Quotes - Dubya the Grammarian
(Choice instances of Dubya's trademark diction)
2008 and after : 2007 : 2006 : 2005 : 2004 : 2003 : 2002 : 2001 and earlier
MAJOR GARRETT (Fox News): Do you think this could this be a larger Bush family effort [in Haiti]? Do you plan on enlisting either your brother or your father in any of the efforts?
DUBYA: They're going to want to help. The and Laura went down there to analyze the PEPFAR program, since and we've had an interest certainly not quite as deep as Bill's. He and the Secretary of State have spent a lot of time down there. We care about it. I care about it because if you see a neighbor in need, it's important to help. And so if people do want to help, they ought to they ought to dial up one place to dial is our website, which is clintonbushhaitifund.org.
Some vintage Dubya diction offered up for the first time in a long time. Thanks for dialing up DubyaSpeak.com to view it. Washington, D.C., Jan. 18, 2010

Actually, I used to talk to President Clinton during my presidency. And I and then, of course, called upon he and President 41, my dad, to work together on the tsunami and then Katrina.
Mmm... yummy grammar. Washington, D.C., Jan. 18, 2010

No matter whether you not or you agreed with my decisions or not, one thing they have to agree with, is that we have not been attacked in the last seven years.
Classic Dubya diction, Midland, Texas, Jan. 20, 2009

Uhh, through it all, it's been, uhh I, I have, umm, respected you. Umm, sometimes didn't like the stories that you wrote or reported on. Sometimes you, umm, misunderestimated me. But, always the relationship I have felt has been professional. And, uhh, I appreciate it.
You have to hope that this is a recognition of his past repeat offense, and not another instance. We're chalking it up to being a repeat offense until we've heard otherwise... White House, Jan. 12, 2009

I remember the 1964 elections. My dad happened to be running for the United State Senate then and, you know, got landslided with the Johnson landslide in the state of Texas.
Dubya turns a noun into a verb, White House, Jan. 12, 2009

My view is is that, most people around the world, they respect America. And some of 'em doesn't like me, I understand that some of the writers and the, you know, opiners and all that. That's fine. That's part of the deal.
Opiners (he loves that word), plus some funky singular/plural agreement. That's our Dubya. White House, Jan. 12, 2009

Hamas, obviously, if they're interested in a sustainable cease-fire, needs to stop arming. And then, of course, countries contingent to the Gaza need to work to stop the smuggling. And it's a difficult difficult task. I mean, there's tunnels and, you know, great opportunities for people who want to continue to try to disrupt democracy to provide the weapons to do so.
If only he'd used "adjacent" and "there are"... White House, Jan. 12, 2009

I believe that runnin' the Social Security idea right after the '04 elections was a mistake. I should've should've argued for immigration reform. And the reason why is, is that you know, one of the lessons I learned as governor of Texas, by the way, is legislative branches tend to be risk-adverse. In other words, sometimes legislatures have the tendency to ask, why should I take on a hard task when the crisis is not eminent? And, umm, the crisis was not eminent for Social Security as far as many members of Congress was concerned.
I have to thank Fox News for faithfully noting all of Dubya's mistakes in their transcript. The White House cleaned up the instances of "eminent" to say "imminent" and treated the other two as if they were correct. White House, Jan. 12, 2009

Rarely was the question asked: Can you read? Or can you write? Or can you add and can you subtract?
Incredibly, Dubya offers up a sequel to this gem, and declares three questions as one. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Jan. 8, 2009

Right after the attacks I made it abundantly clear that we would bring people to justice for our own security. And made it abundantly clear that if a group of people harbored a terrorist, they were equally as guilty as a terrorist. And we gave the Taliban an opportunity to respond. They didn't. And American troops proudly liberated the people of Afghanistan. That's what life was like. And we could have replaced one power person with another. That would have been, I guess, the easy route, and then just left it behind, say we've done our duty and we've upheld the doctrine and said, okay, we're now going to take this group, replace them with this group and just got out of the way. But that's not that, one, didn't learn the lessons of the '80s and the '90s.
As is often the case, Dubya's explanation forgoes correct grammar. Kabul, Afghanistan, Dec. 15, 2008

There have been a lot of troops from around the world who have come to help this young democracy survive and thrive. And so I want to thank the citizens of those country and the troops who have served here before us.
A singular/plural disagreement so common with Dubya, I hesitate to add it. Baghdad, Iraq, Dec. 14, 2008

As our days in the White House wind down, we're going thoo a series of lasts. I pardoned my last Thanksgiving turkey. Laura decorated for her last Christmas in the White House. And Barney bit his last reporter.
Dubya follows up thoo-out with thoo, College Station, Texas , Dec. 12, 2008

There is one person who wishes he could be here today and that's your former President, and America's Secretary of Defense, Bob Gates. You know, he's got an excused absence. It's not like he's over at the Dixie Chicken.
I love the last bit, but the other interesting thing to note is the "two people = one person" portion at the beginning. College Station, Texas , Dec. 12, 2008

This system can now defend America against limited missile attacks from Northeast Asia. Concluded agreements with Poland and Czech Republic, to establish missile defense sites on their territories, to help protect against ballissile-missile attacks from the Middle East. 'Cause we acted, America now has an initial capability protect our people from a ballistic missile attack.
It's worth listening to the quote just to hear Dubya say ballissile-missile... West Point, New York, Dec. 9, 2008

We reorganized our intelligence community to better neet the needs of war against these terrorists, including increasing the number of intelligence officers.
Dubya creates a tongue twister for himself where most folks probably wouldn't have faltered, West Point, New York, Dec. 9, 2008

We have captured or killed hundreds of al Qaeda leaders and operatives in more than two dozen countries including the man who mastermined the 9/11 attacks, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
That's right: Not masterminded... mastermined. West Point, New York, Dec. 9, 2008

When we sit down at the summit table tomorrow, we bring clear priorities. Tomorrow's discussion will be the first in a series of meetings. It will focus on key five objectives.
This one's just fun, White House, Nov. 14, 2008

There are clear-cut ways for nations to demonstrate the commitment to open markets. The United States Congress has an immediate opportunity by approving free trade agreements with Colombia, Peru, and South Korea.
The White House website kindly noted that the country he was looking for there was Panama, New York, New York, Nov. 13, 2008

This is a job which, you know, obviously had a lot of stress to it. It has a lot of pressure. But when you're around your family at all, all that pales.
The pressures of his job pale in comparison to being around his family? Ouch, that's quite an indictment. Washington, D.C., Nov. 12, 2008

Mr. President [Lugo of Paraguay], I've been impressed by un corazón grande. You care deeply about the people of your country. And I have felt that compassion.
Which "big heart"? I'm guessing President Lugo's heart, which would have required saying su corazón grande instead. Of course, mixing two languages in the first place is, well... problematic. White House, Oct. 27, 2008

By undertaking new cooperation on civil nuclear energy, India will be able to count on a reliable fuel supply for its civilian reactors, meet the energy demands of its people, and reduce its independence on fossil fuels.
Let's hope they reduce their dependence instead... White House, Oct. 8, 2008

The American people expect the nomination process to be as free of partisanship as possible, and for senators to rive above tricks and gimmicks designed to thwart nominees.
Yes, he actually said "rive". Cincinnati, Ohio, Oct. 6, 2008

The SEC is also requiring certain investors to disclose their short selling, and has launched rigorous enforcement actions to detect fraud and manipulation in the market. Anyone engaging in illegal financial transactions will be caught and persecuted.
Perhaps they will be, but I think the main objective will be to prosecute them. White House, Sep. 19, 2008

And finally, the people in Louisiana must know that all across our country there's a lot of prayer prayer for those whose lives have been turned upside down. And I'm one of them.
I'm confused... Is Dubya one of the prayers? Or is he one of the people in Louisiana whose life has been turned upside down? Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Sep. 3, 2008

It's a little bit reminiscent of what was taking place in Iraq a couple of years ago, where the enemy knows that they can affect the mentality of the American people if they just continue to kill innocent folks. And they have no disregard for human life.
Which, of course, means they have regard for human life... White House, Jul. 15, 2008

We do not want the enemy to have safe haven. Of course unless, of course, your attitude is, this isn't a war. So if that's the case, it wouldn't matter whether we succeed or not. But it is a two-front war. And I say there's other fronts, but there's other fronts where we're taking covert actions, for example.
Dubya needs to rethink his contraction usage. White House, Jul. 15, 2008

We're trying to help get this AU troops in Africa, throughout Africa into Sudan. And we're working with the French on the issue of Chad. And it's a complex situation, and sadly enough, innocent people are being displaced and are losing their life.
Innocent people... One life? White House, Jul. 15, 2008

Lieutenant Governor, proud to be with you. This man wear the uniform of the United States military, and I'm proud to be with this veteran, and now public servant for the state of Maryland.
A little conjugation difficulty here, Bethesda, Maryland, Jul. 3, 2008

We pray that America will strengthen those who serve nuestros hermanos y hermanas in need. We pray for the continued success of faith-based and community groups like Esperanza all aiming to transfer our great country one heart, one soul, one conscience at a time. I was proud to hear of the work of Esperanza in Philadelphia. I've known Esperanza for ochos aņos.
Dubya engages in some free-form Spanish-English speaking, but drops the ball on the English part... Washington, D.C., Jun. 26, 2008

Organizations like yours have shown the ability to save and change lives. And in your mercies of love and mercy, you must always have a strong and reliable partner in government.
Mercies of mercy... Washington, D.C., Jun. 26, 2008

Part of the faith walk is to understand your weaknesses, and is to constantly try to embetter yourself and get closer to the Lord. And that's a daily occurrence.
Dubya describes his faith with a nonexistent word, White House, May 13, 2008

Just think about what life was like in Afghanistan under the Taliban, with al Qaeda driving the agenda. This is where girls have no rights. You can't worship freely. This is a very dark, grim vision that they believe they must spread far and wide. That's what they think. And one way they achieve their objectives, of course, is to intimidate by death. There's no rules with these people. There's just so America has got to understand that in order to find them we've got to get in their heads. If you're facing a nation, you can find the nation. If you're facing people that burry in failed states you've got to understand how to find them.
Burry... not sure what that means, and neither did the White House transcriber who left it in as-is with a "(sic)" after it. Maryland Heights, Missouri, May 2, 2008

How can you possibly have an international agreement that's effective unless countries like China and India are not full participants?
Classic double negative. Thanks, Dubya! Camp David, Maryland, Apr. 19, 2008

We want people ownin' their home we want people ownin' a businesses, we want people ownin' their own homes, we wanna help 'em stay, and Congress can help by passing responsible legislation that modernizes the Federal Housing Administration, reforms Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, allows state housing agencies to issue tax-free bonds to refinance subprime mortgages. There's a way to help people.
You can pretty much count on something like this happening when Dubya tries to be emphatic, Washington, D.C., Apr. 18, 2008

During the recent fighting in the Basra province, our nations coordinated our support for the Iraqi security forces as they took on extremists and criminals. Most thankful for the brilliance of the British helicopter crews that fired under courage and helped evacuate wounded Iraqi soldiers.
If that makes sense to you, that makes one of us. White House, Apr. 17, 2008

And so, so long as I'm the President, my measure of success is victory and success.
Dubya presents us with a grammatical paradox, White House, Apr. 17, 2008

Some of the incentives in the pro-growth package are for small businesses and businesses with accelerated appreciation, incentives to invest.
Or depreciation... the White House transcript didn't bother to correct this one. White House, Apr. 17, 2008

There's no doubt where he [Russian President Vladimir Putin] stands. That's why I like him. You don't have to guess. And he is concerned about it. Yet Russia appreciates the confidence-building and transparency measures that we have proposed, and declared that if agreed and implemented, such measures will be important and useful in ensuring Russia concerns.
The White House transcript claimed that the word Dubya meant to use was "assuaged" but that wouldn't make much sense unless it was "assuaging"... In any case, Dubya ends up completely changing the meaning of the statement. Sochi, Russia, Apr. 6, 2008

I understand that a citizen says, wait a minute, we're contributing soldiers in Iraq, and yet we're not necessarily treated like other nations in the European collective, or European Union. And those frustrations are clearly understandable. That's why I went to Congress and tried to get them to modernize the visa law. And all they although they changed the law, it still creates certain hurdles for nations like Romania. And I assured the President that we will work with him as best as we can to adhere to our law and to, at the same time, understands the contradictions. It's hopefully, the new law will and our cooperation will make it easier for Romanian citizens to come and visit their relatives.
Dubya claims he understands, but I have to say that given that twisted passage, it's pretty hard to understand Dubya. Neptun, Romania, Apr. 2, 2008

We've had seven years working together, a chance to have some pretty candid exchanges. And secondly and this is his [Russian President Putin's] last this will be our last face-to-face meeting as a presidency, and I'll thank him.
Putin and Dubya: Combined together, they form a presidency. Neptun, Romania, Apr. 2, 2008

Afghanistan is the most daring and ambition mission in the history of NATO.
At least it rhymed with mission... Bucharest, Romania, Apr. 2, 2008

I can't understand a mentality that doesn't recognize that causing America to be treated equally is not in our interests.
I can't understand that sentence, Washington, D.C., Mar. 12, 2008

Removing Saddam Hussein was the right decision early in my presidency. It is the right decision now, and it will be the right decision ever.
Dubya offers a grammatically-challenged defense of his war policy, Washington, D.C., Mar. 12, 2008

I, I have got to know John [McCain] well in the uhh, last eight years. I, I've campaigned against him, and I've campaigned with him. Laura and I have spent time in their house. It's a man who deeply loves his family.
Dubya endorses John McCain, and inadvertently makes a case for increased education funding, White House, Mar. 5, 2008

And so, [Lieutenant] General [Ray Odierno], I want to thank you for your service. And I appreciate the fact that you really snatched defeat out of the jaws of those who are trying to defeat us in Iraq.
I hope that isn't what the General did... White House, Mar. 3, 2008

We saw many others who have new hope because of PEPFAR including a 9-year-old girl who is HIV-positive. She was smiling at the clinic with her grandmother, because sitting at the clinic with her grandmother because her mom and dad had died of AIDS.
I'm guessing (hoping) that's not what Dubya meant to say, Washington, D.C., Feb. 26, 2008

Welcome. Laura and I are glad you're here. Uhh, Rex, thank you for taking the lead for Ford's Theatre. Uhh, if, uhh, our, any citizen wants to know how ta uhh, make a solid contribution to Washington, D.C., support Ford's Theatre. It's worth it. Uh, members of my Cabinet, thanks for comin'. Members of Congress, we're glad you're here. I've got two, two task. One is to present the Lincoln Medal, and, uhh, invite you to a buffet.
The White House transcript adds an 's' to make it make sense. White House, Feb. 10, 2008

Now I want you I'll make sure you understand in the State of the Union that this package certainly doesn't mean we ought to do something else on taxes.
The White House transcript explains that Dubya meant to say "ought not to do", White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, Jan. 25, 2008

I can press when there needs to be pressed. I can hold hands when there needs to be hold hands.
Absolutely brilliant... White House, Jan. 6, 2008

2008 and after : 2007 : 2006 : 2005 : 2004 : 2003 : 2002 : 2001 and earlier

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