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opping the set 655 Statement by the President on the Death of Christian A. Herter.

December 31, 1966 E PRESIDENT. ore than cer. IT IS with great personal sorrow that I Harvard. He rose to be speaker in the y in any parts learned that Christian Herter-great Massachusetts Legislature; and then for 10 ce conferenz * American-died last night.

years was a Member of Congress. His life and career spanned a period which As a Member of Congress, he led the e is and we saw this Nation emerge from a century of

famous Herter Committee, whose report before in isolation to take a place of leadership on helped bring to life the Marshall plan. For

the world scene. From the day in 1916 4 years, he was Governor of the Commoncan look at: when he took up a post as attaché in the wealth of Massachusetts, and then Under ad their rescia. American Embassy in Berlin, to the leader- Secretary of State and Secretary of State. able to dear: ship of the Kennedy Round negotiations to Throughout his life he stood for an Amersaid on a ser expand and liberalize world trade-which ica that would assume its full responsibilities eady to tak me he was exercising to the day of his death, on the world scene in conformity with the Vietcong as he participated in the events of our time and highest values of our national tradition.

Christian Herter was a wise, gentle, and the questions

He was with President Wilson at the wholly dedicated patriot. He will be missed Versailles Peace Conference in 1918-1919. greatly by all of us; but his life and work

He was at the side of Herbert Hoover in will always be remembered as an important

his work in European relief in 1920–1921. part of the half century which has trans-es.” But up as

He then turned to journalism and teach- formed this Nation's place in the world se can't be az ing and to public service in Massachusetts. community. He lectured on international relations at

NOTE: The statement was released at Austin, Texas.

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656 Statement by the President in Response to Report of the

President's Commission on Crime in the District of Columbia.

December 31, 1966 THE President's Commission on Crime in some of which the Commission is itself dithe District of Columbia was charged with a vided-in large measure the question is no task of major importance—the task of study- longer what we should do. Now it is how ing the malignant growth of crime in this soon and how well we can do what is city, and of devising a comprehensive pro- needed. gram to bring it under control. The Com

The report makes it clear that no piecemission, assisted by a highly qualified staff meal approach to a solution will serve. The and a number of expert consultants, and actions taken to implement the earlier recomwith the full cooperation of the Federal mendations on the Police Department are and District Governments, has worked for only a beginning. Unless they are matched almost a year and a half. Its report, which by actions on other fronts, the improvements I am releasing today, is both comprehensive being made in that area will fail to realize in scope, and specific in recommendations. their full potential. Where the recommenAlthough there are controversial areas-on dations of the Commission require further

as it was this part DENT. M. 2k, United Press Mr. President

Johnson's

at the LB'ler on Saturdır, Design

tion with the bombing of military targets. There are civilian casualties taking place every day-some this morning-in South Vietnam. I am concerned with casualties in both South Vietnam and North Vietnam. And I wish that all of our people would be equally as concerned.

I think that the quicker we can have a peace conference, the quicker we can arrange a true cease-fire, the quicker we can stop this total war on both sides, the better off all of our people will be.

But as long as it goes on, civilians are going to be killed, casualties will occur. And I regret every single casualty in both

areas.

LENGTH OF THE WAR

[8.] Q. Mr. President, General Westmoreland said this week that he estimated the war would last several years. Does this change our strategy or administration planning on the war?

THE PRESIDENT. I think that we are making the plans that we believe are in the best interest of this country. I don't think anyone can say with any precision when the peace conference will come, when a truce can be arranged, when a cease-fire can be agreed upon, when agreement can be reached between nations.

We are preparing our people to protect our national interest and our agreements and our commitments. Just how long they will be required to do so, I am not able to predict. If I did predict, I would have no doubt but what I would live to regret it.

measures at home. Some people insist that the war took too much of your budget. Even more people are suggesting that the war will definitely interfere with the things that need to be done in the coming year.

Although you are still weighing some of those decisions, what is the general outlook? Is the Nation going to be able to afford what you think ought to be done at home?

THE PRESIDENT. Yes, I think the Nation can afford to continue as we have to fight wars on both fronts.

I don't think there is anyone who feels that we shouldn't supply our men with what they need. I would differ with you in that respect.

Second, I think there are those who feel that as long as we are in Vietnam, that we should reduce our expenditures every possible way here at home.

I feel that we ought to take all the water that we can out of the budget. And I have spent several weeks trying to do that.

But I am not one who feels, as I said last January and as I will say again next January, that we must neglect the health and the education of our children; that we can overlook the needs of our cities; that we must bring progress to a stop.

I think that we must strengthen our people. We must continue our efforts to reduce poverty. We must continue the war against our ancient enemies just as we are continuing it in South Vietnam-until aggression ceases; and until we can provide each child with all the education that he can take; until we can see that our families have a decent income; until we can secure the measures that are necessary to improve our cities, to curb pollution, to reduce poverty.

I think this Nation with a gross national product of some $700 to $800 billion can afford what it needs to spend. And I shall so recommend.

EFFECT OF WAR ON DOMESTIC PROGRAMS

[9.] Q. Mr. President, you began this year telling the country that it should be able to afford both the military effort in Vietnam and the necessary welfare reform

The exact amounts I do not know. This year's budget was increased some because of increased needs in Vietnam.

In 18 months we have sent several hundred thousand men there. Our budget this year will be somewhere between $125 and $130 billion.

We cannot predict what our budget will be next year. But as has been stated by reliable authorities, and as has been written on good authority, the general figure has been between $135 and $140 billion. Some said between $137 and $140 billion-it is highly speculative, allowing some $2 or $3 billion one way or the other.

A great many of those decisions have not yet been made. There are several appeals pending from the military. There are several important decisions that have not yet been made in the field of health, education,

THE PRESIDENT. Well, I would not want to make an indictment or review all of your contributions to this matter, or all the reasons and motivations of the various people who feel that mistakes have been made.

In my own judgment, we have done the best we could. We have worked at our job. We have made the decisions that we thought ought to be made.

We realize that we have made some mistakes, although I know of no major decision that I have made that I would strike from the statute books tomorrow or would rewrite.

I think that some of the decisions have not been popular.

I think that there has been criticism of the administration.

And I regret all of that. I would hope that the Nation would see things pretty much alike in the days to come.

All I can say is I am going to do the best I can to make the proper decisions, those that are in the best interests of the country.

And then I think if you do what is best for the country, the country will do what is best for us.

and poverty.

I expect to return to Washington early next week to conclude the meetings in that regard, and to have my recommendations ready for the Congress at as early a date as possible.

In short, I think we can, I think we must, I think we will continue to do what is necessary at home and send our men abroad what they need to do their job.

POSSIBLE TAX INCREASE

CRITICISM OF THE ADMINISTRATION

[10.] Q. Mr. President, there has been a great deal of talk lately about your image. Some writers discuss what they call a credibility gap. The Harris and Gallup polls have indicated performance ratings at the lowest point since you became President. And there has been some unrest in the Democratic Party among the Governors. Do you feel you

have been doing things wrong? What do you attribute all of this to?

(11.) Q. Mr. President, can you tell us what the chief factors are that you are now weighing in making your tax decision, and when such a decision might come.

The President. We are trying to decide how much money we will spend next year in the military and civilian fields.

We are trying to study developments in the economy.

We are trying to determine the extent of our deficit.

We are trying to anticipate, as far ahead as we can, economic indicators.

We will bring all of these people together, the Treasury, the economic advisers, the Secretary of Labor, the Secretary of Commerce, the congressional leadership, and then attempt to make the recommendation that we think is justified.

We are working very hard on it but we haven't made a decision. We are not ready to announce one, or make a recommendation today.

THE SUPERSONIC TRANSPORT

(12.) Q. Mr. President, when do you expect to announce a decision on the supersonic transport?

THE PRESIDENT. We don't have any definite date. The advisory committee that I have appointed has given great consideration to this. General McKee * will have an announcement in connection with it shortly. Just when the decision to move ahead will come on the part of the executive, and the legislative, I am unable to predict at this moment.

It is still a matter that is receiving top consideration in the administration. And of course, after we make our study and our recommendations, I am sure the Congress will give it very prompt consideration and high level consideration.

But until we make ours and they conclude, we won't know definitely what will happen.

also stopping the bombing in the North sort of as a forerunner to peace negotiations?

THE PRESIDENT. We will be very glad to do more than our part in meeting Hanoi halfway in any possible cease-fire, or truce, or peace conference negotiations.

I would be very interested in what their response is and what they would be agreeable to before irrevocably committing this country.

If you can look at all the decisions they make and their reactions, I think we would better be able to determine our own.

I have said on a number of occasions that we are ready to talk, any time and anywhere, that the Vietcong will have no difficulty in making their views known to us.

But all the questions turn on when are we willing to do it, and are we willing to do it. The answer to those questions is a strong “yes.” But up to this moment we have heard nothing from the other side.

You just can't have a one-sided peace conference, or a one-sided cessation of hostilities, or ask our own boys not to defend themselves, or to tie their hands behind them, unless the other side is willing to reciprocate.

Now, I assure you that we are willing to meet them more than halfway, if there is any indication of movement on their part.

PEACE NEGOTIATIONS

SIZE OF DEFICIT

(13.) Q. Mr. President, would we consider dealing directly with the Vietcong in negotiating an end of the war, which U Thant seems to think is very necessary

and

(14.) Q. Mr. President, in making your budget decisions, do you expect the deficit to be as low as it was this year?

THE PRESIDENT. No.

Alvin Spivak, United Press International: Thank you, Mr. President. NOTE: President Johnson's ninety-third Dews conference was held at the LBJ Ranch, Johnson City, Texas, at 10 a.m. on Saturday, December 31, 1966.

*Gen. William F. McKec, Administrator of the Federal Aviation Agency. The President's Advisory Committee on Supersonic Transport was established by Executive Order 11149 of April 1, 1964 (29 F.R. 4765; 3 CFR, 1964 Supp., p. 129).

655 Statement by the President on the Death of Christian A. Herter.

December 31, 1966 IT IS with great personal sorrow that I Harvard. He rose to be speaker in the learned that Christian Herter-a great Massachusetts Legislature; and then for 10 American—died last night.

years was a Member of Congress. His life and career spanned a period which As a Member of Congress, he led the saw this Nation emerge from a century of

famous Herter Committee, whose report isolation to take a place of leadership on helped bring to life the Marshall plan. For the world scene. From the day in 1916 4 years, he was Governor of the Commonwhen he took up a post as attaché in the wealth of Massachusetts, and then Under American Embassy in Berlin, to the leader- Secretary of State and Secretary of State. ship of the Kennedy Round negotiations to Throughout his life he stood for an Amerexpand and liberalize world trade—which ica that would assume its full responsibilities he was exercising to the day of his death, on the world scene in conformity with the he participated in the events of our time and highest values of our national tradition. shaped them.

Christian Herter was a wise, gentle, and He was with President Wilson at the wholly dedicated patriot. He will be missed Versailles Peace Conference in 1918-1919. greatly by all of us; but his life and work

He was at the side of Herbert Hoover in will always be remembered as an important his work in European relief in 1920–1921. part of the half century which has trans

He then turned to journalism and teach- formed this Nation's place in the world ing and to public service in Massachusetts. community. He lectured on international relations at

NOTE: The statement was released at Austin, Texas.

656 Statement by the President in Response to Report of the

President's Commission on Crime in the District of Columbia.
December

31, 1966

THE President's Commission on Crime in the District of Columbia was charged with a task of major importance—the task of studying the malignant growth of crime in this city, and of devising a comprehensive program to bring it under control. The Commission, assisted by a highly qualified staff and a number of expert consultants, and with the full cooperation of the Federal and District Governments, has worked for almost a year and a half. Its report, which I am releasing today, is both comprehensive in scope, and specific in recommendations. Although there are controversial areas-on

some of which the Commission is itself divided-in large measure the question is no longer what we should do. Now it is how soon and how well we can do what is needed.

The report makes it clear that no piecemeal approach to a solution will serve. The actions taken to implement the earlier recommendations on the Police Department are only a beginning. Unless they are matched by actions on other fronts, the improvements being made in that area will fail to realize their full potential. Where the recommendations of the Commission require further

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