There are three moments that resonated with me:
1) Bush, at one point, was asked by a Fox News Reporter whether he would disagree with potential policy of President-elect Obama. Bush refused to take the bait. Instead, Bush defended the President-elect and later in the press conference reflected on the historic moment of Obama’s swearing-in saying that he would be in a unique position to see history made on January 20th.
2) Bush revealed a rare picture of his self-image when he talked about self-pity and the loneliness of the presidency. Bush talked about the presidential bubble and how Obama will deal with it well because of the love of his family. He assured the press corps, his detractors and the American people that he has been paying attention to their disagreements with his policies. However, securing the homeland was more important to him than being popular. Once again, his thoughts shifted to the next administration when Bush asked for Obama’s future detractors, from his own political party, to disagree with Obama but to do it with respect.
3) The disappointments - Katrina (where to land AF1), Mission Accomplished, Social Security (post-2004 campaign), not finding Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq, Bush acknowledged the missteps of his presidency with a level of frankness that is rarely seen while the President is still residing at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
The unguarded Bush is a President that America voted for in 2000. This press conference showed a man who loves his country, values his family, and was honored to serve as the 43rd President of the United States. On Wednesday January 21st, citizen George W. Bush may wake up in Crawford and make his wife Laura a cup of coffee (and deliver it to her)… today, I got the feeling that Bush loved being President but will be just fine once the kleeg lights shift their focus on Barack Obama.