E X E C U T I V E O F F I C E O F T H E P R E S I D E N T
THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT IN PHOTO OPPORTUNITY WITH BIPARTISAN CONGRESSIONAL LEADERS The Cabinet Room
2:22 P.M. EST
Q Mr. President, if you count Social Security as a tax increase -- you don't have a one-to-one ratio. Are you going to have enough cuts in this program to be able to sell this thing?
THE PRESIDENT: I think so. There are 150 specific ones, and I'll be glad to entertain some more if anybody's got any specific ideas.
THE VICE PRESIDENT: At this point --
Q Can you honestly say, as Senator Dole has asked, that you have made all the cuts you could possibly make in this program?
THE PRESIDENT: I can honestly say, I've made more specific cuts that affect me personally than I can think that any of my predecessors have made, and that I intend to find more as I go along. I've just been here four weeks, and I'll continue to work on it. But I've made an awful lot of cuts -- going to make some more.
Q Have you convinced Senator Dole and Michel and all of the other Republican leaders? And did you call Ross Perot? (Laughter.)
THE PRESIDENT: My duty is to try to convince them that I will.
THE VICE PRESIDENT: In the words of the old hymn, they're almost persuaded.
THE PRESIDENT: I thought that was a country and western song. (Laughter.)
Q They don't look it.
Q How about Ross Perot, Mr. President?
Q Why build a jogging track when you're making cuts across the board in government?
THE PRESIDENT: I thought the thing was going to be paid for with contributions; that's what I was told. I think it would be a good thing to have, but I think if we can pay for it with contributions, otherwise I don't think we ought to spend any tax money on it.
Q You don't -- way to pay for it?
THE PRESIDENT: I was told that the stuff had been donated already; but if it hadn't -- I told them if it was all going to be donated, it was fine with me if it was built. That's what I was told from the very beginning, so that's all I know about it.
END2:26 P.M. EST