Diane Sawyer Interviews President George W. Bush, Laura Bush

Former president and first lady discuss terrorism, painting and his new library.
6:29 | 04/24/13

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Transcript for Diane Sawyer Interviews President George W. Bush, Laura Bush
Alex, perez, thank you. We'll turn now to the wide ranging exclusive interview with former president george w. Bush. Diane sitting down with the former president and mrs. Bush. Thanks so much, david. Back here in dallas, we're at the george w. Bush library he and mrs. Bush are going to weigh in on the news and their lives in private as the linerary is about to open. He's been off stage, away from reporters, in silence. But tonight he sits with mrs. Bush as we ask him from everything from terrorism to the next election. Mr. President, great to be interviewing you again. Did you miss all of us? No. well, I miss you as a person, but I don't miss your profession. Why am I not surprised by that? Well, you know, I had all the fame I needed. I decided to stay out of the limelight, because one I'm comfortable with that decision, and two, I don't really want to undermine our president. Frankly the only way for me to generate any news is to either criticize the president or criticize my party. I'm not interested in doing either. The former president remembering what it is like in the crucible. Last week the president of 9/11, watching the president of the bombings in boston. The terrorism in boston. Did you take you back to 9/11 when you heard it? I was deeply concerned that it could have been another highly organized attack on the country. And it still may be. Again, I don't know the facts. But I do know that it's really to protect the homeland. Those who want to do harm only have to be right one time. And we have to be right 100% of the time. Whether it be that or the explosion in west, texas, it did harken back to days where you become the comforter in chief, try to help heal souls that are hurting. And chart the future. A year and a half after 9/11 he ordered the u.S. Invasion of iraq. The museum acknowledges no weapons of mass destruction were found. Iraq. I noticed thatou say in the exhibit no stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction were found. Right. That's -- we're just laying out the facts. And that was a fact. 58% of the people saying it was not worth it in their view. I can't remember the numbers, but initially 58% of the people said it was worth it. The removal of saddam hussein was the right decision for our security and giving people the chance to live in a free society. As far as I'm concerned, the debate is over. I mean, I did what I did, and historians will ultimately judge those decisions. In an unusual approach, the museum asks the visitors to make those decisions too. You're given fast-moving information and a clock counting you down to do it fast. The purpose of the museum is not to herald me, but to explain different events and to show people what it's like to make decisions. Feel the pressure that the president feels and to see what -- how the president reacts to various decisions. And we ask about the presidency and his party. What will happen in 2016? Do you have one word for the republican party today? You will exist in the future. thought you were going to say jeb bush. Well, he would be great. Two words. Yeah. He'd be a marvelous candidate if he chooses to do so. He doesn't need my counsel, because he knows what it is, which is run! Your brother versus hillary clinton. It would be a fantastic photo. I'm fascinated by all the gossip and stuff that goes on, but the field won't become clear until after the mid terms. One of the issues in the party in which there seems to be some shift taking place among senators is gay marriage. We know that mrs. Bush has weighed in. They ought to have the same sort of rights that everyone has. I'm not -- ready to weigh in? No, but thank you per trying. Not going to say if you've changed your position too? I'm not weighing in on issues. I mean, there's -- you're either in or out. And I understand your job and you're doing a fine job of doing your job. But I really made the decision to not be a part of dealing with these current issues. For now, he's steeped in private life, a new granddaughter, mila. So is it going to be grandma and granddad? Is it going to be -- we don't know yet really. George wants to be called hefe, boss. El hefep holding that child was a great joy of my life. I remember tolding barbara and jenna when they were born. And there's a picture in the museum that memorializes that moment. An 11 day old granddaughter and an 88-year-old father, the central statue at the museum is the two of them. Through our windows from the back, we can see the statue you commissioned, it's the two of you. It is. I wouldn't be sitting here without his unconditional love. And it gives me great comfort to know he'll be by my side for eternity. And as the museum is opened, and there are four presidents -- sure will be. And you are looking out, what are you going to be thinking? One, how blessed I am. It's not going to be all that long that I will be going to president obama's library museum dedication. As I look out, it will be really a chance to see friends from all over the country, and life-long friends and midland, a lot of them are coming. They said they'll be here in there's free food. and then back off the stage? Back off the stage, yeah. I know people don't believe that somebody who's been in the limelight for so long is anxious not to be in the limelight, each former president chooses his own path. I've chosen mine. And I'm very comfortable with that decision.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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