George Bush photo

Remarks at a Republican Campaign Rally in Albuquerque, New Mexico

November 03, 1990

The President. Frank, thank you very much. Thank you all very, very much. I am just delighted to be here. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Frank, I love this enthusiasm. I think it bodes well for the election of Frank Bond as the next Governor of New Mexico. Get out and get the job done.

Frank, to you and Mary Thompson, your running mate, Barbara and I send our warm, best wishes for a strong and successful finish to this race you've both run so well. And I'm delighted to see one of the great leaders in the United States Senate here, Pete Domenici. What a man he's been for his country. And of course, if we had more Congressmen in Washington like Steve Schiff, we wouldn't be worrying about red ink and too much spending; we'd be doing much, much better. And of course, another great Congressman -- who is not here with us today -- but Joe Skeen is also the same stripe as Frank. Wonderful people -- Steve, Frank Bond. And let me just throw in another name well-known in Washington because he served there, but he's served this State with such distinction, my dear friend Garrey Carruthers. What a job he's done.

And I am very sorry that I had to miss the visit just a few days ago, but look at this magnificent turnout. And besides, our daughter-in-law Columba was up in Santa Fe trying to do a little makeup work. I'm glad she was here to show the flag for the family. Our dog, Millie, sends her love. And Barbara Bush, the Silver Fox, sends her love, too.

You know, in a sense, this is kind of like coming home, because I spent 12 years over in west Texas, right near Eunice and Hobbs and not too far from Roswell. And I feel I know this State. I'm delighted to be back. And I want to just say that we are enthusiastic about this trend to send a good man, Frank Bond, to follow a good man, Garrey Carruthers.

In a sense, next Tuesday marks a turning point for New Mexico. You face a choice: whether to turn the clock back and return to those days of the seventies -- we used to call them the malaise days -- or to make this election the first step towards a future as bright and broad as the New Mexico sky. And there's not a doubt in my mind about the right choice: Starting November 6th, New Mexico will move forward with Frank Bond.

Frank knows what it takes to make New Mexico even more competitive, and he knows what it is to do that and how to open up markets, national and international. He knows what the move towards a free-trade pact with our good neighbor Mexico can mean for this State's economy: new jobs, new businesses, and new opportunities for New Mexico.

And we are on a glorious new path in our relations with our neighboring country Mexico. I've worked hard with President Salinas, and I think I can say to you, relations are on the way. They've never been better, and I think they're still moving up. And I'd like to have a Governor in this State with whom I could work to continue that great cooperation between the United States and Mexico.

You know, here at home, a growing economy is the job number one for our party. And the economy is the job-creating engine that every family in the country counts on. With the help of State leaders like Frank Bond, I'm going to do my level-best to see that the national economy keeps on growing.

You know, in recent months we've seen some uncertainty. Some areas have had some real slowdown. And that's why, in my judgment, a budget agreement was critical and why I was willing to work with Pete Domenici and others to go the extra mile to get it. And despite tough negotiations, we finally got a budget agreement with the Democrats that controlled both Houses of the United States Congress.

And we had our differences -- big differences. But I want to say that we ended up with some things I'll tell you about that are good. And it never would have happened without Pete Domenici's courageous leadership in the United States Senate.

The Democrats have started up their old line again. They wanted to raise taxes, including the income tax rates on every working family in America. They talked about "soak the rich." They had a surtax that would have raised $4 billion from soaking the rich. And at the same time, they were sneaking through a provision to raise $40 billion on the working men and women of this country. And we stopped it with Steve Schiff and Joe Skeen and Pete Domenici.

You see, I sent up a budget that would have reduced the deficit with spending cuts because I believe, as you do, that you're not taxed too little, the Government spends too much. We did get some pretty good events out of that. We had $492 billion in deficit reduction -- $350 billion of it was in spending cuts. We built in some incentives to encourage oil and gas drilling that will make America less dependent on foreign oil. And I think that's a good thing and very timely. And the best thing about it is Congress was put on a pay-as-you-go plan -- real enforcement provisions in this budget agreement. And lastly, although defense was reduced -- and I believe it should have been some -- we held the line against the reckless cut. And we ensured that America's defenses and Armed Forces remain second to none anywhere in the world.

But you know, getting a budget agreement behind us is just part of what we've accomplished. Let's start with the environment, our sacred trust. Frank Bond's grown up here, in the shadows of the mountains, amid the grandeur and beauty of the New Mexico desert. So, you New Mexicans want someone committed to preserving New Mexico's rich natural heritage in all its singular splendor. And I know a fourth-generation New Mexican you can count on. He's right here, and his name is Frank Bond.

There's a little good news coming out of Washington, because more than a year ago I challenged the Congress to support my determination to break the stalemate that has hindered progress on tough clean air legislation for the past decade, to turn technology and to power the marketplace to the advantage of the environment. And today, thanks to the innovation and cooperation of industry, government, and environmental experts, we've broken a 13-year legislative logjam. And there will be landmark legislation which will decrease by 10 million tons the emissions caused by acid rain. It will bring to the Nation's 100 most smog-laden cities safer, healthy air. And it will encourage the use of alternative fuels that are safer for our environment and reduce our excessive dependence on foreign energy. And Republicans care about the environment. We have finally got a clean air bill that I will sign when I go back to Washington, DC.

There's still work to be done on the Republican agenda -- education, for example. Frank Bond knows America can't have a first-class economy with second-rate schools. And we're determined that every child in America has a fair shot at a quality education. That's why I proposed and, earlier this morning, I signed a substantial increase for Head Start, to serve 690,000 kids across this country. And that's why we sent to the Congress the Educational Excellence Act, our action plan for fundamental education reform -- to reward achievement and encourage accountability and to give parents more say in their children's education. I would rather have the parents have more choice about the schools than have some committee in Washington assign how this education ought to work at the State level. Frank Bond and I agree on something fundamental: When it comes to the schooling of our kids, the bureaucracy does not know best; the parents do. And we want to support the good, excellent teachers -- thank God for those teachers that sacrifice to educate the young people in this country every single day.

You know, today we're here on a very partisan point of view -- proudly. And that's what Americans should do. We ought to participate. We ought to work to elect those candidates we believe in. Now, as I've been doing for a couple of days, I want to put partisan politics aside. And I know that everyone in this country is vitally interested in the situation in the Persian Gulf. So, let me just say a few words about our mission there.

You know, former Senator Vandenberg was right when he said politics ends at the water's edge. And I am very grateful to the leaders in the Congress, both Democrat and Republican, and to the Members of the Congress -- all of them -- and to the American people for the steadfast support they are giving the policy of the United States of America in the Persian Gulf.

You know, I want to be very clear about this. The United States bears no hostility to the people of Iraq, nor do any of the over 25 countries represented on land and sea in the Gulf area. We have no argument with the people of Iraq. Our problem is with Saddam Hussein and his determination to take over and bully a neighbor. And we are not going to permit that to stand. And let me say this: I want a peaceful resolution to this crisis. Indeed, we have worked closely with the United Nations in putting sanctions into effect. The United Nations has never been more united nor more fulfilling its peacekeeping mission than it is today as it unanimously condemns the aggression of Saddam Hussein, the invading dictator of Iraq.

So, we are giving the sanctions time to work. And I hope there will never ever be a shot fired in anger. But once again, let me be very, very clear: There will be no compromise on the stated objectives of the United Nations Security Council resolutions. The brutality against innocent civilians will not be tolerated. And it will not stand.

Saddam Hussein calls them guests, and I call them hostages. And Americans are being held against their will, and we cannot rest until every single one of them comes home, free to enjoy the liberties of the United States of America. So, let me say simply to those that are concerned, protesting: They've got it wrong. We're not talking about oil. We are talking about standing up against aggression. And if the United States can't do it and cannot lead, nobody can. We do not need another Hitler in this time of our century. To stake out innocent civilians and to isolate and try to starve out an embassy is unacceptable behavior. And even these friends over here ought to understand that.

New Mexicans seem to understand this. Right now, brave young men and women are serving over there, halfway around the world. And they are the finest forces ever to serve. They're standing ready there in the sand and the heat of the desert sun. In a few weeks, they're going to sit down for a special Thanksgiving, miles from home and family. And Barbara and I have a lot to be thankful for. And we will be with those troops on Thanksgiving Day, and I will give them the thanks of everybody here today and of all the American people.

Yes, these are challenging times for our country. They really are challenging times for a country. But I can think of no more exciting time to be President of the United States than today. It is a tremendous challenge. Our country is united, and we will prevail.

And now back to the partisan business at hand. Next Tuesday think about the liberties we enjoy in this great country. Think about what a privilege it is to walk into a polling booth and vote. Think of the changes in Eastern Europe and the crying out for democracy that has been fulfilled. Think of the changes south of our border in this hemisphere. And do not take democracy for granted; go out and vote. Vote for Frank Bond, for his running mate, for Pete Domenici. Do your duty, and we will have better government in the State of New Mexico for the next decade.

Thank you, and God bless you. And God bless America. Thank you.

Note: The President spoke at 4:05 p.m. in the Durand Hanger at Albuquerque International Airport. In his remarks, he referred to Gov. Garrey Carruthers. Following his remarks, the President traveled to Houston, TX.

George Bush, Remarks at a Republican Campaign Rally in Albuquerque, New Mexico Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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