Biographies >>US Presidents
President George W. Bush
George W. Bush
was the 43rd President of the United States.
Served as President: 2001 - 2008
Vice President: Richard Bruce Cheney
Age at inauguration: 54
Born: July 6, 1946 in New Haven, Connecticut
Married: Laura Lane Welch Bush
Children: Jenna, Barbara (twins)
Nickname: W (pronounced "dubya")
What is George W. Bush most known for?
George Bush is most famous for being president during the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and ordering the invasion of Afghanistan as retaliation. The United States also invaded Iraq and overthrew the dictator Saddam Hussein in the Second Gulf War while Bush was president.
George's father is President George H.W. Bush. He is the second son of a president to become president, the other being John Quincy Adams, son of John Adams.
George grew up in Texas with his five brothers and sisters. He was the oldest and helped to comfort his mother, Barbara, when his sister, Robin, died of leukemia. George liked sports and his favorite was baseball. He went to high school in Massachusetts and then Yale for college where he majored in history. Later, in 1975, he earned an MBA from Harvard. During the Vietnam War George served in the Air Force National Guard where he was an F-102 fighter pilot.
Before He Became President
After earning his MBA, George returned to Texas where he entered the energy business. He also worked on his father's presidential campaign and became part owner of the Texas Rangers baseball team. He loved baseball and enjoyed being involved with the team.
In 1994 George decided to follow in his father's footsteps and enter politics. He ran for the governor of Texas and won. He became a very popular governor and easily won reelection to a second term in 1998. He decided to take his popularity and run for president in 2000.
A Close Election
Bush ran against Bill Clinton's Vice President, Al Gore. The election was one of the closest in history. It came down to the state of Florida. Votes were counted and recounted. Finally, Bush ended up winning the state by only a few hundred votes.
George W. Bush's Presidency
Soon after Bush was elected, the U.S. economy began struggling. The "dot com" bubble occurred and many people had lost their jobs and their savings. However, George would have other issues to deal with during his presidency that would overshadow the economy.
9/11 Terrorist Attacks
On September 11, 2001 Islamic terrorists called Al-Qaeda hijacked a number of commercial airplanes. Two planes were flown into the Twin Towers in New York City causing the buildings to collapse while a third plane was flown into the Pentagon in Washington D.C. There was also a fourth hijacked plane which crashed in Pennsylvania after passengers bravely tried to gain control of the plane.
Over 3,000 people were killed in the attacks. People in the United States were scared that more attacks were on the way. Bush decided to go on the offensive in order to try to stop further attacks and to catch the al-Qaeda leader, Osama bin Laden. The U.S. soon launched an invasion into the country of Afghanistan in order to destroy the bases of the terrorists.
Bush also believed that Iraq and its ruler, Saddam Hussein, were helping terrorists. His advisors thought that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) such as chemical and nuclear weapons. When Iraq refused to comply with inspections (they were supposed to after losing the First Gulf War), the U.S. invaded.
Although the initial invasion was successful, maintaining control of Iraq, rebuilding the country, and establishing a new government proved to be extremely difficult. As casualties grew and costs increased, Bush's popularity began to diminish.
Despite the unpopularity of the Iraq War, Bush was elected to a second term in 2004. Unemployment began to improve dropping down to 5% by the end of 2006. However, in 2007, Bush lost the support of Congress as the Democrats won a strong majority. Unemployment began to rise and his popularity reached an all-time low by the time he left office.
George and his wife Laura moved to Dallas, Texas after his second term was over. He stayed largely out of the public eye, but worked with President Bill Clinton on a relief effort for Haiti after the island had been devastated by an earthquake.
Fun Facts about George W. Bush
- Bush is the only president to have a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree.
- George's grandfather, Prescott Bush, was a U.S. Senator.
- As governor of Texas he pushed through legislation that helped Texas to become the number one producer of wind powered energy in the United States.
- He likes Mexican food and Pralines and cream ice cream.
- He was nearly assassinated when a man threw a grenade at him in 2005. Fortunately, the grenade did not explode.
- George was an avid jogger while in office. He even ran a marathon once.
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