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Bush's Senioritis

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By Dan Froomkin
Special to washingtonpost.com
Monday, June 16, 2008; 1:45 PM

President Bush's contempt for those who question him or doubt his accomplishments has been on full display lately.

That two thirds of Americans are now in that category apparently hasn't made him any more receptive to their concerns-- quite the opposite.

When British Sky News reporter Adam Boulton today challenged Bush on his dedication to freedom, suggesting that Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib represented "the complete opposite of freedom," Bush accused Boulton of "slander[ing] America."

Evidently still smarting about the Supreme Court's rejection of his detainee policies last week, Bush noted defensively that the lower courts had agreed with him -- as if that mattered.

While Americans increasingly blame him for record-high gas prices and the toll on their pocketbooks, Bush dismissively referred to domestic concerns about those high prices as "squawking."

And in an interview on Friday with Ned Temko of Britain's Observer, Bush actually joked that he was "still looking" for the Iraqi weapons of mass destruction that were the main reason he gave to the public for going to war.

The Sky News Interview

Here's the transcript and video of Bush's interview with Boulton of Sky News.

Boulton: "I mean, you've talked a lot about freedom. I've heard you talk about freedom -- I think every time I've seen you."

Bush: "Yes."

Boulton: "And yet there are those who would say, look, let's take Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib and rendition and all those things, and to them that is the, you know, the complete opposite of freedom."

Bush: "Of course if you want to slander America, you can look at it one way. But you go down -- what you need to do -- I think I suggested you do this at a press conference -- if you go down to Guantanamo and take a look at how these prisoners are treated -- and they're working it through our court systems. We are a land of law. "

Boulton: "But the Supreme Court have just said that -- you know, ruled against what you've been doing down there."


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