George W. Bush photo

Remarks to Senior Citizens in Tucson, Arizona

March 21, 2005

[The President's remarks are joined in progress.]

The President. ——now it's our turn to sacrifice for future generations, and we are. This world is becoming more peaceful, and it's because we're free. And that's a lesson we've learned from previous generations, that free societies are peaceful societies. You know, I have this great faith in the capacity of freedom to make the world a better place, so I just want to give you a quick foreign policy report and tell you that this world of ours is getting better as more people become free.

I'm also talking, of course, a lot about Social Security. I think this is a generational issue, and it's a generational issue because your generation has nothing to worry about in terms of getting the promise Government has made. There's just no doubt about it. I know there are some contradictory statements being made; it's just not true. The promise Government has made to those who are retired or near retirement will be kept.

But because the math has changed, because there's a lot of baby boomers like me are getting ready to retire, and we're living longer, and we're getting bigger benefits than the previous generation, and there are fewer workers, we need to worry about not this generation but the next generations.

And that's really what I'm here to tell people in Tucson, is that if you're getting your check, you're fine. If you've got a grandkid, you'd better ask the political people what they intend to do about making sure Social Security, the safety net of Social Security, is available for them. And you know, I'm interested in all ideas. I think that this isn't a Republican issue or a Democrat issue; this is a national issue that requires a national dialog.

And so I want to thank you for giving me the chance to come by to the Udall Center. The mayor was telling me what a unique place this is, and he wasn't exaggerating.

Audience member. Yes, it's great.

The President. It is great—well, I hope so.

Are you playing a little cards over there? Got a little time for some cards. [Laughter] Anyway, thanks for letting me come by. I'm looking forward to meeting you all. Thank you. It's a beautiful city you've got here.

NOTE: The President spoke at 10:51 a.m. at the Morris K. Udall Recreation Center. In his remarks, he referred to Mayor Bob Walkup of Tucson, AZ. The press release issued by the Office of the Press Secretary did not include the complete opening remarks of the President. A portion of these remarks could not be verified because the tape was incomplete.

George W. Bush, Remarks to Senior Citizens in Tucson, Arizona Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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