Gerald R. Ford photo

Remarks at a Fundraising Reception for the National Republican Club of Capitol Hill

September 10, 1975

Nelson and Happy, Harold and Chuck, and of course Betty:

Let me say at the outset that I am delighted to be here and I am most grateful and deeply appreciative of how many of you have come from many, many States--I certainly can't count them on both hands.

I have met so many downstairs and up here who have come a long distance-north, south, east, and west--and for your efforts let me assure you I can't express deeply enough my gratitude and appreciation.

As you know, I am a firm believer in decontrol, and just let me thank you for the way you have decontrolled your pocketbooks tonight. [Laughter]

I also wish to thank you for the Capitol Hill Club. I thank you from the bottom of my heart, and the Capitol Hill Club thanks you from the bottom of its treasury. [Laughter] But anyhow, your generosity--and I say this with sincerity-has kept the Capitol Hill Club from becoming an over-the-hill club.

Now, there are a lot of people who are participants in making this affair possible, and the one that I can speak most forthrightly about is the Vice President. Harold Collier has been working hard, and Chuck Marck has, along with many others. But the Vice President undertook a responsibility at my request to see how it might be done to get everything organized and straightened out. And Nelson, in this case, as in every other that I have asked you to do, you have done a superb job, and for that I am deeply grateful.

I never like to make a speech in the Capitol Hill Club because the atmosphere just isn't right. [Laughter] And obviously, the atmosphere isn't right here tonight to make a speech. Betty and I would both prefer to simply mill around and shake hands, to get acquainted with those we don't know and to renew acquaintances with those that we have known for so many years, both in Washington and elsewhere.

We, on occasions like this, like the informality and the opportunity to just be friends. And so my remarks tonight will be very short; in fact, they are almost over. [Laughter] Is that short enough?

But the future of the Capitol Hill Club is much brighter tonight because of your participation. And for those of you who don't know the history--and I won't recount it except in summary--it began up here where the new library annex is, the Madison Library, and then it went over to the hotel and finally it came here.

In the process, some great people participated in making it feasible. Jim Auchincloss was probably the father of the idea, but after him a great many other people likewise were strong and helpful.

I got involved a few years ago. And I believe the future existence of this club is extremely important to our Republican family, and I mean a Republican family that encompasses everybody in the Republican Party.

So when I, after talking with Harold Collier and Chuck, found that we needed a real boost from some stalwart people, I asked Nelson to take the leadership. He did. But I thank you for coming, and I thank especially you for giving.

CLUB MEMBER. Westchester County is here tonight.

THE PRESIDENT. I know it's here tonight, but I see a lot of people from Texas, from Nebraska, from Mississippi--well, from all over the country--and isn't that what we really want? We want Republicans in this building and in this country from all 50 States.

So, thank you very much for being here.

Note: The President spoke at 7:44 p.m. at the club. In his remarks, he referred to Harold R. Collier, Representative from Illinois 1957-75 and president of the club, Charles T. Marck, member of the club's executive committee, and James C. Auchincloss, Representative from New Jersey 1943-65.

Gerald R. Ford, Remarks at a Fundraising Reception for the National Republican Club of Capitol Hill Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

Filed Under




Washington, DC

Simple Search of Our Archives