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At dinner, Bush pokes fun at his fumbled words

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- President Bush poked fun at his own grammatical foibles in a speech at the annual Radio and Television Correspondents Dinner on Thursday night.

Bush had the audience laughing as he spent most of his speech quoting from a recently published book, "George W. Bushisms: The Slate Book of The Accidental Wit and Wisdom of our 43rd President."

"I actually said this in New Hampshire," Bush recalled, " 'I appreciate preservation -- it's what you do when you run for president, you've got to preserve.' I don't have the slightest idea what I was saying there."

U.S. President George W. Bush speaks at the Radio-TV Correspondents Association 57th Annual Dinner

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Bush defended several of his now-famous gaffes. When talking about economics, instead of saying the pie needed to be bigger, he said, "we ought to make the pie higher."

"It is a very complicated economic point I was making there. Believe me, what this country needs is taller pie," he concluded.

Despite his many oral mishaps, Bush said, "life goes on. Our military still protects our shores. Americans still get up and go to work. I don't think it's healthy to take yourself too seriously, but what I do take seriously is my responsibility."

He ended his speech thanking the correspondents for their "horsepitality."

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