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pd14de98 Remarks Prior to the House Judiciary Committee Vote on the First Article...

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[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents]

[Page i-ii]
Monday, December 14, 1998
Volume 34--Number 50
Pages 2431-2469

[[Page i]]

Weekly Compilation of



[[Page ii]]

Addresses and Remarks

    See also Meetings With Foreign Leaders
    Arkansas, memorial service for William Maurice Smith, Jr., in 
    Dale and Betty Bumpers, gala honoring--2444
    Death of Albert Gore, Sr.--2434
    Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Human Rights, presentation--2454
    Former Secretary of Agriculture Michael Espy, portrait unveiling--
    General Benjamin O. Davis, Jr., of the Tuskegee Airmen--2449
    House Judiciary Committee vote on the first article of impeachment, 
        remarks prior to--2465
    Kennedy Center Honors reception--2435
    Medicare fraud, efforts to combat--2438
    National Christmas tree lighting--2452
    Radio address--2432
    W. Averell Harriman Democracy Award--2446
    White House Conference on Social Security--2441

Communications to Congress

    Major illicit drug-producing and drug-transit countries, letter--

Communications to Federal Agencies

    Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Human Rights, memorandum--2453
    New Independent States of the former Soviet Union, memorandum on 

Executive Orders

    Adjustments of Certain Rates of Pay and Delegation of a Federal Pay 
        Administration Authority--2440

Executive Orders--Continued

    Further amendment to Executive Order 13037, Commission To Study 
        Capital Budgeting--2467
    Implementation of Human Rights Treaties--2459

Interviews With the News Media

    Exchange with reporters aboard Air Force One--2434

Letters and Messages

    Hanukkah, message--2453

Meetings With Foreign Leaders

    Costa Rica, President Rodriguez--2463
    El Salvador, President Calderon--2463
    Guatemala, Vice President Flores--2463
    Honduras, President Flores--2463
    Nicaragua, President Aleman--2463


    Death of Albert Gore, Sr.--2440
    Human Rights Day, Bill of Rights Day, and Human Rights Week--2457
    National Children's Memorial Day--2466
    National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day--2431

Statements by the President

    National Education Goals Report--2463
    Northern right whale, International Maritime Organization action to 

Supplementary Materials

    Acts approved by the President--2469
    Checklist of White House press releases--2468
    Digest of other White House announcements--2467
    Nominations submitted to the Senate--2468


Published every Monday by the Office of the Federal Register, National 
Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC 20408, the Weekly 
Compilation of Presidential Documents contains statements, messages, and
other Presidential materials released by the White House during the 
preceding week.

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There are no restrictions on the republication of material appearing in 
the Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents.

[[Page 2431]]

[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents]

[Page 2431-2432]
Monday, December 14, 1998
Volume 34--Number 50
Pages 2431-2469
Week Ending Friday, December 11, 1998
Proclamation 7156--National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, 1998

December 4, 1998

By the President of the United States

of America

A Proclamation

    Fifty-seven years ago, at 7:55 on Sunday morning, December 7, 1941, 
Imperial Japan launched a surprise attack on American forces at Pearl 
Harbor, thrusting the United States into the crucible of World War II. 
From the vantage point of history, we now know that the events of that 
day would transform our Nation and the course of world history.
    Attacking in two waves, Japanese aircraft killed or wounded almost 
3,600 Americans--over 1,000 of them aboard the battleship ARIZONA--sank 
or badly damaged most of our Pacific Fleet, and destroyed or damaged 
almost all U.S. aircraft in the area. In his historic speech to the 
Congress on the following day, President Franklin Roosevelt requested 
and the Congress approved a declaration of war against Japan. With 
characteristic optimism and confidence in the spirit of the American 
people, he predicted that ``No matter how long it may take us . . . the 
American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute 
    President Roosevelt proved to be right, although he would not live 
to see the ultimate triumph of freedom. After almost 4 long years of 
struggle and sacrifice by the men and women of our Armed Forces, 
sustained by the prayers of their families and the efforts of determined 
working men and women throughout our land who built our Nation into the 
``Arsenal of Democracy,'' the United States and our allies prevailed 
over the forces of fascism and oppression.
    To understand and appreciate the magnitude of our victory in World 
War II, we have only to remember Pearl Harbor. We have only to remember 
the indomitable spirit of the American forces there who, despite the 
death and destruction engulfing them, individually and collectively 
responded with courage and selflessness. We remember the sailors who 
raced to their battle stations and opened fire on the attacking Japanese 
planes even as their ships were ablaze and sinking. We remember the 
small, valiant band of Army pilots who managed to take off during the 
second wave of bombing and, though hopelessly outnumbered, shot down 
several enemy aircraft. We remember the crew of the crippled OKLAHOMA 
cheering their comrades on the NEVADA as she made a desperate dash down 
the harbor channel to safety. These heroes of Pearl Harbor were an 
inspiration to our entire country--and they remain so today. It is 
fitting that each year, on this day, we remember them and give thanks 
for their courage, their sacrifice, and their refusal to be defeated. 
Because of them, and the millions of other Americans like them who have 
served our Nation in uniform, America is free, strong, and at peace.
    To pay tribute to these heroes and to honor our solemn obligation to 
those who sacrificed their lives to defend our freedom that fateful 
Sunday morning, the Congress, by Public Law 103-308, has designated 
December 7, 1998, as ``National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.''
    Now, Therefore, I, William J. Clinton, President of the United 
States of America, do hereby proclaim December 7, 1998, as National 
Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day. I urge all Americans to observe this day 
with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities in honor of the 
Americans who served at Pearl Harbor. I also ask all Federal departments 
and agencies, organizations, and individuals to fly the flag of the 
United States at half-staff on this day in honor of those Americans who 
died as a result of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

[[Page 2432]]

    In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this fourth day of 
December, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and ninety-eight, and 
of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and 
                                            William J. Clinton

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 8:45 a.m., December 8, 

Note: This proclamation was published in the Federal Register on 
December 9. This item was not received in time for publication in the 
appropriate issue.

[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents]

[Page 2432-2433]
Monday, December 14, 1998
Volume 34--Number 50
Pages 2431-2469
Week Ending Friday, December 11, 1998
The President's Radio Address

December 5, 1998

    Good morning. In 1993 I took office determined to get our country 
moving again, to provide opportunity for all responsible, hard-working 
citizens, and to create the conditions of a genuine community in our 
    First, we had to get the economy going. Yesterday we got the good 
news that unemployment is down to 4.4 percent, the lowest in 28 years, 
with 17.3 million new jobs. But America needs more than jobs to really 
work. Our country also has to be safer. And we've worked very hard to 
make our streets, our schools, our neighborhoods safer places to live, 
work, and raise families. We've put in place a comprehensive strategy of 
more prevention, strong enforcement, tougher punishment. We've taken 
more guns and criminals off the street and put more police on the beat. 
Crime has dropped for 6 years in a row now, to a 25-year low.
    This week America launched a new effort to keep guns out of the 
hands of criminals and make our streets safer. For the first time ever, 
the Justice Department, working with the States, conducted computerized 
background checks on all firearm purchases. In its first 4 days, the new 
national instant check system reviewed more than 100,000 prospective gun 
sales to make sure only law-abiding citizens took home new guns. And in 
just 4 days, we stopped more than 400 felons, fugitives, stalkers, and 
other prohibited purchasers from walking away with new guns. That's more 
than 100 illegal gun sales blocked each day. Who knows how many lives 
were saved.
    But within just 24 hours after the instant checks went into effect, 
the National Rifle Association went to court to stop the new system. The 
gun lobby's goal is plain. As the NRA's executive director himself put 
it this week, they want to ``scale back'' the Brady law.
    Five years ago, as the Brady bill was nearing passage in Congress, 
the gun lobby spent more than a million dollars in a desperate effort to 
kill it. Fortunately, the good sense of Congress and the will of the 
American people prevailed. The gun lobby lost. But the American people 
won. Unfortunately, as we saw this week, they'll stop at nothing to gut 
the Brady law and undermine our efforts to keep more guns from falling 
into the wrong hands, even though we now have 5 years of evidence that 
it works.
    We can't turn back. In these last 5 years, Brady background checks 
have stopped nearly a quarter of a million illegal handgun sales. We 
can't go back to the days when dangerous criminals walked away from 
stores with new guns, no questions asked.
    Police, prosecutors, and the American people they protect have made 
it clear they want to strengthen, not weaken, the Brady law. That's why, 
when the new Congress goes into session next month, one of my top 
priorities will be to pass legislation to require a minimum waiting 
period before a handgun sale becomes final. This ``cooling off'' period 
will help prevent rash acts of violence and give authorities more time 
to stop illegal gun purchases.

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