Informal Exchange With Reporters

 

October 21, 1987

 

Mrs. Reagan's Hospitalization

 

Q. Is Mrs. Reagan coming home tomorrow?

 

Q. Mr. President, they say that you're just talking -- accommodating progress instead. You, sir, go ahead, sorry.

 

The President. I've got two statements to make today. Yes, both happy. You know about the market. It closed at 186 and some fraction, and some 450 million shares traded. But the most important day's news is, at 9:15 a.m. tomorrow morning, I will leave here to go out and pick up Nancy and bring her home.

 

Q. And tomorrow night you'll see us in the news conference.

 

The President. Yes. Well, that's not as happy as bringing her home.

 

Q.  --  -- Thursday.

 

Stock Market Decline

 

Q. Is the Wall Street crisis over?

 

Q. Is the crisis over?

 

The President. What?

 

Q. Is the crisis over, sir?

 

The President. The which is over?

 

Q. The crisis with the stock market over, now that it's gone up?

 

The President. Well, it would appear to be. Certainly, when more than half of the loss has already been regained, that sounds as if someone discovered that the economy is still rather sound.

 

Budget Deficit

 

Q. Jim Miller --  --

 

Q. Do you still want to meet with the Democrats?

 

Q. The Democrats --  --

 

Q. Do you still want to meet with Democrats if the crisis is over? Do you still need to meet with Democrats?

 

The President. Oh, yes, because we've got a crisis that they brought on over the last 50 years of a deficit that's got to be resolved.

 

Q. But you're trying to have it both ways by saying you'll talk to them, but you still don't want to raise taxes.

 

The President. Well, I will listen to what they have to say if they will listen to what I have to say about the fact that raising taxes has always resulted in a lowering of the revenues.

 

Q. Miller says you'll never accept taxing.

 

Q. Your budget director said that -- no tax increases.

 

The President. Does it make you mad that somebody else is guessing what I think?

 

Soviet-U.S. Summit Meeting

 

Q. Do you think you'll have an announcement tomorrow on a meeting with Gorbachev, a summit meeting? Is it likely?

 

The President. I don't know. We haven't heard yet as to what's been happening over there in Moscow. I don't know. This is about the summit whether we --  --

 

Q.  --  -- at the news conference tomorrow?

 

The President. That's an idea.

 

Q. What about the War Powers Act?

 

The President. What?

 

Q. What about the War Powers Act -- to say that you've got to go to them on the War Powers Act or something like that.

 

The President. Well, I still say it's unconstitutional. There's a part of it that I think is fine.

 

Q. Gorbachev has said yes to the summit.

 

The President. We've heard that they've made a statement about wanting a summit, but they haven't officially notified us. I'd think that they would relate it to the Secretary.

 

Note: The exchange began at 5:03 p.m. at the South Portico of the White House upon the President's departure for Bethesda Naval Hospital, where Mrs. Reagan was recovering from cancer surgery. In the exchange, a reporter referred to James C. Miller III, Director of the Office of Management and Budget. In the President's last statement he referred to Secretary of State George P. Shultz.