Former U.S. president Bush defends his bank bailout decision

10:05, October 21, 2010      

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Former U.S. President George W. Bush defended his decision to bail out banks toward the end of his term, according to a news report Wednesday.

Speaking to a packed university lecture hall Tuesday night in Tyler, southwest of Dallas, Texas, Bush firmly defended his decision to seek a massive government bailout of troubled banks in late 2008, which is now denounced by his fellow Republicans.

The former president said he was told by top economic advisers that failure to do "something significant" could lead to a " depression greater than the Great Depression." The decision "wasn' t that hard for me," he said.

"I made the decision to use your money to prevent the collapse from happening," he was quoted by the Tyler Morning Telegraph as saying.

Bush, who had kept a low profile since leaving office, now plans a number of interviews ahead of his Nov. 9 release of his book about his presidency, "Decision Pionts".

Bush also told roughly 2,000 listeners that he tried to leave the presidency better than it was when he took office, or at least equal to what it was when he started presidency.

"Here's what you learn. You realize you're not it. You are part of something bigger than yourself," he said.



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