Director Michael Moore portrays President Bush as derelict in his duty as president during a montage alleging
“George Bush spent the rest of August at the ranch where life was less complicated.”
False. The President was in Texas from August 7-13 and 21-25. The rest of the month was spent traveling to New Mexico, Colorado, Wisconsin, Missouri and then back to Washington at the end of the month.
The criticism of Bush’s August “vacation” is not only factually inaccurate, but is also wrong in spirit, as the Presidency travels with the President and Bush’s time in Texas within August 2001 did not see a “vacation” style lull in presidential duty.
Bush continued receiving daily security briefings (except Sunday) and had his staff with him, along with a number of reporters. Bush accomplished various work most days, and traveled away from the ranch during this time, contrary to Moore’s claim.
From the Official White House Press Briefing for August travel arrangements;
While in Texas, he will have a working vacation there. I was going to do this at the end of the briefing. Let me give you some information now. But the President will travel for approximately two days a week each week during his visit to Texas. The upcoming week, he will travel one day to build a house in nearby Waco, Texas, to participate in a Habitat for Humanity event.
The following week, the President will travel to Colorado and New Mexico. The week following that, the President will travel roughly three days to Wisconsin and other locations TBD. He’ll also travel to Pennsylvania that week.
The following week, the President will have an event in nearby San Antonio, and you can also anticipate travel over Labor Day weekend to some unnamed cities as of this point.
A review of the White House news archive for August 2001 shows this month to be anything but a —vacation“.
White House, —News releases for August 2001
White House Press Briefing, August 1, 2001
White House Press Briefing, August 3, 2001
White House Press Briefing, August 9, 2001
White House Press Briefing, August 22, 2001
White House Press Briefing, August 31, 2001
It is naïve to think that the President spent an entire month doing nothing, as Michael Moore implies.