Remarks Announcing the Resignation of James A. Baker III as Secretary of the Treasury and the Nomination of Nicholas F. Brady
The President. Well, as Jim Baker would say, ``It's finally a done deal.'' I say so long, but not goodbye, to a friend today. I've accepted with regret the resignation of James A. Baker III as Secretary of the Treasury. And I'm announcing that I intend to nominate in his place Nicholas F. Brady.
changes we brought about in
management, organization, and savvy were essential to the enormous success of
the 1980 campaign. As Chief of Staff throughout my first term, those same
skills were turned to governing. He was at my side as we delivered on our
promises to the people: cutting and reforming taxes, reducing regulations,
restraining the growth of spending, rebuilding
Treasury Secretary, Jim ushered in the tax reform everyone had said was
impossible. He brought about a new and better system of international economic
policy coordination and led the effort to achieve a free trade agreement
Jim is leaving to become chairman of George Bush's Presidential campaign. And as you go, let me tell you this: You're a friend whom I will miss. You've been a secret of our success. Now, Jim, go do it for George.
I'm pleased to be able to announce that I will nominate such an able successor
as Nick Brady. Nick has answered my call 5 times before. He also served as the
United States Senator from
The theme of this administration has been: ``Others talk, we deliver.'' Jim and Nick are doers who share my vision of what can be, and I'm proud and grateful for their help. Jim, I wish you luck. And, Nick, welcome to what just might be the most active 6 months of this administration.
And now I think Jim has something to say.
Secretary Baker. Thank you very much, Mr. President. After your election victory almost 8 years ago, I think it's fair to say that you broke the mold of convention. You named as your White House Chief of Staff the former campaign manager of your last competitor in the primary campaign. In doing so, you not only surprised most political and governmental observers, you shocked me as well. But at the same time, you gave me an opportunity to serve for which I will always be profoundly grateful. Thanks to your willingness to entrust me with responsibility, I was able to participate directly in what you rightly termed a new beginning.
have achieved, Mr. President, the first successful two-term Presidency in
almost three decades. Mr. President, I'm confident that historians will view
the Reagan era as one in which
You know, I feel there's no way I can fully repay you for the trust and the kindness which you have shown me over the years. But as you've noted, the Vice President has asked that I assume the chairmanship of his Presidential election campaign. And it does seem to me that in seeking to advance your Vice President's candidacy I can best help ensure the survival of your legacy and assure that your remarkable contributions are extended on toward the 21st century. The challenge, of course, is to carry forward the progress that you have fostered and to build upon that progress. I seek to help meet that challenge, with an image of your effective leadership etched forever in my mind and with appreciation for your warmth and your kindness deep in my heart.
Mr. President, I know you will be well served by your excellent choice of the distinguished former Senator Nick Brady as my successor. Nick.
Brady. Mr. President, I'm honored by your confidence. And I'm proud, subject to
confirmation by the Senate, to serve in your Cabinet. Your administration has
brought to this country the longest sustained period of prosperity in recent
years. Under Jim Baker's firm hand, the
Reporter. Secretary Baker, can you tell us what you're going to do to shape up the Bush campaign, with an 18- to 20-point deficit in the polls?
Secretary Baker. I'm going to answer those questions right now over at the campaign headquarters.
Q. Well, Mr. President, if you can tell us -- --
Q. Mr. President, are you relieved that Oliver North's trial has been postponed until after the election?
The President. I'm not going to take any questions here. They can't, for a very legitimate reason -- --
Q. Mr. Brady, were you promised to stay on in the Bush -- if Vice President Bush wins, are you staying on?
Mr. Brady. I'm going to answer any questions and make any statements during my Senate confirmation. Thank you for your interest.
Note: The President spoke to reporters at in the Briefing Room at the White House.