Critics: President may have evaded Boy Scout
By John Breneman
-- New allegations have emerged regarding President Bush's
service in uniform, this time involving his record in the
Boy Scouts of America.
As critics hammer him over whether he evaded his duties in
the National Guard, the president now faces tough questions
about whether he actually earned several merit badges that
have been awarded to him.
Bush is an outspoken supporter of the Boy Scouts and also
serves as the organization's honorary president, but there
is mounting evidence that he may have completely "blown
off" the respected character-building organization as
former Texas scoutmaster says he has no recollection of Bush
ever having served in his troop and could produce no records
that the future president was ever issued a uniform or penknife.
Nevertheless, Bush reportedly has received merit badges for
Citizenship, Emergency Preparedness and Public Speaking. Critics
charge that Bush's possession of the badges is a slap in the
face to thousands of diligent young scouts who have earned
them fair and square.
Eagle Scout Jimmy Barton, 16, of Whittler, Texas, said he
guesses the president could make a case he earned the badges
through his later service to the country, but he is not convinced.
and Emergency Preparedness I could understand, but Public
Speaking? Please," said Barton. "I think he should
give them back unless he wants to do the work. I had to report
15 suspicious neighbors to the Justice Department to get my
Emergency Preparedness badge."
Bush responded to the allegations on "Meet the Press,"
saying, "I would be careful to not denigrate the Boy
Scouts. It's fine to go after me, which I expect the other
side will do. I wouldn't denigrate service to the Scouts,
Earlier today, the White House released dental records showing
Bush had received treatment for a cavity caused by eating
toasted marshmallows at a Boy Scout jamboree in 1960.
'Friends' cameo may boost president's approval
By John Breneman
that TV can reverse his sagging approval rating, President
Bush's handlers have arranged for Sunday's unusual appearance
on "Meet the Press" to be followed this Thursday
by a surprise cameo on "Friends."
Eager to help the amiable chief executive, Ross uses his
scientific knowledge to offer theories on what became of the
weapons of mass destruction while Chandler quips that Saddam
Hussein either flushed them down the toilet during a U.S.
raid or "his dog ate them."
Bush's approval mark dipped to 48 percent this week as more
people realized they don't appreciate it when their president
tells them something as "fact" (Iraq's possession
of weapons) that is actually a "load of crap."
The president, also dogged by his sketchy record of service
in the National Guard, could gain a 7-8 percent bump in the
polls if he did a guest spot on "JAG" outfitted
in, say, a military flightsuit. This idea from his chief TV
adviser was one of several detailed in a confidential memo
obtained by the Humor Gazette.
Bush has been asked to appear on "Hardball with Chris
Matthews," but the memo advises he is better suited to
"Softball with Larry King." The president will avoid
"This Week With George Stephanopoulos" in favor
of some voter-friendly mugging on "This Week With George
Foreman." The memo also reveals Bush ordered his aides
not to book him on "Face the Damn Nation."
White House advisers even strategized about a reality show
but agreed they didn't want Bush anywhere near Donald Trump.
Discussions of a new program called "Joe President,"
in which a failed businessman from a prominent political family
ruins the U.S. economy and turns much of the world against
America, were quickly scuttled.
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