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Remarks Prior to a Meeting With Congressional Leaders and an Exchange With Reporters

March 28, 2001

Federal Budget

The President. I want to thank the leadership of the House and the Senate for coming up. Today's a big day. The House is going to take up a budget, a budget that is a commonsense budget, one that meets priorities, one that grows discretionary spending by 4 percent, a budget that protects Social Security, a budget that funds Medicare. It's also a budget that recognizes that this Nation needs a tax relief package to stimulate our economy.

I want to thank you for coming, Mr. Chairman. I appreciate you, Chairman Thomas, for working with Members of the House to get the package moving quickly. Later on this week you'll be taking up, as I understand, the child credit and the marriage penalty and, later on, the death tax. And I appreciate your leadership.

I've been very encouraged to see that Members on both sides of the aisle have been talking about the need not only to have immediate stimulus to the economy but certainty in our country, by having rates reduced. But reducing just one rate is not enough. In order to encourage the growth of our small businesses and enhance the entrepreneurial fervor of America, we need to cut all rates, so that there's certainty in our economy when people plan. And I'm confident we can get this done. It's in the best interests of our country that we do so.

I want to thank the Senators who are here. We've got a big vote coming up next week on the budget. The chairman is here of the Budget Committee. He's a man who understands the importance of tax relief to stimulate growth. I appreciate you, Mr. Chairman, for your hard work. And we look forward to working with you.

Thank you all for coming.

Campaign Finance Reform

Q. Mr. President, on campaign finance reform——

The President. I'm talking about the budget today. There will be ample time to talk about bills in progress. Today I want America to hear, we're going to get a good budget out of the House, and we'll get a good budget out of the Senate. And it's in the best interests of the working people that we do so.

Q. Will you say if there's——

The President. I'm talking about the budget today.

NOTE: The President spoke at 10:46 a.m. in the Cabinet Room at the White House. In his remarks, he referred to Representative William M. Thomas, chairman, House Committee on Ways and Means, and Senator Pete V. Domenici, chairman, Senate Budget Committee. A tape was not available for verification of the content of these remarks.

George W. Bush, Remarks Prior to a Meeting With Congressional Leaders and an Exchange With Reporters Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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