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Assessing the George W. Bush PresidencyA Tale of Two Terms$
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Andrew Wroe and Jon Herbert

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780748627400

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748627400.001.0001

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The Politics of Aging

The Politics of Aging

Chapter:
(p.166) Chapter 11 The Politics of Aging
Source:
Assessing the George W. Bush Presidency
Author(s):

Alex Waddan

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748627400.003.0011

Under President George W. Bush, the White House had been ambitious in its earlier years as it sought to redraw the contours of domestic policy. The tax cuts of 2001 and 2003, the No Child Left Behind education reform and the appointment of conservative judges to federal courts all marked significant political victories. Furthermore, the administration had embarked on major legislative efforts to reform the United States's two biggest public policy programmes, Medicare, which provides health care for the nation's seniors, and Social Security, the public pension scheme. These were both bold political advances on to terrain normally occupied by the Democratic Party. In 2003, Bush signed into law the Medicare Modernisation Act, but in 2005 the plan to transform the Social Security system made no legislative progress, despite the elections of 2004 confirming unified Republican government. This chapter examines the ideological implications of the Bush administration's reform efforts for Medicare and Social Security and analyses why there was such a difference in the final outcomes across policy areas and between Bush's first and second terms.

Keywords:   George W. Bush, United States, tax cuts, Medicare, Social Security, reform, No Child Left Behind, domestic policy, Medicare Modernisation Act

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