Bush has refused to discuss speculation that he has used illegal drugs, but has said that when his father became president in 1989 and required White House employees to affirm that they had not used illegal drugs for 15 years, he would have passed that test.
A conversation between Bush and an old friend, author Doug Wead, touched on the subject of use of illegal drugs. In the taped recording of the conversation, Bush explained his refusal to answer questions about whether he had used marijuana at some time in his past. “I wouldn’t answer the dope questions,” Bush says. “You know why? Because I don’t want some little kid doing what I tried.” When Wead reminded Bush of his earlier public denial of using cocaine, Bush replied, "I haven't denied anything."