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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
June 25, 2002

Presidential Letter

June 25, 2002

Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. Leader:)

I am writing to ask that the bipartisan cooperation you have shown in our war against terror and creation of a new Department of Homeland Security be extended to another important priority: maintaining the full faith and credit of the United States Government.

Because of the economic slowdown that began in the summer of 2000, the terrorist attacks of September 11, and the ongoing expense of the war, the Secretary of the Treasury last December asked the Congress to increase the statutory ceiling on the Government's ability to raise funds. Seven months later, the Congress has still not acted, although it has routinely fulfilled this responsibility in the past.

The Treasury has had to take extraordinary measures to allow the United States Government to continue to function normally as a result of the failure of the Congress to act. These are only temporary measures, not an excuse for the Congress to fail to fulfill its duties.

I urge you and Minority Leader Gephardt to show the same spirit of bipartisan cooperation that Senate Majority Leader Daschle and Senate Minority Leader Lott showed 2 weeks ago with their bipartisanship on this important issue.

As we fight for freedom, we must not imperil the full faith and credit of the United States Government and the soundness and strength of the American economy.



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