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Bush Holds Rally in Green Bay, WisconsinAired November 6, 2000 - 2:02 p.m. ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: Let's go to one of the candidates now. George W. Bush is in Wisconsin. It is a toss-up state with 11 electoral votes. He has just begun speaking.
(JOINED IN PROGRESS)
GOV. GEORGE W. BUSH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: "Mark, you need to be patient, be patient, because help is on the way."
In one day, help is on the way.
In one day, we're going to end the Clinton-Gore era in Washington, D.C., and have new leadership.
New leadership that stands on the side of the people, that trusts the people, that trusts the people of Wisconsin and trusts the people all across America.
I'm so proud to be here with Bart Starr. What a fantastic example he's been.
In a world where people are starved for athletes that hold up respect and set a good example, it's easy for those of us who were coming up in the '60s to think back to Bart Starr and know he'd never let us down. What a good man.
And Vince Lombardi, my friend from Seattle, Washington, he represents a pretty darn good family, and I'm glad he's here.
Thank you both for coming today.
Speaking about pretty good families, I married above myself.
(LAUGHTER) I'm so proud for America to get to know the next first lady. What a fantastic first lady she's going to be.
Yesterday we celebrated our 23rd wedding anniversary.
We celebrated it at four different rallies in Florida.
I'm not so sure she had that in mind when she said, "I do." But, boy, I'll tell you one thing. When America sees the next first lady, they're going to be -- they're going to know this: that you can judge the nature of a man by the company he keeps. I keep really good company.
I appreciate so much your mayor and his endorsement, and the hospitality of the good folks of Green Bay have shown this Texan. Of course, you always hadn't been that hospitable in the past. You know what I mean. He knows what I mean. But every time we've come to Green Bay, the people have been kind and generous with your time.
I'm really here to thank you for all your help and all your support. I want you to understand that I can't win without you; that this great land of democracy requires, not only a candidate but a campaign of people, people who are willing to take the extra step to turn out the folk. I'm here to not only ask for the vote, I'm here to ask for your help. I hope you redouble the efforts to make sure people get out to the polls. And when you tell them what we stand for and what we believe in, people are going to come our way. They know there's a better day in Washington, D.C., with a leader who can unite not divide.
People know that this nation can come together, that we don't need finger-pointing and name-calling and a bitterness that's taken place in Washington. This country needs a leader that is going to set the people's agenda above party politics, an agenda...
... an agenda that says loud and clear, we must hear the voice of the people. That's one of the reasons why I've been talking about Social Security. You know, when I first got going in the campaign, people said, "Well, you better not talk about Social Security. It's called the third rail of American politics."
But I looked at him and I said, "Wait a minute, I'm running for a reason." It's time for us to be able to say to our seniors, "A promise this nation has made will be a promise this nation keeps." Don't let them scare you.
Where I come from, if somebody's trying to scare somebody in the voting booth, like my opponent is trying to do, somebody's trying to frighten somebody to vote against their opponent, means they must not be proud on the platform they're running on.
So you know what we're going to do tomorrow? We're going to reject the old-style politics that frighten seniors. We're going to turn back -- we're not going to let this country turn back the clock to the politics of tearing somebody else's platform down, because our platform is right.
Not only are we going to keep the promise to the seniors, we're going to trust younger workers to take some of your own money and invest it in the private markets to get a better rate of return so there's a Social Security system tomorrow as well.
Now there's some clear priorities. A priority of mine -- I want to tell the parents that are here and everybody that's here, obviously. I'm running to keep the peace. Dick Cheney and I will do what it takes to make this world more peaceful, but I want a strong hand. I want a strong hand.
The role of a leader is to anticipate. I see issues on the horizon that we best deal with in order to be able to keep the peace. I worry about the fact that too many of our troops are leaving the service, too many of our skilled personnel, too many captains.
I'm worried about the fact that people aren't content with the military. I'm worried about the fact our troops are underpaid and not well-housed. I'm really worried about the fact I'm running against a person who uses the word nation-building and U.S. military in the same breath.
I'm worried about a mission that is not clear. Not only will we clarify the mission -- and the mission of the military is to be prepared to fight and win war, therefore prevent war from happening in the first place, that's the mission.
But we will treat our troops better, we will house them better, and we will restore morale in the United States military in order to keep the peace.
There's some great challenges to this country's good heart. There's no greater challenge than education, to make sure that every child is educated so that not one child is left behind.
But I want to assure your good governor and everybody here in Green Bay, Wisconsin, that I don't intend to become the federal superintendent of schools.
I don't believe that's the role of the federal government. We trust local people. We stand on this principle: that local people should chart that path to excellence for local children. We must trust our teachers and our parents and our principals to chart the right course.
But I'll promise you this: I'll challenge the soft bigotry of low expectations. I'll challenge those systems that lower the bar, by insisting upon high standards and calling upon a results-oriented system around America.
We can't shuffle children through the schools anymore. Every child matters. And when we find a child who needs help early, we'll make sure he or she gets it.
See, there's no second-rate children in America, as far as we're concerned, and there are no second-rate dreams.
And Medicare is a fundamental issue. It's an issue that should not be a political issue; it needs to be an issue of conscience, an issue about the goodness of America.
There's been too much politics in Washington and not enough action. The role of a leader is to set an agenda and bring people together to accomplish things. And that's what's been lacking in the nation's capital.
You've heard the talk about Medicare, and they've been talking this and I've been saying that. Here's my plan: Every senior ought to have prescription drugs as a part of Medicare. We're going to help the poorest seniors. We'll help all seniors with prescription drugs. But we'll say to seniors, "If you're unhappy with the federal bureaucracy and the federal program, you should be able to have a different choice, we should trust you to make different choices for your own health care plans."
Now, one of the things that I want you to remind the folks who may not have made up their mind yet about this issue is this fact: In 1992, my opponent and his partner up there said, "Give us a chance, we will reform Medicare." '96 elections came around, and they're still saying the same thing in '96. Now, here we are four years later and they're still talking about the same issue.
A role of a leader is to get things done. One of my opponent's favorite phrases is, "You ain't seen nothing yet." And we agree, we ain't seen nothing yet. ALLEN: George W. Bush, in Green Bay, Wisconsin, the day before the election. He has already been to Chattanooga, Tennessee, of course his opponent's home state. And right now he is in Green Bay. Then it is off to Davenport, Iowa; Bentonville, Arkansas; and a place where he should have some supporters, Austin, Texas.
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