9-11. Iraq. Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib. Katrina. Eight years ago, President Bush was sworn into office with a $237 billion budget surplus and relative economic prosperity. He now presides over a $438 billion deficit, two wars, and a severe economic downturn. According to a Pew survey released this month, only 11 percent of Americans rate Bush as an "above-average president," compared with 44% for Clinton. How did the Bush Administration get here and how will history remember them? We continue our series looking back at the Bush years with political consultants, historians, and those close to the President.
* Dan Bartlett, former head of communications and counselor to President George W. Bush. He is now Senior Strategist with Public Strategies, Inc.