Harry S. Truman photo

The President's News Conference

July 10, 1947

THE PRESIDENT. I have no special announcements to make this morning. I thought maybe you might have some questions you might like to ask me.

[1.] Q. Mr. President, Senator Barkley, on his way out a moment ago, said you would veto the new tax bill. Would you

THE PRESIDENT. I told Senator Barkley that I didn't see any reason why my attitude should change if they sent me the same bill they did before.

[2.] Q. Mr. President, you conferred this week with Gordon Clapp and Generals Pick and Wheeler. Could you tell us what plans you have for controlling the Ohio River in the Missouri Valley ?

THE PRESIDENT. Well, I have told you, I think, on numerous occasions, that the Missouri Valley Authority is the best way to control the Missouri Valley, but that doesn't affect the flood situation on the Des Moines River, or the Mississippi River or the Ohio River. We are trying to work out a comprehensive flood control program for the whole Mississippi Valley.

Q. For the whole valley? You said you are for the Missouri Valley Authority plan?

THE PRESIDENT. I think I have said it a dozen times. You want me to put it down in writing and hand it to you? [Laughter]

Q. You haven't actively supported it, have you ?

THE PRESIDENT. Why not? That is the only bill that is pending on the subject. Murray 1 was in here and had a conference with me just the other day, and I told him to push the bill.

1 Senator James E. Murray.

Q. You will actively support it?

THE PRESIDENT. Why of course. I have always actively supported it.

Q. They don't think so out in Missouri.

THE PRESIDENT. Who doesn't think so?

Q. Most of that Missouri Valley crowd.


Q. You will support the Missouri-

THE PRESIDENT. I shall support the comprehensive flood control program. That is the emergency at the present time, not the Missouri Valley Authority.

[3.] Q. Have you decided yet when you can accept the Brazilian invitation to go to Rio?

THE PRESIDENT. No. That is still in contemplation.

[4.] Q. Mr. President, are you considering J. Copeland Gray for one of these new places on the National Labor Relations?

THE PRESIDENT. Not that I know of. Nobody put him up to me that I know of.

Q. Anything--are any of those appointments nearing announcement?

THE PRESIDENT. We hope to be able to make announcements in a short time. As soon as I am able to make the announcements, I will let you know right away.

Q. Have you decided on a successor to Judge Collet?

THE PRESIDENT. The successor to Judge Collet will be announced just as soon as I am ready to send it up.1

1 See Item 174.

[5.] Q. Mr. President, do you favor equalization of taxes between community property States and the other States ?

THE PRESIDENT. Well, that is a matter for the Congress to decide. When it comes up to me I will act on it. Congress has control on taxation and the collection of revenue.

Q. The Treasury sent a voluminous report to the Congress without any recommendations. I thought you might have some ideas--

THE PRESIDENT. No. The Congress has to decide on that.

[6.] Q. Mr. President, have you a meeting Monday with the congressional leaders ?


Q. Is that to discuss the Marshall plan?

THE PRESIDENT. NO. That is--it may-- the Marshall plan may come up, but it is particularly to discuss the displaced persons situation--the message which I sent.2

2 See Item 140.

[7.] Q. Any comment on Congress coming back here in the fall, as it has been reported ?

THE PRESIDENT. I had no thoughts on the matter. Of course, if it is necessary for the Congress to be called back, it will be called. I don't anticipate that there will be any necessity for it.

[8.] Q. Mr. President, have you seen any flying saucers ?

THE PRESIDENT. Only in the newspapers. [Laughter]

Q. Any explanations of them from over here?

THE PRESIDENT. Only the explanations I have seen in the newspapers. Did you ever hear of the moon hoax ?

[9.] Q. Mr. President, do you have any comment on the contract signed by the United Mine Workers and the owners of the coal mines ?

THE PRESIDENT. No comment. That is a contract strictly between the owners and the miners. I have no comment on it.1

1 See Item 142.

Q. Is there a study being conducted within the Government, sir, as to the effect that might have on the general level of prices ?

THE PRESIDENT. None that I know of. Mark Sullivan probably can tell you. [Laughter]

[10.] Q. Mr. President, what are the prospects for a trip west this fall ?


Q. Next spring, Mr. President?


Q. Mr. President, have you decided anything about this trip across the country this fall with party leaders ?

THE PRESIDENT. I was just saying that no plans were made for any trip anywhere.

[ 11. ] Q. Mr. President, there was a story broke yesterday about this disappearance of the atomic energy secret papers. There are still persistent rumors this morning that the--in some publications--that the White Sands--rather Los Alamos was not the only one. Have you had any

THE PRESIDENT. I think Senator Hickenlooper very clearly explained the situation in his statement to the Senate. He is chairman of that committee, and I am perfectly willing to accept his statement on the matter. They have been investigating it.1

1 see congressional Record (vol. 93, P. 8494).

[12.] Q. Mr. President, what is your attitude toward the political arrests in Greece ?

THE PRESIDENT. I have no attitude.

[13.] Q. Mr. President, have you heard about Roger Slaughter's speech saying that there would be a scandal breaking on this administration ?

THE PRESIDENT. All I know about it is the memorandum that you sent in to me, Tony.2 [Laughter]

2 Ernest B. Vaccaro of the Associated Press.

Q. That's below the belt!

THE PRESIDENT. I consider the source of the remarks which you said were made in the speech by Mr. Slaughter, so it doesn't worry me any.

[14.] Q. Mr. President, Congress and congressional leaders are attempting to get away the 26th of July. Do you see any reason why they shouldn't?

THE PRESIDENT. NO, I don't see any reason why they shouldn't. Congress understands it much better than I do.

Q. There has been discussion as to whether they should recess or adjourn.

THE PRESIDENT. Well, that is up to the Congress. That is none of my business. I don't intend to adjourn them myself. [Laughter]

[15.] Q. Mr. President, on this special session this fall, with the Marshall plan being discussed and probably some plan to evolve out of Europe, wouldn't that more or less necessitate some sort of action

THE PRESIDENT. The--if the necessity arises we certainly will take whatever steps are necessary.

Q. I was trying to get a little clarification on this, that you didn't think that the necessity would arise?

THE PRESIDENT. I don't see any necessity in the immediate future now, but of course if the necessity arises we will do whatever is necessary to meet the situation.

Q. Mr. President, is there any possibility of a message going up during this session only, to communicate to Congress your present plans on the Marshall plan and what would be required ?


Q. No recommendations on the way ?

THE PRESIDENT. I can't make any recommendations on that situation until we find out how the Paris conference goes.

[16.] Q. Mr. President, there has been some printed speculation that Dr. Steelman might leave your personal staff and head the new Federal Conciliation Service. Would you care to comment on that?

THE PRESIDENT. I hadn't heard about it, and I don't think Dr. Steelman has, either. I think he is pretty well satisfied working 24 hours a day for me. [Laughter] How about it, John?

Dr. Steelman: About right.

[17.] Q. Have you any comment to make, sir, on the refusal of the eastern European countries to join the Paris conference on the Marshall plan ?


Reporter: Thank you, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT. You're welcome.

Note: President Truman's one hundred and eleventh news conference was held in his office at the White House at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, July 10, 1947.

Harry S Truman, The President's News Conference Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/232037

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