THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
TEXT OF A LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT TO THE SPEAKER AND MINORITY LEADER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES AND THE MAJORITY AND MINORITY LEADERS OF THE SENATE April 28, 1998
Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. Leader:)
I am writing with respect to the treatment of International Monetary Fund (IMF) and United Nations (UN) funding in the pending supplemental appropriations conference.
I am pleased that both Houses have approved needed funding for domestic disaster relief and defense. I urge Congress to approve this funding as I requested it, without violating the "firewalls" agreed to in last year's balanced budget deal or including objectionable extraneous measures.
However, I am deeply concerned that the conference report may not include the funding I have requested for the IMF. Delay or failure to approve the full IMF requests could undermine our capacity to deal with threats to world economic stability and could leave us unable to protect American workers, farmers, and businesses in the event of an escalation or spread of the Asian financial crisis or a new crisis.
I am also deeply concerned by the possibility that the conference will not include payment of our UN arrears. The failure to provide the full request in this bill could jeopardize our chance to affect negotiations starting in May on lowering U.S. dues and would undermine U.S. leadership in the international community.
Some would link passage of IMF funding and UN arrears to legislation related to international family planning. There are deep convictions on both sides of this debate, which should be settled on its own merits -- and not used to sidetrack other legislation on matters vital to our nation's well-being.
I urge you in the strongest possible terms to include the full requests for the IMF and UN arrears in the bill now in conference.
WILLIAM J. CLINTON
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