|The American Presidency Project|
|• Republican Party Platforms|
|Republican Party Platform of 1972|
|August 21, 1972|
This year our Republican Party has greater reason than ever before for pride in its stewardship.
When our accomplishments are weighed—when our opponents' philosophy, programs and candidates are assessed—we believe the American people will rally eagerly to the leadership which since January 1969 has brought them a better life in a better land in a safer world.
This political contest of 1972 is a singular one. No Americans before have had a clearer option. The choice is between going forward from dramatic achievements to predictable new achievements, or turning back toward a nightmarish time in which the torch of free America was virtually snuffed out in a storm of violence and protest. It is so easy to forget how frightful it was. There was Vietnam—so bloody, so costly, so bitterly divisive—a war in which more than a half-million of America's sons had been committed to battle—a war, it seemed, neither to be won nor lost, but only to be endlessly fought—a war emotionally so tormenting as almost to obliterate America's other worldly concerns.
And yet, as our eyes were fixed on the carnage in Asia, in Europe our alliance had weakened. The Western will was dividing and ebbing. The isolation of the People's Republic of China with one-fourth of the world's population, went endlessly on.
At home our horrified people watched our cities burn, crime burgeon, campuses dissolve into chaos. A mishmash of social experimentalism, producing such fiscal extravaganzas as the abortive war on poverty, combined with war pressures to drive up taxes and balloon the cost of living. Working men and women found their living standards fixed or falling, the victim of inflation. Nationwide, welfare skyrocketed out of control.
The history of our country may record other crises more costly in material goods, but none so demoralizing to the American people. To millions of Americans it seemed we had lost our way. So it was when our Republican Party came to power.
Now, four years later, a new leadership with new policies and new programs has restored reason and order and hope. No longer buffeted by internal violence and division, we are on course in calmer seas with a sure, steady hand at the helm. A new spirit, buoyant and confident, is on the rise in our land, nourished by the changes we have made. In the past four years:
We have turned toward concord among all Americans;
We have turned toward reason and order;
We have turned toward government responding sensitively to the people's hopes and needs;
We have turned toward innovative solutions to the nation's most pressing problems;
We have turned toward new paths for social progress—from welfare rolls to payrolls; from wanton pollution to vigorous environmental protection;
We have moved far toward peace: withdrawal of our fighting men from Vietnam, constructive new relationships with the Soviet Union and the People's Republic of China, the nuclear arms race checked, the Mid-East crisis dampened, our alliances revitalized.
So once again the foreign policy of the United States is on a realistic footing, promising us a nation secure in a full generation of peace, promising the end of conscription, promising a further allocation of resources to domestic needs. It is a saga of exhilarating progress.
We have come far in so short a time. Yet, much remains to be done.
Discontents, frustrations and concerns still stir in the minds and hearts of many of our people, especially the young. As long as America falls short of being truly peaceful, truly prosperous, truly secure, truly just for all, her task is not done.
Our encouragement is in the fact that things as they are, are far better than things that recently were. Our resolve is that things to come can be, and will be, better still.
Looking to tomorrow, to President Nixon's second term and on into the third century of this Republic, we of the Republican Party see a quarter-billion Americans peaceful and prospering as never before, humane as never before, their nation strong and just as never before.
It is toward this bright tomorrow that we are determined to move, in concert with millions of discerning Democrats and concerned Independents who will not, and cannot, take part in the convulsive leftward lurch of the national Democratic Party.
The election of 1972 requires of the voters a momentous decision—one that will determine the kind of nation that is to be on its 200th birthday four years hence. In this year we must choose between strength and weakness for our country in the years to come. This year we must choose between negotiating and begging with adversary nations. This year we must choose between an expanding economy in which workers will prosper and a hand-out economy in which the idle live at ease. This year we must choose between running our own lives and letting others in a distant bureaucracy run them. This year we must choose between responsible fiscal policy and fiscal folly.
This year the choice is between moderate goals historically sought by both major parties and far-out goals of the far left. The contest is not between the two great parties Americans have known in previous years. For in this year 1972 the national Democratic Party has been seized by a radical clique which scorns our nation's past and would blight her future.
We invite our troubled friends of other political affiliations to join with us in a new coalition for progress. Together let us reject the New Left prescription for folly and build surely on the solid achievements of President Nixon's first term.
Four years ago we said, in Abraham Lincoln's words, that Americans must think anew and act anew. This we have done, under gifted leadership. The many advances already made, the shining prospects so clearly ahead, are presented in this Platform for 1972 and beyond.
May every American measure our deeds and words thoughtfully and objectively, and may our opponents' claims be equally appraised. Once this is done and judgment rendered on election day, we will confidently carry forward the task of doing for America what her people need and want and deserve.
Toward a Full Generation of Peace
When Richard Nixon became President, our country was still clinging to foreign policies fashioned for the era immediately following World War II. The world has changed dramatically in the 1960's, but our foreign policies had not.
America was hopelessly enmeshed in Vietnam. In all parts of the globe our alliances were frayed. With the principal Communist powers our relations showed little prospect of improvement. Trade and monetary problems were grave. Periodic crises had become the way of international economic life.
The nation's frustrations had fostered a dangerous spirit of isolationism among our people. America's influence in the world had waned.
In only four years we have fashioned foreign policies based on a new spirit of effective negotiation with our adversaries, and a new sense of real partnership with our allies. Clearly, the prospects for lasting peace are greater today than at any time since World War II.
New Era of Diplomacy
Not all consequences of our new foreign policy are yet visible, precisely because one of its great purposes is to anticipate crises and avoid them rather than merely respond. Its full impact will be realized over many years, but already there are vivid manifestations of its success:
Before this Administration, a Presidential visit to Peking would have been unthinkable. Yet our President has gone there to open a candid airing of differences so that they will not lead some day to war. All over the world tensions have eased as, after a generation of hostility, the strongest of nations and the most populous of nations have started discoursing again.
During the 1960's, Presidential visits to Moscow were twice arranged and twice cancelled. Now our President has conferred, in the Soviet Union, with Soviet leaders, and has hammered out agreements to make this world a much safer place. Our President's quest for peace has taken him to 20 other countries, including precedent-shattering visits to Rumania, Yugoslavia and Poland.
Around the globe America's alliances have been renewed and strengthened. A new spirit of partnership shows results in our NATO partners' expenditures for the common defense—up by some $2 billion in two years.
Historians may well regard these years as a golden age of American diplomacy. Never before has our country negotiated with so many nations on so wide a range of subjects—and never with greater success. In the last four years we have concluded agreements:
To limit nuclear weapons.
To ban nuclear weapons from the world's sea-beds.
To reduce the risk of an accidental nuclear war.
To end the threat of biological and toxin warfare.
To terminate American responsibility for the administration of Okinawa.
To end the recurrent crises over Berlin.
To provide for U.S.-Soviet cooperation in health and space research.
To reduce the possibility of dangerous incidents at sea.
To improve emergency communications between the White House and the Kremlin.
To exercise restraint in situations threatening conflict.
To realign the world's currencies.
To reduce barriers to American exports. To combat the international drug traffic. To protect the international environment.
To expand cultural relations with peoples of Eastern Europe.
To settle boundary disputes with Mexico.
To restore the water quality of the Great Lakes in cooperation with Canada.
In Vietnam, too, our new policies have been dramatically effective.
In the 1960's, our nation was plunged into another major war—for the fourth time in this century, the third time in a single generation.
More than a half-million Americans were fighting in Vietnam in January 1969. Fatalities reached 562 in a single week. There was no plan for bringing Americans home; no hope for an end of the war.
In four years, we have marched toward peace and away from war. Our forces in Vietnam have been, cut by 93 per cent. No longer do we have a single ground combat unit there. Casualties are down by 95 per cent. Our young draftees are no longer sent there without their consent.
Through it all, we have not abandoned an ally to aggression, not turned our back on their brave defense against brutal invasion, not consigned them to the bloodbath that would follow Communist conquest. By helping South Vietnam build a capability to withstand aggression, we have laid the foundation for a just peace and a durable peace in Southeast Asia.
From one sector of the globe to another, a sure and strong America, in partnership with other nations, has once again resumed her historic mission—the building of lasting peace.
The Nixon Doctrine
When President Nixon came into office, America's foremost problem was the bloody, costly, divisive involvement in Vietnam. But there was an even more profound task—to redefine the international role of the United States in light of new realities around the globe and new attitudes at home. Precisely and clearly, the President stated a new concept of a positive American role. This—the Nixon Doctrine—is monumentally important to every American and to all other people in the world.
The theme of this Doctrine is that America will remain fully involved in world affairs, and yet do this in ways that will elicit greater effort by other nations and the sustaining support of our people.
For decades, our nation's leaders regarded virtually every problem of local defense or economic development anyplace in the world as an exclusive American responsibility. The Nixon Doctrine recognizes that continuing defense and development are impossible unless the concerned nations shoulder the principal burden.
Yet, strong economic and military assistance programs remain essential. Without these, we are denied a middle course—the course between abruptly leaving allies to struggle alone against economic stagnation or aggression, or intervening massively ourselves. We cannot move from the over-involvement of the Sixties to the selective involvement of the Seventies if we do not assist our friends to make the transition with us.
In the Nixon Doctrine, therefore, we define our interests and commitments realistically and clearly; we offer, not an abdication of leadership, but more rational and responsible leadership.
We pledge that, under Republican leadership, the United States will remain a leader in international affairs. We will continue to shape our involvement abroad to national objectives and realities in order to sustain a strong, effective American role in the world.
Over time we hope this role will eventually lead the peace-loving nations to undertake an exhaustive, coordinated analysis of the root causes of war and the most promising paths of peace, so that those causes may in time be removed and the prospects for enduring peace strengthened year by year.
Peace in the 1970's
We stand with our President for his strategy for Peace—a strategy of national strength, a new sense of international partnership, a willingness to negotiate international differences.
We will strengthen our relationships with our allies, recognizing them as full-fledged partners in securing the peace and promoting the common well being.
With our adversaries, we will continue to negotiate in order to improve our security, reduce tension, and extend the realm of cooperation. Especially important is continued negotiation to maintain the momentum established by the Strategic Arms Limitation agreements to limit offensive and defensive nuclear weapons systems and further to reduce the danger of nuclear conflict. In addition, we will encourage increased trade for the benefit of our consumers, businessmen, workers, and farmers.
Along with NATO allies, we will seek agreement with the Warsaw Pact nations on a mutual and balanced reduction of military forces in Europe.
We will press for expansion of contacts with the people of Eastern Europe and the People's Republic of China, so long isolated from most of the world.
We will continue to seek a settlement of the Vietnam war which will permit the people of Southeast Asia to live in peace under political arrangements of their own choosing. We take specific note of the remaining major obstacle to settlement—Hanoi's demand that the United States overthrow the Saigon government and impose a Communist-dominated government on the South Vietnamese. We stand unequivocally at the side of the President in his effort to negotiate honorable terms, and in his refusal to accept terms which would dishonor this country.
We commend his refusal to perform this act of betrayal—and we most emphatically say the President of the United States should not go begging to Hanoi. We believe that the President's proposal to withdraw remaining American forces from Vietnam four months after an internationally supervised cease-fire has gone into effect throughout Indochina and all prisoners have been returned is as generous an offer as can be made by anyone—by anyone, that is, who is not bemused with surrender—by anyone who seeks, not a fleeting peace at whatever cost, but a real peace that will be both just and lasting.
We will keep faith with American prisoners of war held by the enemy, and we will keep faith, too, with their families here at home who have demonstrated remarkable courage and fortitude over long periods of uncertainty. We will never agree to leave the fate of our men unclear, dependent upon a cruel enemy's whim. On the contrary-we insist that, before all American forces are withdrawn from Vietnam, American prisoners must be returned and a full accounting made of the missing in action and of those who have died in enemy hands.
We pledge that upon repatriation our returned prisoners will be received in a manner befitting their valor and sacrifice.
We applaud the Administration's program to assure each returned prisoner the finest medical care, personal counseling, social services and career orientation. This around-the-clock personal service will ease their reintegration into American life.
North Vietnam's violation of the Geneva Convention in its treatment of our prisoners of war has called forth condemnation from leaders around the world—but not by our political opposition at home. We denounce the enemy's flagrant breach of international law and common decency. We will continue to demand full implementation of the rights of the prisoners.
If North Vietnam continues obdurately to reject peace by negotiation, we shall nevertheless achieve peace for our country through the successful program of Vietnamization, phasing out our involvement as our ally strengthens his defense against aggression.
In the Middle East, we initiated arrangements leading to a cease-fire which has prevailed for two years. We pledge every effort to transform the cease-fire into lasting peace.
Since World War II, our country has played the major role in the international effort to assist the developing countries of the world. Reform of our foreign assistance program, to induce a greater international sharing of the aid effort, is long overdue. The reforms proposed by the President have been approved only in part. We call for further reforms to make our aid more effective and protect the taxpayer's interests.
We stand for an equitable, non-discriminatory immigration policy, reaffirming our support of the principles of the 1965 Immigration Act—non-discrimination against national origins, reunification of families, and the selective admission of the specially talented. The immigration process must be just and orderly, and we will increase our efforts to halt the illegal entry of aliens into the United States.
We also pledge to strengthen the agencies of international cooperation. We will help multilateral organizations focus on international issues affecting the quality of life—for example the peaceful uses of nuclear energy and the protection of man's cultural heritage and freedom of communication, as well as drug abuse, pollution, overpopulation, exploitation of the oceans and sea-beds, aircraft hijacking and international crime. We will seek to improve the performance of the United Nations, including more objective leadership. We support a more equitable sharing of the costs of international organizations and have serious concerns over the delinquency of many UN members in meeting their financial obligations.
Our country, which from its beginnings has proclaimed that all men are endowed with certain rights, cannot be indifferent to the denial of human rights anywhere in the world. We deplore oppression and persecution, the inevitable hallmarks of despotic systems of rule. We will continue to strive to bring them to an end, both to reestablish the right of self-determination and to encourage where and when possible the political freedom of subjugated peoples everywhere in the world.
We firmly support the right of all persons to emigrate from any country, and we have consistently upheld that doctrine. We are fully aware of and share the concern of many citizens for the plight of Soviet Jews with regard to their freedoms and emigration. This view, together with our commitment to the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of the United Nations, was made known to Soviet leaders during the President's discussions in Moscow.
The Middle East
We support the right of Israel and its courageous people to survive and prosper in peace. We have sought a stable peace for the Middle East and helped to obtain a cease-fire which contained the tragic conflict. We will help in any way possible to bring Israel and the Arab states to the conference table, where they may negotiate a lasting peace. We will continue to act to prevent the development of a military imbalance which would imperil peace in the region and elsewhere by providing Israel with support essential for her security, including aircraft, training and modern and sophisticated military equipment, and also by helping friendly Arab governments and peoples, including support for their efforts to diminish their dependence on outside powers. We support programs of economic assistance to Israel pursued by President Nixon that have helped her achieve a nine-per cent annual economic growth rate. This and the special refugee assistance ordered by the President have also helped to provide resettlement for the thousands of immigrants seeking refuge in Israel.
We will maintain our technical forces in Europe and the Mediterranean area at adequate strength and high levels of efficiency. The irresponsible proposals of our political opposition to slash the defense forces of the United States-specifically, by cutting the strength of our fleet, by reducing our aircraft carriers from 16 to six and by unilateral withdrawals from Europe—would increase the threat of war in the Middle East and gravely menace Israel. We flatly reject these dangerous proposals.
With a settlement fair to all nations of the Middle East, there would be an opportunity for their peoples to look ahead to shared opportunities rather than backward to rancorous animosities. In a new environment of cooperation, Israel will be able to contribute much to economic renaissance in the Mid-East crossroads of the world.
The Atlantic Community
We place high priority on the strengthening of the North Atlantic Alliance. One of the President's first initiatives was to visit Western European capitals to reinvigorate the NATO alliance and indicate its importance in U.S. foreign policy.
Right now, with plaintive cries of "come home America" echoing a new isolationism, the Republican Party states its firm belief that no nation can be an island or a fortress unto itself. Now, more than ever, there is need for interdependence among proven friends and old allies.
The North Atlantic Alliance remains the strongest most successful peacetime association ever formed among a group of free nations. The continued strengthening of the Alliance will remain an important clement in the foreign policies of the second Nixon Administration.
During the 1960's a number of economic and political issues developed in our country's relations with Japan, our major ally in Asia. To resolve these, President Nixon terminated our responsibility for the administration of Okinawa and initiated action to reduce our trade deficit with Japan. We are consulting closely to harmonize our two countries' separate efforts to normalize relations with Peking. In these ways we have shifted our vital alliance with Japan to a more sustainable basis for the long term, recognizing that the maintenance of United States-Japanese friendship advances the interests of both countries.
The Soviet Union
Over many years our relations with the Soviet Nation have oscillated between superficial improvements and new crises. False hopes have been repeatedly followed by disillusioned confrontation. In the closing months of 1968, our relations with the Soviet Union deteriorated steadily, forcing the cancellation of a scheduled Presidential visit to Moscow and immobilizing projected negotiations on strategic arms limitation.
President Nixon immediately began the difficult task of building a new relationship—one based on a realistic acceptance of the profound differences in the values and systems of our two nations. He moved decisively on key issues—such as the Berlin problem and strategic arms limitation—so that progress in one area would add momentum to progress in other areas. The success of these efforts was demonstrated at the summit in Moscow. Agreements were reached on new areas of cooperation—public health, environmental control, space exploration and trade. The first historic agreements limiting strategic arms were signed last May 26 in Moscow, and the Soviet Union subscribed to a broad declaration of principles governing our relations.
We pledge to build upon these promising beginnings in reorienting relations between the world's strongest nuclear powers to establish a truly lasting peace.
In the 1960's it seemed beyond possibility that the United States could dispel the ingrained hostility and confrontation with the China mainland. President Nixon's visit to the People's Republic of China was, therefore, an historic milestone in his effort to transform our era from one of confrontation to one of negotiation. While profound differences remain between the United States and China, at least a generation of hostility has been replaced by frank discussions. In February 1972 rules of international conduct were agreed upon which should make the Pacific region a more peaceful area now and in the future. Both the People's Republic and the United States affirmed the usefulness of promoting trade and cultural exchanges as ways of improving understanding between our two peoples.
All this is being done without affecting our mutual defense treaty or our continued diplomatic relations with our valued friend and ally on Taiwan, the Republic of China.
Our common long-range interests, as well as history and geography, give the relations among nations of the Western Hemisphere a special importance. We will foster a more mature partnership among the nations of this hemisphere, with a wider sharing of ideas and responsibility, a broader understanding of diversities, and firm commitment to the common pursuit of economic progress and social justice.
We believe the continuing campaign by Cuba to foment violence and support subversion in other countries makes it ineligible for readmission to the community of American states. We look forward to the day when changes in Cuba's policies will justify its re-entry into the American community—and to the day when the Cuban people achieve again their freedom and their true independence.
Our ties with Africa are rooted in the heritage of many Americans and in our historic commitment to self-determination. We respect the hard-earned sovereignty of Africa's new states and will continue to do our utmost to make a meaningful contribution to their development. We have no illusions that the United States can single-handedly solve the seemingly intractable problems of apartheid and minority rule, but we can and will encourage non-violent, evolutionary change by supporting international efforts peacefully to resolve the problems of southern Africa and by maintaining our contacts with all races on the Continent.
We believe in keeping America strong. In times past, both major parties shared that belief. Today this view is under attack by militants newly in control of the Democratic Party. To the alarm of free nations everywhere, the New Democratic Left now would undercut our defenses and have America retreat into virtual isolation, leaving us weak in a world still not free of aggression and threats of aggression. We categorically reject this slash-now, beg-later, approach to defense policy.
Only a strong America can safely negotiate with adversaries. Only a strong America can fashion partnerships for peace.
President Nixon has given the American people their best opportunity in this century to achieve lasting peace. The foundations are well laid. By adhering to a defense policy based on strength at home, partnership abroad and a willingness to negotiate everywhere, we hold that lasting peace is now achievable.
We will surely fail if we go crawling to the conference table. Military weakness is not the path to peace; it is invitation to war.
A Modern, Well-Equipped Force
We believe that the first prerequisite of national security is a modern, well-equipped armed force. From 1965 to 1969 the Vietnam war so absorbed the resources of the Defense Department that maintenance, modernization, and research and development fell into neglect. In the late 1960's the Soviet Union outspent the United States by billions of dollars for force modernization, facing the United States with the dangerous prospect that its forces would soon be qualitatively inferior. Our Reserve Forces and the National Guard had become a dumping ground for cast-off arms and equipment. The military posture of our country became seriously undermined.
To assure our strength and counter the mounting Soviet threat, President Nixon directed:
The most significant ship construction and modernization program since World War II;
The development of new types of tactical aircraft such as the F-155, a lightweight fighter, and a fighter plane for close support of ground troops;
Improvements in our strategic bomber force and development of the new B-1 strategic bomber;
Development of a new Trident submarine and undersea missile system;
Greatly increasing the capability of existing strategic missiles through multiple warheads;
Strengthening of strategic defenses, including initial deployment of an anti-ballistic missile system;
The largest research and development budget in history to insure continued technological superiority;
Equipping of the National Guard and Reserves with the most modern and sophisticated weapons;
Improved command and control communications systems.
We draw a sharp distinction between prudent reductions in defense spending and the meat-ax slashes with which some Americans are now beguiled by the political opposition. Specifically, we oppose plans to stop the Minuteman III and Poseidon programs, reduce the strategic bomber force by some 60 per cent, cancel the B-1 bomber, reduce aircraft carriers from 16 to 6, reduce tactical air wings by a third, and unilaterally reduce U.S. forces in Europe by half.
These slashes are worse than misguided; they are dangerous.
They world torpedo negotiations on arms and troop reductions, create a crisis of confidence with our allies, damage our own industrial and technological capacity, destabilize Europe and the Middle East, and directly endanger the nation's security.
A New Partnership
The Nixon Doctrine has led to a new military strategy of realistic deterrence. Its essence is the sharing of the responsibilities and the burdens of defense. The strategy is based on the efficient utilization of the total force available—our own and our allies', and our civilian reserve elements as well as our regular forces.
For years our country shouldered the responsibility for the defense of other nations. There were fears that we were attempting to be the policeman of the world. Our country found it necessary to maintain a military force of 3.5 million persons, more than a million overseas at 2,270 installations.
A new partnership is emerging between the United States and other nations of the free world. Other countries are assuming a much greater responsibility for the common defense. Twice in the last two years our European allies have agreed to substantial increases in their support fear NATO forces. In Asia we have been heartened by the efforts of the Koreans, Vietnamese, Thais, Nationalist Chinese, Australians, New Zealanders and others who have sought improvements in their own forces.
We have been able to reduce our military forces by more than one million men and women. We have cut by half the number deployed overseas, reduced overseas installations by more than 10 per cent, and sharply reduced the economic burden of defense spending from the Vietnam high. All this has been done by virtue of our new security posture, without impairing our own or our allies' security.
We pledge to press on toward a lasting peace. To that end we declare ourselves unalterably opposed to a unilateral slash of our military power, and we reject a whimpering "come back America" retreat into isolationism.
An All-Volunteer Armed Force
We wholeheartedly support an all-volunteer armed force and are proud to our historic initiatives to bring it to pass.
Four years ago, the President pledged to work toward an early end of the draft that promise has been kept. Today we approach a zero draft that will enlarge the personal freedom of millions of young Americans.
Prior to 1969, annual draft calls exceeded 300,000. The Selective Service System was inequitable in operation, and its rules caused prolonged uncertainty for young men awaiting call.
Since 1969, the Selective Service System has been thoroughly reorganized, and local draft hostels are more representative than ever before. Today draftees are called by random selection of the youngest first, so that the maximum length of vulnerability is no longer seven years but one year only. Youth advisory committees are in operation all across the country.
Of critical importance, we are nearing the elimination of draft calls altogether. In every year since 1968, draft calls have been reduced. Monthly draft calls are now down to a few thousand, and no draftees are sent involuntarily to Vietnam. We expect to achieve our goal by July 1973. Then, for the first time in a quarter-century, we hope and expect that young Americans of all ages will be free from conscription.
Our political opponents have talked for years of their concern for young people. It is our Republican Administration that has taken the strong, effective action required to end the draft, with its many hardships and uncertainties for the youth of America.
Improvements in Service Life
We believe that the men and women in the uniformed services deserve the gratitude and respect of all Americans and are entitled to better treatment than received in the past.
For years most servicemen have been under-paid, harassed with restrictions, and afforded few opportunities for self-development. Construction of military housing was allowed to fall badly behind.
Since 1968 improvements in service life have been many and major:
The largest pay raises in military history have been enacted. While increases have been in all grades, the largest have gone to new recruits whose base pay will have risen more than 300 per cent by the end of this year.
Construction of new housing for military personnel and their families has increased sixfold since January 1969.
Without sacrificing discipline, needlessly harsh, irksome and demeaning practices of the past have been abandoned.
An effective program against dangerous drugs has been initiated.
Educational and training opportunities have been expanded.
Major strides have been made toward wiping out the last vestiges of racial discrimination.
We regard these tasks as never completed, but we are well on the way and pledge ourselves to press forward assuring all men and women in the armed forces rewarding careers.
Better Defense Management
In the 1960's, the Department of Defense became administratively top-heavy and inefficient. The acquisition of new weapons systems was handled with inadequate attention to cost or performance, and there was little recognition of the truman dimensions of the Department. Morale was low.
Our improvements have been many and substantial. Healthy decentralization has taken place. The methods of acquiring new weapons systems have been reformed by such procedures as "fly before you buy," the use of prototypes and the elimination of frills. Service personnel and civilian employees are now treated as the most important asset of the Department.
We have sharply reduced defense spending. In 1968, 45 per cent of the Federal budget was spent for defense and 32 per cent for human resources. In the 1973 budget the proportions were reversed—45 per cent for human resources, 32 per cent for defense. The 1973 defense budget imposes the smallest economic burden on the country of any defense budget in more than 20 years, consuming only 6.4 per cent of the estimated Gross National Product.
We believe in limiting arms—not unilaterally, but by mutual agreement and with adequate safeguards.
When the Nixon Administration began, the Soviet Union was rapidly building its strategic armaments, and any effort to negotiate limitations on such weapons seemed hopeless. The Soviet buildup threatened the efficacy of our strategic deterrent.
The Nixon years have achieved a great breakthrough in the long-term effort to curb major armaments by international agreement and given new momentum to arms limitations generally. Of greatest importance were agreements with the Soviet leaders to limit offensive and defensive nuclear weapons. The SALT accords established mutually agreed restraints between the United States and the Soviet Union and reduced tensions throughout the world.
With approval of the SALT agreements by the Congress, negotiations will be resumed to place further restrictions on nuclear weapons, and talks will begin on mutual, balanced force reductions in Europe.
We believe it is imperative that these negotiations go forward under President Nixon's continuing leadership. We pledge him our full support.
For the Future
We will continue the sound military policies laid down by the President—policies which guard our interests but do not dissipate our resources in vain efforts to police the world. As stated by the President:
We will maintain a nuclear deterrent adequate to meet any threat to the security of the United States or of our allies.
We will help other nations develop the capability of defending themselves.
We will faithfully honor all of our treaty commitments.
We will act to defend our interests whenever and wherever they are threatened.
But where our vital interests or treaty commitments are not involved our role will be limited.
We are proud of the men and women who wear our country's uniform, especially of those who have borne the burden of fighting a difficult and unpopular war. Here and now we reject all proposals to grant amnesty to those who have broken the law by evading military service. We reject the claim that those who fled are more deserving, or obeyed a higher morality, than those next in line who served in their places.
In carrying out our defense policies, we pledge to maintain at all times the level of military strength required to deter conflict, to honor our commitments to our allies, and to protect our people and vital interests against all foreign threats. We will not let America become a second-class power, dependent for survival on the good will of adversaries.
We will continue to pursue arms control agreements—but we recognize that this can be successful only if we maintain sufficient strength and will fail if we allow ourselves to slip into inferiority.
A New Prosperity
Jobs, Inflation and the Economy
The goal of our Party is prosperity, widely shared, sustainable in peace.
We stand for full employment a job for everyone willing and able to work in an economy freed of inflation, its vigor not dependent upon war or massive military spending.
Under the President's leadership our country is once again moving toward these peacetime goals. We have checked the inflation which had started to skyrocket when our Administration took office, making the difficult transition from inflation toward price stability and from war toward peace. We have brought about a rapid rise in both employment and in real income, and laid the basis for a continuing decline in the rate of unemployment.
All Americans painfully recall the grave economic troubles we faced in January 1969. The Federal budget in fiscal 1968 had a deficit of more than $25 billion even though the economy was operating at capacity. Predictably, consumer prices soared by an annual rate of 6.6 per cent in the first quarter of 1969. "Jawboning" or labor and business had utterly failed. The inevitable tax increase had come too late. The kaleidoscope of "Great Society" programs added to the inflationary fires. Our international competitive position slumped from a trade surplus of $7 billion in 1964 to $800 million in 1968. Foreign confidence in the value of the dollar plummeted.
Strategies and Achievements
Our Administration took these problems head on, accepting the unpopular tasks of holding down the budget, extending the temporary tax surcharge, and checking inflation. We welcomed the challenge of reorienting the economy from war to peace, as the more than two and one-half million Americans serving the military or working in defense-related industries had to be assimilated into the peacetime work force.
At the same time, we kept the inflation fight and defense employment cuts from triggering a recession.
The struggle to restore the health of our nation's economy required a variety of measures. Most important, the Administration developed and applied sound economic and monetary policies which provided the fundamental thrust against inflation.
To supplement these basic policies, Inflation Alerts were published; a new National Commission on Productivity enlisted labor, business and public leaders against inflation and in raising real incomes through increased output per worker; proposed price increases in lumber, petroleum, steel and other commodities were modified. A new Construction Industry Stabilization Committee, with the cooperation of unions and management, braked the dangerously skyrocketing costs in the construction industry.
Positive results from these efforts were swift and substantial. The rate of inflation, more than 6 per cent in early 1969, declined to less than 4 per cent in early 1971.
Even so, the economic damage inflicted by past excesses had cut so deeply as to make a timely recovery impossible, forcing the temporary use of wage and price controls.
These controls were extraordinary measures, not needed in a healthy free economy, last needed temporarily to recapture lost stability.
Our mix of policies has worked. The nation's economic growth is once again strong and steady.
The rate of increase of consumer prices is now down to 2.7 per cent.
On the employment front, expenditures for manpower programs were increased from $2.3 billion to a planned $5.1 billion; new enrollees receiving training or employment under these programs were increased by more than half a million; computerized job banks were established in all cities; more than a million young people received jobs this summer through Federal programs, 50 per cent more than last year; engineers, scientists and technicians displaced by defense reductions were given assistance under the nation-wide Technology Mobilization and Reemployment program; 13 additional weeks of unemployment compensation were authorized; and a Special Revenue Sharing Program for Manpower was proposed to train more people for more jobs—a program still shelved by the opposition Congress.
Civilian employment increased at an annual rate of about 2.4 million from August 1971 to July 1972. Almost four and one-half million new civilian jobs have been added since President Nixon took office, and total employment is at its highest level in history.
The total productive output of this country increased at an annual rate of 9.4 per cent in the second quarter of 1972, the highest in many years.
Workers' real weekly take-home pay—the real value left after taxes and inflation—is increasing at an annual rate of 4.5 per cent, compared to less than one per cent from 1960 to 1970. For the first time in six years real spendable income is going up, while the rate of inflation has been cut in half. Time lost from strikes is at the lowest level in many years.
The rate of unemployment has been reduced from 6.1 per cent to 5.5 per cent, lower than the average from 1961 through 1964 before the Vietnam buildup began, and is being steadily driven down.
In negotiation with other countries we have re-valued the dollar relative to other currencies, helping to increase sales at home and abroad and increasing the number of jobs. We have initiated a reform of the international monetary and trading system and made clear our determination that this reform must lead to a strong United States position in the balance of trade and payments.
The Road Ahead
We will continue to pursue sound economic policies that will eliminate inflation, further cut unemployment, raise real incomes, and strengthen our international economic position.
We will fight for responsible Federal budgets to help assure steady expansion of the economy without inflation.
We will support the independent Federal Reserve Board in a policy of non-inflationary monetary expansion.
We have already removed some temporary controls on wages and prices and will remove them all once the economic distortions spawned in the late 1960's are repaired. We are determined to return to an unfettered economy at the earliest possible moment.
We reaffirm our support for the basic principles of capitalism which underlie the private enterprise system of the United States. At a time when a small but dominant faction of the opposition Party is pressing for radical economic schemes which so often have failed around the world, we hold that nothing has done more to help the American people achieve their unmatched standard of living than the free-enterprise system.
It is our conviction that government of itself cannot produce the benefits to individuals that flow from our unique combination of labor, management and capital.
We will continue to promote steady expansion of the whole economy as the best route to a long-term solution of unemployment.
We will devote every effort to raising productivity, primarily to raise living standards but also to hold down costs and prices and to increase the ability of American producers and workers to compete in world markets.
In economic policy decisions, including tax revisions, we will emphasize incentives to work, innovate and invest; and research and development will have our full support.
We are determined to improve Federal manpower programs to reduce unemployment and increase productivity by providing better information on job openings and more relevant job training. Additionally, we reaffirm our commitment to removing barriers to a full life for the mentally and physically handicapped, especially the barriers to rewarding employment. We commit ourselves to the full educational opportunities and the humane care, treatment and rehabilitation services necessary for the handicapped to become fully integrated into the social and economic main-stream.
We will press on for greater competition in our economy. The energetic antitrust program of the past four years demonstrates our commitment to free competition as our basic policy. The Antitrust Division has moved decisively to invalidate those "conglomerate" mergers which stifle competition and discourage economic concentration. The 87 antitrust cases filed in fiscal year 1972 broke the previous one-year record of more than a decade ago, during another Republican Administration.
We will pursue the start we have made for reform of the international monetary and trading system, insisting on fair and equal treatment.
Since the 1930's it has been illegal for United States citizens to own gold. We believe it is time to reconsider that policy. The right of American citizens to buy, hold, or sell gold should be re-established as soon as this is feasible. Review of the present policy should, of course, take account of our basic objective of achieving a strengthened world monetary system.
Taxes and Government Spending
We pledge to spread the tax burden equitably, to spend the Federal revenues prudently, to guard against waste in spending, to eliminate unnecessary programs, and to make sure that each dollar spent for essential government services buys a dollar's worth of value.
Federal deficit spending beyond the balance of the full employment budget is one sure way to refuel inflation, and the prime source of such spending is the United States Congress. Because of its present procedures and particularly because of its present political leadership, Congress is not handling Federal fiscal policies in a responsible manner. The Congress now permits its legislative committees—instead of its fiscal committees—to decide, independently of each other, how much should be devoted to individual programs. Total Federal spending is thus haphazard and uncontrolled. We pledge vigorous efforts to reform the Congressional budgeting process.
As an immediate first step, we believe the Nation needs a rigid spending ceiling on Federal outlays each fiscal year—a ceiling controlling both the executive branch and the Congress—as President Nixon strongly recommended when he submitted his fiscal 1973 budget. Should the total of all appropriations exceed the ceiling, some or all of them would be reduced by Executive action to bring the total within the ceiling.
Our tax system needs continual, timely reform. Early in this Administration we achieved the first comprehensive tax reform since 1954. The record shows that as a result of the Tax Reform Act of 1969 and the Revenue Act of 1971:
9.5 million low-income Americans are removed from the Federal income tax rolls.
Persons in the lowest income tax bracket will pay 82 per cent less this year than they would have paid, had the 1969 and 1971 tax reforms not been enacted; those in the $10,000 to $15,000 income range will pay 13 per cent less, and those with incomes above $100,000 will pay about 7 per cent more.
This year the tax reduction for a family of four earning $7,500 a year will be $270.
In this fiscal year individual taxpayers will pay $22 billion less in Federal income taxes than they would have paid if the old tax rates and structures were still in force.
The tax disadvantage of single taxpayers is sharply reduced and we urge further changes to assure full equality.
Working parents can now deduct more of their costs for the care of their children during working hours.
The seven per cent automobile excise tax is repealed, saving the new-car buyer an average of $200 and creating more jobs in that part of the economy.
This is sound tax reform, the kind that more equitably spreads the tax burden and avoids incentive-destroying tax levels which would cripple the economy and put people out of work.
We reject the deceitful tax "reform" cynically represented as one that would soak the rich, but in fact one that would sharply raise the taxes of millions of families in middle-income brackets as well. We reject as well the lavish spending promised by the opposition Party which would more than double the present budget of the United States Government. This, too, would cause runaway inflation or force heavy increases in personal taxes.
Taxes and government spending are inseparable. Only if the taxpayers' money is prudently managed can taxes be kept at reasonable levels.
When our Administration took office, Federal spending had been mounting at an average annual rate of 17 per cent—a rate we have cut almost in half. We urge the Congress to serve all Americans by cooperating with the President in his efforts to curb increases in Federal spending—increases which will ordain more taxes or more inflation.
Since 1969 we have eliminated over $5 billion of spending on unneeded domestic and defense programs. This large saving would have been larger still, had Congress passed the Federal Economy Act of 1970 which would have discontinued other programs. We pledge to continue our efforts to purge the Government of these wasteful activities.
Tax reform must continue. During the next session of Congress we pledge:
To pursue such policies as Revenue Sharing that will allow property tax relief;
Further tax reform to ensure that the tax burden is fairly shared;
A simplified tax system to make it easier for all of us to pay no more and no less than we rightly owe;
Prudent fiscal management, including the elimination of unnecessary or obsolete programs, to keep the tax burden to a minimum.
International Economic Policy
In tandem with our foreign policy innovations, we have transformed our international economic policy into a dynamic instrument to advance the interests of farmers, workers, businessmen and consumers. These efforts are designed to make the products of American workers and farmers more competitive in the world. Within the last year we achieved the Smithsonian Agreements which re-valued our currency, making our exports more competitive with those of our major trading partners, and we pledge continuing negotiations further to reform the international monetary system. We also established negotiations to expand foreign market access for products produced by United States workers, with further comprehensive negotiations committed for 1973.
As part of our effort to begin a new era of negotiations, we are expanding trade opportunities and the jobs related to them for American workers and businessmen. The President's Summit negotiations for example, yielded an agreement for the Soviet purchase, over a three-year period, of a minimum of $750 million in United States grains —the largest long-term commercial trade purchase agreement ever made between two nations. This amounts to a 17-percent increase in grain exports by United States farmers. A U.S.-Soviet Commercial Commission has been established, and negotiations are now underway as both countries seek a general expansion of trade.
As we create a more open world market for American exports, we are not unmindful of dangers to American workers and industries from severe and rapid dislocation by changing patterns of trade. We have several agreements to protect these workers and industries—for example, for steel, beef, textiles and shoes. These actions, highly important to key American industries, were taken in ways that avoided retaliation by our trading partners and the resultant loss of American jobs.
As part of this adjustment process, we pledge improvement of the assistance offered by government to facilitate readjustment on the part of workers, businessmen and affected communities;
In making the world trading system a fairer one, we have vigorously enforced anti-dumping and countervailing duty laws to make them meaningful deterrents to foreign producers who would compete unfairly.
The growth of multinational corporations poses both new problems and new opportunities in trade and investment areas. We pledge to ensure that international investment problems are dealt with fairly and effectively—including consideration of effects on jobs, expropriation and treatment of investors, as well as equitable principles of taxation.
At the same time that we seek a better environment for American exports, we must improve our productivity and competitiveness. We must have a strong domestic economy with increased investment in new plants and equipment and an advancing technology.
We pledge increased efforts to promote export opportunities, including coordination of tax policy and improved export financing techniques—designed to make America more competitive in exporting. Of critical importance will be new legislative proposals to equip American negotiators with the tools for constructing an open and fair world trading system.
We deplore the practice of locating plants in foreign countries solely to take advantage of low wage rates in order to produce goods primarily fur sale in the United States. We will take action to discourage such unfair and disruptive practices that result in the loss of American jobs.
Small business, so vital to our economic system, is free enterprise in its purest sense. It holds forth opportunity to the individual, regardless of race or color, to fulfill the American dream. The seedbed of innovation and invention, it is the starting point of many of the country's large businesses, and today its roll in our increasingly technological economy is crucial. We pledge to sustain and expand that role.
We have translated this philosophy into many beneficial actions. Primarily through the Small Business Administration, we have delivered financial assistance to small business at a dramatically increasing rate. Today small business is receiving double the SBA funds it was receiving when our Administration took office. During the 1970-72 fiscal years the Agency loaned small business $3.3 billion—40 per cent of the total amount loaned in the entire 19-year history of the Small Business Administration.
Financial help to minorities has been more than tripled, and now more than 17 per cent of the SBA dollar goes to minority businesses. Procurement of Federal contracts for small business has surged above $12 billion.
In his first year in office, the President established a Task Force to discover ways in which the prospects of the small businessman could be improved.
The findings, reported to Congress, were followed by legislative proposals to give small business tax and interest advantages, to provide incentives for more participation on small business, to make venture capital and long-term credit easier to obtain, and to open the doors for disadvantaged minorities to go into business for themselves. Some of these measures have been signed into law. Others are still in the hands of the indifferent opposition in control of Congress.
The results of our efforts have been significant. Today small business is once again gaining ground. Incorporations are at a record level and the number of business failures is dropping. The current new growth of small businesses is about 100,000 units a year. For tomorrow, the challenges are many. We will:
Continue to fill the capital gap in the small business community by increasing SBA financing to upwards of $3 billion next year.
Provide more incentives for the private sector to join the SBA in direct action programs, such as lease guarantees, revolving lines of credit, and other sophisticated financial techniques, such as factoring and mortgage financing.
Increase SBA's Community Development program so that growth-minded communities can help themselves by building industrial parks and shopping centers.
Continue the rejuvenation of the Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) program, leading to greater availability of venture capital for new business enterprises.
See that a fair share of all Federal dollars spent on goods and services goes to small business.
Create established secondary financial markets for SBA loans, affording ready liquidity for financial institutions and opening up more financial resources to small firms.
Through tax incentives, encourage the start-up of more new businesses, and work for a tax system that more fairly applies to small business.
Establish special programs that will permit small firms to comply with consumer, environmental, and other new government regulations without undue financial burden.
Improving the Quality of Life
Our goal is to enable every American to secure quality health care at reasonable cost. We pledge a balanced approach—one that takes into account the problems of providing sufficient medical personnel and facilities.
Last year President Nixon proposed one of the most all-inclusive health programs in our history. But the opposition Congress has dragged its feet and most of this program has yet to be enacted into law.
To increase the supply of medical services, we will continue to support programs to help our schools graduate more physicians, dentists, nurses, and allied health personnel, with special emphasis on family practitioners and others who deliver primary medical care.
We will also encourage the use of such allied personnel as doctors' assistants, foster new area health education centers, channel more services into geographic areas which now are medically deprived, and improve the availability of emergency medical care;
We note with pride that the President has already signed the most comprehensive health manpower legislation ever enacted.
To improve efficiency in providing health and medical care, we have developed and will continue to encourage a pluralistic approach to the delivery of quality health care, including innovative experiments such as health maintenance organizations. We also support efforts to develop ambulatory medical care services to reduce hospitalization and keep costs down.
To reduce the cost of health care, we stress our efforts to curb inflation in the economy; we will also expand the supply of medical services and encourage greater cost consciousness in hospitalization and medical care. In doing this we realize the importance of the doctor-patient relationship and the necessity of insuring that individuals have freedom of choice of health providers.
To assure access to basic medical care for all our people, we support a program financed by employers, employees and the Federal Government to provide comprehensive health insurance coverage, including insurance against the cost of long-term and catastrophic illnesses and accidents and renal failure which necessitates dialysis, at a cost which all Americans can afford. The National Health Insurance Partnership plan and the Family Health Insurance Plan proposed by the President meet these specifications. They would build on existing private health insurance systems, not destroy them.
We oppose nationalized compulsory health insurance. This approach would at least triple in taxes the amount the average citizen now pays for health and would deny families the right to choose the kind of care they prefer. Ultimately it would lower the overall quality of health care for all Americans.
We believe that the most effective way of improving health in the long run is by emphasis on preventive measures.
The serious physical fitness problem in our country requires urgent attention. The President recently reorganized the Council on Physical Fitness and Sports to increase the leadership of representatives of medicine, physical education, sports associations and school administrations. The Republican Party urges intensification of these efforts, particularly in the Nation's school systems, to encourage widespread participation in effective physical fitness programs.
We have initiated this Nation's first all-out assault against cancer. Led by the new National Cancer Institute, the drive to eliminate this cruel killer will involve Federal spending of nearly $430 million in fiscal year 1973, almost twice the funding of just two years ago.
We have also launched a major new attack on sickle cell anemia, a serious blood disorder afflicting many black Americans, and developed a comprehensive program to deal with the menace of lead-based paint poisoning, including the screening of approximately 1,500,000 Americans.
We support expanded medical research to find cures for the major diseases of the heart, blood vessels, lungs and kidneys—diseases which now account for over half the deaths in the United States.
We have significantly advanced efforts to combat mental retardation and established a national goal to cut its incidence in half by the year 2000.
We continue to support the concept of comprehensive community mental health centers. In this fiscal year $135 million—almost three times the 1970 level—will be devoted to the staffing of 422 community mental health centers serving a population of 56 million people. We have intensified research on methods of treating mental problems, increasing our outlays from $76 million in 1969 to approximately $96 million for 1973. We continue to urge extension of private health insurance to cover mental illness.
We have also improved consumer protection, health education and accident prevention programs. And in Moscow this year, President Nixon reached an agreement with the Soviet Union on health research which may yield substantial benefits in many fields in the years ahead.
We take pride in our leadership these last four years in lifting both quality and equality in American education—from pre-school to graduate school —working toward higher standards than ever before.
Our two most pressing needs in the 1970's are the provision of quality education for all children, an equitable financing of steadily rising costs. We pledge our best efforts to deal effectively with both.
Months ago President Nixon sent Congress a two-part comprehensive proposal on school busing. The first is the Student Transportation Moratorium Act of 1972—legislation to halt immediately all further court-ordered busing and give Congress time to devise permanent new arrangements for assuring desegregated, quality education.
The details of such arrangements are spelled out in a companion bill, the Equal Educational Opportunities Act. This measure would:
Provide $2.5 billion in Federal aid funds to help promote quality education while preserving neighborhood schools;
Accord equal educational opportunities to all children;
Include an educational bill of rights for Spanish-speaking people, American Indians, and others who face special language problems in schools;
Offer, for the first time, a real chance for good schooling for the hundreds of thousands of children who live in urban centers;
Assure that the people's elected representatives in Congress play their proper role in developing specific methods for protecting the rights guaranteed by the 14th amendment, rather than leaving this task to judges appointed for life.
We are committed to guaranteeing equality of educational opportunity and to completing the process of ending de jure school segregation.
At the same time, we are irrevocably opposed to busing for racial balance. Such busing fails its stated objective—improved learning opportunities —while it achieves results no one wants—division within communities and hostility between classes and races. We regard it as unnecessary, counter-productive and wrong.
We favor better education for all children, not more transportation for some children. We favor the neighborhood school concept. We favor the decisive actions the President has proposed to support these ends. If it is necessary to accomplish these purposes, we would favor consideration of an appropriate amendment to the Constitution.
In the field of school finance, we favor a coordinated effort among all levels of government to break the pattern of excessive reliance on local property taxes to pay educational costs.
Our nation's intellectual resources are remarkable for their strength and public availability, American intellectuals have at least two important historical roles of which we are deeply conscious. One is to inform the public, the other is to assist government by thoughtful criticism and consultation. We affirm our confidence in these functions and especially in the free play of ideas and discourse which they imply.
We cherish the nation's universities as centers of learning, as conservers of our culture, and as analysts of our society and its institutions. We will continue to strive to assure their economic well-being. The financial aid we have given and will continue to give in the form of funds for scholarships, research, building programs and new teaching methods must never be used as a device for imposing political controls on our schools.
We believe that universities should be centers of excellence-that they should recruit faculty on the basis of ability to teach and admit students on the basis of ability to learn. Yet, excellence can be too narrowly confined—abilities overlooked, and social conformity mistaken for educational preparation.
We pledge continued support of collegiate and university efforts to insure that no group in our society—racial, economic, sexual or regional—is denied access to the opportunities of higher education.
Our efforts to remedy ancient neglect of disadvantaged groups will continue in universities as well as in society at large, but we distinguish between such efforts and quotas. We believe the imposition of arbitrary quotas in the hiring of faculties or the enrollment of students has no place in our universities; we believe quotas strike at the excellence of the university.
We recognize that the public should have access to the most rational and most effective kinds of education. Vocational training should be available to both young and old. We emphasize the importance of continuing education, of trades and technologies, and of all the honorable vocations which provide the society with its basic necessities. Such training must complement our more traditional forms of education; it will relieve the pressures on our universities and help us adapt to the rapid pace of technological change. Perhaps most important, it will help to restore a public sense, of importance to these essential jobs and trades.
Moreover, we believe our educational system should not instruct in a vacuum, unmindful that the students ultimately will engage in a career. Our institutions of learning, from earliest years to graduate schools, can perform a vital function by coupling an awareness of the world of work to the delivery of fundamental education. We believe this kind of career education, blended into our school curricula, can help to prevent the aimlessness and frustration now experienced by large numbers of young people who leave the education system unable to cope with today's complex society.
In recognizing the fundamental necessity for quality education of all children, including the exceptional child, we recommend research and assistance in programs directed to the problems of dyslectic and hyperkinetic children who represent an estimated ten per cent of the school population.
By every measure, our record in the field of education is exceptionally strong. The United States Office of Education is operating this year under its highest budget ever—$5.1 billion. Federal aid to elementary and secondary education has increased 60 per cent over the past four years. Federal aid for college students has more than tripled.
We are proud of these accomplishments. We pledge to carry them forward in a manner consistent with our conviction that the Federal Government should assist but never control the educational process. But we also believe that the output of results, not the input of dollars, is the best yardstick of effectiveness in education. When this Administration took office in 1969, it found American schools deficient at many points. Our reform initiatives have included:
An Office of Child Development to coordinate all Federal programs targeted on the first five years of life and to make the Head Start Program work better;
A Right to Read Program, aimed at massive gains in reading ability among Americans of all ages;
A Career Education curriculum which will help to prepare students for the world of work;
A National Institute of Education to be a center for research on the learning process; and
A proposed National Foundation for Higher Education.
We have also proposed grant and loan programs to support a national commitment that no qualified student should be barred from college by lack of money. The Education Amendment of 1972 embodied substantial portions of that proposal and marked the Nation's most far-reaching commitment to make higher education available to all.
Our non-public schools, both church-oriented and nonsectarian, have been our special concern. The President has emphasized the indispensable role these schools play in our educational system—from the standpoints of the large numbers of pupils they serve, the competition and diversity they help to maintain in American education, and the values they help to teach-and he has stated his determination to help halt the accelerating trend of nonpublic school closures.
We believe that means which are consistent with the Constitution can be devised for channeling public financial aid to support the education of all children in schools of their parents' choice, non-public as well as public. One way to provide such aid appears to be through the granting of income tax credits.
For the future, we also pledge Special Revenue Sharing for Education, continued work to develop and implement the Career Education concept, and continued efforts to establish a student financial aid system to bring together higher education within the reach of any qualified person.
The Nation's welfare system is a mess. It simply must be reformed.
This system, essentially unchanged since the 1930's has turned into a human and fiscal nightmare. It penalizes the poor. It provides discriminatory benefits. It kills any incentives its victims might have to work their way out of the morass.
Among its victims are the taxpayers. Since 1961 the Federal cost of welfare has skyrocketed over 10 times—from slightly over $1 billion then to more than $11 billion now. State and local costs add to this gigantic expenditure. And here are things we are paying for:
The present system drains work incentive from the employed poor, as they see welfare families making as much or more on the dole.
Its discriminatory benefits continue to ensnare the needy, aged, blind and disabled in a web of inefficient rules and economic contradictions.
It continues to break up poor families, since a father's presence makes his family ineligible for benefits in many States. Its dehumanizing lifestyle thus threatens to envelop yet another "welfare generation."
Its injustices and costs threaten to alienate taxpayer support for welfare programs of any kind.
Perhaps nowhere else is there a greater contrast in policy and philosophy than between the Administration's remedy for the welfare ills and the financial orgy proposed by our political opposition.
President Nixon proposed to change our welfare system "to provide each person with a means of escape from welfare into dignity." His goals were these:
A decent level of payment to genuinely needy welfare recipients regardless of where they live. Incentives not to loaf, but to work.
Requiring all adults who apply for welfare to register for work and job training and to accept work or training. The only exceptions would be the aged, blind and disabled and mothers of preschool children.
Expanding job training and child care facilities so that recipients can accept employment.
Temporary supplements to the incomes of the working poor to enable them to support their families while continuing to work.
Uniform Federal payment standards for all welfare recipients.
In companion actions, our efforts to improve the nutrition of poor people resulted in basic reforms in the Food Stamp Program. The number of recipients increased from some three million to 13 million, and now 8.4 million needy children participate in the School Lunch Program, almost three times the number that participated in 1968.
Now, nearly 10,000 nutrition aides work in low-income communities, in 1968 there were none.
Since 1969, we have increased the Federal support for family planning threefold. We will continue to support expanded family planning programs and will foster research in this area so that more parents will be better able to plan the number and spacing of their children should they wish to do so. Under no circumstances will we allow any of these programs to become compulsory or infringe upon the religious conviction or personal freedom of any individual.
We all feel compassion for those who through no fault of their own cannot adequately care for themselves. We all want to help these men, women and children achieve a decent standard of living and become self-supporting.
We continue to insist, however, that there are too many people on this country's welfare rolls who should not be there. With effective cooperation from the Congress, we pledge to stop these abuses.
We flatly oppose programs or policies which embrace the principle of a government-guaranteed income, We reject as unconscionable the idea that all citizens have the right to be supported by the government, regardless of their ability or desire to support themselves and their families.
We pledge to continue to push strongly for sound welfare reform until meaningful and helpful change is enacted into law by the Congress.
We have solid evidence that our unrelenting war on crime is being won. The American people know that once again the thrust of justice in our society will be to protect the law-abiding citizenry against the criminal, rather than absolve the criminal of the consequences of his own desperate acts.
Serious crimes rose only one per cent during the first quarter of this year—down from six per cent last year and 13 per cent the year before. From 1960 to 1968 major crime went up 122 per cent.
The fact is, in the first quarter of 1972, 80 of our 155 largest cities had an actual decline in reported crime.
In our Nation's Capitol, our anti-crime programs have been fully implemented. Through such measures as increased police, street lighting, a Narcotics Treatment Administration, court reform and special prosecuting units for major offenders, we have steadily dropped the crime rate since November 1969. By the first quarter of this year, the serious crime rate was down to half its all-time high.
When our Administration took office, a mood of lawlessness was spreading rapidly, undermining the legal and moral foundations of our society. We moved at once to stop violence in America. We have:
Greatly increased Federal aid to State and local law enforcement agencies across the country, with more than $1.5 billion spent on 50,000 crime-fighting projects.
Augmented Justice Department funding fourfold and provided more marshals, more judges, more narcotics agents, more Assistant United States Attorneys in the field.
Raised the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration budget ten-fold, earmarking $575 million of the $850 million for 1973 to upgrade State and local police and courts through revenue sharing.
Added 600 new Special Agents to the FBI.
Raised Federal spending on juvenile delinquency from $15 million to more than $180 million and proposed legislation to launch a series of model youth services.
Appointed Attorneys General with a keen sense of the rights of both defendants and victims, and determination to enforce the laws.
Appointed judges whose respect for the rights of the accused is balanced by an appreciation of the legitimate needs of law enforcement.
Added to the Supreme Court distinguished lawyers of firm judicial temperament and fidelity to the Constitution.
Even more fundamentally, we have established a renewed climate of respect for law and law enforcement. Now those responsible for enforcing the law know they have the full backing of their Government.
We recognize that programs involving work release, study release and half-way houses have contributed substantially to the rehabilitation of offenders and we support these programs. We "further support training programs for the staffs in our correctional institutions and will continue to see that minority group staff members are recruited to work in these institutions.
The Fight against Organized Crime
To most of us, organized criminal activity seems remote and unreal—yet syndicates supply the narcotics pushed on our youth, corrupt local officials, terrify legitimate businesses and fence goods stolen from our homes. This Administration strongly supported the Organized Crime Control Act of 1970, and under our Strike Force concept we have combined Federal enforcement agencies to wage a concerted assault on organized crime. We have expanded the number of these strike forces and set a high priority for a new campaign against the syndicates.
Last year we obtained indictments against more than 2,600 members or associates of organized crime syndicates—more than triple the number indicted in 1968.
At last we have the lawless elements in our society on the run.
The Republican Party intends to keep them running,
Rehabilitation of Offenders
We have given the rehabilitation of criminal offenders more constructive, top-level attention than it has received at any time in our Nation's history. In November 1969, the President ordered a ten-year improvement program in prison facilities, correctional systems and rehabilitation methods and procedures.
We believe the correctional system not only should punish, but also should educate and rehabilitate. We are determined to press ahead with reform of the system to make it more effective against crime.
Almost a decade of inadequate Federal support of law enforcement has left deep scars in our society, but now a new mood pervades the country, Civil disorders and campus violence are no longer considered inevitable. Today, we see a new respect for law and order.
Our goal is justice—for everyone.
We pledge a tireless campaign against crime—to restore safety to our streets, and security to law-abiding citizens who have a right to enjoy their homes and communities free from fear. We pledge to:
Continue our vigorous support of local police and law enforcement agencies, as well as Federal law enforcement agencies.
Seek comprehensive procedural and substantive reform of the Federal Criminal Code.
Accelerate the drive against organized crime. Increase the funding of the Federal judiciary to help clear away the logjam in the courts which obstructs the administration of justice.
Push forward in prison reform and the rehabilitation of offenders.
Intensify efforts to prevent criminal access to all weapons, including special emphasis on cheap, readily-obtainable handguns, retaining primary responsibility at the State level, with such Federal law as necessary to enable the States to meet their responsibilities.
Safeguard the right of responsible citizens to collect, own and use firearms for legitimate purposes, including hunting, target shooting and self-defense. We will strongly support efforts of all law enforcement agencies to apprehend and prosecute to the limit of the law all those who use firearms in the commission of crimes.
The permissiveness of the 1960's left no legacy more insidious than drug abuse. In that decade narcotics became widely available, most tragically among our young people. The use of drugs became endowed with a sheen of false glamour identified with social protest.
By the time our Nation awakened to this cancerous social ill, it found no major combat weapons available.
Soon after we took office, our research disclosed there were perhaps hundreds of thousands of heroin users in the United States. Their cravings multiplied violence and crime. We found many more were abusing other drugs, such as amphetamines and barbiturates. Marijuana had become commonplace. All this was spurred by criminals using modern methods of mass distribution against outnumbered authorities lacking adequate countermeasures.
We quickly launched a massive assault against drug abuse.
We intercepted the supply of dangerous drugs at points of entry and impeded their internal distribution. The budget for international narcotics control was raised from $5 million to over $50 million. Narcotics control coordinators were appointed in 59 United States embassies overseas to work directly with foreign governments in stopping drug traffic. We have narcotics action agreements with over 20 countries. Turkey has announced a total ban on opium production and, with our cooperation, France has seized major heroin laboratories and drugs.
To inhibit the distribution of heroin in our own country, we increased the law enforcement budget for drug control more than 10 times—from $20 million to $244 million.
We are disrupting major narcotics distribution in wholesale networks through the combined efforts of the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, Customs operations at our borders, and a specially credited unit of over 400 Internal Revenue agents who conduct systematic tax investigations of targeted middle and upper echelon traffickers, smugglers, and financiers. Last January we established the Office of Drug Abuse Law Enforcement to disrupt street and mid-level heroin traffickers.
We established the "Heroin Hot Line"—a nationwide toll free phone number (800/368-5363) —to give the public a single number for reporting information on heroin pushers.
Last year we added 2,000 more Federal narcotics agents, and the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs has trained over 170,000 State and local personnel.
And we are getting results. This past year four times as much heroin was seized as in the year this Administration took office. Since 1969, the number of drug-related arrests has nearly doubled.
For drug abuse prevention and treatment we increased the budget from $46 million to over $485 million.
The demand for illicit drugs is being reduced through a massive effort directed by a newly created office in the White House. Federally funded drug treatment and rehabilitation programs were more than doubled last fiscal year, and Federal programs now have the capacity to treat more than 60,000 drug abusers a year.
To alert the public, particularly the youth, to the Dangers of drugs, we established a National Clearinghouse for Drug Abuse Information in 1970 as well as a $3.5 million Drug Education and Training Program.
We realize that the problem of drug abuse cannot be quickly solved, but we have launched a massive effort where practically none existed before. Nor will we relax this campaign:
We pledge to seek further international agreements to restrict the production and movement of dangerous drugs.
We pledge to expand our programs of education, rehabilitation, training and treatment. We will do more than ever before to conduct research into the complex psychological regions of disappointment and alienation which have led many young people to turn desperately toward drugs.
We firmly oppose efforts to make drugs easily available. We equally oppose the legalization of marijuana. We intend to solve problems, not create bigger ones by legalizing drugs of unknown physical impact.
We pledge the most intensive law enforcement war ever waged. We are determined to drive the pushers of dangerous drugs from the streets, schools and neighborhoods of America.
Agriculture and Rural Life
Our agriculture has become the economic marvel of the world. Our American farmers and ranchers have tripled per worker production in the last 20 years, while non-farm industries have increased theirs a little over half.
Yet when we took office three and a half years ago, the farm community was being shockingly shortchanged for its remarkable achievements.
Inflation was driving up both the cost of farming and the cost of living—indeed, driving up all prices except the prices of products the farmers were taking to market. Overall farm income was down. Farm exports were low. Bureaucratic planting regulations were oppressive. All across the country family farms were failing.
Our moves to deal with these problems have been numerous and effective. The rate of inflation has been curbed without forcing down prices for commodities, even as we have stepped up our drive against rising food costs in the cities.
Net farm income has soared to a record high of more than $18 billion. During these Republican years average net farm income has been over $2 billion a year higher than during the last two Administrations. For the same period average income per farm is up more than 40 percent.
And farm exports now stand at a record $8 billion, sharply up from the $5.7 billion when we took office.
Operating loans to help young farmers have reached the highest levels in history. Administration-backed legislation has given farmers much greater freedom to plant what they choose, and we have given assistance to cooperatives to strengthen the farmers' bargaining positions.
Rural development has been energetically carried forward, and small towns and rural areas have been helped to adjust and grow. The loan programs of the Farmers Home Administration for farm and rural people have been dramatically increased. Electric and telephone service in rural areas has been substantially expanded, a Rural Telephone Bank has been enacted, and the Farm Credit Administration has been streamlined. The total national investment in rural development has almost tripled. Heading the Department of Agriculture have been leaders who understand and forcefully speak out for the farming people of America.
Farmers are benefiting markedly from our successful efforts to expand exports—notably a $750 million sale of United States grains to the Soviet Union, with prospects of much more. Last year we negotiated a similar sale amounting to $135 million.
For the future, we pledge to intensify our efforts to:
Achieve a $10 billion annual export market by opening new foreign markets, while continuing to fight for fair treatment for American farm products in our traditional markets;
Follow sound economic policies to brake inflation and reduce interest rates;
Expand activities to assist farmers in bargaining for fair prices and reasonable terms in a rapidly changing marketing system;
Keep farm prices in the private sector, not subject to price controls;
Support family farms as the preferred method of organizing agricultural production, and protect them from the unfair competition of farming by tax-loss corporations and non-farm enterprises;
Reform Federal estate tax laws, which often force the precipitate sale of family farms to help pay the tax, in such ways as to help support the continuance of family farms as institutions of great importance to the American way of life;
Provide greater credit, technical assistance, soil and water conservation aid, environmental enhancement, economic stimulus and sympathetic leadership to America's rural areas and communities;
Concentrate research on new uses of agricultural products;
Continue assistance to farm cooperatives, including rural electric and telephone cooperatives, in their efforts to improve their members;
Develop land and water policy that takes account of the many uses to which these resources may be put;
Establish realistic environmental standards which safeguard wise resource use, while avoiding undue burdens on farmers;
Use forums of national leaders to create a better understanding by all citizens, those in the cities and suburbs as well as those in small towns, of the difficult problems confronting farm and ranch families in a modern agriculture.
We will not relax our efforts to increase net farm income, to narrow the spread between farm and non-farm income levels, and to pursue commodity programs that will enable farmers and ranchers to receive fair prices for what they produce.
For more than a quarter century the Federal Government has sought to assist in the conservation and rebuilding of our urban centers. Yet, after the spending of billions of dollars and the commitment of billions more to future years, we now know that many existing programs are unsuited to the complex problems of the 1970's. Programs cast in the mold of the "big government" philosophy of the 1930's are simply incapable of meeting the challenge of today.
Our Party stands, therefore, for major reform of Federal community development programs and the development of a new philosophy to cope with urban ills.
Republican urban strategy rejects throwing good money after bad money. Instead, through fundamental fiscal, management and program reforms, we have created a new Federal partnership through which State, county and municipal governments can best cope with specific problems such as education, crime, drug abuse, transportation, pollution and housing.
We believe the urban problems of today fall into these categories:
The fiscal crises of State, county and municipal governments;
The need for a better quality and greater availability of urban services;
The continual requirement of physical development;
The need for better locally designed, locally implemented, locally controlled solutions to the problems of individual urban areas.
In the last category—the importance of grass roots planning and participation—our Republican Party has made its most important contribution to solving urban problems.
We hold the government planners should be guided by the people through their locally elected representatives. We believe that real solutions require the full participation of the private sector.
To help ease the fiscal crises of State, county and municipal governments, we pledge increased Federal assistance—assistance we have more than doubled in the past four years. And, as stressed elsewhere in this Platform, we remain committed to General Revenue Sharing, which could reduce the oppressive property tax.
Our proposals for Special Revenue Sharing for Urban Development, transportation, manpower and law enforcement—all still bottled up by the opposition Congress—are designed to make our towns and cities places where Americans can once again live and work without physical or environmental hazard. Urban areas are already benefiting from major funding increases which we fought for in the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration programs and in our $10 billion mass transit program.
Urban areas are also benefiting from our new Legacy of Parks program, which is bringing recreation opportunities closer to where people live.
We are committed also to the physical development of urban areas. We have quadrupled subsidized housing starts for low and moderate income families since 1969, and effected substantial increases for construction of municipal waste treatment facilities.
We strongly oppose the use of housing or community development programs to impose arbitrary housing patterns on unwilling communities. Neither do we favor dispersing large numbers of people away from their homes and neighborhoods against their will. We do believe in providing communities, with their full consent, guidance and cooperation with the means and incentives to increase the quantity and quality of housing in conjunction with providing increased access to jobs for their low-income citizens.
We also pledge to carry forward our policy on encouraging the development of new towns in order to afford all Americans a wider range of residential choices. Additionally, our Special Revenue Sharing for Urban and Rural Community Development, together with General Revenue Sharing and nationwide welfare reform, are basic building blocks for a balanced policy of national growth, leading to better lives for all Americans, whether they dwell in cities, suburbs or rural areas.
Our Party recognizes counties as viable units of regional government with a major role in modernizing and restructuring local services, eliminating duplication and increasing local cooperation. We urge Federal and State governments, in implementing national goals and programs, to utilize the valuable resources of counties as area-wide, general-purpose governments.
Our Republican Administration has made more and better housing available to more of our citizens than ever before.
We are building two-and-a-third million new homes a year—65 per cent more than the average in the eight years of the two previous Administrations. Progress has not been in numbers alone; housing quality has also risen to an all-time high—far above that of any other country.
We will maintain and increase this pattern of growth. We are determined to attain the goal of a decent home for every American.
Significant numbers of Americans still lack the means for decent housing, and in such cases-where special need exists—we will continue to apply public resources to help people acquire better apartments and homes. We further pledge:
Continued housing production for low and moderate income families, which has sharply increased since President Nixon took office;
Improvement of housing subsidy programs and expansion of mortgage credit activities of Federal housing agencies as necessary to keep Americans the best-housed people in the world;
Continued development of technological and management innovations to lower housing costs—a program begun by Operation Breakthrough, which is assisting in the development of new methods for more economical production of low-cost, high-quality homes.
We urge prompt action by State, county and municipal governments to seek solutions to the serious problems caused by abandoned buildings in urban areas.
When President Nixon took office a crisis in transportation was imminent, as indicated by declining mass transportation service, mounting highway deaths, congested urban streets, long delays at airports and airport terminals, deterioration of passenger train service, and a dwindling Merchant Marine. Within two years the President had proposed and signed into law:
A $10 billion, 12-year program—the Urban Mass Transportation Act of 1970—to infuse new life into mass transportation systems and help relieve urban congestion;
A major 10 year program involving $280 million annually for airport development projects as well as an additional $250 million annually to expand airways systems and facilities;
The Rail Passenger Service Act of 1970 to streamline and improve the Nation's passenger train service;
New research and development projects, including automatic people movers, improved Metroliner and Turbo-trains, quieter aircraft jet engines, air pollution reduction for mass transportation vehicles, and experimental safety automobiles. We strongly support these research and development initiatives of the Department of Transportation.
Four years ago we called attention to the decline of our Merchant Marine due to previous neglect and apathy. We promised a vigorous ship replacement program to meet the changing pattern of our foreign commerce. We also pledged to expand maritime research and development and the simplification and revision of construction and operating subsidy procedures.
By the enactment of the Merchant Marine Act of 1970, we have reversed the long decline of our Merchant Marine. We reaffirm our goals set forth in 1968 and anticipate the future development of a merchant fleet that will give us defensive mobility in time of emergency as well as economic strength in time of peace.
To reduce traffic and highway deaths, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been reorganized and expanded, with dramatic results. In 1971, the number of traffic deaths per hundred million miles driven was the lowest in history.
To help restore decision-making to the people, we have proposed a new Single Urban Fund providing almost $2 billion a year by 1975 to State and metropolitan areas to assist local authorities in solving their own transportation problems in their own way.
Our proposal for Special Revenue Sharing for Transportation would also help governments close to the people meet local needs and provide greater freedom to achieve a proper balance among the Nation's major transportation modes.
To revitalize the surface freight transportation industry, we have recommended measures to modernize railway equipment and operations and to update regulatory practices. These measures, on which Congress still dawdles, would help curb inflation by saving the public billions of dollars a year in freight costs. Their enactment would also expand employment and improve our balance of trade.
The Nation's transportation needs are expected to double in the next 20 years. Our Party will continue to pursue policies and programs that will meet these needs and keep the country well ahead of rapidly changing transportation demands.
In January 1969, we found the Federal Government woefully unprepared to deal with the rapidly advancing environmental crisis. Our response was swift and substantial.
First, new decision-making organizations were set in place—the first Council on Environmental Quality, the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. We also proposed a new Department of Natural Resources, but Congress has failed to act. We also created a National Industrial Pollution Control Council to enlist the private sector more actively against environmental decay, and Presidential Federal Property Review Board was appointed to ferret out Federal property for transfer to local park and recreational uses.
Second, we gave top priority in the Federal Budget to environmental improvements. This fiscal year approximately $2.4 billion will be expended for major environmental programs—three times more than was being spent when President Nixon took office.
Third, sweeping environment messages were sent to Congress in 1970, 1971 and 1972 covering air quality, water quality, toxic waste substances, ocean dumping, noise, solid waste management, land use, parklands and many other environmental concerns. Almost all of these proposals still languish in the opposition Congress.
Although the President cannot move until and unless Congress passes laws in many of these areas, he nevertheless can act—and has acted—forcefully on many fronts:
He has directed the Federal Government to practice ecological leadership by using low-lead gasoline and recycled paper. He has cracked down on flagrant polluters, greatly increasing prosecutions and making the first use of Federal authority to shut down major industries during an air pollution crisis. The fragile and unique Everglades were saved from a jetport. Pesticide abuses were curtailed.
Strict new clean air standards were set, and in many urban centers the air is improving. Regulations were issued to make one grade of lead-free and phosphorous-free gasoline available throughout the Nation by July 1, 1974, and a phased reduction was required in the lead content of regular and premium gasolines. Auto makers were required to design air pollution control systems to assure that vehicles comply with Federal emission standards throughout their usual life.
Additionally, the President launched the Legacy of Parks program to convert underutilized Federal properties to park and recreational use, with special emphasis on new parks in or near urban areas. More than 140 areas have already been made available to States, counties and municipalities for such use, including priceless stretches of ocean beach. Moreover, nearly two million acres of land have been purchased by Federal, State and local governments for recreation and for historical and natural preservation purposes.
A system of recreational trails for hiking, bicycling and horseback riding will help meet the pressing recreational needs of our increasingly urbanized society. Many State, county and municipal governments are developing bicycle, hiking, and horseback trails with our active assistance through various Federal programs. We pledge our continued commitment to seeking out practical ways for more and safer bicycling opportunities within our cities and metropolitan areas.
We have also provided effective leadership in international environmental activity. The President has negotiated the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement with Canada and a Cooperative Agreement on Environmental Protection with the Soviet Union.
The United Nations Conference on the Human Environment in Stockholm adopted our government's initiatives for the creation of an international fund for the environment, a continuing United Nations agency for environmental problems, and the control of ocean dumping. Our President has led the effort for a ten-year moratorium on commercial whaling everywhere in the world.
We call upon the Congress to act promptly on the President's environmental proposals still stalled there more than 20 in all. These include:
Legislation to control, and in some cases prohibit, the dumping of wastes into the oceans, estuaries and the Great Lakes;
A Federal Noise Control Act to reduce and regulate unwanted sound from aircraft, construction and transportation equipment;
Authority to control hundreds of chemical substances newly marketed each year; Legislation to encourage the States to step up to pressing decisions on how best to use land. Both environmentally critical areas such as wetlands and growth-inducing developments such as airports would have particular scrutiny;
A proposal to provide for early identification and protection of endangered wildlife species. This would, for the first time, make the taking of endangered species a Federal offense;
Establishment of recreational areas near metropolitan centers such as the Gateway National Recreational Area in New York and New Jersey and the Golden Gate National Recreation Area in and around San Francisco Bay.
The nostalgic notion of turning the clock back to a simpler time may be appealing but is neither practical nor desirable. We are not going to abandon the automobile, but we are going to have a clean burning engine.
We are not going to give up electric lighting and modern industry, but we do expect cleanly-produced electric power to run them.
We are not going to be able to do without containers for our foods and materials, but we can improve them and make them reusable or biodegradable.
We pledge a workable balance between a growing economy and environmental protection. We will resolve the conflicts sensibly within that framework.
We commit ourselves to comprehensive pollution control laws, vigorous implementation of those laws and rigorous research into the technological problems of pollution control. The beginnings we have made in these first years of the 1970's are evidence of our determination to follow through.
We intend to leave the children of America a legacy of clean air, clean water, vast open spaces and easily accessible parks.
Natural Resources and Energy
Wilderness areas, forests, fish and wildlife are precious natural resources. We have proposed 36 new wilderness areas, adding another 3.6 million acres to the National Wilderness Preservation System. We have made tough new proposals to protect endangered species of wildlife.
Public lands provide us with natural beauty, wilderness and great recreational opportunities as well as minerals, timber, food and fiber. We pledge to develop and manage these lands in a balanced way, both to protect the irreplaceable environment and to maximize the benefits of their use to our society. We will continue these conservation efforts in the years ahead.
We recognize and commend the humane societies and the animal welfare societies in their work to protect animals.
Water supplies are not a boundless resource. The Republican Party is committed to developing additional water supplies by desalinization, the discovery of new groundwater stocks, recycling and wiser and more efficient use of the waters we have.
We will continue the development of flood control, navigation improvement and reclamation projects based on valid cost-benefit estimates, including full consideration of environmental concerns.
No modern nation can thrive without meeting its energy needs, and our needs are vast and growing. Last year we proposed a broad range of actions to facilitate research and development for clean energy, provide energy resources on Federal lands, assure a timely supply of nuclear fuels, use energy more efficiently, balance environmental and energy needs and better organize Federal efforts.
The National Minerals Policy Act of 1970 encourages development of domestic resources by private enterprise. A program to tap our vast shale resources has been initiated consistent with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969.
We need a Department of Natural Resources to continue to develop a national, integrated energy policy and to administer and implement that policy as the United States approaches the 21st Century. Energy sources so vitally important to the welfare of our Nation are becoming increasingly interchangeable. There is nothing inherently incompatible between an adequate energy supply and a healthy environment.
Indeed, vast quantities of energy are needed to do the work necessary to clean up our air and streams. Without sufficient supplies of power we will not be able to attain our goals of reducing unemployment and poverty and enhancing the American standard of living.
Responsible government must consider both the short-term and the long-term aspects of our energy supplies. Avoidance of brown-outs and power disruptions now and in the future call for sound policies supporting incentives that will encourage the exploration for, and development of, our fossil fuels. Such policies will buy us time to develop the sophisticated and complex technologies needed to utilize the exotic energy sources of the future.
National security and the importance of a favorable balance of trade and balance of payments dictate that we must not permit our Nation to become overly dependent on foreign sources of energy. Since more than half our Nation's domestic fossil resources now lie under Federal lands, high priority must be given to the governmental steps necessary to the development of these resources by private industry.
A liquid metal fast breeder reactor demonstration plant will be built with the financial support of the Atomic Energy Commission, the electric power industry and the Tennessee Valley Authority.
We will accelerate research on harnessing thermo-nuclear energy and continue to provide leadership in the production of energy from the sun and geothermal steam. We recognize the serious problem of assuring adequate electric generating capacity in the Nation, and pledge to meet this need without doing violence to our environment.
The oceans are a vast, largely untapped reservoir of resources, a source of food, minerals, recreation and pleasure, with great potential for economic development. For their maintenance we must:
Encourage the development of coastal zone management systems by the States, in cooperation with the Federal Government, to preserve the coastal environment while allowing for its prudent social and economic development;
Protect the oceans from pollution through the creation of binding domestic and international legal and institutional arrangements;
Foster arrangements to develop the untapped mineral resources of the seas in an equitable and environmentally sound manner;
Establish domestic and international institutions for the management of the ocean fisheries. Fishing in international waters, a way of life for many Americans, must be maintained without harassment on the high seas or unreasonable restrictions;
Protect and conserve marine mammals and other marine species to ensure their abundance and especially to protect species whose survival is endangered;
Maintain a national capability in ocean science and technology and, through the United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea, work to codify an international legal framework for the peaceful conduct of ocean activities.
Science and Technology
Basic and applied scientific research and development are indispensable to our national security, our international competitive position, and virtually every aspect of the domestic economy. We have initiated a new research-and-development strategy which emphasizes a public-private partnership in searching out new ideas and technologies to create new jobs, new internationally competitive industries and new solutions for complex domestic problems.
In support of this strategy we have increased Federal efforts in civilian research and development by 65 per cent—from $3.3 billion to $5.4 billion—and expanded research in drug abuse, law enforcement, health care, home building, motor vehicle safety, energy and child development as well as many other fields.
We will place special emphasis on these areas in which breakthroughs are urgently needed: Abundant, clean energy sources;
Safe, fast and pollution-free transportation; Improved emergency health care;
Reduction of loss of life, health and property in natural disasters;
Rehabilitation of alcoholics and addicts to dangerous drugs.
Additionally, we urge the fair and energetic enforcement of all fire-prevention laws and applaud the work of the National Commission on Fire Prevention and Control. We encourage accelerated research on methods of fire prevention and suppression, including studies on flammable fabrics, hazardous materials, fire equipment and training procedures.
The space program is yielding impressive dividends in earth-oriented applications of space technology—advances in medicine, industrial techniques and consumer products that would still be unknown had we not developed the technology to reach the moon. We will press ahead with the space shuttle program to replace today's expendable launch vehicles and provide low-cost access to space for a wide variety of missions, including those related to earth resources. We pledge to continue to extend our knowledge of the most distant frontiers in space.
We will also extend our exploration of the sea-bed and the sea. We will seek food for the hungry, power for future technologies, new medicines for the sick and new treatments of water for arid regions of the world.
The quantities of metals and minerals needed to maintain our economic health and living standards are so huge as to require the re-use of all recoverable commodities from solid waste materials. We pledge a vigorous program of research and development in order to seek out more economical methods to recover and recycle such commodities, including the processing of municipal solid wastes.
We pledge to extend the communications frontier, and to foster the development of orbiting satellite systems that will make possible wholly new, world-wide educational and entertainment programs.
We recognize that the productivity of our Nation's research and development efforts can be enhanced through cooperative international projects. The signing of the Moscow agreements for cooperation in space, environment, health and science and technology has opened a new era in international relations. A similar agreement between the United States and Polish Governments will permit expansion of programs such as the jointly-funded Copernicus Astronomical Center and Krakow Children's Hospital.
Finally, we pledge expanded efforts to aid unemployed scientists and engineers. We are determined to see that such on-going efforts as the Technology Mobilization and Reemployment Program are effective.
The Individual and Government
Even though many urgently-needed Administration proposals have been long delayed or stopped by the oppositions Congress, we have kept our 1968 promise to make government more accountable and more responsive to the citizen. One such proposal is General Revenue Sharing with State and local governments—a means of returning to the people powers which for 40 years have grown increasingly centralized in the remote Washington bureaucracy. Another is consolidation of scores of categorical grant programs into six Special Revenue Sharing programs which would make available some $12 billion annually in broad policy fields for States and localities to apply in their own ways to their own needs. Yet another is our proposal to modernize the Executive Branch of the Federal Government by combining six Cabinet departments and several independent agencies into four new departments. So far, the opposition controlled Congress has blocked or ignored all of these proposals.
In addition, we have:
Improved domestic policy formulation and implementation by the new Domestic Council and Office of Management and Budget within the Executive Office of the President;
Established stronger liaison between the Federal Government and the States, counties and municipalities by a new Office of Intergovernmental Relations, headed by the Vice President;
Overhauled the fragmented and poorly coordinated Federal agencies concerned with drug abuse and the environment;
Utilized voluntary citizen effort through the formation of the ACTION agency in government and the National Center for Voluntary Action outside of government;
Proposed reorganization of the Federal regulatory agencies and appointed distinguished people to those agencies;
Assured more open government, ending abuse of document classification and providing fuller information to the public.
We pledge continuing reform and revitalization of government to assure a better response to individual needs.
We express deep concern for the flood victims of tropical Storm Agnes, the worst natural disaster in terms of property damage in our Nation's history. Past laws were totally inadequate to meet this crisis, and we commend the President's leadership in urgently recommending the newly-enacted $1.8 billion flood relief measure, greatly expanding and enlarging the present program. We pledge to reevaluate and enlarge the national flood disaster insurance program so that it will be adequate for future emergencies.
We will continue to press for the enactment of General and Special Revenue Sharing and to pursue further initiatives both to decentralize governmental activities and to transfer more such activities to the private sector.
We will continue to defend the citizen's right to privacy in our increasingly interdependent society. We oppose computerized national data banks and all other "Big Brother" schemes which endanger individual rights.
We reaffirm our view that voluntary prayer should be freely permitted in public places—particularly, by school children while attending public schools—providing that such prayers are not prepared or prescribed by the state or any of its political subdivisions and that no person's participation is coerced, thus preserving the traditional separation of church and state.
We remain committed to a comprehensive program of human rights, social betterment and political participation for the people of the District of Columbia. We will build on our strong record in this area—a record which includes cutting the District of Columbia crime rate in half, aggressive support for a balanced transportation system in metropolitan Washington, initiation of a Bicentennial program and celebration in the national capital region, and support for the first Congressional Delegate in nearly a century. We support voting representation for the District of Columbia in the United States Congress and will work for a system of self-government for the city which takes fair account of the needs and interests of both the Federal Government and the citizens of the District of Columbia.
The Republican Party adheres to the principle of self-determination for Puerto Rico. We will welcome and support statehood for Puerto Rico if that status should be the free choice of its people in a referendum vote.
Additionally, we will pursue negotiations with the Congress of Micronesia on the future political status of the Trust Territories of the Pacific Islands to meet the mutual interests of both parties. We favor extending the right of electing the territorial Governor to the people of American Samoa, and will take complementary steps to increase local self-government in American Samoa. We vigorously support such action as is necessary to permit American citizens resident in Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands to vote for President and Vice President in national elections. We support full voting rights in committees for the Delegates to Congress from Guam and the Virgin Islands.
In our territorial policy we seek a maximum degree of local self-sufficiency and self-government, while encouraging greater inclusion in Federal services and programs and greater participation in national decision-making.
In our free system, the people are not only the source of our social problems but also the main source of solutions. Volunteerism, therefore, an indispensable national resource, is basic to our Republican philosophy. We applaud the Administration's efforts to encourage volunteerism by all Americans and commend the millions of volunteers who are working in communities and states across the country on myriad projects. We favor further implementation of voluntary action programs throughout the fifty States to assist public and private agencies in working to assure quality life for all human beings.
Arts and Humanities
The United States is experiencing a cultural renaissance of inspiring dimension. Scores of millions of our people are now supporting and participating in the arts and humanities in quest of a richer life of the mind and the spirit. Our national culture, no longer the preserve of the elite, is becoming a people's heritage of importance to the whole world.
We believe, with the President, that "the Federal Government has a vital role as catalyst, innovator, and supporter of public and private efforts for cultural development."
We have supported a three-year extension of the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities, and increased the funding of its two endowments by more than four times the level of three years ago. The State Arts Councils, which operate in all 50 States and the five special jurisdictions, have also been strengthened.
The Arts Endowment has raised its support for the Nation's museums, orchestras, theatre, dance, opera companies and film centers and encouraged the creativity of individual artists and writers. In addition, the new Federal Expansion Arts Program has been sharply increased.
We have encouraged Federal agencies to use the arts in their programs, sponsored an annual Design Assembly for Federal administrators, requested the National Endowment for the Arts to recommend a program for upgrading the design of Federal buildings, and moved to set new standards of excellence in all design endeavors of the Federal Government.
Moreover, the National Endowment for the Humanities, now greatly enlarged, is fostering improved teaching and scholarship in history, literature, philosophy and ethics. The Endowment also supports programs to raise levels of scholarship and teaching in Afro-American, American Indian and Mexican-American studies, has broadened its fellowship programs to include junior college teachers, and stresses adult or continuing education, including educational television and film series. We have also expanded the funding of public broadcasting.
For the future, we pledge continuance of our vigorous support of the arts and humanities.
A Better Future for All
We believe, with the President, that the first five years of life are crucial to a child's development, and further, that every child should have the opportunity to reach his full potential as an individual.
We have, therefore, established the Office of Child Development, which has taken a comprehensive approach to the development of young children, combining programs dealing with their physical, social and educational needs and development.
We have undertaken a wide variety of demonstration programs to assure our children, particularly poor children, a good start in life—for example, the Parent and Child Center program for infant care, Home Start to strengthen the environment of the preschool child, and Health Start to explore new delivery systems of health care for young children.
We have redirected Head Start to perform valuable full-day child care and early education services, and more than 380,000 preschool children are now in the program. We have doubled funds for early childhood demonstration programs which will develop new tools and new teaching techniques to serve children who suffer from deafness, blindness and other handicaps.
So that no child will he denied the opportunity for a productive life because of inability to read effectively, we have established the Right to Read Program.
To add impetus to the entire educational effort, our newly-created National Institute of Education ensures that broad research and experimentation will develop the best educational opportunities for all children. Additionally, we have taken steps to help ensure that children receive proper care while their parents are at work.
Moreover, as stated elsewhere in this Platform, we have broadened nutritional assistance to poor children by nearly tripling participation in the Food Stamp Program, more than doubling the number of needy children in the school lunch program, operating a summer feeding program for three million young people, increasing the breakfast program fivefold, and doubling Federal support for child nutritional programs. We are improving medical care for poor children through more vigorous treatment procedures under Medicaid and more effectively targeting maternal and child health services to low-income mothers. We will continue to seek out new means to reach and teach children in their crucial early years.
We believe that what our youth most want and need is not special treatment as a group apart, but just the opposite—the opportunity for full participation by exercising the rights and responsibilities of adults.
In 1970 the President approved legislation which gave the vote to more than 11 million 18-to-20 year olds. The 26th Amendment, which places this important new right in the Constitution, has our enthusiastic backing.
Our Administration has already made the draft a far less arbitrary factor in young men's lives. Now we near the point where we can end conscription altogether and achieve our goal of an all-volunteer armed force.
Our total war on drug abuse has had special benefits for youth, hardest hit by this menace. Last year we held the first White House Conference ever held by and for young people themselves. The Administration gave the Conference's more than 300 recommendations a searching re view, and last spring the President returned a detailed response and action report to the conferees.
The anarchy which swept major campuses in the late 1960's penalized no one more severely than the young people themselves. The recent calm on campus is, we believe, in part the result of the President's leadership in winding down the war in Vietnam, reducing the draft, and taking a strong stand against lawlessness, but our view is that colleges themselves are responsible for maintaining a campus climate that will preserve academic freedom.
We have proposed legislation to ensure that no qualified student is denied a higher education by lack of funds, and have also moved to meet the often-overlooked concerns of the two-thirds of the college-age young not in school. We have developed a new job-oriented, career-education concept, expanded Federal manpower programs and provided a record number of summer job opportunities for young men and women.
To engage youthful idealism and energies more effectively, we have created the new ACTION volunteer service agency, bringing together the Peace Corps, VISTA, and other volunteer programs; and we encouraged the establishment of the independent National Center for Voluntary Action.
We stand for lowering the legal age of majority in all jurisdictions to 18; and we will seek to broaden the involvement of young people in every phase of the political process—as voters, party workers and leaders, candidates and elected officials, and participants in government at municipal, State and Federal levels.
We will continue to build on these solid achievements in keeping with our conviction that these young people should have the opportunity to participate fully in the affairs of our society.
Equal Rights for Women
The Republican Party recognizes the great contributions women have made to our society as homemakers and mothers, as contributors to the community through volunteer work, and as members of the labor force in careers outside the home. We fully endorse the principle of equal rights, equal opportunities and equal responsibilities for women, and believe that progress in these areas is needed to achieve the full realization of the potentials of American women both in the home and outside the home.
We reaffirm the President's pledge earlier this year: "The Administration will . . . continue its strong efforts to open equal opportunities for women, recognizing clearly that women are often denied such opportunities today. While every woman may not want a career outside the home, every woman should have the freedom to choose whatever career she wishes—and an equal chance to pursue it."
This Administration has done more than any before it to help women of America achieve equality of opportunity.
Because of its efforts, more top-level and middle-management positions in the Federal Government are held by women than ever before. The President has appointed a woman as his special assistant in the White House, specifically charged with the recruitment of women for policy-making jobs in thee United States Government. Women have also been named to high positions in the Civil Service Commission and the Department of Labor to ensure equal opportunities for employment and advancement at all levels of the Federal service.
In addition we have:
Significantly increased resources devoted to enforcement of the Fair Labor Standards Act, providing equal pay for equal work;
Required all firms doing business with the Government to have affirmative action plans for the hiring and promotion of women;
Requested Congress to expand the jurisdiction of the Commission on Civil Rights to cover sex discrimination;
Recommended and supported passage of Title IX of the Higher Education Act opposing discrimination against women in educational institutions;
Supported the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972 giving the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission enforcement power in sex discrimination cases;
Continued our support of the Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution, our Party being the first national party to back this Amendment.
Other factors beyond outright employer discrimination—the lack of child care facilities, for example—can limit job opportunities for women. For lower and middle income families, the President supported and signed into law a new tax provision which makes many child care expenses deductible for working parents. Part of the President's recent welfare reform proposal would provide comprehensive day care services so that women on welfare can work.
We believe the primary responsibility for a child's care and upbringing lies with the family. However, we recognize that for economic and many other reasons many parents require assistance in the care of their children.
To help meet this need, we favor the development of publicly or privately run, voluntary, comprehensive, quality day care services, locally controlled but federally assisted, with the requirement that the recipients of these services will pay their fair share of the costs according to their ability.
We oppose ill-considered proposals, incapable of being administered effectively, which would heavily engage the Federal Government in this area.
To continue progress for women's rights, we will work toward:
Ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment; Appointment of women to highest level positions in the Federal Government, including the Cabinet and Supreme Court;
Equal pay for equal work;
Elimination of discrimination against women at all levels in Federal Government;
Elimination of discrimination against women in the criminal justice system, in sentencing, rehabilitation and prison facilities;
Increased opportunities for the part time employment of women, and expanded training programs for women who want to reenter the labor force;
Elimination of economic discrimination against women in credit, mortgage, insurance, property, rental and finance contracts.
We pledge vigorous enforcement of all Federal statutes and executive orders barring job discrimination on the basis of sex.
We are proud of the contributions made by women to better government. We regard the active involvement of women at all levels of the political process, from precinct to national status, as of great importance to our country. The Republican Party welcomes and encourages their maximum participation.
We believe our Nation must develop a new awareness of the attitudes and needs of our older citizens. Elderly Americans are far too often forgotten Americans, relegated to lives of idleness and isolation by a society bemused with the concerns of other groups. We are distressed by the tendency of many Americans to ignore the heart-break and hardship resulting from the generation gap which separates so many of our people from those who have reached the age of retirement. We deplore what is tantamount to cruel discrimination—age discrimination in employment, and the discrimination of neglect and indifference, perhaps the cruelest of all.
We commit ourselves to helping older Americans achieve greater self-reliance and greater opportunities for direct participation in the activities of our society. We believe that the later years should be, not isolated years, not years of dependency, but years of fulfillment and dignity. We believe our older people are not to be regarded as a burden but rather should be valuable participants in our society. We believe their judgement, their experience, and their talents are immensely valuable to our country.
Because we so believe, we are seeking and have sought in many ways to help older Americans—for example:
Federal programs of direct benefit to older Americans have increased more than $16 billion these past four years;
As part of this, social security benefits are more than 50 per cent higher than they were four years ago, the largest increase in the history of social security;
Social security benefits have become inflation proof by making them rise automatically to match cost of-living increases, a protection long advocated by the Republican Party;
We have upgraded nursing homes. Expenditures under the Older Americans Act have gone up 800 per cent since President Nixon took office, with a strong emphasis on programs enabling older Americans to live dignified, independent lives in their own homes.
The valuable counsel of older people has been sought directly through the White House Conference on Aging. The President has appointed high-level advisers on the problems of the aging to his personal staff.
We have urged upon the opposition Congress—again, typically to no avail—numerous additional programs of benefit to the elderly. We will continue pressing for these new initiatives:
Increase the amount of money a person can earn without losing social security benefits;
Increase widow, widower, and delayed retirement benefits;
Improve the effectiveness of Medicare, including elimination of the monthly premium required under Part B of Medicare—the equivalent of more than a three per cent social security increase;
Strengthen private pension plans through tax deductions to encourage their expansion, improved vesting, and protection of the investments in these funds;
Reform our tax system so that persons 65 or over will receive increased tax-free income;
Encourage volunteer service activities for older Americans, such as the Retired Senior Volunteer Program and the Foster Grandparents Program;
Give special attention to bringing full government services within the reach of the elderly in rural areas who are often unable to share fully in their deserved benefits because of geographic inaccessibility;
Upgrade other Federal activities important to the elderly including programs for nutrition, housing and nursing homes, transportation, consumer protection, and elimination of age discrimination in government and private employment.
We encourage constructive efforts which will help older citizens to be better informed about existing programs and services designed to meet their needs, and we pledge to cut away excessive Federal red tape to make it easier for older Americans to receive the benefits to which they are entitled.
Working Men and Women
The skill, industry and productivity of American workers are the driving force of our free economy. The Nation's labor unions, comprised of millions of working people, have advanced the well-being not only of their members but also of our entire free-enterprise system. We of the Republican Party reaffirm our strong endorsement of Organized Labor's key role in our national life.
We salute the statesmanship of the labor union movement. Time and time again, at crucial moments, it has voiced its outspoken support for a firm and effective foreign policy and for keeping the Armed Forces of the United States modern and strong.
The American labor movement and the Republican Party have always worked against the spread of totalitarian forms of government. Together we can continue to preserve in America the best system of government ever devised for human happiness and fulfillment.
We are for the right of American workers and their families to enjoy and to retain to the greatest possible extent the rewards of their own labor.
We regard collective bargaining as the cornerstone of the Nation's labor relations policy. The government's role is not to encroach upon this process but rather to aid the differing parties to make collective bargaining more effective both for themselves and for the public. In furtherance of that concept, we will continue to develop procedures whereby the imagination, ingenuity and knowledge of labor and management can more effectively seek solutions for such problems as structural adjustment and productivity.
In the construction industry, for example, we will build on a new joint effort between government and all parts of the industry to solve such problems as seasonality and varying peaks of demand to ensure a stable growth in the number of skilled craftsmen.
We call upon management and labor to devote their best efforts to finding better ways to conduct labor-management relations so the good of all the people can be advanced without strikes or lockouts.
We will continue to search for realistic and fair solutions to emergency labor disputes, guided by two basic principles; first, that the health and safety of the people of the United States should always be paramount; and second, that collective bargaining should be kept as free as possible from government interference.
For mine health and safety, we have implemented the most comprehensive legislation in the Nation's history, resulting in a major reduction in mine-related accidents. We pledge continued advancement of the health and safety of workers.
We will continue to press for improved pension vesting and other statutory protections to assure that Americans will not lose their hard-earned retirement income.
We pledge further modernization of the Federal Civil Service System, including emphasis on executive development. We rededicate ourselves to promotion on merit, equal opportunity, and the setting of clear incentives for higher productivity. We will give continuing close attention to the evolving labor-management relationship in the Federal service.
We pledge realistic programs of education and training so that all Americans able to do so can make their own way, on their own ability, receiving an equal and fair chance to advance themselves. We flatly oppose the notion that the hard-earned tax dollars of American workers should be used to support those who can work but choose not to, and who believe that the world owes them a living free from any responsibility or care.
We are proud of our many other solid achievements on behalf of America's working people—for example:
Nearly five million additional workers brought under the coverage of the unemployment insurance system, and eligibility deadlines twice extended;
Funding for more than 166,000 jobs under the Emergency Employment Act;
Expansion of vocational education and manpower training programs;
Use of the long-neglected Trade Expansion Act to help workers who lose their jobs because of imports. We strongly favor vigorous competition by American business in the world market but in ways that do not displace American jobs;
Negotiation of long-needed limitations on imports of man-made fibers, textiles and other products, thus protecting American jobs.
We share the desire of all Americans for continued prosperity in peacetime. We will work closely with labor and management toward our mutual goal of assuring a job for every man and woman seeking the dignity of work.
From its beginning, our Party has led the way for equal rights and equal opportunity. This great tradition has been carried forward by the Nixon Administration.
Through our efforts de jure segregation is virtually ended. We pledge continuation of these efforts until no American schoolchild suffers educational deprivation because of the color of his skin or the language he speaks and all school children are receiving high quality education. In pursuit of this goal we have proposed $2.5 billion of Federal aid to school districts to improve educational opportunities and build facilities for disadvantaged children. Further to assure minority progress, we have provided more support to predominantly black colleges than ever before—twice the amount being spent when President Nixon took office.
Additionally, we have strengthened Federal enforcement of equal opportunity laws. Spending for civil rights enforcement has been increased from $75 million to $602 million—concrete evidence of our commitment to equal justice for all. The President also supported and signed into law the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972, which makes the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission a much more powerful body.
Working closely with leaders of construction unions, we have initiated 50 "home-town" plans which call for more than 35,000 additional minority hirings in the building trades during the next four years. We will continue to search out new employment opportunities for minorities in other fields as well. We believe such new jobs can and should be created without displacing those already at work. We will give special consideration to minority Americans who live and make their way in the rural regions of our Country—Americans too often bypassed in the advances of the general society.
We have made unprecedented progress in strengthening minority participation in American business. We created the Office of Minority Business Enterprise in March 1969 to coordinate the Federal programs assisting members of minority groups who seek to establish or expand businesses. We have more than tripled Federal loans, guarantees and grants to minority-owned businesses. More minority Americans are now in our Nation's economic mainstream than at any other time in our history, and we pledge every effort to expand these gains.
Minority businesses now receive 16 per cent of the Small Business Administration dollar—more than double the proportion in 1968. Many Minority Enterprise Small Business Investment Companies have been licensed since 1969 to provide venture capital for minority enterprises. More than $200 million is now available through this program, and we have requested additional funding.
In late 1970, we initiated a combined Government-private program to increase minority bank deposits. This year our goal of $100 million has been reached four times over.
We pledge to carry forward our efforts to place minority citizens in responsible positions—efforts we feel are already well under way. During the last four years the percentage of minority Federal employees has risen to a record high of almost 20 per cent and, perhaps more important, the quality of jobs for minority Americans has improved. We have recruited more minority citizens for top managerial posts in Civil Service than ever before. We will see that our progress in this area will continue and grow.
In 1970 President Nixon approved strong new amendments to the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and we pledge continued vigilance to ensure that the rights affirmed by this act are upheld.
The cultural diversity of America's heritage groups has always been a source of strength for our society and our Party. We reaffirm our commitment to the basic American values which have made this Nation the land of opportunity for these groups, originating from all sectors of the world, from Asia to Africa to Europe to Latin America. We will continue our Party's open-door policy and work to assure all minorities full opportunity for participation in the political process. We pledge vigorous support of the Bilingual Act and the Ethnic Studies Heritage Act.
In recognition of the significant contributions to our country by our proud and independent Spanish-speaking citizens, we have developed a comprehensive program to help achieve equal opportunity.
During the last four years Spanish-speaking Americans have achieved a greater role in national affairs. More than thirty have been appointed to high federal positions.
To provide the same learning opportunities enjoyed by other American children, we have increased bilingual education programs almost six-fold since 1969. We initiated a 16-point employment program to help Spanish-speaking workers, created the National Economic Development Association to promote Spanish-speaking business development and expanded economic development opportunities in Spanish-speaking communities.
We will work for the use of bilingual staffs in localities where this language capability is desirable for effective health care.
Indians, Alaska Natives, and Hawaiians
President Nixon has evolved a totally new Indian policy which we fully support. The opposition Congress, by inaction on most of the President's proposals, has thwarted Indian rights and opportunities.
We commend the Department of the Interior for its stalwart defense of Indian land and water rights, and we urge the Congress to join in support of that effort. We further request Congress to permit Indian tribal governments to assume control over the programs of the Departments of Interior and Health, Education and Welfare in their homelands, to assure Indians a role in determining how funds can best be used for their children's schools, to expand Indian economic development opportunity, to triple the funds for Indian credit and create a new Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Indian and Territorial Affairs.
These reforms, all urged by the President, have been ignored by the Congress. We—with the Indian people are impatiently waiting.
Knowing the Indians' love for their land and recognizing the many wrongs committed in years past, the President has restored Blue Lake in New Mexico to the Taos Pueblo and the Mr. Adams area in Washington to the Yakima Nation. We are seeking to protect Indian water rights in Pyramid Lake by bringing suit in the Supreme Court.
We are fully aware of the severe problems facing the Menominee Indians in seeking to have Federal recognition restored to their tribe and promise a complete and sympathetic examination of their pleas.
We have increased the Bureau of Indian Affairs' budget by 214 per cent, nearly doubled funds for Indian health, and are arranging with tribal leaders for the allocation of Bureau funds in accordance with priorities set by the tribal governments themselves.
We pledge continued attention to the needs of off-reservation Indians and have launched demonstration projects at Indian centers in nine major cities. We are determined that the first Americans will not be the forgotten Americans, and that their rights will be respected.
We will continue the policy of Indian preference in hiring and promotion and apply it to all levels, including management and supervisory positions in those agencies with programs affecting Indian peoples.
The standard of living of Indian Americans is still far below that of any of the peoples of the United States. This intolerable level of existence should be alleviated by the enactment of new legislation designed to further Indian self-determination without termination and to close this economic gap and raise the Indian standard of life to that of the rest of America. We favor the development of such legislation in the 93d Congress.
At the President's recommendation, the Congress voted an Alaska Native Claims Settlement which confirms the titles of the Eskimos, Indians and Aleuts to 40 million acres and compensates them with a generous cash settlement.
We will also preserve and continue to protect the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act which provides land already set aside for Hawaiians for homes and the opportunity to preserve their culture.
Our achievements for human dignity and opportunity are specific and real, not idle promises. They have brought tremendous progress to many thousands of minority citizens and made our society more just for all.
We will press on with our fight against social injustice and discrimination, building upon the achievements already made. Knowing that none of us can reap the fullest blessings of liberty until all of us can, we reaffirm our commitment to the upward struggle for universal freedom led by Abraham Lincoln a century ago.
The American consumer has a right to product safety; clearly specified qualities and values, honest descriptions and guarantees, fair credit procedures, and due recourse for fraud and deception. We are addressing these concerns forcefully, with executive action and legislative and legal initiatives.
The issues involved in this accelerating awareness on the part of consumers lie close to the heart of the dynamic American market: Good products at fair prices made it great; the same things will keep it great.
Enlightened business management is as interested in consumer protection and consumer education as are consumers themselves. In a market-place as competitive and diverse as ours, a company's future depends on the reputation of its products. One safety error can wipe out an established firm overnight.
Unavoidably, the remoteness of business management from the retail counter tends to hamper consumers in resolving quality and performance questions. Technical innovations make it harder for the consumer to evaluate new products. Legal complexities often deny efficient remedies for deception or product failure.
To assist consumers and business, President Nixon established the first Office of Consumer Affairs in the White House and made its Director a member of his personal staff and of the Cost of Living Council. We have also proposed a Buyer's Bill of Rights, including:
Federal authority for the regulation of hazardous consumer products;
Requirement of full disclosure of the terms of warranties and guarantees in language all can understand.
We support the establishment of an independent Consumer Protection Agency to present the consumer's case in proceedings before Federal agencies and also a consumer product safety agency in the Department of Health, Education and Welfare. We oppose punitive proposals which are more anti-business than pro-consumer.
We pledge vigorous enforcement of all consumer protection laws and to foster more consumer education as a vital necessity in a market-place ever increasing in variety and complexity.
We regard our Nation's veterans precisely as our President does:
"Americans have long known that those who defended the great values of our Nation in wartime are of great value to the Nation when the war is over. It is traditional that the American veteran has been helped by his Nation so that he can create his own 'peace story', a story of prosperity, independence and dignity.
"Veterans benefit programs have therefore become more than a recognition for services performed in the past; they have become an investment in the future of the veteran and of his country."
Under Republican leadership, far more for our veterans is being done than ever before:
G.I. Bill education benefits have been increased more than 35 per cent. Vietnam-era veterans have the highest assistance levels in history to help them pursue educational opportunities.
Major cost-of-living adjustments have been made in Compensation and pension payments.
Medical services are the best in the history of the Veterans Administration and now include a strong new drug treatment and rehabilitation program.
Disability benefits have been increased.
G.I. home loan benefits have been expanded and improved.
The total Administration commitment is massive—$12.4 billion for this fiscal year. This is the largest Veterans Administration budget in history, and the third largest of all Federal agencies and departments.
We are giving the highest priority to the employment problems of Vietnam veterans. In 1971 we initiated a comprehensive program which recently placed more than one million Vietnam-era veterans in jobs, training and education programs. For the future, we pledge:
Continuation of the Veterans Administration as a strong, independent agency;
Continuation of an independent system of Veterans Administration health care facilities to provide America's veterans with the best medical care available, including appropriate attention to the problems of the ex-serviceman afflicted with drug and alcohol problems;
Continuing attention to the needs of the Vietnam-era veteran, with special emphasis on employment opportunities, education and housing.
Continuation of our efforts to raise GI Bill education benefits to a level commensurate with post-World War II benefits in adjusted dollars;
Continued effort for a better coordinated national policy on cemeteries and burial benefits for veterans.
We will not fail our obligation to the Nation's 29 million veterans and will stand ever watchful of their needs and rights.
The record is clear.
More than any President, Richard Nixon has achieved major changes in policy and direction in our government. He has restored faith—faith that our system will indeed reflect the will of the people—faith that there will be a new era of peace and human progress at home and around the world.
To be sure there is unfinished business on the agenda of our ever-restless Nation. We have great concern for those who have not participated more fully in the general prosperity. The twin evils of crime and drug abuse are still to be conquered. Peace in the world is not yet won.
But Republican leadership has restored stability and sanity to our land once again. We have vigorously attacked every major problem.
Once again our direction is peace; once again our determination is national strength; once again we are prospering; once again, on a host of fronts, we are making progress.
Now we look to tomorrow.
We pledge ourselves to go forward at an accelerated pace—with a determination and zeal unmatched before.
In four years we mark the 200th anniversary of the freest, most productive, most benevolent Nation of all human history. In four years we celebrate one of man's highest achievements—two hundred years as a constitutional republic founded on the noble concept that every person is a sovereign being, possessed of dignity and inalienable rights.
Almost two centuries ago, the Founding Fathers envisioned a Nation of free people, at peace with themselves and the world—each with equal opportunity to pursue happiness in his own way. Much of that dream has come true; much is still to be fulfilled.
We, the Republican Party, pledge ourselves to go forward, hand-in-hand with every citizen, to solve those problems that yet stand in the way of realizing that more perfect union, the dream of the Founding Fathers—a dream enhanced by the free and generous gift of people working together, not in shifting alliances of separated minorities, but in unison of spirit and purpose. We cannot favor, nor can we respect, the notion of group isolation in our United States of America. We must not divide and weaken ourselves by attitudes or policies which would segregate our citizens into separate racial, ethnic, economic, religious or social groups. It is the striving of all of us—our striving together as Americans—that will move our Nation continually onward to our Founders' dream.
Building on the foundations of peace in the world, and reason and prosperity at home, our Republican Party pledges a new era of progress for man—progress toward more freedom, toward greater protection of individual rights, toward more security from want and fear, toward greater fulfillment and happiness for all.
We pledge to the American people that the 200th anniversary of this Nation in 1976 will be more than a celebration of two centuries of unequaled success; we pledge it also to be the beginning of the third and greatest century for all of our countrymen and, we pray, for all people in the world.
|Citation: Republican Party Platforms: "Republican Party Platform of 1972", August 21, 1972. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/?pid=25842.|
© 1999-2011 - Gerhard Peters - The American Presidency Project