Statement by the President Upon Signing Bill Concerning Public Transit Services in the District of Columbia
DUE TO a labor management dispute and resultant strike, the people of the City of Washington have been without transit services for 45 days. Neither party to the dispute that gave rise to this stoppage of service has discharged its obligation to the public.
I am opposed to any attempt to settle labor disputes through legislation of the character of S. 2576. My approval of this bill is for an entirely different, but it seems to me, a cogent reason. The law creating the Capital Transit Company more than 20 years ago established a direct relationship between the Company and the Congress in that the Congress reserved to itself the power of determining the termination date of the Company's franchise. This Congress has done in S. 2576. Moreover, both the Congress and the Commissioners of the District of Columbia have concluded that Capital Transit Company, beginning several years ago and continuing up to the present time, has failed to measure up to its responsibilities as a public utility in the District of Columbia. The effective date of cancellation of the Company's charter and franchises has been fixed by Congress as one year after the date of the bill's enactment, and the bill authorizes the District Commissioners to contract with that Company or others for transit services in the intervening period.
I urge that the Commissioners act with wisdom in protecting the best interests of the public.
Note: As enacted, S. 2576 is Public Law 389, 84th Congress (69 Stat. 724).
Dwight D. Eisenhower, Statement by the President Upon Signing Bill Concerning Public Transit Services in the District of Columbia Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/233502