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Question-and-Answer Session With Reporters on Arrival in Palm Springs, California

December 29, 1982

The President. I just thought since—I'd come over and say "Happy New Year."

Q. Did you agree with the arms negotiator that there's a 50-50 chance that we could get an agreement with the Soviets in 1983?

The President. Well, I haven't heard that, but I know that, from our talking with them, they feel that the Soviets are really negotiating in good earnest. So, we're a little optimistic.

Q. How about the low growth rate with the economy next year? All of your people seem to be saying it's not going to be so great. What is your feeling?

The President. Well, we're always trying to be the most conservative so that you won't write—[laughing]—that we were too optimistic. But I've been looking at some of the gentlemen who are being quoted in the business world, and there seems to be a wide disparity—well, wide in a matter of a few points, but as to whether it will be as low as some of us have said, or whether we're going to see an extra spurt, so—

Q. What is your opinion?

The President. Well, my opinion is that, really, no matter how much they may use the dignified words of projection, there's an awful lot of element of guesswork in all of this.

Q. Mr. President, have you got any words or opinions or views about the riots that have been taking place in Miami?

The President. Well, wherever they're taking place—there or in Washington or anyplace else—I just don't think there's any room for that, for violence in the streets.

Q. You haven't been in contact with the State of Florida?

The President. No, no, I have a direct—

Mr. Deaver. The White House has been.

The President. The White House has.

Q. Thank you very much.

Q. A very Happy New Year. Do you have a New Year's resolution?

Mrs. Reagan. I do.

Q. What is it?

Mrs. Reagan. I'm not going to get in the sun anymore. [Laughter]

Note: The exchange began at 4:15 p.m. at Palm Springs Municipal Airport, following the President's trip from Los Angeles.

Following his remarks, the President and Mrs. Reagan went to the home of Walter and Lenore Annenberg, where they stayed during their visit to Palm Springs.

Michael K. Deaver is Deputy Chief of Staff and Assistant to the President.

Ronald Reagan, Question-and-Answer Session With Reporters on Arrival in Palm Springs, California Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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