Dobson on Bush: Greatest president or greatest president ever?
Exhorting the eminence of former President George W. Bush, Focus on the Family’s James Dobson and its new lobbyist Tim Goeglein, who left the White House as a disgraced former aide to Karl Rove, waxed rhapsodic for the better part of 90 minutes on the radio about the former Leader of the Free World’s morality, faith and championing of the antiabortion culture wars.
The stunning three-part “Insider View of the Bush Presidency” discussion culminated today on Focus on the Family’s Daily Broadcast and drew sharp, if unspoken, contrasts with a morally-lacking President Barack Obama.
According to Dobson, Bush’s “winsome” charms didn’t translate to public speeches while “Obama is in the White House today because of that ability to read off a teleprompter.”
A compilation of the running Dobson and Goeglein broadcasts are courtesy of Right Wing Watch.com, but the entire June 8-10 interview broadcasts are well worth a listen.
Following is a transcript of the broadcast excerpt prepared by The Colorado Independent:
James Dobson: There are undoubtedly some people listening to us today who are going to sneer at what you just said because George W. Bush was certainly one of the most hated presidents that we’ve had — certainly in recent memory.
He was maligned at every turn but I know you admire him greatly, don’t you?
Tim Goeglein: I do, indeed. In fact, I see George W. Bush as a great president. And I believe that George Walker Bush was right about the most important things that came across his presidency in those eight years, Dr. Dobson.
First, without peer, is that he saw the greatest external threat to our national security. And he saw it immediately. And he prosecuted the war in such a way that from 9/11 and the terror and terribleness of the day — and I was in the White House that day — until the last minute of the last hour of his presidency, George W. Bush kept us safe.
Providence kept us safe.
But George W. Bush was the instrument in God’s hand as the leader of the free world.
And every problem imaginable that comes across your desk when you’re the President of the United States. But history will be kind to George Bush because they will see that through a series of very important decisions his leadership, his personal character and integrity added up to the forbearance of another direct attack on the United States of America.
The primary role of the Commander in Chief is our national security. And, yes, I believe that part of the greatness of George W. Bush was not to see this as an intelligence problem primarily. To not see it as a police action.
Dobson: Yeah, yeah.
Goeglein: But to actually see it for what it was. Of course, this was the great blessing of our first president George Washington — the original George W. — who, you know, the thing that made him in Thomas Flexner’s landmark biography “The Indispensable Man,” the greatest trait of Washington was to see things as they were and not as he wanted to see them.
That was George W. Bush’s gift.
When he came to this war, he immediately — upon being told of the attacks — knew that this was war and that we were being attacked existentially by radical Islam.
But the one thing that we did not talk about, I think is the greatest achievement of the former president, beyond the security question, is the fact that George W. Bush is the most pro-life and pro-family president in the history of the United States.
Dobson: Now, I’ve said that on many, many occasions here at Focus on the Family and I want you to address it. George Bush is the most pro-life and pro-family president in history. Validate that statement for us.
Goeglein: I was getting ready to come to the broadcast and I literally jotted these down. These are quick snapshots of the Bush Administration on life.
• Signed and reinstituted the Mexico City Agreement
• Signed the Unborn Victims of Violence Act
• Signed the Born Alive Infants Protection Act
• Vetoed the partial birth abortion bill
And, very importantly, fought it in several appellate courts.
He had the most pro-life, anti-cloning provision, ever. He instituted the most important pro-life provision in his presidency which was a pro-human dignity, pro-life stem cell research policy.
He created the conscience clause laws provisions.
I may say, as well, that George W. Bush funded pro-marriage programs. Was the greatest funder of abstinence education in the history of the United States.
He gave Henry Hyde the Medal of Freedom, the most pro-life member of the United States Senate or House, ever.
And I think very importantly, Dr. Dobson, and this is something that I think that is at the pinnacle of pro-life, pro-family achievement in this administration, the Bush administration, he elevated John Roberts to be the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court for the United State of America. He appointed Samuel Alito to be an Associate Justice …
Dobson: A great justice too.
Goeglein: … two great justices. And, this is something people do not know, that George W. Bush nominated and confirmed over 35 percent of sitting federal judges.
Dobson: So his impact on the judiciary is going to continue for a long time.
Goeglein: It is huge. It is huge and it’s lasting.
Dobson: Does it break your heart what is about to happen to the judiciary?
Goeglein: It more than breaks my heart. To watch it unravel in a few short months by a new president is a heartbreaking, disappointing and difficult thing to watch. It is systematic and it is categorical. And we have gone in America from the most pro-life president in the history of our country to, unfortunately, the most pro-abortion president that we’ve ever had.
It is not possible to president of the United States of America, in the early part of the 21st century, and to know what we know morally and technologically and to find any reason other than a full-throated advocate for the pro-life position.
Dobson: Yeah, when President Obama spoke recently at Notre Dame about abortion he talked about our need to come together, to find areas of agreement. He said that we needed to work together. We needed to accommodate each other.
But you can’t compromise with evil. I mean, in what way are you going to compromise with the killing of babies?
Goeglein: There is no compromise. There can be no compromise on the question of the defense of the innocent pre-born.
All of the millions of people who have worked in both in the leadership and the vanguard of the pro-life movement, they will be vindicated. If by divine providence Roe v. Wade were to be overturned. And we were to start again in the United State on the question of life.
It is simply unacceptable that from 1973 until 15 seconds ago, that something like 45 million innocent pre-born lives have been snuffed out in defense of words like “choice.”
George W. Bush’s greatness as a human being, apart from the presidency, is that he has an inner moral compass that is self-confident. That is loyal. That is powered by integrity.
But Dr. Dobson it wells up from his faith in Christ. This is who the man is.
He is a great thinker. He is a person who prays and works to make the right decision. He has an inner confidence and peace in his soul that that was the right thing.
Dobson: And nothing is going to shake his confidence.
Goeglein: I think that is absolutely right. And that’s why I’m actually very confident and hopeful that in the years ahead — with the benefit of time and space — that historians will look back at those remarkable, incredibly eventful eight years, and say, you know, he made the right decisions about the biggest things during those eight years.
And, yes, maybe he will not be remembered, you know, of Churchillian, you know, eloquence. Maybe he will not be remembered for X, Y and Z. But when it comes to the questions of national security and war, when it comes to the questions of the right to life and when it comes to the questions of our constitutional Republic, national sovereignty and constitutional formulation of the Supreme Court — above all when it comes to the innocent pre-born people will say he got those big ones right.
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