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Lakewood Times

Lakewood Times

Lakewood Times

    George H.W. Bush Dead at 94

    U.S. President George H.W. Bush speaks during a fundraiser in Dallas, on Nov. 1, 1991.
    U.S. President George H.W. Bush speaks during a fundraiser in Dallas, on Nov. 1, 1991.

    Former president, George H.W. Bush, was found dead in his Texas home on Friday, November 30th, 2018. Mr. Bush lived a long, prosperous, and accomplished life from 1924 to 2018, which in turn will set an example for men, women, and children across the nation–here is an overview:

    Mr. Bush was born in 1924 in Milton, Massachusetts. He grew up attending the finest private schools across Connecticut and Massachusetts, and following graduation he joined the U.S Naval Reserve from 1942 to 1944. He was one of the youngest men of his time to become an aircraft controller and went on to win the Distinguished Flying Cross, for serving as a torpedo bomber pilot on an aircraft carrier in the Pacific during World War II.

    After his service, Mr. Bush married Barbara Pierce (Bush) and carried on family tradition by attending Yale University (postponed due to his service), graduating in 1948.

    He and his new family then moved Texas, where he became a field oil supplies salesman and cofounded numerous companies. When in Texas, he became part of the Republican party and secured himself a seat in the House of Representatives. This was only the start, for then Nixon elected Mr. Bush as the U.S Ambassador to the United Nations. However, during the Watergate Scandal, he left the position to become head of the Republican National Committee.

    Following Nixon’s resignation, Gerald R. Ford was the new president and his Vice President was Nelson Rockefeller, who named Mr. Bush as the Chief of the U.S Liaison Office. After that, he became head of the CIA, but in 1977 stepped down to announce his presidency when Jimmy Carter was Elected.

    Except there was one problem: His opponent, Ronald Reagan was far more popular, so he stepped down from his campaign and threw his support behind Reagan instead. Mr. Bush was then picked as Reagan’s running mate and the two beat Jimmy Carter in his run for re-election with a great margin. Throughout the Reagan/Bush era, their popularity only grew due to the rising economy, causing them to win re-election by an even greater landslide in 1984.

    Following his run as VP, he again set his eyes towards the prize, and ran for president–except this time he was the more popular nominee, winning the popular vote 53% over 46% of that of his opponent, Michael Dukakis.

    While President,  Mr. Bush kept Reagan’s economic policies, but also showed more of an interest in foreign policy by invading Panama, signing the mutual non-aggression pact with Mikhail Gorbachev in 1990 after the collapse of the Soviet Union, a victory over Iraq, and by increasing number of troops in Persian Gulf region.

    Although his approval rating was high due to his aggressive foreign policy, that soon came crumbling down. America was now in a recession (due to Bush’s lack of domestic policy), and in response to the recession he did the one thing he promised not to do: raise taxes.

    The utter disapproval from the American people ultimately led to his defeat in the popular vote to Bill Clinton in 1992. In the last few weeks of his time as president, he ordered a U.S military-led mission to feed Somalian citizens effected by war, but he killed eighteen U.S soldiers in doing that. As his approval ratings were spiraling down even lower, he made matters worse by pardoning six Reagan administration officials convicted of illegal actions regarding affairs in Iran.

    After Clinton’s inauguration, Mr. Bush moved back to Houston, Texas, and was not heavily involved with the Republican party moving forward; however his son George W. Bush soon became president, while his other son, Jeb Bush, became governor of Florida. Mr. Bush soon became involved again after the Indian Ocean Tsunami in 2004 to raise money for the victims, those actions eventually led to him being the recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

    When talking with Lakewood High School AP Government teacher, Ron Lewis, he claimed that Bush was “an enigma” due to his loss running for re-election. Lewis continued by saying, “he was a war hero, a fine public servant, and like many presidents he did a lot of good after leaving office. The criticism of him regarding the AIDS epidemic was slightly unfair, the world did not understand the disease and his policies or lack thereof reflected it.”

    Whether you are Republican, Democrat, or somewhere in between, everyone can agree that he was an extremely accomplished man, and will leave a legacy for all to remember him by.

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