H.R. 6370, which I am signing, authorizes FY 1978 appropriations of $11,522,000 for the International Trade Commission. The bill also provides the President with the power, starting in June 1978, to appoint a Chairman of the six member Commission, but requires the appointment to be from among the four most senior Commissioners. In addition, the new Chairman must be of the opposite political party from the outgoing Chairman and from the new Vice Chairman.
I believe these restrictions on the selection of a Chairman may unduly limit the President's ability to select the best available leadership for the Commission.
Accordingly, I hope that Congress will correct this defect prior to the appointment of the new Chairman by enacting legislation giving the President the flexibility to select any of the Commissioners as Chairman.