View Header


Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release December 21, 1998
                       AT PLAIN LANGUAGE AWARDS

                          The Roosevelt Room

12:33 P.M. EST

THE VICE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to the White House. Mike, thank you very much for your kind words of introduction. I've known Mike Walker for 23 years now -- actually, longer than that. But it's great to be able to participate in this ceremony with you.

This is a regular occurrence, because reinventing government requires constant attention; we hit it every single day, every week, every month. And one of the new initiatives is this Plain Language Award, and I'm very pleased to be able to present it again this month.

But before I present this month's Plain Language Award, I would like to make a brief comment on another matter. As I said this past weekend, I believe that Saturday's vote in the U.S. House of Representatives was wrong -- wrong for our Constitution and wrong for America.

But this much should be clear: President Clinton and I will continue to focus all of our energies on the business of the American people. We face enormous challenges, after all -- saving Social Security for our children, improving our schools, cleaning up the environment, fighting crime, fighting terrorism around the world and making our government work better here at home.

That is the work that President Clinton and I will continue to focus on today, this week, every day and every week for the next two years. I do hope that the United States Senate will rise to this moment, as it so often does, to be the voice of reason, deliberation and healing that America needs, to play the role it was intended by our founders to play in situations exactly like this one.

I hope the Senate will therefore forge a fair, bipartisan compromise to end this matter promptly -- and to end it in a way that will respect the will and the wisdom of the American people.

END 12:35 P.M. EST