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tv   A Bush Family Album  FOX News  February 16, 2014 9:00pm-10:01pm PST

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lucky to come out with a commemorative t-shirt. from new york, this is mike huckabee. good night and god bless. stay tuned for twitter @ megyn canc kelly, thank you for joining us. i'm megyn kelly. this is "the kelly file." >> we met at a dance, he was the first person who ever kissed me. i almost fainted from excitement. >> he packed up mother and me and moved out to odessa, texas. and i always have admired him for his pioneering spirit. >> our dad is probably the sweetest person you would meet. he is very kind and good
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fashioned. >> it is amazing how he lives, by his actions. >> he is modest. there is a difference. >> he is not perfect and no one is. but amazingly he is as close as you can get. >> he was the only dad who could catch baseball straight behind his back. he was a cool dad. >> the family of the 41st president of the united states shares intimate stories only they can tell. welcome to a bush family album. i'm brit hume. while historians and journalists will both praise and criticize the president, the family remembers him first and foremost, a loving family man, a man with a servant's heart. on this program, a peek into the bush family. you will hear from bush 41
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himself. he sat in on an interview with his wife and couldn't resist add ing a few comments. just across this cove behind me, walker's point, where the bush family has gathered for generations. and now, a bush family album. >> when i grew up, my mother used to show me a scrapbook of my dad at yale. and pictures of my dad when he was at war. i will never forget in the scrapbook there was a piece of the raft that had rescued him. and the picture of my dad being pulled out of the sea. and was made more real when i thought about that raft, the piece of the raft. >> he is a war hero to many americans. and to his own children. they, the bush kids, describe growing up as our 41st president's sons and daughters. many of the photos inside this until now private album were
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taken at their home on the coast of maine in kennebunkport. >> it means it is a place where our family gathers. >> walker's point is a summer home where years of bush family history has occurred. >> lot of memoryies, happy memories, all of them. >> mother and dad love it there. he loves going there, he loves to fish, with the waves crashing on the rocks. he found solace, and it is a place where his sons a and daughter come to be with had him. >> the only time he was not there was when he was in the military. it is a powerful thing, soothing for my dad. >> my parents had moved almost over 50 times, maybe over 50 times. so we have had a pretty transient life but that has been
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our one constant. we love it. we know our second cousins once removed because of kennebunkport. >> it carries a huge amount of family history in it. but it is neither too opulent or overdone in any way. they're not trying to impress anybody. it says a lot about him and about barbara bush. you know, it is a place for family and friends to be together. and that is the attraction of it. that is what you feel when you're there. >> you can see by his body actions and his words how important kennebunkport is to them. how important it is to him, the joys he gets of watching his grandchildren blossom into adults. and to see the success of his family, i think far exceeds any success that he has had in his life, which in my mind far exceeds anything that anybody
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else in our family has done. >> my husband is great. we have been married 65 years. and there is no dark side. truthfully. someti sometimes he makes me sort of mad but i have never been ashamed or embarrassed about him. and i have always been proud of him. >> george herbert walker bush met barbara pierce after the december 7th attack on pearl harbor. >> and george asked someone there do you know the girl in the red and green dress. >> beautiful girl -- >> no, he didn't say that. he said yeah, george said go cut in on her, in those days we did that. and you can bring her over. which he did do. they played a waltz, and waltzing matilda didn't waltz. and he said do you mind if we sit down for a minute, and i did, and we talked. then i went over to the andover
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dance, and he kissed me. i almost fainted from excitement. 16, 17 -- you were 17? >> you were 16. >> 18 the next day. he was. that is like a song, you were 16. >> i don't think -- >> two teenagers in love with wars in europe and the pacific, the future did not look bright. bush joined his fellow americans and enlisted as soon as he turned 18. he earned his wings and became the youngest pilot in the navy. >> his mother and father were wonderful. and i had a brother who was overseas. i had a brother-in-law who was overseas. but it was different, different times. >> lieutenant junior grade bush flew a bomber off carriers. the targets of his 58 bombing
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missions were japanese installation on small islands in the pacific. bush's wartime diaries includes mention of his close calls, hit by japanese flag, bush completed the mission and then headed to sea. he was able to bail out, but his crew, the tail gunner and radio man did not survive. >> when he was shot down i got a notice that they had seen him rowing away. they thought somebody picked him up. and then his mom called me about a day later saying he is fine, he is in hawaii. he could have come home then, he chose to stay. he is a hugely patriotic american. >> bush arrived home on christmas eve 1944. two weeks later, family and friends attended george and barbara's wedding. >> it was a very funny sort of day, we had a lunch, my honest stood up and wowed them all, and
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he said something nice about and you know barbara means beautiful, when you look it up, barbara means barbaric, strange, but it was the only lie i ever knew -- >> not long after, his father wrote a letter. >> george is at yale, i think he is the big man on campus, but some day he could be president of the united states. he really thought george was wonderful. we did not expect that then. we didn't think he would be the president then, but he worked hard all of his life and did the best he could, i believe. best son, best father, best student. always. must have been hard -- >> athlete. >> best athlete. >> get the pictures for you in a minute. >> barbara bush credits the bush family matriarch for much of her
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husband's success. >> dorothy walker bush wind an extraordinary woman, great woman, she didn't put on airs, be honest, talk about the other fellow, don't talk about yourself. and maybe she made george a fault he shouldn't have had. she told me one day, i think george bush is the greatest president i knew. i knew a lot. he had one fault. he never took credit. >> george h.w. bush's personal modesty has not kept his family and his wife from telling in the way he would how he influenced them and fighting constipation by eating healthier, drinking plenty of water, but still not getting relief? try dulcolax laxative tablets. dulcolax is comfort-coated for gentle, over-night relief. dulcolax. predictable over-night relief you can count on.
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besides the love for my father, was the fact that my dad moved to texas. >> president bush was the oldest of five children. >> he could have stayed up east, gone into wall street, settled into a very comfortable life but instead he packed up mother and me and moved out to odessa, texas, and i always have admired him for his pioneering spirit. >> moving to odessa, texas, well, i had never been here before. it was dusty, but people were wonderful. >> george bush went to texas to build a career on his own instead of following in his father's foot steps. >> he told me he didn't really want to work with something you couldn't touch, like banking or something his family had done and maybe others, too. and he was offered jobs by a lot of groups. who was it that turned you down? proctor & gamble. >> oh, they make a fine soap.
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>> they do make a fine soap. he wanted to go, he went to corpus christi, i think, being trained. and i think he really loved that feeling of doing something different. >> when i think back to midland, texas, i think of baseball. my dad was a very good baseball player, he was the captain of the team. they went to the championship twice, sadly lost both times. i used to love to play catch with him. i remember the first time he said son, i can throw it as hard as i want. which meant a lot to me because it meant i had come of age in terms at least, of me being able to catch a baseball. >> and the bush family began to grow, first with a daughter, robin, and another son, jeb, bush learned the oil business and piloted a corporation with a group of investors in 1953.
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it became an offshore drilling experience with rigs around the world. >> we went through very tough times. when the rig went down, and it is a third of your profits, that is tough. but you have people depending on your livelihood. i think that is important. >> the difficult times the bushes faced in the oil business were nothing that a parent faces when it is their worst nightmare. when 3-year-old robin contracted leukemia and died a year later. learning the payroll became key. >> when he told me he would run for county chairman he didn't quite tell me there were some 300 or 200 precincts. and when he was campaigning i thought they would all fall down and say yes, perfect. all of our friends thought it was nutty. but george rolled up his sleeves, and you loved it.
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>> politics became the family business. and with the same eagerness and drive he used to build his company, george h.w. bush worked his way to the top. >> preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the united states. >> so help me god. >> so help me god. >> congratulations. >> thank you. >> dad had handled his relationship with president reagan extremely well. he remained loyal to the man who had picked him to be the vice president right up into the right moment which was the convention. and when the curtain rose he gave one of the greatest convention speeches ever. and that then helped define who he was. >> i will keep america moving forward, always forward, for a better america, for an endless enduring dream and a thousand points of light. this is my mission and i will complete it. >> my dad is an informal guy. he can relax. and he sure loved his dog,
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ranger. and i love the picture of ranger, relaxed on the rug in the oval office. the picture, to me, speaks about the importance of the job. the amount of work that a president has to do in order to do the job that people expect. having ranger around added some comfort to him. >> george h.w. bush's presidency faced challenges and opportunities on both the international and national fronts. the gulf war gave bush one of the highest approval ratings than any for a president. but his numbers fell sharply during the 1992 presidential campaign. >> i think this is the worst year of my life. watching george bush getting defeated for president. >> i just called governor clinton over in little rock and offered my congratulations. he did run a strong campaign. >> what was interesting about the moment, mother's attitude was it is over get on with your
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life. that is exactly what we did. with his help. and his encouragement. >> george called everyone to come into the east room. the staff. they were very, very proud of him. and a wonderful announcement, ladies and gentlemen, the president of the united states. and in walks -- and he was funny. >> actually, i was staying in the lincoln bedroom last night and i couldn't resist getting on the phone and called the president, feel like going jogging tonight? in the nude? >> i remember a lot of things. wouldn't be prudent. not going to do it. >> he always had these silly gestures which i don't use. not gonna do it. wouldn't be prudent. that kind of thing. >> and george you were very good, you insisted everybody in the white house work to the last moment and that they help the clinton people as best they could, and i think they did.
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and you know, his precious mother died the day that the clinton's came to see the white house. >> the loss of the presidency for george bush held an unusual twist of fate. >> i thought about it a lot. it just broke my heart when he said i realize that with the press against you, and you don't have the house or the senate, george never had that, that you would have had the worst four years of your life. and not me, just the family. and it took a little while for me to buy that but i think that is true. >> and maybe george wouldn't have been elected president. >> he wouldn't, well, he wouldn't have been governor. so maybe that is okay. >> would have been very difficult for me to have run in 1994, and difficult for jeb to have run in 1994. so his pain, the pain of loss made it possible for us to run for public service which i found to be one of the great ironies of my life. >> for only the second time in
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american history a father and son each had served as president. john adams was our second president and son, john quincy adams, number six. george bush 43 remembers his first day in office and the surprise visit from 41. >> and i was kind of sitting in the office just reflecting, absorbing the environment. and in walks my father. it was a very touching moment that he would come and share the early moments of my presidency with me. >> president george h. bush and president george bush share some things in common. >> he didn't have a vision about what i should do in life. he didn't say look you need to go out and practice fielding for ten hours a day because i want you to be a great shortstop. his attitude was i'll provide examples for you on how to live your life. i'll set certain values and go
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get it. i wish you all the very best. obviously, if we needed help or advice he was there. but he never really tried to steer the course of our life, for which i am eternalily grateful. >> i think it is fabulous, but not to the point where i want to emul emulate him. when he was a kid after getting shot down he couldn't remember the moments so he wanted to relive what it was like to jump out of an airplane. since then he is serving as an example to older citizens that you know, you can live life to the fullest. and i think it is really cool. >> throughout his life, president george h.w. bush set examples for others to follow, including me. i followed bush 41 out of the side of an airplane at the celebration of his 80th birthday. it was very cool. indeed, very cold at 13,000 feet. we'll be right back. ♪
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etern . >> our dad is probably the sweetest person you would ever meet. he is very thoughtful and kind and good and old fashioned in that way. he just makes you feel like a very special person when you're with him. he has that ability. for example, when i call him on the phone he has the most enthusiastic -- is that you? and he is just pretty special. >> he was the only dad who could catch a baseball ten straight times behind his back. he is like a good wine, he has gotten better with age. he is a cool guy. >> dorothy bush coke and marvin
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bush are the youngest of the family. as they grew up, their father entered the o-- left the oil business to enter politics. >> when you see your father on the billboard, it is pretty neat. he ran for congress and was one of only 24 congressmen at that point in texas who was a republican. the only republican. so that was a pretty big deal. and then you know as your profile rises in politics, there is more scrutiny. and for those of us who obviously care about my dad it gets tougher and tougher. >> but with his family's support and despite many political battles, bush never shied away from seeking public office. >> we had lived in washington a lot. he was a congressman when george was head of the cia, head of the republican party. he was a lot of things. he is a man who can't say no. >> after the thankless job of
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heading the republican party, president ford offered bush a choice of enviable posts. >> i think it was the best thing that happened to us. >> i was thinking about the weather. we learned -- in the state departments, i would talk to myself. and when i got over there, not one thing that i had learned was appropriate. but how much does it cost? every american knew that. i loved it. the food was divine. >> we did take a really fun trip to china. we were over there for a month or a couple of months. and we traveled. my mom became an expert on a lot of the tourist sites in china.
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it was a pretty forbidden time. >> and there were further interesting times for the bush children. >> when your dad became president, i mean, it was a huge thrill. it was not a surprise, really, i mean, it is not as if he was not qualified to be president. i don't know, it kind of fit. but for us, it was just the same. >> i will say it was not all that fun that much of the time. because the intensity is just ratcheted up. all of us were very protective of our dad. there was a newsweek article, i thought to myself, the wimp factor. and i thought this is odd. this perception that he -- he went to washington, here is guy who literally watched his daughter die which takes a lot of courage to keep a family together after that. here is a guy who by virtue of
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the way he lived his life, had he was anything but a wimp. and so you have a perception, and then there is reality. so you can handle that in a couple of ways. you can retreat, or you can do what we did, which is spend more time with him. >> my dad is famous for letter writing. and so that gives you a look of who he is. >> george bush expressed his gratitude to others through a continual stream of personal letters and notes. they were edited and put into a book by his long-time assistant. he wrote the letters, describing them as, my heart is full of joy, caring and rejoicing letters. >> so he just had no interest in looking back at his life. he sits in his office and thinks of ideas of fun plans and things to do in the future. and who can he call? >> daughter doro was the author
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of "my father." the memoir he was too modest to write. in 2006, the george h.w. bush was christened. it seems appropriate to honor him for a life of service to his country. doro got to wield the champagne bottle. >> the world's best sponsor, she really is, she is unbelievable, she has put in a library. she put in tapes for the moms and dads to read a child's book and then send the tape home so they can hear the voice. that is nice. she has been a great sponsor. >> on june tenth, 2012, the bush family welcomed the ship to the maine coast. they spent time with the crew of 60 sailors. >> they sent me a picture of the
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new carrier, this thing, gosh, it's beautiful. beautiful. that is one part of the navy. i loved being at sea. >> are you ready? >> yes, sir. >> hold on. >> for a guy who is sort of -- lives you know, life straight down the middle he is very aggressive in his vote. >> i'm not going to say reckless, because he is not reckless, because he is good at driving the boat. but for an 85-year-old dude to go 50 miles an hour over 40-feet waves it is pretty aggressive. >> whenever he had the chance, george bush shared his love of the ocean, fishing and fast boats with family and friends. >> dad was anxious to give president putin at the time a ride in his boat. he is an outdoor man, an adventurer, we get into his boat. and of course, after a slow
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start he cranks that baby up. it was interesting to watch vladimir's reaction to the older former president blasting across the atlantic. fortunately, diplomatic relations were not severed at that moment. >> one thing you will know in talks and knowing my father, he has literally 200 people who think they're among his five best friends. we always joke in our family about having the fifth beatle, meaning there are four boys and another dude out there. >> and we call those four boys brother from another mother. because there are tons of them. >> coming up, he was a political rival but also a great admirer of president george h.w. bush. >> they refer to me as the black sheep son. sheep son. i'm the one that strayed if you have high blood pressure like i do, many cold medicines may raise your blood pressure. that's why there's ricidin hbp
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log onto foxnews.com. welcome back to a bush family album. coming up, jeb bush, neil bush, and the self-described black sheep of the bush family, former president bill clinton tell us what they thought about president george h.w. bush, and why. my dad is the most complete man i know. >> governor john ellis, jeb bush. >> it is hard to describe him as a son. but he is courageous, he is
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honest, he has unimpeachable integrity. all the traits he has, for someone who is nearing perfection. he is not, no one is, but amazingly as close as he can get. >> but the trait that jeb, the second son admired most in his father was courage. >> my dad exhibited that his entire life, starting as the youngest navy pilot in world war ii. moving, that took courage, to run for office for the minority party in the easterly days of the -- early days of tonight republican party. remember, when he got involved in politics he was 40. he was a business guy, he traveled a lot. he was working hard. but when he was with us, it was always fun. we always did things. we were always going to a
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baseball game, going to play tennis or just outdoors. he was not strict. but when we messed up, his words of simply saying i'm disappointed in you, was devastating. it was like a thousand lashes and one month stuck in your room. so his means of child rically t example. >> being an example and setting standards for george bush was his role, barbara bush dealt with the day to day business of raising the family. >> i'm considered the meanest person in the world. >> the meanest? >> well, toughest. every one of the boys who gives a speech can't wait to needle their mother. i mean, like george w. in florida called me once, and jeb in the car, governor and president. and he says mom, don't watch the news tonight.
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and i hear this roaring with laughter. and so of course, i say what is the matter? jeb finally gets it out. he said well, today, a young girl asked the president is it important to eat as a family? and he said yes. and she said did you eat as a family? and he said -- >> i did eat with my family, so long as my mother was not cooking. just kidding, mom. >> that is just an average bush joke. right? right. >> in the '88 campaign i worked fulltime so it was also kind of personal for me, very gratifying to see the victory, people forget this, but he was down 15 points in the polls with two months to go. it shows the extraordinary tenacity of my dad to inspire everybody to work harder. if you look at the four years it was packed with really incredible event that is could have gone many different ways,
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but for my dad to act on his convictions. >> the world is such that this aggression will not stand, and it will not stand. >> it came out when the war was focused on operation desert storm. the public impression is that my dad is this nice guy and nice guys can't be tough. that is probably the biggest fallacy, you can be tough and be kind. in fact, being tough in a bravado sense is not tough. you want presidents that act on principle and then carry it out. he did. >> as president, i can report to the nation, aggression is defeated. the war is over. >> it is something that he will get sick when he hears it, but i think as a public figure, the fact that my dad has literally
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thousands of friends, thousands of friends, he has people that will be undyingly loyal to him. that is an extraordinary legacy if you think about it. if you think about it. not many people can earn so, i'm working on a cistern intake valve, and the guy hands me a locknut wrench. no way! i'm like, what is this, a drainpipe slipknot? wherever your business takes you, you can se money with progressive commercial auto. [ sighs ] [ flo speaking japanese ] [ shouting in japanese ] we work wherever you work. now, that's progressive. call or click today. sunny bubbly? cozy or cool? "meow" or "woof"? wheels or wheeeels? everng exactly the way you want it ... until boom, 's bedtime. your mattress isn't bliss: it's a battleground of thwarted dere. enter the sleep number bed.
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. oh, boy, what do i know that the rest of the world doesn't know? i mean, that is a tough question. i mean, everybody knows he hates broccoli. so that doesn't count. >> neil bush, the third born bush boy is the head of the points of light institute. it was started during his father's presidency. >> he has an enduring belief in this human quality of giving to others. and he models that for people in
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his own life. he is the most unselfish human being i think you will probably ever meet. it is amazing how he lifts people not only by his example but by his actions. he is a very remarkable man. basically all of my teenage life and on he has been in political service. but i mean, it was very normal. and everyone thinks he drives around in limos or fly around in personal airplanes or eat in the best restaurants, you know, we really have a very normal life. dad was out there cooking the burgers when i was a young kid. i think he is a pretty average family with exceptional parenting. i always thought so highly of him, i thought he would be a great president. in fact we all worked hard to help him. >> along with the perks of living in the white house, that was not an option for the bush children. >> mom, dad supported her, she
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said if ever you were elected president, we wouldn't live in the white house. we were independent adults and so they stuck to that. i think when the historians do look back at my father's presidency they're going to see a remarkable pattern of success in everything he did. on the domestic side and on the foreign policy side, the tearing down of the berlin wall. you know, he dealt with the tiananmen crisis in china, and dealt with it with a diplomatic savvy, obviously, when saddam attacked kuwait, my father dealt with that in exactly the right way. gave saddam every chance in the world to right his wrong. and then when he stopped at the border it was the right thing to do. >> on the domestic side you know there were issues related to the economy and taxation and he
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worked to compromise with congress which turned out to be his downfall. because he made the very famous, kind of in politics, the saying. >> read my lips. >> he did what was right at the time. and the economists in reflecting on his actions, support what he did to keep the economy going. he signed into law the legislation for the disabilities act. he signed into law the first volunteer service oriented act for the united states. had he had some legacy actions, domestic and foreign, that will put him at the very high ranks, i'm a little biassed, obviously, but at the very high ranks of being a president. i think one of my own personal legacies, from my own selfish legacy, is the commitment to volunteer, and encourage others to pitch in and do what they can to make the world a better pl e
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place. >> on july 16th, 2013, george bush was invited to the white house for a presentation. for the 5,000th time, the points of light institute presented their award. president obama took this opportunity to thank the institute's founder. >> we are surely a kinder and gentler nation because of you. and we can't thank you enough. >> just like a rock, he just has this steady civility and kindness and givingness and lovingness. and he never wavered one iota from that. coming up, the bush brother from another mother, president bill clinton. his
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i always liked him. you know, i liked him because after he had a very tough fight with president reagan, when he finished second and he was asked to be vice president and he did. >> though they were once strong political opponents, it turns out former president bill clinton was always one of george h.w. bush's admirers. 1983. gov association met up in maine. and he hosted them at his house. so we went there and i had my daughter who was then three years old i walked up to the vice president and i said, mr. vice president i'd like you to meet this man the president of the united states and she said where is the
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bathroom? he took her to the bathroom and introduced my daughter to his mother who was then still living. and made a big impression on me. it's the kind of man he s he's kind and treats everybody with respect. he's interested in people. >> the two men did not agree on many issues president clinton was struck by bush's integrity >> i wasn't an idealoge. he voted for open housing bill to integrate housing in america i thought that showed he had character to be open to the facts and i liked him because i thought he was a very good man. i think he will go down in history to one of the positive things he did to improve security of the united states in his term which was in part
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reflection of the failure of communication and a reflection of the success of every american president from hairy -- harry truman. >> we celebrated the 200th anniversary of the white house in 2000 i invited all living presidents and former first ladies there. it was an amazing night of american history but after the 2000 election and before the supreme court awarded election to president bush, his son. so there they were, sitting in the white house, they had to be calm and try to enjoy this and try to realize the weight of the moment. they had no idea whether his son was going to be president or not. they handled it. they were amazing.
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>> former presidents gather for events on rare occasions but bush and clinton have been found together time and again. in 2004 on the day after christmas a earthquake shook and a tsunami hit the coast of southeast asia. for 200,000 people were dead or missing, many areas, destroyed the two presidents showed americans that we're sometimes more united than divided. this unlikely team raised over $1 billion in relief funds >> one of the countries hardest hit was maldives. they didn't understand what part of india was hurt. what happened in thailand. we rekindled our bond existing before the election. z.in 92. in a way this wasn't possible in years when i was
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president. and i loved it. we had a great time together z i think we did a lot of good. >> the unusual partnership tapped again the next year after hurricane katrina devastated the gulf coast. >> made people feel good to see a republican and democrat and two people who run against each other working together. it caused people to relax. we still don't agree on everything. they refer to me as their black sheep son, but that is the way america should work. before people get out of politics. you know? i think we just have to keep struggling to find common ground in this country. on his part it was genuine. he cared about the work we did together and enjoyed time we spent together. he believes that people who have had opportunities we've had in life should serve as long as they live. and are able. and i
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want people to know that about him. he is a good man. >> president clinton believes george bush should be remembered and admired for the way he lived his life. >> if every american could have seen him driving that speed boat not only with daring but skill, he became the same man who was the youngest fighter pilot that shot out of the air in world war ii when he was only 18. you just get that almost boyish excitement and fire, you can see that is the secret to every man and woman's life. you know? you have to have something to look forward to. find joy in the moment. he does. the idea he's still jumping out of airplanes every five years to mark his birthday is astonishing. so that is what i'd like for people to remember about him the guy has a lot of juice. he loves life. and he is a
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genuinely good man. >> some people find it astonishing these two political rivals became such good friends i've interviewed them both. i know their relationship to be genuine. as president bush said just because you you disagree on something doesn't mean you can't work together. that is an attitude that once separated much of american politics from the world. it's basic to the character of president george hw bush. now, we close with these final words. >> he was professional and he was a man with a great heart. he caught me values matter, principles matter. >> he's loyal, kind, thoughtful. he's funny. >> for us, it's no other greater gift we can have. >> the final legacy is that he's going to be remembered as the
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president that just had a great love for people. you know? and his ability to bring out the best in people. >> history is like an ocean rather than a stream. you can't impact events but over time, the kilo of affect of people looking at that period of time, i think my dad will be treated really well. to complicate ♪
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>> are you a member of the privileged class? you get special breaks in life? politicians say. >> we will all benefit from it. >> all don't benefit. the privileged benefit. >> is there any other large employer that gets the same treatment? >> it doesn't only apply to congress. >> we will be darned if we are going to lose their health insurance because of unintended consequences. >> so unio

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