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Statement of Administration Policy: S.J. Res. 77 - Compact of Free Association

October 02, 1985

STATEMENT OF ADMINISTRATION POLICY

(Senate)
(Senator McClure (R) Idaho)

The Administration urges prompt Senate passage of S.J. Res. 77, including certain amendments to be offered by Senators Packwood and McClure. The Compact would provide for a new United States relationship with the two largest components of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands—the Marshall Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia—and has been approved by the voters of these two jurisdictions. Prompt enactment of the Compact is necessary to ensure continued use of Kwajalein missile range and fulfill United States trusteeship obligations.

The Administration supports the tax and trade amendment to be offered by Senator Packwood. The Administration recognizes the need for a provision to compensate the Micronesians for benefits originally negotiated in the Compact that would be foregone under this amendment. The Administration believes, however, that the compensation amendment to be offered by Senator McClure, estimated to cost over $95 million, far exceeds the potential loss to the Micronesians. If the Senate adopts this amendment, the Administration will seek to have it reduced in the House to a level commensurate with the potential loss, estimated to be approximately $15 million.

The Administration strongly opposes the protectionist textile amendment which we understand may be offered on the Senate floor. This amendment would significantly roll back imports of textile and apparel products from twelve selected major suppliers, regardless of whether such imports cause damage to U.S. producers or are unfairly traded. If such an amendment is added to the joint resolution, the President's senior advisors would recommend disapproval.

Finally, because the Administration favors enactment of the Compact in a version as close as possible to the President's proposal, the Administration opposes all other amendments, including an amendment that may be offered dealing with settlement of nuclear claims by U.S. citizens. The Administration's opposition to this amendment was expressed in a letter from Max Friedersdorf to Senator Dole on July 26, 1985, which noted that if such an amendment is included in the joint resolution, the President's senior advisors would recommend disapproval.

Ronald Reagan, Statement of Administration Policy: S.J. Res. 77 - Compact of Free Association Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/327025