WASHINGTON - President Bush probably has told his twin teen-age daughters
to stay out of trouble in the wake
of highly publicized incidents involving illegal use of alcohol, the White House chief of staff said on Sunday.
Andrew Card, speaking on the "Fox News Sunday" program, said he regretted
that the 19-year-old college students,
Jenna and Barbara Bush, had been featured on the cover of People Magazine under the headline, "Oops, they did it again."
"It's sad," Card said. "You know the president is a dad and Laura Bush
is a mom. And they have two teen-age daughters
who are wonderful, just really good kids. And we should let that family deal with the problems that most families in
America have had to deal with without the scrutiny of the American public."
Barbara Bush, a student at Yale University in Connecticut, pleaded no
contest to an underage drinking charge on Thursday
while Jenna Bush, in her second recent alcohol-related case, pleaded innocent in an Austin, Texas, court. Barbara Bush was sentenced to eight hours of community service and an alcohol awareness class, with the case likely to be dismissed if she completes the terms of probation by Sept. 7.
Jenna Bush, a student at the University of Texas in Austin, pleaded
innocent to a charge of trying to use someone else's identification to
buy alcohol. Her case is scheduled for July 31. The charges stemmed from
a May 31 evening out at a
popular Austin restaurant, Chuy's. Authorities were alerted by the restaurant that young people, under the legal drinking
age of 21, were trying to purchase alcohol.
The incident was the second alcohol-related case involving Jenna Bush
in as many weeks.
She pleaded no contest to being a minor in possession of alcohol on May 16 in an unrelated incident.
Asked why Bush hadn't bluntly told the young women to "cut it out,"
Card added: "I suspect that the president has probably
said that to his daughters. And as we sit here talking, the president and his wife and daughters are in Crawford, Texas,
on their ranch and I'm sure that this is a quality family weekend."
Last week, Bush told the fourth "National Summit on Fatherhood," that raising a child "requires sacrifice, effort, time and presence. And there is a wide gap between our best intentions and the reality of today's society."
The president, who has sought to guard the privacy of his twins,
made no reference to their citations for underage alcohol violations.