Remarks to Broan Manufacturing Company Employees in
you very much. And, Mr. Schlegel, thank you for bringing me into the family.
And I want you to know that I'm also grateful to the other three employees of
yours that are up here with me -- the Governor, the Senator, and the
Congressman, myself. We all work for you. And it's
great to be here today, although I confess to being a little nervous about
know, as I was coming into the plant today, I remembered all those years as a
political candidate that I spent shaking hands at plant gates. I guess that's
the difference when you're President -- they let you come inside. [Laughter]
But I do wish I'd gotten here in time for your company picnic. [Laughter] I'll
have to check my staff on who scheduled me for the leftover potato salad.
[Laughter] Don Schlegel tried to make me feel better about missing the picnic
by saying it was hot out there, too. [Laughter] I said, ``Yes, Don, but on the
other hand, there was also plenty of that stuff that made
actually, it's what each of you are doing to make
just one more reason that you're an example of what's known in
all this is a credit to you. Nobody works as hard as the American worker. And
forgive my pride, but when given half a chance American business and labor can outcompete any country or people in the world. But your
success here is also a credit to the American electorate -- of which you're a
part -- because they made it possible for your hard work to pay off when they
said no to policies that led to double-digit inflation, growing unemployment,
and booming interest rates. Yet even though the people spoke emphatically at
the polls, it was tough to turn things around in
But turn it around we did: We cut taxes, we simplified taxes, we reformed taxes. And let me make sure that when I use the term, ``Congress,'' I'm talking about a part of the Congress because we have had the help in what we're trying to do of Senator Kasten and Congressman Sensenbrenner, and also now, your good Governor.
went on, and we reduced unnecessary regulation. We cut the rate of growth of
spending and even got the Congress to sign off on a deficit reduction plan --
Gramm-Rudman-Hollings. We fought protectionist legislation that would invite
foreign retaliation, retaliation that would eventually close down markets and
American plants and factories. But sure enough, just as prosperity becomes
Now, some of you know I'm crisscrossing the country to fight these dangerous trends on Capitol Hill. I've been campaigning not only to hold on to the progress that we've made and keep our prosperity growing but to institute permanent reforms -- something called an Economic Bill of Rights -- that would protect you and your children from future encroachments of government. One of the most dangerous inclinations of human nature, Thomas Jefferson once said, is appropriating wealth produced by the labor of others rather than producing it by one's own labor. He said government was the usual vehicle for this abuse. And as he put it: The stronger the government, the weaker the producer. And he added: The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground.
And that's why I'm out pushing our Economic Bill of Rights. We want to protect you -- the producers, the taxpayers -- by reforming the way future Congresses spend your money and raise your taxes. We want to put permanent checks and balances like a balanced budget amendment, line-item veto -- which your government has -- and truth-in-spending legislation on government's inevitable tendency to confiscate more and more of your take-home pay. [Applause] You are right; it's time to cut the Federal budget, not the family budget.
I've got to tell you, my decision to take our case to the people has gotten
some of the seers and sayers back in
fact, they make me think of Yogi Berra when he said:
``Nobody goes to that restaurant any more -- it's too crowded.'' [Laughter] I
say the people care about higher taxes, and I say the people care about higher
spending, and I say the people care about higher trade barriers that would cost
There is much left to do in the next 18 months. And to borrow a phrase that you might have heard recently from one of the lawyers -- defense lawyers at the legislative hearings there going on in Washington -- [laughter] -- who had to protest that he wasn't a potted plant; he was a lawyer there with his client -- I reject a potted-plant Presidency. I'm here to do a job, and when the Congress spends too much money or tries to raise taxes or passes trade legislation that will hurt American workers, you can bet I'm going to be out here asking you, the people, for your hands and your hearts and your help.
I also say it's a President's job to warn Americans and American workers about trade legislation that could lead to foreign retaliation -- retaliation that will cut off foreign markets, shut down plants, and as I said, destroy jobs here at home. We tried that once way back in the depths of the Great Depression, and we only spread depression around the world. Right now the House and the Senate have passed trade bills that are dangerous to economic growth. And I'm here to tell you today: Under the guise of protectionism, those bills threaten the jobs and livelihood of American workers, and that's why I'm prepared to veto this legislation if it reaches my desk in its present form. I stand ready to work with Congress, but on a trade bill that promotes economic growth rather than stifles it.
This antiprotectionist and antigrowth [progrowth] message is something I'll be taking to other stops today in your great State. And once again, I'll be preaching the same old Jeffersonian gospel -- that the government that governs least is the government that governs best.
thank you again for this visit today. Keep up your good work, help
But I just want to thank all of you here for letting me interfere for a little while and visit with you. And as I say, I've got two more stops nearby to go, so just thank you all, and God bless you all.
Note: The President
spoke at on the manufacturing
floor at the plant. In his opening remarks, he referred to Gov. Tommy Thompson,
Senator Robert W. Kasten, Jr., Representative F.
James Sensenbrenner, Jr., and Donald M. Schlegel, president of the Broan Manufacturing Co. Following his remarks, the
President traveled to