Letter to the President of the Senate and to the Speaker of the House on Appropriations for Atomic Energy.
I am informed that the Supplemental Appropriation Bill, as reported from conference, contains a rider which, in effect, forbids the Atomic Energy Commission to start any specific construction project unless funds are available to complete the project; and that the amount of funds carried in the bill for the atomic energy program is less than half the amount I requested.
This rider and reduction in funds, coupled together, would mean that the Atomic Energy Commission would not be able to fulfill military requirements for atomic weapons. I cannot believe that the Congress would wish to adjourn with our national security jeopardized in this fashion.
I urgently request that this rider be eliminated before the Congress completes its action on this bill.
HARRY S. TRUMAN
Note: This is the text of identical letters addressed to the Honorable Alben W. Barkley, President of the Senate, and to the Honorable Sam Rayburn, Speaker of the House of Representatives.
For the statement by the President upon signing the Supplemental Appropriation Act on July 15, see Item 205. By the act the Congress appropriated $2,986,894,000 for the Atomic Energy Commission, but the provision barring the AEC from starting any plant construction for which funds for completion were not available was retained in the final bill.
Harry S. Truman, Letter to the President of the Senate and to the Speaker of the House on Appropriations for Atomic Energy. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/231170