July 28th, 2007
04:29 PM ET
12 years ago

Bush alters radio address for Democrats

President Bush deleted a line of his address in deference to Democrats

WASHINGTON (CNN) - One sentence in President Bush's weekly radio address was deleted overnight after some Democrats privately complained that it was overly partisan on the explosive subject of reforming the administration's warrantless wiretap program, White House officials confirmed Saturday.

In the initial radio address, which was taped Friday, Bush charged that the country is less safe because of Democratic delays in passing legislation that would reform the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

"Every day that Congress puts off these reforms increases the danger to our nation," the president originally said.

White House officials say that line of audio was deleted after Democrats saw a transcript of the remarks distributed Friday afternoon.

The extremely rare change to a taped address comes at the end of a week in which the White House faced a blizzard of questions about whether Attorney General Alberto Gonzales committed perjury in testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee about the surveillance program.

White House officials have vehemently denied that Gonzales gave misleading testimony, and say Bush still wants his Attorney General to stay on the job.

A senior White House official suggested Saturday that the administration wanted to turn the temperature down on all the controversy and get reform legislation passed.

"We've been making good progress with the Democrats on this legislation," a senior White House official told CNN.

"Some of them felt the sentence sounded too political. Our sole objective has been to get the law changed - not to seek partisan advantage. So we were happy to make the requested change, particularly in light of Democrats' expressed determination to make necessary changes in law."

–CNN White House Correspondent Ed Henry

Filed under: President Bush
soundoff (44 Responses)
  1. Ken, Newport News, VA

    Another example of Bush appeasing the thin-skinned LibDems. The LibDems NEVER show any restraint in their outrageous rhetoric against their opponents, but Bush and the GOP are constantly expected to put on kid gloves when dealing with the LibDems.

    July 29, 2007 08:34 am at 8:34 am |
  2. Tricia M Charlottetown PEI

    TO: Don, Irvine CA

    Congrats! Great Job! Wish there were more Americans like yourself who can actually see the true picture.

    I couldn't agree with you more.

    July 29, 2007 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  3. Tom, everywhere USA

    Don, knock it off your comments are slander and anti american. we dont want any more clintons in the white house enough allready! do u really want to go back to defeatism?

    if your for the bill of rights, then support your leaders and the administration! progress is being made in iraq and other places unlike clinton. victory is in oyr grasp, u just dont see it. its not to late for people like urself to join the team and come on in for the big win! by the way. the guy was commenting on peoplee like urself being from the UK and bashing our goverment. hes right-we couldnt win our independcece if we had to fight ur kind!!!

    July 29, 2007 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  4. toni

    Thank You, Bush for wakening the nation up as to how corrupt both parties are.....From now on I only vote Indepndent.....whoever raises the "LEAST" amount of money gets my vote. t

    July 29, 2007 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  5. jim west palm beach florida

    Crimminals running our country.
    Pedophiles in congress.
    I't no longer The GOP
    It's now the GOPedophiles

    July 29, 2007 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  6. Pixie, Murfreesboro, TN

    Regarding this FISA reform business....first off, Under FISA, it is a criminal offense to eavesdrop on Americans without the oversight and approval of the FISA court. Section 1809 of FISA expressly provides that "[a] person is guilty of an offense if he intentionally – (1) engages in electronic surveillance under color of law except as authorized by statute. . . ." And Section 2511(2)(f) provides that FISA "shall be the exclusive means by which electronic surveillance . . . may be conducted." Thus, a person has broken the law if - as the President admits he did - he orders eavesdropping on Americans without complying with the warrant requirements of the statute. Period.

    The Administration admits that it did just that - that the President ordered exactly the warrantless eavesdropping which FISA makes it a criminal offense to engage in. The Administration does not deny this fact. They admit that the eavesdropping they engaged in is exactly the eavesdropping for which FISA requires judicial approval, but defend themselves only by claiming that they had the legal right to engage in this eavesdropping without complying with the law.
    NOW he claims that he wants to REVISE the law, but Congress should not even entertain the thought until they find out exactly what the extent of law breaking is that has already occurred. Violation of FISA is a criminal offense and an impeachable one at that. I hope to God, the Congress has the guts to shine sunlight on the corrupt inner workings of this administration and to hold them accountable for it.

    July 29, 2007 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  7. Brian Portland, Or

    Each and every comment on this page is a complete waste of breath. This is like reading the talking points as directed from both the GOP as well as the DNC. The arguments are personally attacking and shallow on both sides. You all have fallen victim to the national organization puppeteers who directing your every moves. Please wake yourselves up and develop your own voices, your own opinions, and please base them on intteligent information – not the psuedo-truths engaged in here. Good luck!

    July 29, 2007 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  8. Nat Daily

    do u really want to go back to defeatism?

    We are losing everyday this cult runs our once great nation into the ground. One report after another says the Child King's and conservative policies have created more terrorists and made the world less safe.

    The LibDems NEVER show any restraint in their outrageous rhetoric against their opponents

    We've listened to nothing but over the top un-American homnophobic, theocratic hatred from right wing propaganda radio and republican leaders for the last 25 years. Unfortunately a cult mindset does not allow you to see reality. You know, Rush has been conditioning the right for 3 hours a day, 5 days a week for what? 15 years. David Koresh didn't train/talk to his cult near that much.

    July 29, 2007 11:42 pm at 11:42 pm |
  9. Chris - Atlanta Georgia

    I wonder what would happen if everyone simply quit thinking about politicians as 'Republicans' or 'Democrats' and simply judged them on their merits.

    Is George Bush's job performance as President meritorious? Only 30% of Americans seem to think so. No labels, no partisanship or taking of 'sides' necessary – the fact of the matter is that 70% of this nation disapproves of his job performance. We don't need history to decide – he works for us and the jury is already in – HE SUCKS! It's time for him to head to the boardroom, ladies and gentlemen, because 'George Bush – YOU'RE FIRED!'

    WORST president ever, statistically speaking, except for the other famous crook, Richard Nixon, who has him beat by two points. But there's still over a year and a half to go, so George Bush might just leave the Oval Office just like he left Yale – DFL. This guy is an idiot of epic proportions and I just hope our great country survives – it's tragic.

    July 30, 2007 12:56 am at 12:56 am |
  10. Andy - San Francisco, California


    You said and I quote, "From now on I only vote Indepndent…..whoever raises the “LEAST” amount of money gets my vote."

    Doing that is wasting your vote, because the one who raises the least amount of money is the least popular, and thus has no chance of winning. And that is exactly what they want you to do. Waste your vote.

    If you really want to mess up their program, vote for the person you feel is the most qualified for the job.

    July 30, 2007 01:42 am at 1:42 am |
  11. Scott Moreno Valley, CA

    Tom, first of all (spell check), second
    get over Clinton. Keep your eye on the ball. The coup of 2000, all the lies. now the threat of martial law.History repeats itself. Americans are trying to get away from King George, yet once again. I love america, but how can you back an american president who clearly hates americans?

    July 30, 2007 03:48 am at 3:48 am |
  12. Mary, Beaver, PA

    td, you must be terribly stupid to ASSUME that everyone who despises Bush must love the Clintons.

    July 30, 2007 08:04 am at 8:04 am |
  13. Mary, Beaver, PA

    Tom of everywhere, USA: If you think that supporting the Bill of Rights means supporting "your leaders and the adminstration," you must have received your education in civics from the same school where you obtained your command of the English language.

    Now, go on and outdo yourself in stupidity. Criticize the Clintons in an attempt to hurt me. You idiots seem to believe that hating Bush means loving the Clintons. What a non sequitur! Are all you neo-cons so dense?

    July 30, 2007 08:18 am at 8:18 am |
  14. Tom, everywhere USA

    Tricia why are u posting in here?

    this is an american website not Canadian!!!!!

    July 30, 2007 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  15. Michael Mobley, Saint Louis, MO

    Of all the entries here i seem to think Chris from Atlanta, GA is the closest to being right. Don't get me wrong, I am very much a democrat and stand up for the DNC's ideals to the fullest, but I really would not say the past 8 years of this country's misfortune have been completely the REPUBLICAN's fault. Even before the midterm elections the GOP was starting to show signs that what has been going on since 2000 has been anything but good.

    One thing is quite definitely for certain. President Bush has by far been one of the worst leaders this country could stand. I easily run out of fingers and toes counting the number of impeachable offenses Bush, Cheney, and his entire staff have committed since landing in office. That doesn't even include the bad-but legal moves he has made as well. I think that congress should institute an amendment that allows the public to recall an election like in California, cause then the people would really have the power, and Bush may not have been in office long enough to do the damage he has already done.

    And Tom, if you seriously think Bush is still doing a good job, maybe you should move to Russia. Their politics would suit you nicely.

    July 30, 2007 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  16. bryan okc ok

    Soon Americans will have protection by
    giving up all the freedoms, with walls,
    spys, no control of our goverment officals and a president who would be king we will find ourselfs back in the
    previous government of kings, queens, and nobels that we left in England.

    July 30, 2007 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  17. Anonymous


    You said and I quote, “From now on I only vote Indepndent…..whoever raises the “LEAST” amount of money gets my vote.”

    Doing that is wasting your vote, because the one who raises the least amount of money is the least popular, and thus has no chance of winning. And that is exactly what they want you to do. Waste your vote.

    If you really want to mess up their program, vote for the person you feel is the most qualified for the job."

    Popularity does not always equal most qualified. Bush was popular for a while, and Clinton seems to be as well. Hell Even Guilliani was popular.

    The fact is the defeatist nature of "dont vote third party, its a waste of a vote" is exactly why we have the situation we do, two parties who pander to extremists while the majority of America doesnt even vote. Yeah, thats a great reason to not vote third party.

    I can either have extreme socialism, or extreme fascism (ironic though, that these two ideologies are somewhat similar)...

    Personally Id rather waste my vote than waste it by voting for one of the evils that will surely be nominated from both parties...

    July 30, 2007 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  18. Debora Oakland CA

    Our president has lied to the American people; he lied to the people of Texas and he has killed more people in the world intentionally than any other president in US history.

    Mr. Bush was told that if he chose (and by his own admission, he chose) to go to Iraq, the country would end in civil war with the ability of Al Qaeda to build an even stronger force than the force in Afghanistan. Mr. Bush decided profit and oil were more important than the protection of the American people.

    What about a constitutional amendment that says the family members of high ranking elected or appointed officials in the US goverment may not monitarily profit from any war. If it were an amendment, we would not be at war because Bush, Cheney, and their ilk would not benefit as they are now. Because of the Iraq war the Bush family fortune has more than tripled at last known count.

    July 30, 2007 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  19. Jill, Westwood, NJ

    "if your for the bill of rights, then support your leaders and the administration!"

    Tom, this may be the dumbest statement I've ever read in a blog comment. The Founding Fathers created the Bill of Rights to keep Americans from having to endure the kinds of treatment they had under British rule - treatment that the Bush Administration is trying to revive - there would be no secret detentions, no imprisonment without a fair public trial, no unfair searches and seizures of property, and no squelching of peaceful expression.

    Patriotism and the Bill of Rights have to do with protecting us as citizens from our government, not to allow a president to be a king, a dictator, an absolute ruler. The Bill of Rights does not mandate that you shut up and take orders from your government. I think a little civics lesson is in order for you.

    July 30, 2007 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
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