Herbert Hoover photo

The President's News Conference

January 30, 1931

PRIME MINISTER RICHARD B. BENNETT

THE PRESIDENT. I have been very glad to welcome here today the Canadian Premier on his informal visit to Washington. We have no formal matters under discussion. We are mutually interested in the common welfare of both nations, and we will have, no doubt, some informal conversations on problems of the future, and that sort of conversations always leads to better working understandings. I consider it a very great compliment that Mr. Bennett has found it possible to come to Washington in such a fashion.

VIRGIN ISLANDS

The only other matter of interest that I have today is that we have undertaken to reorganize the Government of the Virgin Islands. The Navy Department has asked to be relieved of the administration, and I am assigning it to the Department of the Interior.

I am proposing to forward to Congress the name of Dr. Paul M. Pearson, of Pennsylvania, for Governor. Other civilian officials will be appointed in replacement of naval officers.

Congress recently made some appropriations for reorganization and developmental work in the islands, and the new organization is intended to make that more effective.

The Director of the Budget and the Director of the Bureau of Efficiency have worked out a plan for the new administration which will be carried into action by the Department of the Interior.

QUESTIONS

Q. Mr. President, is that effective today--immediately?

THE PRESIDENT. Yes, I will send the name of the new Governor up to Congress, and as soon as he is confirmed or otherwise we will make the changes.

Q. Mr. President, you spoke of Mr. Bennett having set a fashion in coming down here.

THE PRESIDENT. I didn't say "set a fashion." I said "in such a fashion."

Note: President Hoover's one hundred and seventieth news conference was held in the White House at 4 p.m. on Friday, January 30, 1931.

On the same day, the White House issued texts of the President's statements on the visit of Canadian Prime Minister Richard B. Bennett (see Item 40) and the reorganization of the Government of the Virgin Islands (see Item 41).

Herbert Hoover, The President's News Conference Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/206780

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