“In March 2009, Bush said Obama “deserves my silence,” and he plans to stick to that pledge. “Once you get back into the arena, and once you get back involved in politics,” he says, “you will be a critic.” He cares deeply about immigration, he says, but he doesn’t expect to speak out about it. “That is the kind of issue that tends to suck one into the political environment,” he says.
Obama often criticizes Bush, though he sometimes says “the previous administration” instead of using his predecessor’s name. In an August speech, he said the recession was caused by Bush policies that “cut taxes for millionaires (and) cut working folks loose to fend for themselves.”
Isn’t Bush tempted to defend himself and his record? “No, because once you’re in, you’re in, and I don’t want to be in. … Politics is a chapter in my life. It wasn’t my whole life. If I feel uncomfortable doing something, I’m just not going to do it.”