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BUSH ON GOD The president's comments



Published: Fri, January 21, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



"Christ, because he changed my heart. ... When you turn your heart and your life over to Christ, when you accept Christ as the savior, it changes your heart. It changes your life."

-- Dec. 13, 1999, Republican debate, when asked to name a favorite philosopher or thinker.

"I was asked what [philosopher most] influenced my life, and I gave an honest, unvarnished answer. It doesn't make me better than you or better than anybody else, but it's a foundation for how I live my life. Some may accept the answer, and some may not. But I really don't care. It's me. It's what I'm all about. It's how I live my life."

-- Jan. 6, 2000, Republican debate, when asked about the prior remark and whether non-Christians would feel excluded by a Bush presidency.

"My position on these issues is shaped by deeply held beliefs. I'm a strong supporter of science and technology and believe they have the potential for incredible good. ... I also believe human life is a sacred gift from our creator. I worry about a culture that devalues life and believe as your president I have an important obligation to foster and encourage respect for life."

-- Aug. 9, 2001, on his decision to limit funding for embryonic stem cell research.

"I do say that freedom is the Almighty's gift to every person. I also condition it by saying freedom is not America's gift to the world. It's much greater than that, of course. And I believe we worship the same God."

-- Nov. 20, 2003, when asked about the Middle East and the belief by many Christians that Muslims don't worship the same God. Many Christian leaders denounced his answer.

"Going into this period, I was praying for strength to do the Lord's will. ... I'm surely not going to justify war based upon God. ... Nevertheless, in my case I pray that I be as good a messenger of his will as possible. And then, of course, I pray for personal strength and for forgiveness."

-- December 2003, discussing his decision to invade Iraq with reporter Bob Woodward, as recounted in the book "Plan of Attack."

"My job is to make sure that, as president, people understand that in this country you can worship any way you choose. And I'll take that a step further. You can be a patriot if you don't believe in the Almighty. You can honor your country and be as patriotic as your neighbor."

-- May 26, 2004, interview at the White House, Christianity Today.




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