Karl Rove Ranks Bush’s Presidency Somewhere ‘Up There,’ Just Below Washington, Lincoln, Reagan, FDR
Former President George W. Bush isn’t quite a George Washington or an Abraham Lincoln, his former campaign strategist Karl Rove admitted to ABC News on Thursday, but according to Rove, he’s not too far off.
“The greats, you can’t touch: George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Ronald Reagan, FDR,” Rove said in Dallas at the dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Center. “But yeah, I’d put him up there.”
Rove’s claim came after an aggressive defense of Bush’s legacy, which he said history would view favorably more quickly than most thought. Bush left office in 2009 as the most unpopular outgoing president in the history of Gallup polling. Rove pointed to a recent poll that showed his popularity at 47 percent to argue that Bush was already experiencing a turnaround.
Rove also said that Bush deserved more positive treatment, claiming that he “kept us safe after 9/11” and “tackled the big issues of trying to reform Social Security, Medicare, immigration, education.” He also defended the Iraq War as “the right thing to do.”