Remarks at a White House Briefing for Conservative Political Leaders
I can't top that. I might as well just -- [laughter]. Well, thank you all very much, and welcome to the White House complex. White House complex -- that's what our opponents have after 8 years out of power. [Laughter]
know, for 8 years, this White House has been guided by your vision and your
ideals. And what an 8 years it's been -- so much achieved in so many areas. It
reminds me of what a
all remember the inflation and stagnation that the taxes, the spending, and
regulations of liberalism gave
conservatives brought that faith back to
Conservative writer George Gilder has pointed out that in the entire Industrial Revolution productivity increased by a factor of 100. Already microelectronics have skyrocketed the productivity of information-based industries by more than a million. No wonder America is exporting more than ever this year, and no wonder that when you look at the potential employment pool in the United States -- and that's everyone, male and female, 16 years of age and up -- think of it, everybody in the United States over the age of 16, including retirees and everything else, that pool, the proportion of it that is at work is higher than ever before in our history -- 63.6 percent of them are employed.
But that isn't all that putting our principles to work has meant for this nation we love. It's meant judges on the Federal bench across our country who know that every criminal is not a victim of society and that equal justice means justice for the victims of crime. It's meant a Federal Government that knows that the true measure of quality in education is in a simple, yet profound question that our good friend [Secretary of Education] Bill Bennett asks over and over again, to the great consternation of the National Education Association. He asks, ``What works?''
Well, it's meant an administration that is fighting for the rights of families, for the rights of parents to protect their children from the evils of drugs and pornography, and for the rights of the unborn. It's meant waging still other unfinished battles to put work into our welfare system, to make choice a part of our system of education, and to allow God back into our classrooms. He never should have been expelled in the first place.
And it's meant, around the world, an America that once again stands up for its principles, that has embraced a forward strategy for freedom, that will proclaim the gospel of democracy and liberty from every mountaintop, and that in this world, this dangerous place, knows that the one road, the only road, to peace is through American strength.
come so far. Who would have believed when I took the oath of office 7\1/2\
years ago that, almost for the first time since the end of the Second World
And still, my friends, all we've done, all we've achieved, all the promise for the future that we've opened up for our nation could be lost in just a few months. Our opponents are putting together a campaign that is subtle and clever. The American people understand what liberalism means and don't like it. So, our opponents plan to go to the voters incognito. They're putting on political trench coats and sunglasses -- [laughter] -- will never, even in the lowest whisper, mumble the ``L'' word again. [Laughter]
Yet how other than liberal would you characterize a Governor who, in the last 5 years, increased his State's spending twice as fast as the Federal Government's and more than a third faster than the average for all the other States? You know it's bad when a State legislative leader in his own party says, ``There hasn't been any will to control spending'' in the Governor's administration. And what do you call a Governor who raises taxes $115 million and declares it a victory? Out and out liberal!
Yes, all that the American people need to do is a little comparison shopping to see the truth. Our opponents' candidate has fought for weekend furloughs for dangerous convicts, including drug dealers. Our candidate has led the fight against drug smugglers. Their candidate favors abortion on demand; our candidate is prolife. Their candidate has opposed requiring the Pledge of Allegiance and allowing prayer in schools. Our candidate -- well, he and I both find it hard to believe that anyone could take these positions.
It's no secret who I believe should pick up the lease around here in January. Again and again these past 8 years I've admired George Bush's strength. Again and again his leadership has been a key to our successes.
1983 deployment of Pershing II and ground-launched cruise missiles in
And here at home, while his opponent has vetoed mandatory prison sentences for drug pushers, George Bush stands in the front of our battle against illegal drugs. With quiet strength, he brought together agencies that had rarely cooperated. And the result of his and other efforts has been tons of cocaine and marijuana seized and almost three times as many Federal drug prosecutions last year as there were in 1980.
this is the kind of man I want to follow me, someone who'll take our battle
forward, who will speak our gospel truly, and will do the work that is yet to
be done. When the Chief Justice asks the next President to solemnly swear to
preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the
friends, we have -- you and I -- given
years ago, I said to you that we could spark a great prairie fire that would
sweep across this nation and the world. Well, by golly, we have! Others would
like to extinguish the flame of hope, but if we stand together, it won't
So, it's up to us. In reality, it's up to you. We've got to send our man there to the White House, yes, but also let's send him what you sent me when I first came here. It's gone now, after 6 years, but that was a Senate, one House of the Congress. The House of Representatives has been in the Democrats' hands for all but 4 of 56 years. And one Democratic President had a Republican Congress for 2 years -- Harry Truman. One Republican President had a Republican Congress for 2 years -- Dwight Eisenhower. Then I did have, fortunately, those 6 years with one House at least. And without it we never could have attained all that we did in our economic recovery or in our buildup of strength, and that's very evident in what is going on now in these 2 years where they're back in control in both Houses.
So, let's send a President who's saying the things we believe, and then let's see if we can't send a lot of people up here with him that will not be working against his doing those things that he told us he wanted to do. Well, I know I can depend on you, and thank you all very much. God bless you all.
Note: The President
spoke at in Room 450 of the