Democrats' Radio Response

The following is a transcript of the Democrats radio response to President Bush's weekly radio address:

Good Morning, I'm Governor Howard Dean.

The Holiday season is here. In this season that celebrates joy and love, people around the world take time to think about our values, reflect on the choices that we make in our private and our public lives, and to recommit ourselves to pursuing a course that promotes the greater good for all mankind. It's also a time to be grateful for our many blessings. We are a richly diverse and giving nation whose people in the face of great tragedies in our country took time off of work, gave generously, and came together to help their fellow Americans.

We are deeply grateful to our men and women in uniform, their families and our veterans for the sacrifices that they make on our behalf. In our family we celebrate both Christmas and Hanukkah. In the spirit of all the holidays that Americans celebrate at this time of year and the values we share, I want to talk about what Democrats believe will make our American community stronger.

First, we want honesty and integrity in our government. Democrats in Congress have drafted strong ethics bills. With a Democratic Majority we will pass those bills so that we can stop the scandals that are going on in Washington throughout the government.

Second, we will deliver a strong national defense. Democrats will always defend America. But when we deploy American troops, we will start by telling the truth to the American people, to our soldiers, and to our allies.

Third, we will create American jobs that will stay in America. We will create those jobs by making America energy independent. We need to get off our dependence on foreign oil. We can invest in energy efficiency, conservation and other American energy sources to create jobs everywhere in our country.

Democrats are the only party to have balanced the budget in America in the last thirty eight years. We will do it again. We think it is wrong to pass our bills along to our children. And in the spirit of the Christmas season, we also think it's wrong to cut things like funding for crutches and school lunches for poor children. What democrats will deliver is a balanced budget and a tax code that works for middle class Americans.

We will deliver a health care system that works for everyone. Thirty six countries around the world have some kind of system that is both affordable and covers everyone. It's not easy, but these countries manage to balance their budgets at the same time. So can we.

Democrats will deliver a strong public education system. High standards must be coupled with greater respect for the role of parents and local decision making. If we want American jobs to stay in America, we have to have more American children succeeding in science, math and literacy. Regardless of how we celebrate this season, there is much we have in common.

We are all in this together, and we are all part of God's community. Together we can stand for honesty, hard work, respect, and opportunity for each American. Together America can do better.

I'm Governor Howard Dean, wishing you a wonderful Holiday season.