“Just People Trying To Do The Best They Possibly Can”

Is how President Bush described the White House press corps to the White House press corps this morning at his final press conference. Politico has some footage (though not of all the questions and answers).

An exchange with ABC News’s Jake Tapper:

BUSH: What have you been doing since 2000?
TAPPER: Working my way to this chair.
BUSH: So, are you going to be here for President Obama?
TAPPER: I will.
BUSH: Pretty cool job.
TAPPER: It’s not bad.
BUSH: Yeah.
TAPPER: Yours might be better.
BUSH: What, retirement?

UPDATE: Here’s a rush transcript of the press conference. When asked about Gitmo and torture and invading Iraq and other things that “have damaged America’s moral standing in the world,” Pres. Bush replied, in part:

Do you remember what it was like right after September the 11th around here? In press conferences, in opinion pieces and in stories that sometimes were news stories and sometimes opinion pieces, people were saying, “How come they didn’t see it? How come they didn’t connect the dots?”

Do you remember what the environment was like in Washington — I do — when people were hauled in front of Congress and members of Congress were asking questions about, “How come you didn’t know this that or the other?”

And then we start putting, you know, policy in place — legal policy in place to connect the dots, and all the sudden, people were saying, “How come you’re connecting the dots?”

And — so, you know, I’ve heard all that. I’ve heard all that.

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Liz Cox Barrett is a writer at CJR.