tv Greta Van Susteren FOX News November 13, 2010 1:00am-2:00am EST
and there were troops guarding interceptions. the scene of the first war of the 21st century. >> don't miss the full hour with president bush at 9:00 p.m. eastern. that's all the time we have left tonight. thank you for being with us. have a great weekend! ♪ ♪ ♪ captioned by closed captioning services, inc >> greta: tonight, you spend the entire hour with president george w. bush. we're going to take you to texas where president bush goes on the record about his new book "decision point." the former president has been quiet since leaving office. but not anymore. you're going to get the inside story on the bush white house. then president bush takes you to the site of his future presidential center. tonight he gives you a sneak peek at artifacts that will be housed in the presidential museum, including the famous
ground zero bull horn and a gun found on saddam hussein when he was captured. first, here is president bush on the record. >> nice to see you. i'm feeling good about life. thank you. >> you look like you feel good about life. new book. things look great. >> i spent a lot of the time in the post presidency writing the book. i'm happy with the way it came out. i hope people read it. >> it's interesting. you are in an exclusive club of few people and expresidents. interesting that you have a rear-view mirror. happy to be out of the white house, happy to be in retirement, unhappy? >> not really. >> mixed feelings? >> i miss being commanderer in chief. i miss my buddies in the white house. but i don't long for something that is not possible.
i am very content in texas. i made the decision to not be involved. in opining on subjects. i did so for a couple of reasons, one to regain any sense of anonymity. two, i don't think it's good to criticize my successor, i don't think it's good for the country or the presidency. i am living a good life in texas and busy. >> how is your family and your mother? i saw you throw out the first pitch the other night. >> i did. >> highlight of my life. but driving that at the wall at the stadium in articling top to watch the beloved rangers play and sitting next to a man i adore and listening to the crowd respond to him
was enbelievably good. then nolan ryan was there. a special moment. >> i once sat behind your mother at a baseball game and she was doing the box score and she seemed to know more about baseball than anybody! >> she is a box scorekeeper. i can remember looking at the box score of my father's games. little league. mother kept score in those days as well. avid baseball fan. i love the sport. >> your mother told me that you put things in the book you say you maybe you shouldn't mention. but after she had heart ral-replacement, with pig's heart that you oink around her.
is that true? >> i call and say how are you feeling? i said i thought the first words out of your mouth would be oink. we have an awe nic relationship i tried to define in the book, to give people a sense for my relationship with my dad and my relationship with my mom. i am a blessed guy to have two wonderful parents. >> you describe yourself more like your mother, you inherited her traits. >> that's true. i have an irreverent streak as does my mother. i like to needle. as does my mother. it had my daddy's eyes and my mother's mouth. trying to encapsulate who i am. it captures it well. you see, mother and i developed a you unique bond, particularly after my sister died.
i was the person who got smothered by her affections and that is a natural reaction for a mom who just lost a young child. jeb had just been born. she smothered him but a different smothering. a story in the book to tell a friend of mine i can't come out and play because i have to play with my mother. it was then that she realized she needed to cut me loose. the book chronicles why we developed this unique relationship. >> you talk about robin, and your father gets choked up about it. you write about seeing your parents cry. >> for the first time i did. i was coming out of my classroom in midland.
a car pulled up. it rush over to the car. i thought i saw robin and there was no robin. mother and dad came back from new york where they sent her to get her help or use her disease as a way to research childhood leukemia. they told me that she passed away. they were weeping. for me it was lost of a playmate. for them it was the loss of a child. i don't chronicle it in the book but a death of child could have fractured their marriage. it was such a strong marriage, they endured it, the death probably brought them closer together. >> even today when i spoke to your father, it's hard for him. >> he loves his children and his little girl. >> you talk about it, he was upset, not to jump ahead.
but marvin in his presidency, it was hard on him. >> neil. >> yeah. >> i talk about this anecdote. >> he said he was thinking about not running. id said i hope you do. he said why? he felt like his position caused there to be harrial criticism. of neil and it hurt him. >> you needled a woman, one of the decisions to give up drinking about sex over 50. got to repeat that. >> i chronicle story in the book. i want reader to understand i'm a quipster and the alcohol made the quips i'm stupid
sometimes. i'm at the dinner table in maine and next to a beautiful woman and a friend of our family's who should remain nameless. i said what is sex like after 50? my brothers and sisters were staring at the stable and my parents and my wife were staring at me like what an idiot kind of thing. the next morning i had remorse and i called her and apologized. the funny thing is when i turned 50, i get a note saying what is it like? she had a great sense of humor about it. >> i bet your mother wasn't amused. >> nobody was amused. i tell the story, because i -- because quitting drinking was instrumental in my life. i wouldn't be sitting here as a former president had i not grit drinking. i hope somebody who reads the book realizes he or she can
quit drinking. alcohol became loud mouth soup. i did foolish things when i drank. >> you are in an exclusive club of being expresident. but i imagine watching your dad in the ingnaw ration, did you think you would be there some day? >> no. i really didn't. i quit by saying if i planned on being president i would have behaifed better as a kid. i never planned to be president. when i became governor and people started to speculate, i began to think about it. as i say in the book, i watched him sworn in and it was proud moment for me and the family. i every envisioned me being in the same spot he was in when he was sworn in.
>> bill clinton relationship with the president. since your father lost in '92, he was big to get over the grudge. >> i feel that way, too. i talk about the 2004 election. mother and doad were there for the election. they left and i felt he had a sense of relief in the voice. you don't want to welcome someone in the white house who defeated you in an election. he handled it with dignity. his relationship with bill clinton speaks volume about both. >> it's easier to be bigger when you won. i like president clinton.
i don't mean that, but when you have been on the losing end, i think that's harder. bigger person. >> bill clinton has been gracious to my dad. and all of our family appreciates how he has treated dad. i admire how dad handled the relationship with bill clinton. bill clinton and i have a good relationship. we work together on the haiti fund and occasionally we give speeches together. i would classify him as a friend. >> greta: next, inside story and the 2000 election. when did al gore tell president bush not to get snippy. has bush spoken to gore since election 2000? then a special sneak peek at historic artifacts that are going into president bush's museum. letter from bono to president bush. and much much more coming up. [ advisor 1 ] what do you see yourself doing one week,
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>> greta: we know you remember the road to the white house for president bush included the wildest election in the history of the united states. jump in. 2000, that was quite a race we watched. >> yes. it was quite a race. and it, it took a while for the verdict. >> a little bit. it was a couple of weeks. >> and it was.
i had james a. baker a family friend to go to florida and manage recount for us. once he got down there, and assembled a team of people to deal with it, i had all the confidence he would recommend my interest. which freed me to think about the administration that i felt like i was going to be in a position to put in place. enable he to go to the ranch with laura, unwinding from the campaign and thinking about a transition that was shortened by the controversy. i put in the book, you know, that i got a phone call, and was lying in bed when the verdict by the supreme court was read allowed. put probably the only person who took the presidency lying in bed. i remind people that the supreme court decision was 7-2
on the key issue and 5-4 on the remedy. in other words, it was overwhelming decision by the court. jo who said don't be snippy? you or vice president gore? >> vice president gore called to concede. and we had a very gracious in the phone call and he asked if he could go out and speak first to his crowd. and asked me to wait. so i said sure. but he never went out to speak. it took time. and finally donnie evans got ahold of bill daily and he put gore on the phone. gore said, you know, i'm not conceding anymore. i said in texas when a person gives their word, they mean it. he said well don't get snippy. it was an amazing night. a night in which i had been declared a loser, and it turns out the exit polls were wrong. and had been declared the winner. which created a sense of
exhilaration. then declared neither of us won. creating sense of frustration. turns out the way it was. it's unfortunate it drug on, because i was -- the country was divided. this were people that were bitter that vice president gore didn't win. that bitterness was a part of the noise in washington, d.c. when i became the president. >> greta: have you spoken to him since? sat down to talk about the election? >> no. never have. >> greta: would you like to? it seems -- >> i don't think there's much to say. you know, it's long past. if people are interested in my reflection, buy my book. >> he next takes you back to morning of 9/11. we have seen the video when
>> greta: when president bush came in office he expected to be the education president. that changed morning of september 11, 2001. the morning of september 11, when i read your book, i thought the first time that you knew something was awry was when andy card came in front of the children. but rove tipped you off something unusual happened? >> as we're walking in the school, the classroom to tout
reading in public schools, carl said the plane hit the world trade center. condi called me and said a mane hit the world trade center. my reaction was it was an accident. i couldn't especially vision an attack at that point time. i'm thinking bad pilot, bad weather. it'm hustled in the classroom and andy was in my ear, second mraep hit the world trade center, america is under attack. my first reaction was anger. and then i looked at the kids and my role as president became clarified. my job was to protect the american people. all of a sudden, started getting the the phone calls, the press. and i knew my reaction were being recorded. i decided to wait for the appropriate moment to leave the classroom. it didn't want to disrupt,
create a sense of panic. i want project a sense of calm and deliberation. in crisis, people look at the leader, if the leader panics, i was fearful -- the psychological tsunami would accelerate. anyway, the appropriate moment i got up and left the classroom. he knew i needed to make a statement. which i did. who expect me to talk about reading and heard america has been attacked. there was shock and worry and emotion. that all the rest of the country was feeling. >> story aside after that, i read in the book that you didn't want to scare the kids. in the room. you also well the world is watching, you had a room full of kids there. >> that's my point.
in other words, creating a sense of panic would have been one way to do so would have scared the kids. i had been in crisis before as governor of texas. nothing like this, of course. it's very important for people head of an organization to project a sense of calm. and not to create a lot of emotion. and effect the psychology that people who you are trying to lead. if the leader panics or creates panic, everybody else will panic. >> the whole day was something to plan for. even the order to shoot a plane down. if that had happened, come to pass, citizens flying from chicago to los angeles. >> right.
i gave the ordinaries for fighters to identify aircraft that looked suspicious. prior to grounding aircraft. give them a chance to respond. if they didn't respond, shoot them down. eventually, once the planes were grounded, any aircraft that was flying would be subject to the same order upon identification. one flier would fly up to the airplane to give it a chance to head down to a peaceful landing. if not, the order was to shoot down. flight 93 went down, my first reaction was, my first concern was maybe the order i had given had caused the death of american lives. it turns out i was wrong,
thankfully. and that the world witnessed one of the greatest acts of courage ever. those are u.s. citizens storming the plane to save the lives of others. >> greta: the reason i know you wrote the book, that somebody else didn't write it, not to diminish 9/11 but at one point you had a conversation with your mother, where are you? brookfield, wisconsin. what are you doing there? you grounded the plane. family aspect of it. >> the only moment of levity during the day. >> giving you hell. >> she did. where are you, mom? he says in wisconsin. why? she said you grounded our plane. a great relief to hear mom and dad and relief for a laugh in what was a long and traumatic day for many americans. >> coming you up, one of the
stunners in decision point. president bush considered dropping vice president dick cheney from the ticket in 2004. whose idea was it? that part is the surprise. the whole story is next. aren't you sick of these airline credit cards that advertise flights for 25,000 miles? but when you call... let me check. oh fud, nothing without a big miles upcharge. it's either pay their miles upcharges or connect through mooseneck! [ freezing ] i can't feel my feet. we switched to the venture card from capital one -- so no more games. let's go see those grandkids. [ male announcer ] don't pay miles upcharges. don't play games. get the flight you want with the venture card at capitalone.com. [ lovinit ] help! what's in your llet?
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>> greta: two wars raging that began in the administration of george w. bush. "decision point" takes you behinds the scenes of a wartime presidency. we went to afghanistan. you worked with president karzai. we now hear that president karzai, we hear that he is corrupt, that he has emotional problems. what is the president karzai? is he someone you do business with or satisfied working with him? >> i was satisfied working
with. i found him to be courageous. i had his best interest at heart. i don't know about the corruption wraps on president karzai. i have didn't see that when i was president. he is take on a tough assignment. he helped the country develop monitor constitution. dually elected by the people of afghanistan. any democracy that is broke will have problems. afghanistan is broke. his task is difficult. i do put in the book, there was too much corruption. i didn't allege that karzai was corrupt. i never saw that evidence. i had a good relationship with him. my job was to help him better understand america's willingness to support and
that we expected him to help the government reach out and provide security. reach out to people in the provinces. >> after afghanistan, of course, there was iraq. i don't want to beat a dead horse, but we talk about weapons of mass destruction and throughout the book you say you wish you would have pushed harder. here is what i don't understand. then secretary of state powell went before the u.n. and he gave his -- made the case for the united states that there were, why we should go in, the weapons of mass destruction. later in the book he is the one putting op the brakes. he later said i didn't think there were weapons of mass destruction, but he made the case. >> i don't think, i don't view colin powell as backing away from the belief that all of us
had, including intelligence services that he had weapons of mass destruction. >> we all felt it. the world felt it. we got it wrong. >> congress passed overwhelming resolution authorizing the use of force if need be. iraq felt it. many became critics later on. we felt there were weapons of mass destruction. i don't think colin powell is walking away from that. i think he hopes thatdy blow plassy would work and we wouldn't use military. all of us hoed diplomacy would work. there is an instructive scene in the book where he is saying the military option is a concern. at one point in time i said if diplomacy runs its course, would l you support military action in iraq? he said he would. >> greta: i guess i had a sense as he was exmilitary at
that point. he had spoken to the c.i.a. and he was making the case that for some reason i always thought that he made a big blunder. >> that he did. >> he never -- >> blunder being -- >> greta: that there was weapons of mass destruction. >> he's thorough and he wouldn't have gone to the u.n. unless he was convinced intelligence available to all of us was real. it turns out it wasn't. he made a very compelling presentation. that convinced the u.n. to and the world that our intel jeps ruse right? it wasn't just our intelligence, but intelligence of all major intelligence agencies around the world. amazing thing is that saddam hussein was up willing to admit that he didn't have weapons of mass destruction. i believe the choice was his
to make. >> it's fascinating to read what happens afterwards. your relationship with dick cheney. many people thought he was the darth vader, guy making the calls. you said there were even times you disagreed with him. >> there were times he disagreed with me. he was the advisor and his job was to advice. like other people's job is to advise. he had a unique position, however, because if something were top happen to me, he'd become president. he agreed with me sometimes and didn't agree with me sometimes. the thing i admired about dick cheney he always gave me his opinion. secondly when i made up my mind, he saluted smartly as most people did in my administration. the notion about him rupping
the white house was running joke inside the west wing. he knew it wasn't the case. people who worked with me knew it wasn't the case. there's a moment in the book where i say that dick cheney came to see me and offered to leave the ticket. it was an incredibly gracious gesture on his part and speaks to his character as far as i'm concerned. i consider canned it, of course. >> greta: why? >> well, because it was an opportunity to analyze whether or not, you know, the administration would be better off without him. that's what you do when you're president. you look at options and deliberate. it became clear to me i didn't want to replace dick cheney. it would be easy to displace him and dispel the myth. it wasn't true to be ge win with. i'm glad i picked him in 2000 and day i left office i was glad i picked him.
he did superb job as vice president. >> greta: next, as president obama called president bush in the past two years? you will find out coming up. plus, we always take you behind the scenes. in minutes we have a special treat. president bush shows you some of the artifacts going in his presidential museum. want to see the gun found on saddam hussein when he was captured? you will! coming up. ♪ [ d ] for years, i was just a brewer. until one of the guys brought in some fresh bread that he'd made from our pale ale. and from that first bite, i knew my business would never be the same. [ male announcer ] when businesses see an opportunity to grow, the hartford is there. protecting their property and helping them plan their employees' retirement. ♪ beer or bread? [ male announcer ] see how the hartford helps businesses at achievewhatsahead.com. ♪
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broader constitutional issues next year. a former tennessee student has been accused of hacking sarah palin's email account. david ker nel was sentenced to one year and one day, but the judge recommended he served the term in the halfway house. he hacked vice-presidential candidate's private email. the bureau of prisons will decide if he will go to a halfway house. now back to "on the record." fo. ♪ ♪ >> greta: president bush largely kept quiet about his successor, but we got some information out of him. has president obama called you to talk president to president? >> no, and he shouldn't. he is learned what i learned. when you are in the white house, there is a lot of stuff flying at you all the time. you tend to rely upon judgment of people who you trust and who you know well. and i don't expect him to
call. it doesn't hurt my feelings that he doesn't call. it didn't spend time calling former presidents either except for my father when i was comforting him. he did call and asked me to join with president clinton to help the people in haiti and i was more than happy to respond. >> greta: you set out to be the education president, 9/11 happened and then we have immigration issue, you wanted to tackle social security. >> right. >> greta: all of those sort of things that no presidency can ever sort of unfold like you want it, can it? >> life -- i mean life doesn't unfold the way you expect it either. it didn't in my case. i never expected to be president. i, you know, i was hoping the presidency would be -- i thought the presidency would go one way and it went a different direction. task of the president is to deal with problems that arise. and i never fully expected there to be a financial meltdown. that we had to deal with.
>> greta: you deal with that in your book as well. >> last chapter. >> you know, i expected education to be an issue. i never "ed america to come under attack. in the 2000 campaign, i don't remember the world "al-qaeda" coming up in any debate or any discussion. so life is full of unexpected things. the role of the president is to be prepared to deal with them. you hope for the best and plan for the worst. >> greta: i want to see a couple artifacts because one thing that the president, we talk about the foreign policy and the presidency, we don't want about the many accomplishment. i want to see the things you did in africa and the first lady, went with saudi arabia. we have went with her on breast cancer awareness. want to esee the artifacts. >> by the way. let me talk about laura. thank you for going. i remember you did go with her. i felt that was symbolic of her, how she viewed our
relationship. how she viewed our time in washington. she could have been a person who said i didn't do this. i can't believe you threw me in this pot. >> you said you'd never give political speech when you married her. >> i reneged. she seized the moment. the trip on breast cancer aware nose the mast still resonates. i was there in the post presidency. people are still talking about the fact that first lady laura bush came and represented women throughout the middle east in saying to government and society it's okay for women to talk about breast cancer. not only okay, it is important and necessary. you know, my wife, laura was awesome as a first lady. she was great comfort to her.
occasionally tried to soothe my rough edges and she seized the opportunity. she made a difference in the lives of a lot of people. >> greta: you weren't there, we were but there was one instant we'll look at this shot where we were sitting around the world in saudi arabia. western women aren't supposed to put on a show. all these women were breast cancer suffers or survivors, touching moment. they gave her a gift of this shaw. she took it out of the box and put it on her head. click, click, click, click, click. she got criticized back home for that. if she hadn't done that, it would have been the rudest, more horrible thing. those of us who were in the room knew it was the right thing to doer if all these women. she got criticism back home, if you heard the whole story and if you had been there, you would have known it was right to do.
>> let me talk about that. she and i believe that it's important do the right thing. even though you might be criticized. i was fully aware of that moment. i was very proud of her. she could care less at that moment whether people criticized her. what she cared about what being dignified, thankful and credible. laura is a kind person who is less interested in her own self-and more interested in other people. that incident reminds me of her great character. >> greta: next, you get a sneak peek at the artifacts going in president bush's museum. the inside story. pistol that belonged to saddam hussein and let they're bono [ j. weissman ] it was 1975.
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who better to tell you about them than the president himself. ground breaking coming up. >> 16 of november, breaking ground for the presidential center on the s.m.u. campus. part of the center will be a museum that will house a lot of artifacts of my presidency. >> this is the shawl we talked about. first lady put on. >> beautiful. >> it is beautiful. over here, we have a number of things. one thing we should talk about is aids in africa, the aids work that the administration did. letter here from -- this says hello to barbara and jenna, your daughters. >> bono, i was a little suspicious. rock stars or movie stars who sometimes look like they were trying to advance a cause, advance their own career. so when i met bono, it was clear that wasn't the way he is. he is a genuine, decent person who is well briefed on for
example in this case the u.s. budget and how much people are spending. he cares deeply about people who are hiv/aids in africa for example. we became friends. he wrote a very kind letter complimenting me, our government and the people on petfar, the aids program that congress generalously funded to save lives. it has save lives on continent of africa. this is a pistol from the oval. >> oval office. >> the oval office. >> greta: i know you call it "the oval." >> people come in and they were scheduled and there were troops, soldiers, army folks. special operators. the best of the best. they came in and said we've got a gift for you, mr. president. i am the fella who crawled in
the hole to pull out saddam hussein, is what the guy said. and on the person of saddam hussein as i recall were three guns. two long guns and a pistol. that is the pistol that these brave souls gave to me so i could show and exhibit it and that the american people can see. >> greta: next, you see the famous bull horn president bush used at ground zero and hear the advice that derek jeter gave president bush when he threw out the first pitch at the world. don't go away. [ advisor 1 ] what do you see yourself doing one week, one month, five years after you do retire? ♪ client comes in and they have a box. and inside that box is their financial life. people wake up and realize i better start doing something. we open up that box. we organize it. and we make decisions. we really are here to help you.
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>> greta: from the sift his future presidential center... >> this is, i gave a lot of speeches this president. i was never nervous. but when it came time to throw out the first pitch at yankee stadium after the attacks, at the world series, i was really nervous this, is the ball i used. that is the jacket i wore. >> how did you do? >> i did okay. the key thing is not to bounce it. i'm warming up underneath the stadium. and derek jeter, the great yankee short stop came n we chatted and he said are you going to throw from the mound? and i couldn't -- i said what do you think? he said if you don't, think
boo you. on the way out he loorks over and says, but if you bounce it, they'll boo you. so i go walking out thinking don't bounce it, they'll boo you. the stadium was alive. electricity. and it was unbelievable. i got up to the mound and todd green, the catcher looked about this small. the ball, that ball felt like a shot put. i got it over the plate. and it was a huge relief. and the place just exploded usa, usa. it's a memory i'll forever cherish. unbelievable experience. >> the bull horn. >> yes. that is the bull horn that i was handed as i walked up on a pile of rubble turned out to be a fire engine. a new york fire fighter was on top of the pile there. i joined him. and and someone yelled "i can't hear you".
and ground zero was an mazing exkbreerns in the book. i chronicled the emotions, the raw emotions that i saw. and felt. the, mostly firefighters and police officers and rescue workers had no clue who i was. they were wondering whether or not they were looking at a president who would take action to protect the count skpri bring justice to those that did this harm. the blood loss was palpable. i remember one guy, you know saying whatever taiktz. and i believe injustice, not revenge. and i also believe -- i tried trying to comfort them. they that is not what they wanted to hear. they wanted to hear are you going do what it takes. the statement they heard from us