Today is the 89th birthday of former President George H. W. Bush, the 41st President, and we almost lost him at the end of 2012, when he was in the hospital for a long time, and it seemed as if he was not going to make it through bronchitis and other ills.
The fact that the senior Bush was a moderate Republican, who took us through the Gulf War; had the courage to raise taxes, even though it helped to defeat him in 1992; and promoted the passage of the Americans With Disabilities Act, one of the most important civil rights laws in our history; all this helps to add to his stature as we look back after twenty plus years since he lost reelection to Bill Clinton.
While Bush will never make it to the top third of our Presidents, he has gained respect and recognition as a President who, even with faults and shortcomings in office, contributed in important ways to the advancement of the United States, both domestic and foreign, so today is a day to salute the 41st President and wish him many more years of enjoying his children and grandchildren, and the appreciation of the American people for a job done with full commitment to his nation!
It is wonderful that longevity has become a norm, not only in society in general, but among Presidents, as now Bush is the fifth longest lived President, after Gerald Ford and Ronald Reagan, both of whom reached 93 years of age; and John Adams and Herbert Hoover, who both reached 90. And on October 1, Jimmy Carter will also reach the age of 89, and is in far better health than Bush is at this time. Both Bush and Carter have already surpassed Harry Truman, who died at age 88 and seven and a half months.