THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
PRESS BRIEFING BY MIKE MCCURRY
The Briefing Room
1:28 P.M. EDT
MR. MCCURRY: Welcome to our daily briefing here at the White House. A couple of housekeeping items -- on Monday, Monday, June 22, Nicholas Lardy, who is a senior fellow at the foreign policy studies program at Brookings Institution, and Harry Harding, the dean of the Elliott School of International Affairs at George Washington University, will brief on China here.
Q Who will they brief?
MR. MCCURRY: They will brief you, because you don't leave until --
Q I thought on Monday all of us will be at the Gore Family Conference.
MR. MCCURRY: That's right. You will be in Nashville, and we have carefully arranged for those of you in Nashville at the Family Conference, we'll either have this briefing piped in or it will be replayed in its entirety for your benefit in Nashville. This is the best time that they were available.
Some of you remember Dr. Harding prior to Jiang Zemin's visit here back in October; he was one of the academic scholars that briefed here. This is something that has been popular with you and with us because we can give you access to some independent outside academics who can talk about the subject.
Q What time?
MR. MCCURRY: This will be at 12 noon on Monday. Nick Lardy is an economist, and Harding, of course, is a political scientist. And they're experts both in Asian economics and China in particular.
Q If the President makes any news beyond China, on any of the issues of the day, could you please tell us about it during the day, because I don't think we should be scooped on something where we've been barred.
MR. MCCURRY: Oh, you mean in our session with the Chinese journalists. We'll protect the newsmaking interest that you all have.
Q Not just Chinese journalists; Americans.
MR. MCCURRY: Well, Helen, in fairness, we give exclusive interviews to various news organizations from time to time, and we give them the right to break their news first. We'll protect you if there is anything in that, but --
Q If he said anything about Monica Lewinsky or something like that.
MR. MCCURRY: If he does, I will fall over backwards dead in amazement. (Laughter.)
All right, moving on. I did a TQ yesterday on product liability, and I'm not going to attempt to go through all of this because I barely understand it. But I will say that the President has always supported sensible product liability reform to recap the principal concerns that we've had with respect to product liability. We've always believed that non-economic damages should be treated as fully equivalent to economic damages; punitive damages should be available to punish and deter egregious misconduct by enterprises; any statute of repose be limited in a manner that does not deprive people of access to compensation for injuries caused by product defects. And if there is going to be federal preemption of state law, it must in general be a two-way street, giving obligations arising both ways.
Now, those are the principles that the administration and the President instructed our staff to pursue as we discussed product liability with Senator Rockefeller and others on the Hill. They have now, working closely with Senator Rockefeller, developed a product liability proposal that we believe deserves bipartisan support this year.
The principal provisions of the bill I won't try to outline, but they do cover preemption, punitive damages, liability for product sellers, obligations of plaintiffs and claimants when it comes to drug and alcohol abuse, which was an issue that had been of great concern to some, business groups in particular; statute of limitations, workers compensation, the claims that arise under workers comp and how they intersect and interrelate with product liability claims. Without going into the details, I would say that the President is satisfied that the administration worked hard to achieve a sensible compromise.
We are delighted that after a lot of consultations between the White House and Senator Rockefeller and work with Senator Gorton, the principal Republican sponsor of product liability reform. Senator Gorton has now agreed to join in the legislation, which we think is a very positive and welcome step. And that will encourage, we believe, more Republicans to join in supporting common legislation.
The question I had yesterday was specifically about why treat small businesses differently. And there has been broad-spread recognition that small businesses, because they are small, have fewer economic resources that are subject to review in product liability claims, but the measure that's being developed caps punitive damages against small businesses at the lesser of $250,000 or two times compensatory damages, which we believe is a fair and legitimate cap.
Also, I had a question yesterday on mergers, the comments that Chairman Greenspan made with respect to the administration's enforcement of antitrust policy. First of all, we did not read Chairman Greenspan's comments to be overly negative. Obviously 98 percent of most proposed mergers go through. And we agreed, as the Chairman said yesterday, that most mergers make economic sense because they will help consumers or they will invigorate markets. The times in which the federal government, through its regulatory role, becomes involved in blocking mergers is when clearly consumers will be harmed. And there are examples of that when the Federal Government has entered in to block proposed mergers in which consumers have been protected. You've heard the President generally on this subject before, but we did not read the Chairman's comments as being overly negative.
That concludes my leftover business. Yes, go ahead.
Q The cap is on smaller businesses and on punitive damages. And my question was, what evidence is there that smaller businesses engage in fewer crimes or less egregious wrongs than larger businesses because punitive damages are supposed to deter that kind of behavior.
MR. MCCURRY: Well, not being expert in it, I can't answer the question specifically. My understanding is that the issue doesn't arise on what the rate of liability has been in small versus medium-sized versus large enterprises. It's more what are the underlying resources that are available that sometimes give rise to claims that are frivolous. Remember, the overall goal of this legislation is to prevent and deter frivolous litigation. And attacking the resources of small businesses when those enterprises very often have few resources available, and indicating what the cap and the limit is going to be on liability is a way in which hopefully we can encourage lawsuits that are designed to recover damages or achieve punitive purposes that are fully consistent with the principles that I outlined that the President espouses.
I'll see if there is any -- if folks who have been working on this issue, specifically on the pattern and practice, have gotten any more detail on it.
Q The Republicans are pushing in this area, actually four different areas -- class actions, product liability, federal no-faults, and securities fraud -- which would basically federalize state common law, as this compromise does. The President has said that he doesn't want to -- he's actually in the last campaign said he's not going to sign onto legislation that would federalize state common law in these areas, and now he's doing it. How does he explain that?
MR. MCCURRY: Well, I'd have to go back and look. I think the things that he's said -- securities litigations reform -- has been treated somewhat differently because of the different experiences and the different arguments that have arisen in the industries that have been particularly concerned about that. That's generally an aspect of total reform that has a different applicability. I'll go back and talk to some of our folks and see if they specifically on that question have got an answer.
But I think we see different thresholds and different levels on the preemption question as they apply in each of the sectors that you just mentioned. And we think standards do apply depending on what aspect of reform we're talking about.
Q What did you discover when you looked into the story that the United States is winking at the sale of oil from Iraq through Turkey?
MR. MCCURRY: I found the following -- if I find it here in my book. In general, our enforcement of Iraqi sanctions has been quite effective. It has been aimed mostly at interdiction in the Gulf. There is commerce that goes back and forth in the border between Turkey and northern Iraq. That's been well known. It has been a subject that we've raised with Turkey and expressed our concern about. But it is a bare fraction of the damage that these economic sanctions do to Saddam Hussein in the course of a typical year. The best estimate is something like $15 billion a year worth of economic punishment that Saddam Hussein faces because of his failure to comply with the U.N. Security Council resolutions and his conduct during the war.
And the amount of oil leakage that we're talking about that gets across the border, smuggled across the border into Turkey, is something like $100 million a year -- obviously, much less than 1 percent of the total value of the economic sanctions that Saddam Hussein faces.
Now, that said, the government of Turkey, which has always indicated to us that they fully support the oil embargo that exists, even though it costs them dearly, they indicate to us that they understand our concerns about that smuggling, that they will work to address it. We do know what goes on and we have raised those concerns and we will continue to express our concerns to the government of Turkey, recognizing that they're in a position where they suffer some economic damage as well because of the imposition of these sanctions.
It is not in the total scheme of the sanctions regime in place on Saddam Hussein, which is arguably the most -- the toughest economic sanctions regime that's ever been placed on any nation in history -- the oil leakage from the oil smuggling is a fraction of the total burden that has been placed on Saddam Hussein.
I'll also point out that in some ways, some of this is inevitable because we have, for humanitarian purposes, authorized Iraq to sell oil to generate proceeds that can be used to feed children who would otherwise starve or to get them doctors and medicine that they need. The United Nations has long recognized that some oil proceeds should be available to help the people of Iraq, who should not be made to suffer because of Saddam Hussein's behavior and his policies.
Q You seem to be saying that while the United States does not condone this, beyond telling Turkey of our concerns there is nothing we either care to do or can do about it.
MR. MCCURRY: Well, I think it's safe to say that we recognize that proportionally the impact of these sanctions do damage where the damage is intended to be done -- on Saddam Hussein, on his regime. They have been enforced -- the bulk of our enforcement has been through the multilateral interdiction force, the MIF, on those places where we think we can be most effective in fulfilling the sanctions mandates that have been placed by the United Nations. We do an awful lot of work, maritime work to do blockage of ports to assure that there is not leakage on these sanctions. There inevitably is going to be some cross-border traffic in Turkey.
And remember, that's an area of Northern Iraq populated by Kurds who have -- Kurdish Iraqis who have faced enormous repression, difficulty, and punishment at the hands of their own ruler, Saddam Hussein. So part of that is the geographic reality we're dealing with.
Q Do you have an estimate of how much oil is going across in Turkey; you said $100 million? Do you know how much oil is flowing out in the Gulf along the Iranian coastal waters?
MR. MCCURRY: I don't know, but it is a fraction. As I said, we concentrate our interdiction efforts, maritime, along the coast and deter what would otherwise be the significant leakage that would come from the port areas that would be most indicated.
Q I understand that it, but is it higher than the amount that's going into Turkey? I mean, can you give a guesstimate, or is it lower, the stuff that's coming to the Gulf?
MR. MCCURRY: The only estimate I have is the one of what the smuggled quantity is that crosses the border, which is approximately 45,000 barrels per day, roughly $100 million worth.
Turkish pipeline proceeds, by the way, I think can carry something like 675 million barrels per day, so this is a fraction of the total volume of oil.
Q On another subject, Mike, this morning two different newspaper columnists wrote of your right reverence in the field of moral theology. So I have a two-part question.
MR. MCCURRY: Two? I only saw one. Where was the -- I saw the Washington Times. What was the other one?
Q Tyrell, Tyrell and Pruden. Do you believe that the bishops --
MR. MCCURRY: Washington Times and the American Spectator. Okay. Just to get that clear. (Laughter.)
Q Do you believe that the bishops of the 2.5 million-member African Methodist Zion Church, who declared that same-sex marriages is an abomination and the practice of homosexuality must be condemned. Are they as, quote, "extremist and backward" as you claim Senator Lott is because he dared to express his belief about what is frequently mentioned in the Bible -- that Bible that the President carries.
MR. MCCURRY: None of the comments I made on this subject were related to theology. They were related to what experts believe about homosexuality, that it is not an affliction or a disease. I commented in no way, shape, or form about the moral beliefs that Senator Lott had. That would not be appropriate. He's entitled --
Q His moral belief? He was quoting the Bible.
MR. MCCURRY: Well, he was entitled to have as a matter of conscience any view he wants on the subject of sin. My comment went to the subject of disease and what is categorized by disease by doctors who are more proficient in that than they are in theology.
Q I have one follow-up.
MR. MCCURRY: That's enough on that for now. I'll come back to you later.
Q In contrast, can you please -- you told us you'd give a comment about Kosovo, an update.
MR. MCCURRY: In contrast to that subject? On Kosovo? (Laughter.) That certainly does contrast.
We are very conscious of the fact that there's enormous danger that continues to exist for civilians in Kosovo, Kosovar Albanians. We're continuing to very carefully watch and see whether Serbian authorities are fulfilling the promises that President Milosevic made to President Yeltsin. And the President's national security team will be meeting later today to assess what level of compliance there has been that we've seen so far in the wake of President Yeltsin's meeting with President Milosevic.
And the North Atlantic Treaty Organization continues its planning about other options that may be pursued. So it is of active interest to the United States. We are aware of some reports of continued fighting along both the Albanian and FYROM borders, and that continues to concern us gravely.
Q The Russians are saying that this is not just a NATO matter, in fact that they're off base, that it should be taken to the U.N. Security Council.
MR. MCCURRY: Well, we believe the United Nations is certainly also following this situation carefully. And in some respects the Russian Federation is correct in that view. Our work together on matters related to the Balkans has profited greatly because Russia has been a part of the work we do. Remember, Russian troops served side-by-side with U.S. troops and other multilateral troops in Bosnia, curbing -- implementing the Dayton Accord. So they have demonstrated they have a very positive role to play.
But we will continue to do the work that we're doing, continue in a variety of venues -- the Contact Group, the United Nations, the North Atlantic Council, the permanent joint council between NATO and Russia -- continue to follow closely events in Kosovo.
Q Does this mean that the administration believes that no intervention can take place in Kosovo without a UN mandate?
MR. MCCURRY: That does not mean that. It means that there are a variety of venues in which the world community together can work to bring pressure to bear on Serbian authorities to do the right thing.
Q On tobacco, the President's tone this morning seemed a lot more strident than his tone yesterday. In particular, he seemed a lot less open to any of the ideas for sort of a smaller bill that are circulating on the Hill. Can you explain that?
MR. MCCURRY: There are no real ideas for a smaller bill circulating on the Hill. There is an effort for political cover that the Republicans, who are now paying the price for the decision that they made, are beginning to launch. But that's not the same as a bill that's going to protect kids from smoking. And the key feature of -- there are different ways to reduce tobacco use among kids. You can control access, you can give them discouraging images and messages through counter-advertising, but the single most important way to curb tobacco use by children is to increase the price per pack of cigarettes.
And to get the kind of reduction that we want to see in youth smoking we need to increase the price by at least $1.10 per pack, as you know. And that's the kind of measure that would be serious. The principles that we outlined long ago that should structure an approach, comprehensive approach on tobacco are the right ones because they're the right public health policies. And failing to meet those principles is going to produce a bill that will be nothing more than a fig leaf -- or as Congressman Gephardt said, a tobacco leaf -- over the problem. It's not going to be a real solution.
And the President obviously spoke today consistent with what the Vice President said yesterday and consistent with the view that he has expressed all along here, that we need to have a serious, real effort to protect America's children from tobacco.
Q To be clear, $1.10 is the magic figure; below that it's a charade --
MR. MCCURRY: Well, no, $1.10 -- I mean, the bill that's sort of the McCain-like bill in the House is $1.50 over three years. That's kind of a minimum price incident that generates the type of curb in consumption that we want to see among young people. You could go more than that, but you would also then generate a lot of revenue. You could obviously provoke a lot of arguments that economic damage is done to the industry if you move to those levels because that affects non-youth smokers, as well.
Q Below $1.10 is unacceptable?
MR. MCCURRY: Below $1.10 you don't get the public -- it's not a question of a magic number, it's a question of public health. And the public health policy needs, according to the experts, a price increase in that -- certainly in that range, maybe not specifically that number, but in that range, to be effective.
Q Part two of my question deals with doctors. In your reference to "25 years since it became clear that sexual orientation is not an affliction," did this refer to the American Psychiatric Association removing homosexuality from its list of pathological disorders?
MR. MCCURRY: And the concurrence in that view by the American Psychological Association.
Q Right. Now, are you aware that this same organization has removed pedophilia and sadomasochism from its list of disorders, and do you and the President agree that pedophilia and S&M are not sexual disorders, Mike?
MR. MCCURRY: I'm not familiar with what those expert organizations have --
Q Well, they did this. They removed pedophilia, along with homosexuality --
MR. MCCURRY: I'll look into that and some day in the future, maybe in the next century, I'll get around to that. (Laughter.)
Q The President, at the beginning of the economic meeting, said that one of the topics of discussion would be stability in Asia. Could you give us any indication on what the discussion was? And also, do you have any read-outs yet from Larry Summers in Tokyo on how his discussion with the Japanese government is going?
MR. MCCURRY: I didn't get much. I know that they did have a review of performance of Asian markets since the actions earlier in this week. They talked a little bit about some of the things that we are going to be pursuing with respect to our conversations in a variety of diplomatic channels and also some of the things the President will do on his trip. But beyond that, I didn't get any more specific a read-out than that.
Q The President certainly did not ask for anything specific from Hashimoto? He said he's going to get a clear statement someday, right?
MR. MCCURRY: No, no, no. He got -- I mean, if you go back and look at that statement that Foreign Minister Matsunaga made and that was referenced by Prime Minister Hashimoto on -- what day was that, Tuesday?
Q I think it was Wednesday.
MR. MCCURRY: Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. If you go back and look at those statements that we gave you from Wednesday morning, they are quite specific, and they have some specific references to things they're going to do with respect to the banking system and the macroeconomy generally that are important.
Q Mike, on tobacco you say that the Republicans are now paying for their position? How's that?
MR. MCCURRY: Well, they're waking up and reading in their districts every morning headlines that say GOP kills tobacco bill. And I think that that -- you know, they're going to find an American public that is mystified why they have taken such a damaging step with respect to America's kids. They're going to say why have they headed off a piece of legislation that would protect the public health of young people?
Q I'm sorry. We just didn't get the -- do you have any assessment on how Larry Summers' work in Tokyo is going?
MR. MCCURRY: I have heard only a little bit about that, but if you check in with the Treasury Department they can probably tell you more.
Can we -- if we've got cell phones -- I'm going to just kind of encourage people not to do cell phone traffic in here.
Q The President today made a strong defense of the policy of engagement with countries that are far from perfect on human rights, and some critics say there is a double standard and that the United States don't ask for the same degree of perfections from some countries than from others. So my question is, is there a double standard? And also, are you thinking about applying the policy of engagement to Cuba anytime soon?
MR. MCCURRY: Well, there is not single standard and there is not a double standard. There is a very careful assessment of the performance across a broad range of criteria of countries when it comes to all of those things that go into consideration of human rights. If you go look at the annual assessment done by the United States State Department in the area of human rights, it is a thick valuable resource document that tells you what real practices are.
Now, I guess what you're asking is what are the consequences of practices that the United States considers egregious, and there are a variety of things. There are some things that are invoked by law, there are other things that are invoked by policy. And they range across the gamut depending on what the circumstances are. U.S. policy with respect to Cuba is governed by federal law that has been long supported by Congresses and Presidents, Republican and Democratic. And there is a long history to that law and to that policy. And it applies itself in specific ways and in general ways.
But by no way, shape, or form is there a single way in which you can address human rights conditions that are going to vary inevitably, country to country.
Q Wouldn't it be good for the United States that you engage before there could be a brutal change in Cuba? Wouldn't it be in the interest of the United States?
MR. MCCURRY: Well, it be far preferable to see the policy work. The policy is designed to bring peaceful democratic change to Cuba -- that's the purpose of the policy. And obviously, we all would hope that that's the inevitable result.
Q On tobacco, Senator Hatch is reportedly considering an $.80 per pack increase. Would that be within the acceptable range?
MR. MCCURRY: Well, there are going to be a lot of different ideas, and the President's principles are the President's principles. The utility in having the principles he has set forth more than a year and a half now is that that is the benchmark by which we can measure anyone who's got an idea. We are interested in something that has no -- I mean, remember, it took a lot to get where the McCain bill ended up before it was killed by the Republicans in the Senate. And we don't certainly want to go any weaker than that because there were already severe criticisms from many that the bill didn't go far enough. But that represents, I think, kind of, certainly, a floor that you'd have to think of as you were looking at a bill.
But again, we will have to go back and look and see if people have got ideas or if there's something that looks like it's going to be a real vehicle that's going to move, we'll go back and look and see how it measures up against the President's principles.
Q Mike, the GM strike today, President Clinton said he had limited options to intervene, or the federal government had a limited role. Do you foresee at any point that there would be any cause to invoke the Taft-Hartley Act, because I think the last time that was invoked was 1978. And there's strict guidelines -- it has to affect national health safety or shut down an entire industry.
MR. MCCURRY: Right. You have to make an argument that the national health and safety is imperiled, and that has been rarely invoked by presidents.
Unlike American Airlines, for example, which has a different standard under the Railway Labor Act, the Taft-Hartley standard is pretty -- the threshold is very, very high. But we will continue to monitor that and see whether there's any statutory implications.
If that standard was ever met, you'd have to then create a board. There would have to be an evaluation. A Board of Inquiry would have to report to the President. The President would have to then direct the Attorney General to ask for an injunction. So there's a careful and calibrated process under federal labor law that would apply. And what we are doing right now is monitoring the situation and looking to see what kind of impact there has been on national health and safety.
Q Mike, does the President have any more China-related events before his departure next week?
MR. MCCURRY: Are we going to do a departure statement or anything like that?
MR. TOIV: He has no departure statement planned.
MR. MCCURRY: Nothing planned now that I know of. He's going to be doing his briefings and obviously some of these interviews this afternoon and some briefings.
Q But no public --
Q No departure statement?
MR. MCCURRY: I don't think there's one planned currently.
Q Are you going to get the delegation list today?
MR. MCCURRY: They're working on that and P.J. thought there was some chance you might get it today, right?
MR. TOIV: We're going to get a CODEL --
MR. MCCURRY: CODEL list.
MR. TOIV: -- and a goodly portion of the senior level of the rest of the delegation.
Q Mike, what is your reaction, as the President's media chief, to the Boston Globe following the New Republic and discovering that they have reporters like Janet Cooke who lie; and secondly, the CNN/Times story claiming U.S. use of nerve gas?
MR. MCCURRY: Look, I don't have any White House reaction to that. As someone who follows that, I think that news organizations have done very careful and meticulous reviews of the credibility of the works that they publish and they take serious their obligations to present accurate, truthful, credible reporting. And I think that's one of the things that makes your profession so invaluable to our democracy. (Laughter.) Except when you say things that are mean. (Laughter.)
Q Mike, has the President ruled out accepting the U.N. arrears bill that Helms is sitting on?
MR. MCCURRY: Yes, because it contains the provisions related to the Mexico City language that we've indicated are subject to veto.
Q So he'd prefer to keep the U.N. --
MR. MCCURRY: Has that bill ever come here, by the way?
Q No, he's sitting on it until he hears up front that the President would accept it -- he won't send it down.
MR. MCCURRY: Well, Congress can pass a bill and then it's up to Congress to decide that they don't like it well enough to send it down here. So I guess that's what's happened.
MR. TOIV: The Constitution actually gives us a chance to veto it.
MR. MCCURRY: Yes, and the Constitution does give the President the opportunity to veto the bill if it comes down here not to his liking.
Q But what if you don't get it?
MR. MCCURRY: But not if we don't get it, you're correct.
Q Does President Clinton see any other role, short of the Taft-Hartley Act that he could use in the GM strike to encourage a settlement?
MR. MCCURRY: The time-honored approach is to encourage the parties to do what they can, through collective bargaining and through their rights under labor law, to amicably settle their differences. And if you noted, the President did exactly that today.
Q Republicans all of a sudden are talking about the need to pass fast track. Is there a new opening --
MR. MCCURRY: I have not heard that reported to me. I would have to go back and check and see, but we would obviously welcome that. We would welcome an opportunity to see that all of these trade-related developments in the news are impacted by the economic reports we have from regions that we do a lot of commerce with. And for that reason, the ability to break down barriers to encourage greater exchange of goods and services and commerce is a good thing because it will shore up economic relationships, particularly with those parts of the world that are suffering some economic downturn.
Q Does the President still smoke cigars, and if so, do you believe that it would help convey an anti-tobacco message to young people if he quit?
MR. MCCURRY: He does not smoke cigars, and has only once --
Q He chews them.
MR. MCCURRY: -- in a long, long time that I know of. And I'll have to ask him if he's still chewing cigars.
Okay. Thank you.
Q Week ahead?
Q Saturday and Sunday?
MR. MCCURRY: Week ahead, Barry will do for you.
Q Does your 2000 -- in the next century reference mean that you've signed on with Vice President Gore?
MR. MCCURRY: No, it just that, theologically speaking, I think that I'll save that for the next millennium.
Q You're doing the week ahead?
MR. TOIV: Yes I am, afraid so.
Very quickly, the week ahead. Tomorrow, Saturday, the President will do the Radio Address live here. We do not have a topic yet.
Q Are you taking suggestions? (Laughter.)
MR. TOIV: As a matter of fact, yes.
Then tomorrow afternoon, the picnic experience that you all will have today will be repeated for the White House staff tomorrow afternoon. And then we're -- he's down until Monday.
Q Here or at Camp David, Barry?
MR. TOIV: We don't know yet. Monday the President travels to Nashville for the Family Reunion VII. This is the Vice President's annual event down in Nashville that you're all familiar with. The topic for the reunion this year is Families and Health, and the President will be addressing health care issues, including the Patients Bill of Rights and some other issues as well.
MR. TOIV: I would be surprise if that didn't come up. But that is not -- I don't think right now at least that that's the main subject.
Q Trent Lott?
MR. TOIV: No, not at all.
Q Will the Vice President discuss his experiences as a tobacco farmer, do you think, Barry?
MR. TOIV: I don't expect him to. Tuesday -- the President returns Monday night. Tuesday the President signs the Ag Research Bill here in the Rose Garden, Tuesday morning, scheduled for 10:30. That's the bill that you'll all recall contains Ag Research provisions, crop insurance, and also the food stamp provisions for legal immigrants, which restores -- which means that we will have restored a substantial amount of the cuts that were made, the unfair cuts that were made for legal immigrants in the Welfare Reform Bill in 1996.
Q Wool incentive return?
MR. TOIV: Sorry?
Q Wool incentive back?
MR. TOIV: I don't know. Check with your friends on the Hill, Sam. I don't know. Tuesday night he does a reception for Governor Shaheen, New Hampshire, here in town. Wednesday, before he departs for China, the President will sign the Deadbeat Parents Punishment Act, which is a child support enforcement bill.
This is something that the President originated back in '96, he called for a policy of this kind. And the Congress has now enacted, and essentially it increases -- it actually creates new federal felonies for those who do such things as go across state lines or leave the country to avoid child support payments. And that is scheduled for 9:45 on Wednesday morning. And the President leaves the White House at 11:35 a.m. for his trip to China. And I think you all know the rest of it.
Q The Iran sanctions veto?
MR. TOIV: It's not on the schedule. I would guess -- I don't know that we're going to do that publicly. My guess is we'll do a piece of paper.
Q What's he doing for Father's Day, Barry?
MR. TOIV: Well, we don't know yet. We don't know if they'll be here or at Camp David.
Q Is Chelsea coming in?
MR. TOIV: Not that I'm aware of. I haven't heard any plans.
Q Did she send a card or something?
MR. TOIV: But I really don't know for sure.
Q Do you know whether she send a card or something?
MR. TOIV: Sorry, Sam, I don't know. I suspect that they will communicate on Father's Day.
Q Who's all going from the Press Office? Who will be with the President from the Press Office.
MR. TOIV: Where? In China? Mr. McCurry, myself, Josh Silverman, Julia Payne --
Q How about David Leavy, is he going?
MR. TOIV: Mr. Leavy, who is not in the Press Office, but he will be -- he's critical to you all, I know. And I am -- oh, Darby Stott -- Ms. Darby Stott from the White House Press Office will be on this trip to assist you all.
END 2:05 P.M. EDT