CRAWFORD, Texas – President Bush touted what he called a record of achievement in his first year in office, listing an income tax cut, sweeping changes in education and successes in the war on terror as examples. But he complained anew that the Democratic-controlled Senate had stalled his efforts on other fronts.
"This year ends with progress on the battlefield and accomplishment at home," Bush said Saturday in his weekly radio address, delivered from his ranch in central Texas.
"The men and women of our military have successfully fought a new kind of war," he said. "In Washington, we have built a record of achievement."
The president claimed credit for what he called the biggest tax cut in a generation, and "the boldest reform of the federal education program in nearly four decades," a bill Congress passed earlier this month.
But the Senate balked at several other Bush priorities — his energy plan, which would increase petroleum drilling and conservation; his plan to expand religious charities' ability to compete for public money; and tax-cut proposals he said would jump-start the economy.
"I was disappointed by the failure of the Senate to act on my proposals to help laid-off workers and to stimulate job creation," the president said. "I outlined these proposals in October, more than 800,000 lost jobs ago."
Delivering the Democratic radio address, Rep. David Bonior of Michigan said agreement over the economic stimulus package failed because it "gave out billions of dollars in tax breaks for the wealthiest and did nothing to shore up our health care system."
"In Congress the battles were fierce because Republicans tried to leave working people behind," Bonior said.
Bush also demanded "quick action on other issues that passed the House of Representatives, but languished in the Senate."