Former President George W. Bush Gives Speech At Tulsa Fundraiser

Thursday, October 17th 2013, 11:22 pm
By: Emory Bryan

Former President George W. Bush spent Thursday evening in downtown Tulsa, giving a speech before a packed room at The Hyatt hotel.

He addressed the crowd at the 2013 Liberty Gala, hosted by the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs, a conservative group based in Oklahoma City.

There was an interesting mix of people in the hotel--the largely Republican crowd waiting for Bush, along with people going to Oktoberfest, the Thunder game and the Congress of American Indians.

The event itself was closed to the media.

The former President's visit had a part of downtown blocked off around the Hyatt Hotel. He arrived early in the afternoon, and a lot of that time was spent meeting supporters and having pictures made at a reception before the speech.

More than a thousand people heard him speak. About a half dozen people walked around outside, protesting his visit and calling him a war criminal.

The talk lasted more than an hour, and was about his decisions, and leadership style.

"He talked a lot about leadership. I would say that would be the number one thing, and all the aspects--kind of along the lines of his book. Not that that was his sole purpose in being here. But he talked a lot about decisions and what that means. And the first decision being, 'Why I ran for President,'" said Christy Tate, who was in the audience.

President Bush left the hotel and Tulsa at about 8:30 Thursday night. The motorcade was just a couple of SUVs and police cars, and Bush was flying out right away.

One quote from Bush is this: "Three of the best things my father gave me: being raised in West Texas, no money and unconditional love."

Tulsa Mayor Dewey Bartlett said Bush was warm and personable when he met him, very direct in his talk and very critical of decisions made these days in Washington.

Bartlett said it was his first time meeting Bush. A lot of politicians were there to see the former President.