[George W. Bush] might be a bigger sports junkie than Clinton, Reagan, Nixon, JFK and Taft, founding presidential father of the ceremonial first pitch. So it was no surprise that Bush used his State of the Union address to assail the professional athletes responsible for the performance-enhancing plague. The timing was appropriate, even with the bullets flying abroad. Too many kids had taken too many drugs because grown-up stars led them to believe they were the surest roads to fortune and fame.
This was Bush at his best. And then this was Bush at his worst, after that finger-wagging witness on Capitol Hill, ex-Ranger Rafael Palmeiro, was found to have raided Ben Johnson's medicine chest: "Rafael Palmeiro is a friend. He testified in public, and I believe him."
This was a minor misstep when measured against a biking and fishing vacation lasting longer than the Spanish Inquisition. Bush is a man who cares about fitness -- this is good. When a bum knee forced him to stop running, he could've done what most 50-something men with bum knees do: limit their recreational pursuits to synchronized channel-surfing. Bush burned calories on the 10-speed instead.
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