George W. Bush photo

Remarks at a Dinner for the Nation's Governors

February 23, 2003

Good evening. Laura and I really look forward to these yearly dinners with our Nation's Governors and spouses, and we welcome you all back to the White House. For those of you who are first-timers here as Governors, we welcome you as well.

I'm particularly pleased that Lyle Lovett, from the great State of Texas, is here with us. We look forward to hearing you tonight, Lyle.

I also welcome former Governors who serve in my Cabinet. Tommy Thompson and Christie Todd Whitman, John Ashcroft are here. Tom Ridge is now a member of my Cabinet; he's not here. He'll still be invited to the Cabinet Room. [Laughter] Governors are strong leaders with a practical point of view, and I'm really grateful for my former fellow Governors for serving their country.

There are 25 new Governors who are here. I know it's an exciting experience for you to set an agenda and to put together a great team to solve problems for your State or your territory.

I loved being the Governor of Texas. In my 6 years, I placed great value on the advice of fellow Governors and made many friendships which continue to this day. I've grown especially close to the Governor of Florida. [Laughter] The man is like a brother to me. [Laughter]

We each have a shared experience, and we have shared responsibilities. We share the responsibility for protecting the homeland. We share the responsibility for encouraging economic growth and jobs. We share the responsibility for making sure every child learns and no child is left behind. We share the responsibility for expanding access to high-quality, affordable health care and for helping our fellow citizens in need. And we'll meet these responsibilities together.

I'm honored to have you all here. I now ask you to join me in a toast to the Governors of the United States. Thank you.

NOTE: The President spoke at 8:03 p.m. in the State Dining Room at the White House. In his remarks, he referred to entertainer Lyle Lovett. The transcript released by the Office of the Press Secretary also included the remarks of Gov. Paul E. Patton of Kentucky, chair, National Governors Association.

George W. Bush, Remarks at a Dinner for the Nation's Governors Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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