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George H.W. Bush

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Former President George H.W. Bush, who was the subject of a recent HBO documentary, remains hospitalized in Houston. Wife Barbara and other family members will spend Christmas with him there. (Associated Press)

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Former President George H.W. Bush, who was the subject of a recent HBO documentary, remains hospitalized in Houston. Wife Barbara and other family members will spend Christmas with him there. (Associated Press)

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Former President George H.W. Bush waves as he arrives at the White House on Friday, May 19, 2006, in Washington. Mr. Bush was to speak at the commencement exercises at George Washington University on Sunday. The man on the left is an unidentified Secret Service agent. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

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President George H.W. Bush with his dog Ranger as he starts out jogging on Thursday, Feb. 15, 1991 afternoon in Washington when the temperatures reached the mid-fifties. (AP Photo/Dennis Cook)

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During the 1984 vice presidential debate, Democrat Geraldine Ferraro bristled at George H.W. Bush’s “patronizing attitude.” (Associated Press)

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During the 1984 vice presidential debate, Democrat Geraldine Ferraro bristled at George H.W. Bush’s “patronizing attitude.” (Associated Press)

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During the 1984 vice presidential debate, Democrat Geraldine Ferraro bristled at George H.W. Bush’s “patronizing attitude.” (Associated Press)

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Vice President George H.W. Bush (left) won in 1988 in part owing to Michael Dukakis’ opposition to the death penalty. (Associated Press)

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President George H.W. Bush talks with independent candidate H. Ross Perot (center) as Democratic candidate Bill Clinton stands aside at the end of their second debate. (Associated Press)

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Vice President George H.W. Bush (left) won in 1988 in part owing to Michael Dukakis’ opposition to the death penalty. (Associated Press)

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President George H.W. Bush talks with independent candidate H. Ross Perot (center) as Democratic candidate Bill Clinton stands aside at the end of their second debate. (Associated Press)

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** FILE ** President George H.W. Bush talks with independent candidate H. Ross Perot (center) as Democratic candidate Bill Clinton stands aside at the end of their second debate. (Associated Press)

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**FILE** Former President George H.W. Bush and wife Barbara arrive for the premiere of HBO's new documentary about his life, "41," near the Bush family's summer home in Kennebunkport, Maine, on June 12, 2012, Mr. Bush's 88th birthday. (Associated Press)

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Former President George H.W. Bush takes the wheel of his boat in Kennebunkport, Maine, during the filming of the documentary "41," which premieres Thursday on HBO. (HBO via Associated Press)

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President Bill Clinton and first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton applaud as former President George H.W. Bush and former first lady Barbara Bush stand near the presidential portrait of Mr. Bush at its unveiling at the White House in 1995. A portrait of Mrs. Bush was unveiled as well. (Associated Press)

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President Bill Clinton and first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton applaud as former President George H.W. Bush and former first lady Barbara Bush stand near the presidential portrait of Mr. Bush at its unveiling at the White House in 1995. A portrait of Mrs. Bush was unveiled as well. (Associated Press)

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Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, a Republican presidential candidate, meets with former President George H.W. Bush in Houston on Thursday to receive his endorsement. Mr. Bush, who talked with the hopeful in his office, called Mr. Romney a "good man" who would "make a great president." (Associated Press)

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Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (right), front-runner for the GOP presidential nod, seen here Dec. 1 with former President George H.W. Bush in Houston, will get Mr. Bush's formal endorsement Thursday. (Associated Press)

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** FILE ** In this Dec. 1, 2011, file photo, Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney meets with former President George H.W. Bush in Houston. (AP Photo/Pat Sullivan, File)