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Public Papers - 1992

Remarks at a Bush-Quayle Rally in Branson, Missouri


The President. Thank you all very˙20much. Thank you so much. What a wonderful welcome back to the Ozarks. Thank you very, very much. May I just salute our great Governor, John Ashcroft, thanking him for all he's done to strengthen the American family and to bring decency and honor to the governorship of this State. He has been superb. I'm glad that all the entertainers, these marvelous stars who stand for grassroots America, are with us today. They are friends, and we honor them. And I know why you came here, just to hear them. So thank you very, very much.

May I tell you, perhaps it sounds a little bit prejudiced, but I think Barbara Bush is doing a first-class job as First Lady of this land. If you ask Barbara, she'll tell you that my favorite kind of music is a two-way tie between country and western. So, for me to visit Branson is really a dream come true. America loves country music because, I believe, country music really loves America. It's a great pleasure to be here.

Let me talk just briefly this afternoon about the choice that we face this fall. I might even mention a couple of country songs along the way. This is my second stop after our great Republican Convention in Houston that ended yesterday. Now we've got 70-some days left -- --

Audience members. Four more years! Four more years! Four more years!

The President. -- -- 70-some days left to take our message of hope for a safer and stronger and more prosperous America to every voter. I will take on the Governor of Arkansas. I will define him. And we will win.

You know, last week he gave an interview, Governor Clinton did, where he sounded as if he was getting ready to measure the drapes in the Oval Office. Well, I've got news for you. Not so fast. I believe that, come November 3d, my opponent and his saxophone will be playing that old Buck Owens classic, ``It's Crying Time.''

You know, last night I had a chance to have some straight talk with the American people. One of the questions I wanted to answer was why, with all the challenges at home, foreign policy is important. Look, remember back to those days when the kids, and some of you were there then, had to climb under your desks to practice nuclear war drills? I saw the chance to rid our children's dreams of the nuclear nightmare. I did it, and I am proud of it. And the American people supported me. If that Clinton-Gore ticket doesn't understand it, I believe the American people do. That our kids can now sleep in the sunshine of peace is good for the American family, good for the entire world.

Do you remember Garth Brooks' song ``One Dream Per Customer''? Well, to me, that's not a bad description of our great country because freedom means that every citizen can have their dream. In the past 4 years, more people around the world were able to have their first dream of freedom than at any time in human history. With your help and the help of the American people that kept America strong, we got that done.

If the opposition doesn't think that's important, let them go to ethnic America. Let them talk to people whose families still live there or families that came here for the first time. Let them discuss that. Let those Clinton-Gore people hear from the American people that freedom is important. And I am glad I had a hand in bringing it about.

There's another side of all of this. There's another side of a more peaceful world. And that means that this new freedom brings new demands for American products, all American products. That means jobs for the American people.

Now, my opponent's ideas, they are clear, present, and dangerous. He says he's converted, he's not a liberal. But right out of the block, he offers 0 billion in new Government spending, that's true, and then 0 billion in new taxes, the largest tax increase in history. And he calls that investment. He wants to invest your money in Government spending, and I'm not going to let it happen.

When you peel away all his nice-sounding rhetoric about the plan he's got, the impact of his plan can be summed up by a song by my old friend Loretta Lynn, ``When the Tingle Becomes a Chill.''

I propose a dramatically different way to create new jobs. I believe that we get a change in Congress, we can do it this way: Cut the Government spending and then cut the taxes. Get it down. Get Government further out of the lives of the people. And the Congress, that gridlocked Congress, has failed. Last night I promised a new idea to let you, the taxpayer, check your income tax form to designate up to 10 percent of your taxes for one purpose: reduce the deficit. And then, to the degree you check it, put lids on so we have to reduce the spending to go with that deficit reduction.

They get on me about spending. Look, I've sent up to the Congress proposals to eliminate over 200 Government programs and 4,000 projects, and I've asked for a freeze on discretionary spending. That gridlocked Congress has refused to go along. So today I say, let's give the American people the freedom to do what Congress has refused to do and been unable to do for 38 years under that liberal Democrat control.

As I say, I want to go further. As we cut the spending, I believe we can cut those taxes and give families more money to pay their bills and businesses more incentives to hire new workers. The Congress linked in to Bill Clinton say no, and I say yes. That's the way to bring prosperity back to the United States of America.

We have other priorities.

Audience members. We want Bush! We want Bush! We want Bush!

The President. We have other priorities. Let me tell you about health care. My opponent has a plan that would lead to a back-door Government takeover of our health care system and would slap a tax on the already overburdened small-business man and small-business woman in this country. I want to unfetter small business, not stick a new tax on them.

I have a different approach to health care, the plan I've got to the Congress that the gridlockers refuse to move on. What it says is: Make insurance available to all, the poorest of the poor and everybody else. Get these costs under control. Do something about these malpractice lawsuits. But do not turn the health care over to the Government; would run it like they ran the post office and the bank.

We've got a great plan to renew our schools, and God bless the teachers that are out here today. We also have another plan, and that is put the lid on some of these crazy lawsuits that are costing our economy hundreds of millions of dollars, scaring coaches out of the Little League, scaring doctors out of the medical profession. Suing each other too much and caring for each too little, and I want to change it.

You might ask, why haven't you done that as President? I'll tell you. We've had proposal after proposal up on Capitol Hill to do it, to change the law. And the gridlocked Congress doesn't dare think about it because they are in the pocket of the trial lawyers association. That's the fact. That is the fact, and I'm going to keep telling the American people that: Blocked by the gridlocked Democrat-controlled Congress. Remember that. You're going to hear a lot about it for 74 days.

All right, let me give you another example. I mentioned it last night. On the day I sent the planes over Baghdad -- God bless those men and women of Desert Storm -- on that day I sent a new energy program to the Congress. It took 43 days to win the Gulf war, but it has taken 533 days, and still counting, to get Congress to send a national energy program down to the White House. That is too long. The Congress is in gridlock. They don't dare move. Too many -- --

Audience members. Clean the House! Clean the House! Clean the House!

The President. That's it: Clean the House, clean the House. That is the expression. That's it. All right, I'm going to be saying that from now on, too. This is exactly right. That is the problem: 38 years the Democrats have controlled the House. You ought to be able to just make a mistake and get a change in one time. They've never done it. Throw them out with their PAC's, their privileges, and their perks, and give us a chance.

Tomorrow, Branson, I understand, is hosting the fifth Oldtime Fiddle Contest. I wouldn't be surprised to see all the liberal leaders of the Congress there, signed up, participating as a team, fiddling while America gets burned by their inaction. But make no mistake about it, that Clinton-Gore ticket are locked, they are interlocked with the gridlocked Congress. I'm not going to let the American people forget that. We've got to change the Congress and send Bill Clinton back to live happily after across the Ozark Lake.

So I've got two messages, two messages. First, for the opponent: Follow that old Elvis Presley song ``Return to Sender.'' Return him over here across the lake. And then, you may have guessed it, break up the gridlocked Congress. Kick the liberals out of Washington. Give me a Congress that will cut the spending and cut the taxes and do what is right to get our great country moving again.

You know, the thing that got me the most about this Governor across the way is when he said we were ridiculed around the world. We are not. We are the most respected nation in the world. Let him tell that to the leaders there, and they'll tell him he's wrong. If he wants to say we're ridiculed, let him tell that to the men and women that fought in Desert Storm and see what happens to him.

So yes, I am proud to say we have changed the world. Now we've got to move this country forward. My good friend Randy Travis put it this way: ``There is no stopping us now.'' Thank you for this hospitality. Thank you for this fantastic welcome.

Let me put it this way. Here's the way it's going to be from now on out. Do you remember the son of Missouri, Harry Truman? He was a big underdog, and he fought back. He wrapped another Governor challenging him right around that do-nothing Congress. I'm going to do the same thing with the Governor of Arkansas, wrap him to the gridlocked Congress, take my message of peace and a stronger America to the American people, and win this election, not for me but for the American people.

Thank you very, very much. Thank you. Great rally.

Note: The President spoke at 4:36 p.m. at Silver Dollar City. In his remarks, he referred to entertainer Randy Travis.

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