3 Most Memorable Quotes From George H.W. Bush

As of November 30, 2018, there are only four living former presidents who are still living: Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama. Former president George H.W. Bush passed away at the age of 94 after a series of health complications.

Over the years, historians have kept track of Bush’s noteworthy moments both prior to, during, and after his presidency.

Here are some of the 41st president of the United State’s most memorable quotes — everything from kind tributes to fellow former presidents to very strong opinions about vegetables.

The Bill Clinton rivalry

George H.W. Bush

George H.W. Bush | Ronald Martinez/ Getty Images

At one point, George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton did not get along. The Republican and Democrat went head-to-head in 1992, opponents in the election Clinton would eventually win — forcing Bush to leave office after only one term.

He later spoke about setting aside their differences in 2005, reflecting on how far their relationship had come since their simultaneous race for the presidency.

Who would have thought that I would be working with Bill Clinton, of all people? … It’s been an eye-opening and enjoyable experience for me to work with him on something truly apolitical.

When Clinton took office in 1993, Bush wrote him a letter encouraging him as he began his term. Clinton tweeted about his appreciation for his fellow former president upon learning of his passing on November 30.

Tribute to Ronald Reagan

On June 11, 2004, the nation celebrated the life of former president Ronald Reagan. Bush spoke at the funeral, and had nothing but kind words to say about his predecessor.

I learned more from Ronald Reagan than from anyone I encountered in all my years of public life.

Bush served as Reagan’s vice president from 1981 to 1989 before becoming the 41st president of the United States. The two may not have had a Biden-Obama bromance, but it was clear from his speech Bush considered Reagan both a mentor and a good friend.

Broccoli

On March 22, 1990, former president George H.W. Bush made an important announcement during a press conference.

I do not like broccoli, and I haven’t liked it since I was a little kid and my mother made me eat it. And I’m president of the United States, and I’m not going to eat any more broccoli.

There’s no hidden message in these words — and not much to draw inspiration from (unless you’re a people-pleaser and are really sick of eating broccoli to make Mom happy). But it never fails to make us smile nonetheless.

But No. 41 was a notorious broccoli-hater. He despised the coniferous vegetable so much that he banned it from being served on Air Force One. Not even a letter from a five-year-old could change his mind.

George H.W. Bush served many roles throughout his lifetime — husband; father; grandfather; friend; and, of course, president of the United States. Throughout his life, he never hesitated to speak his mind when he saw fit — and thus, many of his words will be remembered for centuries to come.

Think about that next time you consider confessing your hatred of broccoli on national television, if the possibility ever comes up.