THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary (Salinas, California) ________________________________________________________________________ For Immediate Release August 8, 1996
PRESS BRIEFING BY MIKE MCCURRY
The Monterey County Courthouse Salinas, California
1:10 P.M. PDT
MR. MCCURRY: Good afternoon, everybody. We just wanted to hang around and answer a few questions, pump the juvenile crime statistics a little bit, because that's causing a fair amount of interest back in Washington as a result of the Attorney General's announcement earlier today. But to begin with, I will yield to my colleague from Clinton-Gore '96 for just a brief description of the endorsement he got at the front end.
MR. LOCKHART: The International Union of Police Associations is the first police organization to endorse this year. They endorsed Clinton-Gore in '92. They are -- they have about 80,000 rank and file officers around the country, 12,000 here in California.
Q How many in the country?
MR. LOCKHART: Eighty thousand -- 12,000 here in California. Issues that they've generally been involved in back in Congress is lobbying for the ban on assault weapons, the Brady Bill and the COPS program.
Q What was the name again of the leader who was up there on the stage with him?
Q Joe, has much money has the administration given to --
MR. MCCURRY: Hold on a second. The name -- give them that name again.
MR. LOCKHART: The International Union of Police Association. Sam Cabral, the President. C-a-b-r-a-l.
Q Where's he from?
MR. LOCKHART: I don't know which state.
Q He's the president of International, is that right?
MR. LOCKHART: Yes.
Q Do you know how much money total the administration has given to Salinas for these programs? Was that $1 million in Salinas for the anticrime initiatives?
MR. MCCURRY: Jill, if you check this one here it's got a pretty good rundown on the money that's gone in. Under the COPS program, Salinas has been awarded $225,000 in COPS funding for seven additional officers. It's one of 10 cities in the COPS Youth Firearms Initiative. I think they've gotten some VAWA money, too, for Violence Against Women. But it's in the fact sheet here, there's a little rundown on that.
Q The President talked about not being able to afford a broad tax cut, but could afford a targeted one. Is there any broad-based tax cut that he thinks the U.S. can afford? And will he specifically mention --
MR. MCCURRY: Well, the President has consistently said, when it comes to tax relief that it needs to be targeted on those that need it most, it needs to sustain the strong economic recovery that we are in, and it needs to fit within the contours of a balanced budget plan. That's how he evaluates tax proposals. He's always indicated, for example, on capital gains tax reductions he remains open to it, but you have to evaluate ideas like that within the contours of macroeconomic policy that sustains the strong economic performance the United States is enjoying now, and consistent with the goals of a balanced budget that the President firmly believes in.
Q Was he implying that Dole's tax package was like a kid in a candy store?
MR. MCCURRY: The President will continue to make the point that his economic program delivers tax relief, a balanced budget, and it does so with real economic assumptions and real numbers, unlike the figments of imagination that others use in their economic proposals.
Q Including Dole?
MR. MCCURRY: Others.
Q Does he think Dole's program will Americans sick if -- (laughter.)
MR. MCCURRY: Too much of too many good things can often make you sick. It's like if you choose one from every column and are not prudent --
Q Too many briefings, for example.
MR. MCCURRY: Too many briefings. Too much news for one good day.
Anything else on other issues? You all have got some information, I think, on our visits to Southern California. We're going to be stressing there the globalization of the international economy, the commerce that flows through the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, the fact that cargo traffic through those two ports are up as a result of our strong engagement in the world economy and the trade agreements that the President has pursued and the trade policies he's pursued. And another good day of campaigning in, now, sunny California.
Q Tomorrow he is off?
MR. MCCURRY: Tomorrow he is off. I think the only thing he does tomorrow is pre-tapes the radio address before departing for vacation.
Q Mike, I'm not sure I understand the metaphor. If Dole is proposing an across-the-board tax cut, 15 percent over three years, is the President just proposing a tax deduction for education, a tax credit for two years of college, the minimum wage adoption tax credit, isn't his a more --
MR. MCCURRY: No, ours is very specifically targeted on those things that are healthy, that are good for the economy in the long-term -- education, which brings people new skills so that they can earn more, so they can contribute more to the economy; technology investments; child care support, so people can go into the work force. So very prudent, very targeted measures aimed at those taxpayers that most need relief, as opposed to an across-the-board tax cut, a capital gains provision, I think a charitable tax provision -- although, by the way, whatever happened to that? Is that $90 billion in the Dole plan or is it not in the Dole plan? Does anybody know or has anybody been able to it figure out? We haven't been. But it's like many unanswered questions about his plan, you can't really judge whether it's serious because it looks good, sounds good on the shelf, there's just too much of it there to believe that it could ever do you any good.
Q The President today was speaking to the Steel Workers, basically asked for their help in changing the composition of Congress. Is that something he intends to do from this point out?
MR. MCCURRY: Let me get Doug to do that. I think the President has continued to say that we need to help elect Democrats at all levels, and one of the things he'll do tonight is help the Democratic congressional campaign. I'll have Doug do that.
MR. SOSNIK: I was just going to add, I mean, that is part of our -- purpose of our trip today, is a fundraiser tonight in Los Angeles, where we're going to raise, we are told, over a million dollars on behalf of House campaign -- Democratic House Campaign Committee on behalf of Democratic candidates running for Congress. We've also -- the Democratic National Party has given the House Campaign Committee, I think, a million dollars in cash in addition to the money that we're going around the country and raising for not only the House Campaign Committee, but also the Senate Campaign Committee, to elect democrats in the fall.
MR. MCCURRY: But as a general proposition, the President is both encouraged by the enthusiasm we're seeing at all ranks in the party for his candidacy, but he's also encouraged by what's happening in the electorate as they judge the campaigns of Democrats at all levels. You all saw some polling evidence in The New York Times today that indicates that people are feeling better and good about the Democratic Party and we see that happening at, frankly, all levels -- local, state and federal.
That was big news, wasn't it? (Laughter.) Okay. Whatever it is we're selling, they ain't buying.
Q Is the President taking a boat to Chicago, or a bus out of Chicago?
MR. MCCURRY: That's Mr. Lockhart's domain. Intermodal transportation is on our agenda today, down at the Port of Long Beach in Los Angeles.
MR. LOCKHART: We will very shortly be discussing the President's travel plans to Chicago, and then shortly thereafter, out of. We'll be discussing very shortly the President's travel plans to Chicago, to the convention.
MR. MCCURRY: I would caution you about some of the reports you've seen because they may not be accurate.
Q What part is accurate? (Laughter.)
MR. LOCKHART: Well, that will be clear when we --
Q Is it going to be announced in Washington, available to us on the road?
MR. LOCKHART: Yes. We'll get it for you if it's in the next --
Q How about plans during his stay in Wyoming?
MR. MCCURRY: Say again?
Q Any additions to his schedule in Wyoming, or anything you can tell us about Wyoming?
MR. MCCURRY: The schedule for Wyoming will be out tomorrow, Mary Ellen? Tomorrow? Probably tonight. We've only heard of one external mission and then maybe a couple of things that he'll doing during the week. But very similar to last year.
Q Which one?
MR. MCCURRY: Not going to confirm Monday until later today. That's the trip to the new world mine, the Yellowstone stuff. We'll confirm that later. (Laughter.)
Q If Bob Dole announces a running mate on Saturday, as proposed, or Sunday, can we expect the President to personally comment on this in Wyoming?
MR. MCCURRY: No. But we'll be reacting to it in some fashion through our various national technical means. (Laughter.)
Q Yes, but would you do it in Wyoming, I think is the critical question.
MR. MCCURRY: No, we would not do it in Wyoming. You'll have to --
Q So might you --
Q Let him finish the sentence, please.
MR. MCCURRY: You'll be in contact with the folks at the campaign, and then there may be some others. There will be certainly a response to that from those who will be -- there will be some Democratic Party leaders in San Diego; I'm sure they'll be engaged on that subject. So we'll a lot of people who will be willing to give a response.
Q You would point us to San Diego for comment?
MR. MCCURRY: Yes, San Diego. And have we said that Chairman Dodd is down there? Yes. Chairman Dodd will be in San Diego, so he will be available.
Q So are you confirming that there is going to be a land swap for this new world mine?
MR. MCCURRY: No, I'm not. I'm just saying if we do anything on that subject we'll confirm it later.
Anything else? That's it. Thank you. Mary Ellen Glynn has got the con in Jackson Hole. I guess we shouldn't say "the con."
Q Is that Navy talk?
MR. MCCURRY: No, it's spin talk. Hood-wink talk. (Laughter.) And then I don't see a need -- does anybody see a need for us to do any further on the Long Beach-L.A. stuff. There is some good facts materials in there about that, but it's beyond East Coast deadlines. This is obviously California consumption.
Q -- West Coast --
MR. MCCURRY: We do. Is that stuff in the briefing sheets?
Q The trade figures for L.A-Long Beach?
MR. MCCURRY: Let me just give -- some of you need this, and I know some of you don't, so just bear with me for a second. Let me give some of it to you.
Just a couple of facts on the two ports. More than 80 percent of all the cargo that moves through Long Beach and Los Angeles passes on to or from the Pacific Rim. So obviously, one of the things we're emphasizing here is the important role our emerging trade relationships with Asia play in our global economic strategies -- one of the things the President will certainly talk about later today.
In general, there has been a marked increase in the volume of cargo traffic through both of these ports. The combined ports in 1992 -- I'll use 1992 and then compare that to 1995 -- in 1992 the combined ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles moved cargo valued at $113.3 billion -- $113.3 billion, or 23 percent of the nation's water-borne total of just under $500 billion in cargo traffic. During 1995 they moved $157 billion in cargo across their wharves, representing 25 percent of the $620 billion in water-borne traffic. So, in other words, a fairly impressive increase of almost 40 percent in that cargo traffic since 1992, and obviously, that's because of export increases, the United States selling more abroad. It's also because of a growing commercial and trade relationships with a lot of our Asian trading partners.
And in terms of jobs, trade through the two ports generate approximately 500,000 jobs in a five-county region consisting of Los Angeles, Ventura, Orange, San Bernardino, and Riverside County. So another point here is that the economy in Southern California is export-driven to a very large extent; over half a million jobs in the region depending on that type of trade volume. So, again, another indication of how important America's involvement and engagement in the global economy is as we think about the 21st century economic needs of the country.
That was very exciting, wasn't it?
Q I liked it.
Q Very important.
MR. MCCURRY: We got one taker -- Bloomberg -- all right.
Okay, we'll see you all. We're not planning to do any further briefings down in LA tonight. And happy hunting for dinner for all of you going out to dinner.
THE PRESS: Thank you.
END 1:24 P.M. PDT