Columbus, Ga. Former president Jimmy Carter, who last week took issue with many of President Bush's acts in office, said that he respects Bush despite their "honest differences of opinion."
"I have the greatest personal respect for President George W. Bush, and also understand the difficulties and challenges of a new president," Carter said Saturday to the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer. "I know that he is dedicated to protecting America's best interests and our nation's moral values."
The newspaper quoted Carter in a July 24 article criticizing Bush for his positions on a proposed national missile defense system, Alaskan oil drilling and global warming.
In the article, Carter said he has been "disappointed in almost everything he has done."
In the statement issued Saturday, Carter said, "My disagreement on these kinds of issues represents honest differences of opinion that are to be expected concerning controversial decisions now being made in a new administration."