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2005: A Year of Challenges for President Bush

President George Bush arrives to deliver his fourth and final speech on the war in Iraq at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, D.C., Dec. 14.
Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images
President George Bush arrives to deliver his fourth and final speech on the war in Iraq at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, D.C., Dec. 14.

President Bush has had a tough year. The war in Iraq dragged his public standing to its lowest ebb. His administration was sharply criticized for its handling of Hurricane Katrina. But he did score one big success: the appointment of John Roberts as chief justice of the Supreme Court.

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You're most likely to find NPR's Don Gonyea on the road, in some battleground state looking for voters to sit with him at the local lunch spot, the VFW or union hall, at a campaign rally, or at their kitchen tables to tell him what's on their minds. Through countless such conversations over the course of the year, he gets a ground-level view of American elections. Gonyea is NPR's National Political Correspondent, a position he has held since 2010. His reports can be heard on all NPR News programs and at NPR.org. To hear his sound-rich stories is akin to riding in the passenger seat of his rental car, traveling through Iowa or South Carolina or Michigan or wherever, right along with him.