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For Immediate Release
Office of the First Lady
February 20, 2007

Mrs. Bush Attends Briefing on the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands National Monument
Eisenhower Executive Office Building
Room 450

10:38 A.M. EST

MRS. BUSH: I'm so happy to have this chance to be briefed on the new national marine monument that President Bush declared a monument in 2006. He's the one who did the declaring; a lot of you in the audience are the ones who did the hard work to, first, advocate that this be protected as a national monument, and then helped figure out the ways we could do it.

So I want to thank everybody. I know that many of you were involved from a long time ago, really, and every step of the way, to make sure this beautiful and fabulous marine area -- huge area, 140,000 square miles -- is protected. He was the one who signed the proclamation but I'm the very lucky one that's going to get to go. And next week, I'm going to make a trip there, and then go to Honolulu where, with the Governor, they will do the native naming of the monument.

So I think that's really, really terrific. I'm looking forward to that, and having the chance to bird watch for one day while I'm there, and then to go to Honolulu for a very, very special occasion for the people of Hawaii, to know that these outer islands are protected, and then to have the native naming. So that will be great.

I want to thank everybody who's here for all the work you've done, and I'm going to turn it over to Jim, and then I think Susan Middleton is going to make a great presentation. Looking forward to it.

END 10:40 A.M. EST

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