As pressure mounts for him to boycott the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in Beijing this summer, Bush said Friday he plans on attending the Olympics to support the athletes.
"My plans haven't changed," Bush said.
Later, the White House said Bush was speaking about his attendance at the games, not specifically the opening ceremony. The president's aides have been vague about when exactly he will attend.
The president, along with other Western leaders, has come under pressure to skip the ceremony in protest over China's human rights abuses, particularly in Tibet and Darfur. Bush said Friday he would continue to address human rights concerns with Chinese President Hu Jintao.
Bush said the message his attending sends to the world is that he's "supporting our athletes."
"I don't view the Olympics as a political event. I view it as a sporting event," Bush continued, saying that he's brought up issues surrounding religious freedom and human rights abuses with China before the Olympics, and will continue to do so during and after.
With the American economy battling recession, Bush said he still considers himself a "good steward" of the economy but said he takes responsibility for where it is today.
Despite Democratic efforts in Congress for an additional economic stimulus package to boost the ailing economy, Bush won't consider a second package until the results of the first one, passed just last month, are evident, he said.