Former President George W. Bush denounced the January 6th Insurrection at the Capitol during a new interview, saying the actions of the rioters “undermines rule of law.” He stopped short of specifically blaming former President Trump or any of his allies for the deadly assault, but left little doubt about how the unprecedented event impacted him.

Here’s how he described to the Texas Tribune how he felt as it unfolded.

“I can’t remember what I was doing, but … I was sick to my stomach … to see our nation’s Capitol being stormed by hostile forces.”

Bush had already issued a congratulatory statement once the news networks called the 2020 election for Joe Biden, but he used the interview as an opportunity to reiterate his belief that the election was won, fair and square.

“I think the election, all elections have some kind of improprieties. I think … the results of this election, though, were confirmed when Joe Biden got inaugurated as president.”

When he was asked directly if he felt the election was stolen, the former president gave a one-word answer: “No.”

Despite what happened at the Capitol in January, and his concerns over how social media has weaponized misinformation, Bush said he remains “optimistic about democracy.”

The interview was conducted as part of the SXSW Online 2021 Festival and served as the kickoff to Mr. Bush’s promotional tour for his new book, “Out of Many, One: Portraits of America’s Immigrants.” It’s a topic Bush is passionate about. He spent much of his second term trying, unsuccessfully, to overhaul U.S. immigration policy. He said during the interview he intentionally delayed releasing the book so as to not inject immigration into the discussions during the election campaigns.

Still, he hopes his book, which includes profiles of notable immigrants as well as portraits painted by Bush himself, shows people the positive impact immigrants can have on American society.

It debuts April 20.