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Wednesday, 27 December, 2000, 11:00 GMT
George W Bush: A laid-back president?
Former President Ronald Reagan
Ronald Reagan: A hands off approach to the presidency
By Rob Watson in Washington

US-President elect George W Bush looks set to take a relaxed approach to his years in the White House.

But he never promised to be America's hardest-working president.

During his five years as Governor of Texas, Mr Bush was well-known for his two hour lunch breaks, time enough for a work out at the gym and time on occasions for playing his favourite video games.

His aides in Texas also quickly discovered Mr Bush liked to be finished in the office not much after 1700 - and be in bed not much after 2130.

But George W Bush will hardly be the first US president to favour such a laid-back approach.

Risky business?

The former president he is most often compared to, Ronald Reagan, spent much of his Presidency relaxing at his ranch in California, famously joking once that hard work never killed anyone, but why take the risk.

Bush at play
George W Bush: Relaxing over the festive period
But most Americans never complained about Ronald Reagan's time off and seem likely to take a similar attitude to their new president.

Americans by and large like the idea of a chief executive who is relaxed enough not to be pacing the White House until all hours and confident enough to delegate to intelligent subordinates.

After all the voters much preferred President Eisenhower's famous smile from the golf courses he so loved to frequent to the sleepless eyes of the only president to resign from the White House, Richard Nixon.

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