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At Fundraiser, Bush Goes After Democrats

By Michael Abramowitz
President Bush tonight used his final appearance at the annual GOP fundraiser for House and Senate candidates to serve up some of the reddest meat he has dished out in recent days, trashing congressional Democrats even as he is trying to eke out a few legislative victories before Congress shuts down for the summer.

"These days, if you want to know how a Democrat in Congress is going to vote tomorrow, just visit the Web site of today," Bush said, drawing applause from a friendly audience of Republican donors at the Washington Convention Center. The event raised about $21 million for the party's congressional committees.

Bush went after the Democrats hard on Iraq, saying they had declared the "surge" of troops "a failure before it began."

"And now that the surge has turned the situation around, they still call for retreat," Bush added, before taking a veiled shot at the presumptive Democratic nominee, Sen. Barack Obama. "The other side talks a lot about 'hope,' and that sums up their Iraq policy pretty well: They want to retreat from Iraq and hope nothing bad happens. But wishful thinking is no way to fight a war and to protect the American people."

Bush offered some of his most copious praise of Sen. John McCain since his onetime adversary secured the necessary delegates to become the presumptive GOP presidential nominee.

"The stakes in this election are high," Bush said. "I know the pressures of the Oval Office -- the daily intelligence briefings, the unexpected challenges and the tough decisions that can only be made at the president's desk. In trying times, America needs a president who has been tested and will not flinch. We need a president who has the experience and judgment to do what is right, even when it is not easy. We need a president who knows what it takes to defeat our enemies. And this year, there is only one man who has shown those qualities of leadership -- and that man is John McCain."

By Washington Post Editor  |  June 18, 2008; 11:08 PM ET
Categories:  Republican Party  
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