LIVE: State Policy Efforts to Avert and Alleviate Medical Debt






Saturday evening – the day before Easter – the White House conveniently released the Aug. 6, 2001, Presidential Daily Briefing (PDB) titled "Bin Ladin Determined to Strike in U.S." But the clever timing of this release can not hide the Bush administration’s failure to act decisively in attempting to thwart al Qaeda activities in the United States prior to 9/11. The administration was explicitly warned in this memo that something big was coming. How did President Bush react at the time? He stayed – uninterrupted – on one of the longest presidential vacations in history.*

  • Contrary to the sworn testimony of Condoleezza Rice, the Bush administration was given explicit warning of impending al Qaeda attacks on the United States. The Aug. 6 PDB contained detailed warnings about al Qaeda plans in the United States including "preparations consistent with hijackings" and stated that 70 full field FBI investigations into al Qaeda were underway. The president did not need bin Laden’s final blueprint to know that something more had to be done.
  • Despite this clear warning, President Bush did nothing to increase the urgency of the government’s efforts to stop al Qaeda. President Bush yesterday amazingly claimed that he did everything he could to fight domestic terrorism. Yet after the Aug. 6 memo, he stayed on vacation for two more weeks. He convened no high level meetings. And he did not bring the government to "battle stations" as Rice misleadingly stated last week.
  • The Bush administration should stop the political games and come clean on its role pre-9/11. The nation’s security should not be beholden to President Bush’s desires for clean campaign scripts about how valiant the administration has acted on terrorism. Two and half years after 9/11, the public is just learning the not-so-pretty truth about the administration’s actions. It’s time for the administration to admit its mistakes and reassure the public that it has learned something from these errors.

*President Bush’s Vacation Schedule starting Aug.6, 2001 – the day of the PDB warning about an impending al Qaeda attack in the U.S.

Monday, August 6

4-mile run, built nature walk in canyon, fishing.[1]

Tuesday, August 7


3-mile run.[3]

Fishing, cookout with Mel Martinez.[4]

Wednesday, August 8

Habitat for Humanity, Waco, TX (injured finger).[5]

Worked out with weights.[6]

Thursday, August 9

Jogging, fishing, announced stem cell decision (9pm EST).[7]

Sunday, August 12

Church near Crawford.[8]

Monday, August 13

Golf, signed agriculture bill with audience of farmers.[9]

Tuesday, August 14, 2001

Thinned brush and raised money at a picnic in Colorado.[10]

Talked to children at YMCA camp in Colorado.[11]

Wednesday, August 15, 2001

Talked to children in Albuquerque, opened job-training center, addressed Chamber of

Commerce, attended fundraiser for Sen. Domenici, Colorado Rockies v. Atlanta Braves.[12]

Saturday, August 18, 2001

Radio address re: faith-based initiatives.[13]

Monday, August 20, 2001

Addressed VFW Convention, toured Harley-Davidson plant, Milwaukee.[14]

Work out, dinner with friends.[15]

Tuesday, August 21, 2001

Truman High School, Independence, MO re: taxes.[16]

Wednesday, August 22, 2001

Ran, lifted weights.[17]

Thursday, August 23, 2001

Golf, Crawford Elementary School, met with horticulturalist re: trees on ranch.[18]

Friday, August 24, 2001

Press conference re: economy (1st press conference of vacation).[19]

Saturday, August 25, 2001

Ranch tour for the press (80 minutes).[20]

Sunday, August 26, 2001

Steel Plant in Pennsylvania, barbeque.[21]

Little League World Series Championship (Japan v. Florida).[22]

Wednesday, August 29, 2001

Spoke at an American Legion Convention re: military budget, tax cut.[23]

Dedicated a restored grist mill, San Antonio.[24]

[1] It’s Not All Play, Bush Tells Media, Contra Costa Times, August 8, 2001
[2] Ibid.
[3] Bush Vacation: Keeping the Peace, Beating the Heat, The Hotline, August 8, 2001
[4] Presidential Retreat; Bush spends some of his time off defending his time off, John c= Henry, The Houston Chronicle, August 8, 2001
[5] Bush Lends a Hand to Build Texas Home, Akron Beacon Journal (Ohio), August 9, 2001
[6] Bush’s Stem Cell Decision, Los Angeles Times, Edwin Chen, August 10, 2001
[7] Bush OKs Limited Stem Cell Funding, Scott Lindlaw, Associated Press, August 9, 2001
[8] President Attends Church Near Ranch, Scott Lindlaw, Associated Press, August 12, 2001
[9] Bush Presses Arafat On Quelling Terror; Egypt Asks Greater U.S. Involvement, Dana Milbank, The Washington Post, August 14, 2001
[10] Bush visits Colorado, Trims Brush, Boosts Campaign Funds, Scott Lindlaw, Chattanooga Times Free Press, August 15, 2001
[11] Bush Emphasizes Teaching of Values to Children, Frank Bruni , The New York Times, August 15, 2001
[12] Bush courts Hispanics in N.M., Associated Press, Deseret News (Salt Lake City), August 15, 2001
[13] Bush Urges Pressure to Pass Faith-Based Plan, Los Angeles Times, August 19, 2001
[14] Bush Pushes Defense, School Funding, Sandra Sobeiraj, Associated Press, August 20, 2001
[15] President keeps low profile on first day in KC, Steve Kraske, The Kansas City Star, August 21, 2001
[16] President’s Words Were Familiar, Steve Kraske, Kansas City Star, August 26, 2001
[17] Bush set to select new military chief, Jeff Zeleny, Chicago Tribune, August 23, 2001
[18] Young Minds Want to Know, Mr. Bush, Edwin Chen, Los Angeles Times, August 24, 2001
[19] Bush Sees Good In Bad Times, Says Economic Slowdown Has Benefits, The Arizona Republic, August 25, 2001
[20] Bush Gives Press Tour Of Ranch, The Bulletin’s Frontrunner, August 27, 2001
[21] In Remarks To Union Workers, Bush Declares Steel Production A National Security Priority, The Bulletin’s Frontrunner, August 27, 2001
[22] President Concerned Over Slow Economy, Chattanooga Times Free Press (Tennessee), August 27, 2001
[23] President Defends Tax-Cut Initiative, David Sanger, Chattanooga Times Free Press, August 30, 2001
[24] Bush Pitches Defense Spending Plan to Veterans, Robert W. Gee, Cox News Service, August 29, 2001




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