Gerald R. Ford photo

Exchange With Reporters on Arrival at Peoria, Illinois.

March 05, 1976

IT IS great to be in Peoria. I have been here a number of times. In fact, Bob Michel reminded me of the time, quite a few years ago--I won't tell you how long, but it was a great occasion, and it's nice to be back in 1976.

REPORTER. What is your current stand on the right-to-life amendment in the Constitution?

THE PRESIDENT. My stand today is the same as it has been for some time. I think the Supreme Court went too far. I think the amendment that bans all abortion goes too far. I think that there is a reasonable and responsible middle ground, and that's the position that I take.

Q. Mr. President, if you win the primary, will you be able to beat out either Teddy Kennedy or Hubert Humphrey?

THE PRESIDENT. Well, I think that our chances in November are very good, regardless of the Democratic candidates.

Q. How about the current status of revenue sharing as far as you are concerned? Are you satisfied with the progress of that bill through Congress?

THE PRESIDENT. Not at all. I have recommended to Congress a 5 3/4-year extension of general revenue sharing--last July, as I recollect--and Congress has not

gotten the legislation out of subcommittee yet. Congress has been very, very dilatory. The majority party doesn't seem to have much inspiration to pass the legislation. I hope that we can push--with the help of Governors, mayors, and county officials--this legislation can be vitally important to all units of government.

Q. Do you think it is going to pass?

THE PRESIDENT. I'm always optimistic, but the time delay is very bothersome. All I can say is that we're working very hard to get some congressional action before it's too late.

Q. Is it going to play in Peoria? Are you going to win in central Illinois?

THE PRESIDENT. I'm very optimistic with my prospects as far as Peoria is concerned. Illinois has always been a good State. I had many opportunities to visit it. I have virtually been all over the State. I think I have a friend or two, and I think they will be helpful.

REPORTER. Thank you very much.

Note: The exchange began at 5:45 p.m. at the Greater Peoria Airport.

Gerald R. Ford, Exchange With Reporters on Arrival at Peoria, Illinois. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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