| TYLER, Texas, Oct. 20 (UPI) -- The presidency, former U.S. President George W. Bush told an audience in Tyler, Texas, is bigger than the man or the ideas he brings to Washington.
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Bush told an audience at the University of Texas-Tyler when he became the nation's 43rd president, he wanted to lead with vision and optimism and leave the office better, or at least not worse, than when he arrived, the Tyler Morning Telegraph reported Wednesday.
"Here's what you learn", Bush said Tuesday. "You realize you're not it. You're a part of something bigger than yourself."
He also plugged his book, "Decision Points", scheduled for a November release, during his appearance, part of the university's Distinguished Lecture Series.
"This will come as a shock to some people in our country who didn't think I could read a book, much less write one", he joked.
Bush said his faith, family and friends helped sustain him, the Morning Telegraph said.
The belief that everyone should experience freedom helped him stay the course in Iraq, Bush said, adding he believes the country is better because of the fall of Saddam Hussein.
The decision to back a bank bailout in the early weeks of the economic downturn "wasn't that hard for me", Bush said, because he was advised that if he didn't do "something significant", the country would experience "a depression greater than the Great Depression."
"I made the decision to use your money to prevent the collapse from happening", Bush said .
Bush said he opted not to watch a lot of television, choosing to read instead. He said he read 12 biographies about President Lincoln while in office.
"It's interesting to be making history and reading history", he said. "I think he's the country's greatest president." - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
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