The White House, President George W. Bush Click to print this document

For Immediate Release
Office of the First Lady
October 28, 2006

Mrs. Bush's Remarks at New York Victory 2006 Rally
Greece Community and Senior Center
Greece, New York

10:45 A.M. EDT

MRS. BUSH: Thank you very much, Congressman. Thank you everybody. Thank you all very much. Thank you, Congressman Reynolds; thank you very much. Thanks to each and every one of you for such a warm welcome, I really appreciate it.

Thanks also for coming out on a rainy morning, early in the morning, to say hello to me -- thank you very much for that. And thanks for coming to support Congressman Tom Reynolds and Congressman Randy Kuhl, both to be reelected to the United States Congress. (Applause.)

I want to recognize Donna Reynolds, Tom's wife, who is here in the crowd with us. Donna, thank you very much. Thank you for joining us. (Applause.) Steve Minarik, the Chairman of the New York State Republican Party. Steve, thank you for joining us. (Applause.) And in the crowd are a number of local elected officials and candidates. Thank you all, thank you for your service to your communities and to your state and to our country. Thanks so much. (Applause.)

I'm delighted to be here today to support Tom Reynolds and Randy Kuhl's campaigns for the United States Congress.

Congressman Reynolds is a leader in the House of Representatives, where he serves as Deputy Majority Whip. He was chosen unanimously by his colleagues in the 109th Congress to be chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee -- one of only eight elected Republican House leadership positions. (Applause.)

Tom is best known, though, for the passion he brings to representing the people of New York -- and in Washington, he's distinguished himself as a powerful advocate for the 26th district. Just two weeks ago, Tom's dedication and leadership helped secure millions of dollars in federal assistance for his constituents in the Buffalo area -- (applause) -- resources that will help Western New Yorkers rebuild after the devastating snowstorm that surprised the region earlier this month. Thank you, Tom, for this important work. (Applause.)

During his eight years in the House, Congressman Reynolds has brought almost half a billion dollars in federal funding to the 26th district. He's advanced health care in this region by securing federal investments in the University at Buffalo's Bioinformatics Center, and in the Roswell Park Cancer Institute. And Tom restored vital funding to the federal Manufacturing Extension Partnership program, which helps New York State's 26,000 small- and mid-sized manufacturing companies compete in a global marketplace. (Applause.)

Congressman Randy Kuhl is dedicated to the people of Western New York. He's had a great start in Congress, and during his first term in the House he brought the principles of efficiency and accountability that have defined his public service -- service that includes 24 years representing Western New Yorkers in Albany. Thank you very much, Randy. (Applause.)

In Washington, Congressman Kuhl works to make sure New Yorkers' tax dollars are spent wisely and responsibly. He supports the presidential line item veto, which will help eliminate unnecessary spending from the federal budget. And he supports President Bush's tax cuts. (Applause.) These tax cuts have fueled our economy, and they've helped to add 6.6 million new jobs since 2003. That means 6.6 million more Americans wake up every morning with the dignity and the sense of purpose that comes with a job. (Applause.)

Congressman Reynolds and Congressman Kuhl are dedicated to creating jobs in New York State. Through his leadership on the Agriculture Committee, Randy is improving opportunities for New York farmers. In just two years, Randy has already secured $250 million in federal funds to foster economic development in the 29th district. And during the last round of base closings, Tom Reynolds led the effort to save the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station -- saving 3,000 upstate New York jobs. (Applause.)

Offering young people the hope of good employment is one of the most important things we can do for our children. Another important way we can help our young people is by steering them away from risky behavior, and guiding them toward the knowledge and the self-respect they need to build successful lives. (Applause.)

And one of the best ways we can help young people succeed is by providing them with a good education. (Applause.) And a good education starts with reading. If you can read, you can read every single subject. (Applause.) Congressman Reynolds supported legislation that provided $10.2 million for the Reach Out and Read program -- a program that's very close to my heart. Reach Out and Read is a program that adds the authority of the medical community to reading, where pediatricians inform young parents about the importance of early reading with their children, and actually write a prescription for reading.

Thank you very much for that, Congressman Reynolds. (Applause.)

Congressman Kuhl has served on the board of his local Boy Scout council, helping boys in Western New York build leadership skills and develop the character they need to be healthy and successful young men. Thank you, Randy and Tom, for your commitment to New York's children. (Applause.)

We all know, though, that the well-being of young people in New York and throughout our country ultimately depends upon our government's ability to protect them -- by defeating terrorism and increasing liberty abroad. (Applause.)

Congressman Kuhl and Congressman Reynolds understand the needs of our troops at this crucial time in our country's history. During the 1970s, Tom served for six years in the Air National Guard and achieved the rank of sergeant. And in the United States Congress, Tom and Randy are champions of the men and women of the United States military. (Applause.)

And thanks to our troops, the men and women of Iraqi are now free from the oppression of Saddam Hussein, and are working to build a democratic future for their country. (Applause.)

And in Afghanistan, women and girls can now be educated. (Applause.) It's hard for us to imagine a country that would prohibit half of its citizens from being educated. But now, little girls are in school all over Afghanistan. (Applause.)

All of us are proud of the men and women who are deployed around the world defending our country. Every day, thousands of these young men and women risk their lives overseas to make sure that their families, and all of our families, are kept safe in the United States. (Applause.) Their love of our country, and of liberty, never wavers -- and neither does their belief in their cause.

Many of these young men and women have given their life for this belief. Around the country, President Bush and I meet with the families. In military hospitals, we meet with their fellow soldiers who've been wounded in combat. And from our troops and their families, the President and I hear the same request: that we honor the sacrifice of these men and women by seeing their mission through. They ask the American people to stand with our troops. (Applause.)

Congressman Reynolds and Congressman Kuhl appreciate our troops' sacrifice. They understand that this election is critical to the future of our country. And they know that America faces challenges too important to be reduced to just politics. (Applause.)

President Bush has an ambitious agenda for the rest of his time in Washington, and he takes his responsibility to the American people very seriously. Ending our dependence on foreign oil, reforming our immigration system, rebuilding the Gulf Coast, and keeping our country safe from terrorism are not easy tasks, but they're absolutely vital goals. To accomplish them, we must have serious national conversations, conducted with civility and respect.

The right to have these conversations is part of what makes our country great, and our democracy strong. We must be mindful that people around the world are listening to these discussions. Responsible candidates understand that the men and women of our military are risking their lives for us overseas, and that we must conduct our debate here at home in a way that does not jeopardize our troops in harm's way. (Applause.) It's so important that we stand with Congressman Reynolds and Congressman Kuhl at this challenging time in our country's history.

Thanks to each and every one of you for supporting Congressman Reynolds and Congressman Kuhl. And thanks especially to all of the volunteers for your hard work making the phone calls and knocking on the doors. You've already done so much to help Tom and Randy, and our other terrific Republican candidates in New York. And in the next week and a half, they'll need more of your energy and enthusiasm. So go to the phone banks, knock on those doors, and talk to your friends and neighbors about Tom Reynolds, Randy Kuhl, and all of New York's great Republicans. They need your support -- and our country needs them. (Applause.)

Thank you all so much. Thank you very much. Thank you for coming out today. Thank you in advance for all the hard work you're going to do over the next week-and-a-half to make sure Tom Reynolds and Randy Kuhl are reelected to the United States Congress on November 7th. Thank you all very much. (Applause.)

END 11:05 A.M. EDT

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