Presidency of George W. Bush

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Presidency of George W. Bush
George-W-Bush.jpeg
43rd President of the United States
In office
January 20, 2001 – January 20, 2009
Vice President Dick Cheney
Preceded by Bill Clinton
Succeeded by Barack Obama
46th Governor of Texas
In office
January 17, 1995 – January 21, 2001
Lieutenant Bob Bullock
Rick Perry
Preceded by Ann Richards
Succeeded by Rick Perry
Personal details
Born George Walker Bush
(1946-07-06) July 6, 1946 (age 68)
New Haven, Connecticut
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Laura Bush
Residence Crawford, Texas
Occupation Businessman (Oil, Baseball)
Religion United Methodist
Signature

The presidency of George W. Bush began on January 20, 2001, when he was inaugurated as the 43rd President of the United States of America. The oldest son of former president George H. W. Bush, George W. Bush was elected president in the 2000 general election, and became the second U.S. president whose father had held the same office (John Quincy Adams was the first).

After two recounts, Democratic presidential candidate Vice President Al Gore filed a lawsuit for a third. The Supreme Court's highly controversial decision in Bush v. Gore resolved the dispute. The Florida Secretary of State certified Bush as the winner of Florida. Florida's 25 electoral votes gave Bush, the Republican candidate, 271 electoral votes, enough to defeat Al Gore. Bush was re-elected in 2004. His second term ended on January 20, 2009.

As president, Bush pushed through a $1.3 trillion tax cut program and the No Child Left Behind Act, and also pushed for socially conservative efforts such as the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act and faith-based welfare initiatives. Nearly 8 million people immigrated to the United States in 2000 –2005;[1] nearly half entered illegally.[2]

After the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, Bush declared a global War on Terrorism and, in October 2001, ordered an invasion of Afghanistan to overthrow the Taliban, destroy Al-Qaeda, and to capture Osama bin Laden. In March 2003, Bush received a mandate from the U.S. Congress to lead an invasion of Iraq, asserting that Iraq was in violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1441.[3]

Bush also initiated an AIDS program that committed $15 billion to combat AIDS over five years.[4] His record as a humanitarian included helping enroll as many as 29 million of Africa's poorest children in schools.[5]

On his second full day in office, Bush reinstated the Mexico City Policy; this policy required any non-governmental organization receiving US Government funding to refrain from performing or promoting abortion services in other countries.[6]

Running as a self-styled "war president" in the midst of the Iraq War,[7] Bush won re-election in 2004,[8] as his campaign against Senator John Kerry was successful despite controversy over Bush's prosecution of the Iraq War and his handling of the economy.[9][10]

His second term was highlighted by several free trade agreements, the Energy Policy Act of 2005 alongside a strong push for offshore and domestic drilling, the nominations of Supreme Court Justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito, a push for Social Security and immigration reform, his administration's response to Hurricane Katrina, a surge of troops in Iraq, which was followed by a drop in violence, and several different economic initiatives aimed at preventing a banking system collapse, stopping foreclosures, and stimulating the economy during the recession.[11][12][13][14][15]

The approval ratings of George W. Bush have, at different points in time, run the gamut from high to all-time record low. Bush began his presidency with ratings near 50%.[16] In the time of national crisis following the September 11 attacks, polls showed approval ratings of greater than 85%, peaking in one October 2001 poll at 92%,[16] and a steady 80–90% approval for about four months after the attacks.[17] Afterward, his ratings steadily declined as the economy suffered and the Iraq War initiated by his administration continued. By early 2006, his average rating was near 40%, and in July 2008, a poll indicated a near all-time low of 22%. Upon leaving office the final poll recorded his approval rating as 19%, a record low for any U.S. President.[16][18][19]

Major issues of presidency[edit]

Major legislation[edit]

Legislation signed[edit]