Off the Record

Greta: My favorite moment with President Bush 41 - a lesson in genuine leadership

'41 & 43: Presidential Portrait' - 'Off the Record,' 12/25/14: Greta shares her favorite story about George H.W. Bush

 

By Greta Van Susteren

Let's go "Off the Record" for a minute. President Bush 43 has so many wonderful stories about his father. So, now, it's my turn to tell you one of my favorite moments of President Bush 41.

Now, I have been lucky. I have interviewed him many times. Recently, he let me drive hem around on a golf cart at a charity event in Maine. Of course, we're followed by a Secret Service just to make sure my driving was not dangerous.

But the President Bush 41 moment that really stands out in my mind is when I interviewed him with President Clinton in Galveston, Texas, in 2008. It was in the aftermath of a hurricane - Hurricane Ike.

Here were former presidents from different parties, one having defeated the other, coming together to help their fellow Americans in a time of great need.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE H.W. BUSH: Working together on this has been extraordinarily satisfying to me. I think it's awakened better nature in a lot of Americans when they see two people, obviously political differences, coming together to, you know, to help people. That's what this is about. And it's nice to have it out of politics, out beyond the political reach.

BILL CLINTON: We have gotten a lot more out of this than we have given, way more. And, you know, when you have had the kind of lives we have had and the good fortune we have had and opportunity to serve, you are going to get a lot of lives. And so, we -- I mean, I feel not only is it fun and immensely rewarding, I think both of us feel like this is what we should be doing. That we would be bone headed if we weren't doing it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

Now, there are no term limits for leadership. President Bush and Clinton have taken their influence far beyond their years in office. Too often, politics divides us, it is genuine leaders like President Bush and Clinton who can all unite us.

It's a good reminder to awful of us about what we can accomplish when we rise above partisan pettiness and just help one another. And that's my "Off the Record" comment tonight.