A Charge To Keep: on Principles & Values

Government if necessary, not necessarily government

[Citing his gubernatorial inauguration speech], “Texans can run Texas,” I told my fellow Texans. “I will ask the federal government to return to us the power to set our own course. My guiding principle,” I said, “will be government if necessary, not necessarily government.” I talked about the need to change our culture, and reform our schools and welfare and criminal justice laws. “I feel the wind at our backs,” I concluded.
Source: “A Charge to Keep”, p. 44 Dec 9, 1999

“A Charge to Keep,” hymn & painting, inspire Bush

I started the [gubernatorial inauguration] day with a church service. One of the hymns I selected is titled “A Charge to Keep I Have.” Written by Charles Wesley, the words say:
A charge to keep I have,
A God to glorify,
A never dying soul to save,
And fit it for the sky.
To serve the present age,
My calling to fulfill;
O may it all my powers engage
To do my Master’s will!
[Hanging in my office is] a beautiful oil painting by W.H.D. Koerner entitled A Charge to Keep. The painting, inspired by the hymn, [pictures] a horseman determinedly charging up what appears to be a steep & rough trail. This is us. [The painting and] hymn have been an inspiration for me & for members of my staff. “A Charge to Keep” calls us to our highest and best. It speaks of purpose and direction. In many hymnals, it is associated with a Bible verse, 1 Corinthians 4:2: “Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful.”
Source: “A Charge to Keep”, p. 45 Dec 9, 1999

Government should not block faith-based programs

It seemed to me that a government that truly wants to help people should welcome the active involvement of people of faith, not throw up roadblocks or stifle their efforts with bureaucratic red tape.. I assembled a task force to recommend ways that churches and synagogues and mosques and other faith-based or private institutions could work with government to help people in need without violating the important principle of separation of church and state, compromising the religious nature of their mission, or being shackled by government intrusion. I believe in the power of faith to change lives.
Source: “A Charge to Keep”, p.213-215 Dec 9, 1999

Texas re-election based on “compassionate conservatism”

[On the day of the gubernatorial re-election:] Tonight’s resounding victory says my compassionate conservative philosophy is making Texas a better place. But today’s election says something more. It says that a leader who is compassionate and conservative can erase the gender gap, open the Republican Party to new faces and new voices, and win without sacrificing our principles.
Source: “A Charge to Keep”, p.224 Dec 9, 1999

Bush’s conservatism: local solutions within limited govt

I am a conservative because I believe in the power of each individual. My philosophy trusts individuals to make the right decisions for their families and communities [instead of] from distant bureaucracies. I am a conservative because I believe government should be limited and efficient. I am a conservative because I believe in a strong national defense [and] I support free markets and free trade. I am a conservative because I believe government closest to the people governs best.
Source: “A Charge to Keep”, p.235 Dec 9, 1999

  • The above quotations are from A Charge To Keep: My Journey to the White House, by George W. Bush.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Principles & Values.
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  • Click here for more quotes by George W. Bush on Principles & Values.
2012 Presidential contenders on Principles & Values:
Pres.Barack Obama(IL)
V.P.Joe Biden(DE)

Gov.Mitt Romney(MA)
Rep.Paul Ryan(WI)
Third Parties:
Green: Dr.Jill Stein(MA)
Libertarian: Gov.Gary Johnson(NM)
Justice: Mayor Rocky Anderson(UT)
Constitution: Rep.Virgil Goode(VA)
Peace+Freedom: Roseanne Barr(HI)
Reform Party: André Barnett(NY)
AmericansElect: Gov.Buddy Roemer(LA)
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Page last updated: Apr 16, 2013