George H.W. Bush may be one of the few Americans of his generation who cannot recall exactly where he was when John F. Kennedy was shot in Dallas on November 22, 1963.
At times he has said that he was “somewhere in Texas.” Bush was indeed “somewhere” in Texas. And he had every reason to remember. At the time Bush was the thirty-nine-year-old chairman of the Harris County (Houston) Republican Party and an outspoken critic of the president. He was also actively campaigning for a seat in the US Senate at exactly the time Kennedy was assassinated right in Bush’s own state. The story behind Bush’s apparent evasiveness is complicated. Yet it is crucial to an understanding not just of the Bush family, but also of a tragic chapter in the nation’s history.