Focus Point - The Best Man

Commentary by Pete du Pont

I'm Pete du Pont with the National Center for Policy Analysis. When the Gallup Poll asked Americans to rate the presidents since 1960, guess who came out second -- over LBJ and even Ronald Reagan? George Bush. And in a recent New Republic article, the Brookings Institution's Jonathon Rauch applauded the results, calling Bush our best modern president.

I'm still a Reagan man, but Rauch's arguments are interesting. Bush cleaned up the S&L mess and guided a successful end to our long involvement in Nicaragua. He steered foreign policy through the potentially treacherous Soviet meltdown and German reunification. His masterly gulf war coalition-building and conduct of the war showed the military Reagan had rebuilt could fight. He broke his no new taxes pledge, which cost him his job, and his economic policies were more liberal than conservative.

Still, Rauch argues, Clinton has spent eight years drawing from the account George Bush built up. To my knowledge, Clinton has not yet acknowledged it.

Those are my ideas, and at the NCPA we know ideas can change the world. I'm Pete du Pont. Next time, the real tobacco story.