Contact: White House, Office of the Press Secretary, 202-456-2580
10:53 A.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT: I'm proud to welcome the Secretary General of NATO here to the Oval Office. We've just had a fascinating discussion.
First, Mr. Secretary General, you've been a very strong leader. As a matter of fact, you've made NATO a values-based organization that is capable of dealing with the true threats of the 21st century. I appreciate your leadership. I particularly appreciate the fact that you have led the 26 nations of NATO into
I appreciate the fact that you're reaching out to global partners, nations which share our value, but have not been considered a -- necessarily considered a part of NATO. I want to thank your view of making sure NATO continues to provide the opportunity for other nations to join NATO.
I'm looking forward to
SECRETARY GENERAL de HOOP SCHEFFER: Mr. President, thank you very much, and thank you for giving me your time. I can echo your words. NATO is delivering security in the 21st century. And that means defending values, and that means defending values not only in
And let me -- let me say that when, in those actions of NATO, of those brave NATO soldiers, civilians are killed, as happened two days ago, that's always a tragedy. That's a tragedy.
But let me convince you to look at the broader picture. They are against democracy. Girls did not go to school when the Taliban was running
Mr. President, I'm looking forward to the
Mr. President, once again, thank you very much for being here.
THE PRESIDENT: Yes, sir. I'll answer a couple of questions this morning. Jennifer.
Q Thank you, sir. What does it say to you that
THE PRESIDENT: It says to me that we must double our effort to work with the international community to persuade the Iranians that there is only isolation from the world if they continue working forward on such a program. And I've read the speculation about that that's what they may be doing, but whether they've doubled it or not, the idea of
Q Sir, do you agree with the Vice President that a dunk in the water is a "no brainer" when it comes to interrogating a terror suspect?
PRESIDENT BUSH: This country doesn't torture, we're not going to torture. We will interrogate people we pick up off the battlefield to determine whether or not they've got information that will be helpful to protect the country.
Q Mr. President, with the elections just about 10 days away, polls show that voters are more disenchanted with the Republican-led Congress than at any time since 1994, when the Democrats lost power. What explanation or answer do you have for people who feel that way?
PRESIDENT BUSH: I understand people here in
This election is going to be determined by how our candidates run locally. And I believe if they continue to emphasize the big issues -- keeping taxes low, and protecting the American people -- we'll win. And so we'll see how the outcome comes. I know there's a lot of speculation here in
All I can tell you is what I see: I see enthusiasm amongst Republicans, I see candidates who are saying, vote for me, I will work to make sure
Thank you all very much.
END 10:59 A.M. EDT