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Bush Center Dedication

Bush Center Dedication

keeping a low profile for the last four years former President George W. Bush is making a comeback in big way today.

Bush 43 is returning for the dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Center at Southern Methodist University.

“SMU has got visionary leaders and it’s got a active alumni association. It’s got a faculty that is dedicated and smart, and it has a great student body,” Bush said in a recent speech at the school.

The former President is looking forward to a long run on campus.

“We’re going to promote freedom in the Middle East, freedom of the markets and freedom of our own society by encouraging educational excellence,” Bush said.

The library will feature over 70 million pages of paper records. All five living former Presidents (Bush 43, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, jimmy Carter and Barrack Obama) will be there, something Presidential historian Terry Madonna says is rare.

“It’s not something that we see very often. It’s truly an historical event,” Madonna told KTRH.

Madonna says it's an exclusive club.

“We’re going to promote freedom in the Middle East, freedom of the markets and freedom of our own society by encouraging educational excellence,” Bush said.

The library will feature over 70 million pages of paper records. All five living former Presidents (Bush 43, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, jimmy Carter and Barrack Obama) will be there, something Presidential historian Terry Madonna says is rare.

“It’s not something that we see very often. It’s truly an historical event,” Madonna told KTRH.

Madonna says it's an exclusive club.

“Each of them understand the pressure, the climate in which they had to serve and the atmosphere,” Madonna explained.

Because of what happened in Boston, former FBI agent Danny Deffenbaugh told KTRH security is going to be ramped up.

“You’ll have additional security enhancements. They’ve already advertised that certain streets will be closed,” Deffenbaugh said.

But Deffenbaugh says what you see in terms of security won't be anything you haven’t seen before.

“You won’t see radical changes because they’ve been planning this security for quite some time,” Deffenbaugh explained.

The dedication ceremony is set to begin at 10 o'clock. The library will officially open to the public on May 1st.

Legacy Becoming Clearer Over Time

Whether it was the attacks of 9/11, or Shuttle Columbia disaster,

George W. Bush's presidency was one marred by tragedy and controversy. 

However, longtime friend and former campaign media advisor Mark McKinnon insists there were triumphs as well.

"He implemented the most dramatic federal education reforms in decades, demanding accountability in standards for our kids," McKinnon says of No Child Left Behind.  "Those are starting to show some real advances with fourth and eighth graders in math and science."

McKinnon also points to Bush's 'compassionate conservatism.'

"What he did with his emergency relief program on AIDS arguably saved the continent of Africa, we know it saved at least 2 million lives," he says.

Bush also kept unemployment around 5.6% and domestic spending down to 20% or less of the Gross Domestic Product, something McKinnon says had only happened once in 40 years by any other president.

McKinnon believes given the challenges Bush faced at the time, people are starting to realize he held the union together through one of the toughest times in our nation's history.

See Part 1 & Part 2 of interview with George W. Bush and wife Laura Bush about the library & museum dedication.

 

 

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