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Public Papers - 1989 - October

Remarks and an Exchange With Reporters on Signing a Bill Making Continuing Appropriations for Fiscal Year 1990 and Providing Disaster Relief

1989-10-26

The President. Let me just thank this delegation, congressional delegation from California -- its two distinguished Senators and Members of Congress, those most interested in this disaster relief. And I've signed this bill that provides .85 billion in Federal disaster relief for the victims of the earthquake and also the hurricane on the east coast.

And I would simply say again that our hearts go out to the victims. And we are hopeful that this action, taken with great speed and compassion by the Congress, will send a signal that all of us, crossing party lines, care very much about this.

And so, I appreciate those of you who have impressed on us the importance of quick relief. I appreciate those who took the time to be with me and help me understand this -- feelings of the people out there. And lastly, I really do want to thank again -- this is government action, but in its totality it cannot exceed the action of private citizens who are pitching in to help neighbors and friends out there. And I got that message loud and clear from all of you, and I think it's so true.

So, I will go forward and do this, and I'm delighted that you all came down.

Q. Some of the Californians say they think that more money would be needed. Do you anticipate this will be the end of it?

The President. What was that, Lesley [Lesley Stahl, CBS News]?

Q. It was Rita [Rita Beamish, Associated Press].

The President. Oh, it was Rita -- blaming her. [Laughter]

Q. And what I said was, do you think that this will be enough?

Q. Will there be more if it's needed, Mr. President?

The President. I pledged to do what we need to do, and I think we've made a great -- got this done.

Note: The President spoke at 11:05 a.m. in the Oval Office at the White House. H.J. Res. 423, approved October 26, was assigned Public Law No. 101 - 130. A tape was not available for verification of the contents of the remarks.

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