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Mr. MULTER. Do you think we in the Congress ought to exercise jurisdiction over them, operate and maintain them?
Mr. WILLIAMS. Quite obviously I do not, but we are doing it at the present time. Do you feel those should be deeded to the city so that they would relieve the Federal Government from paying in lieu of taxes?
Mr. MULTER. Yes, but relieve the Federal Government of its obligation to support them, no, because most of the people who use those recreational facilities in and around the District of Columbia are the tourists, American citizens who come to their Capital from all over the country.
Mr. WILLIAMS. Those tourists bring money into the Capital, don't they?
Mr. MULTER. That is right.
Mr. WILLIAMS. There is not a city in the United States who would not be tickled pink to have these facilities provided for their city by the Federal Government and let them enjoy the benefits of it; is there?
Mr. MULTER. I am not so sure about that. It is an economic situation you cannot argue intelligently about unless you have the exact figures and know precisely what we are talking about. I think we can generalize about it, but it will get us nowhere. The fact is even if we give home rule to the District the U.S. Government must, in my opinion, continue to make a fair contribution to the maintenance of those facilities in and around the District of Columbia that are used by all of the American citizens.
Mr. WILLIAMS. Isn't that going quite a bit further than the Federal Government does with respect to other cities?
Mr. MULTER. What do we do with our national parks outside the District
Mr. WILLIAMB. I am not referring to national parks.
Mr. MULTER. Don't you think the recreational facilities of parks in the District of Columbia are national parks? Mr. WILLIAMS. Let's stick to this situation for a minute.
You mentioned facilities. Isn't it your purpose to put the city of Washington on exactly the same footing insofar as possible as Kansas City, New York City, Chicago, or other cities and municipalities? Mr. MULTER. I cannot say that. I can't say
that far. I do not think you can ever go all the way in the District of Columbia as long as this is the Capital of the country.
Mr. WILLIAMS. That is the very point. That is the very reason. Mr. MULTER. I do not think we ought to confuse it.
Mr. WILLIAMS. It is the reason the Fathers gave for setting this aside as a separate district.
It gave Congress exclusive control over it.
Mr. MULTER. They didn't see at that time a country stretching from the Atlantic to the Pacific and from the Rio Grande to Canada and they did not foresee all of the difficulties and problems we have today. I am sure one thing they did foresee is that no American citizen should ever be deprived of his right to participate in his own Government. I think that is what we should concentrate on here in this bill. We will worry about the financial situations and the financial problems a little later.
Let's give these people their basic, fundamental right to govern themselves.
Mr. WILLIAMS. You think this bill does it even though it does not give them a voice in the Senate nor does it give them a vote in the House?
Mr. MULTER. It gives them only a part of what they are entitled to.
Mr. Multer, you still insist that all of the provisions of H. Res. 320 remain in that resolution?
Mr. MULTER. I am willing to discuss with those who are of a mind to compromise, a compromise resolution in exchange for support for the bill or the resolution.
Mr. Davis. What is your position on those things that I asked you about?
Mr. MULTER. As of now, sir, I favor that resolution but my mind is never closed to improvements or amendments that may get additional support for it.
Mr. DAVIS. What would be the method of changing the provisions of this resolution? Has the gentleman studied that any?
Mr. MULTER. First, I think we would have to determine what support we can gain for what amendment. I mean this would have to be a matter of sitting down around the conference table and a matter of give and take.
I think it can be worked out. If there is a will to bring a bill to the House and get it enacted, I think we can work out a method of doing that.
Mr. Davis. You won't know whether there is a will to do that or not, will you, until the House votes on this resolution ?
Mr. MULTER. We can try to improve it in advance. I think we have a pretty good idea of who is opposed to the resolution, who is opposed to the bill, and if any of those Members are willing to give up some of their opposition in exchange for an amendment, either to the rule or to the bill, I think all of the sponsors of this legislation, including those representing the people in the District of Columbia, I am sure, will be happy to appoint a committee and sit down and discuss with the opponents of the measure how it can be improved so as to eliminate their opposition.
Mr. Davis. Does the gentleman have any move in mind of bringing about such a conference?
Mr. MULTER. Frankly, I did not.
Mr. MULTER. No. I have nothing in mind because until this morning I had no idea there was any will to compromise or any desire to compromise on the part of the opponents of the measure. If there is such a desire and such a will, we would be very happy to sit down and discuss it.
Mr. Davis. But as of now the gentleman does not have any such move in mind ?
Mr. MULTER. No.
May I make one more very frank statement about this entire matter, and please believe that I do not intend to offend anybody.
Starting again in my home district, where many people say I come from a one-party district, where in the last election I got some 78 per
cent of the vote, I might just as well resign or never run again if I voted against a home rule measure such as these that are before this committee.
I appreciate that many Members in this House and on this committee are in the opposite position where if they voted for a home rule measure they might just as well resign or not run again. Those are the political facts of life. There isn't much we can do about it except I think we all, as good American citizens, ought to combine and concentrate our efforts toward bringing something before the House and let the House work its will and when the majority has spoken, we bow in humility and say, “This is it, maybe we will be the majority next time.”
Mr. Davis. Well, thank you very much, Mr. Multer.
Mr. Davis. The next witness is Congressman Thor C. Tollefson, author of H.R. 4746.
Is Mr. Tollefson here? (No response.)
Mr. Davis. The next is Congressman Harley Staggers, author of H.R. 4820.
Nr. Davis. The next is our colleague on the committee, Congressman Roy W. Wier, author of H.R. 4379.
(No response.) Mr. Davis. The next is Congressman Sidney R. Yates, author of H.R. 4754.
(No response.) Mr. Davis. Next is Congressman William B. Widnall, author of H.R. 4642.
Mr. Davis. Next is our colleague on the committee, Congressman William L. Springer, author of H.R. 4641. STATEMENT OF HON. WILLIAM L. SPRINGER, A REPRESENTATIVE
IN CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF ILLINOIS
Mr. SPRINGER. I would say this for the committee: that I support H.R. 4641. I will say this further: that I was not familiar with the section of the Constitution which has been read by our colleague, Mr. Broyhill. I will support the bill in spite of the seemingly constitutional limitation and would be willing to submit it to the Supreme Court for an interpretation.
That is my statement, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. WILLIAMS. Mr. Springer, having read that section, do you now entertain any doubt in your mind as to the constitutionality of this action?
Mr. SPRINGER. Frankly, and seriously, I would say that I would retain serious doubts as to the constitutionality in view of the very exclusive wording that there is in the Constitution with reference to what may be done.
Having taken the stand that I have in behalf of the kind of a bill recommended by the President, it is my thought that he must have had some legal authority with reference to legislation before he recommended it to the Congress, and on that basis I am willing to support it and would vote for it if it comes before the House.
Mr. WILLIAMS. May I make this remark?
I want to compliment my colleague from Illinois, who is also my colleague on the Interstate and Foreign Commerce Committee, for his frankness, for his honesty, and for his exhibition of integrity which we have just heard. I fully understand the position in which he finds himself with respect to this legislation; and his willingness to express a doubt as to the constitutionality of the legislation, an honest doubt, even after having sponsored the legislation itself, I think is certainly commendable.
I have found him to be equally honest on the Interstate and Foreign Commerce Committee. I want to compliment him for making that observation.
Mr. Davis. Mr. McMillan?
Mr. McMILLAN. Mr. Chairman, I also want to compliment the gentleman from Illinois on his statement and I would like to ask him if his bill is similar to the bill introduced by Mr. Multer?
Mr. MULTER. I believe the bill is identical and also with H.R. 4400 introduced by my colleague, Mr. O'Konski from Wisconsin.
Mr. Davis. Judge, I note in House Resolution 320 that you are one of the four Members mentioned there proposing this resolution. What are the reasons why you feel that these restricted provisions should be placed in this resolution?
It amounts to practically a gag rule.
Mr. SPRINGER. I would say insofar as the resolution is concerned I would be willing to entertain for my own part any reasonable debate upon the bill.
Mr. Davis. Let me ask you what you think would be reasonable debate on this bill, H.R. 4630.
Mr. SPRINGER. Without going into detail, I would think, offhand, 2 days. In other words, 8 hours of general'debate. I do not believe any reasonable person, in view of the seriousness of this, would object to the 8 hours of general debate.
Mr. Davis. May I ask you then, Judge, whose proposal is it that these restrictive provisions be in this bill?
Mr. SPRINGER. I think that is a beginning, Mr. Chairman. I think that is a little bit like a lawyer at a bar. You put your pleading in and I take it the other party puts his pleading in and somewhere along the line usually there is a compromise which you arrive at as to what general debate would be.
I think this is not an unusual form that has been granted by the Rules Committee, I think, to limitation on the same thing and probably the same restrictive procedure. I think this follows generally what you would have in a discharge petition.
Mr. Davis. It has been my observation and experience that provisions of this kind are placed in a rule or resolution only on tax bills, or, that is, almost always on tax bills, and I think you and I and the balance of us understand why such restriction is placed on a tax bill resolution. It would be almost impossible to enact a tax bill from
time to time, which must be enacted, unless it were presented under a closed rule.
I discussed this some with the witness who just preceded you, our colleague, Mr. Multer, and I asked him what procedure would be followed to change any of these restrictive provisions in the bill, and he did not offer any suggestion which I think would be workable. May I ask you what procedure would be feasible and practical now in order to change this?
Mr. SPRINGER. I think the only way in which it could be done under these, and I would certainly want to withhold any comment as to how far I would go, but I think the only possible way of approach on this would be to vote the rule down with an amendment.
Mr. WILLIAMS. Will the gentleman yield?
Mr. WILLIAMS. I think the procedure opening an amendment is to vote down the previous question, which was open to an amendment.
Mr. SPRINGER. I think that is the only thing that can be done. I do not want to be bound by anything with reference to this until I see what the outcome will be when it reaches the floor, but I will say this: Through the years I have been as much opposed to the gag rule as the chairman. It is a question of how to get a the problem. In other words, if this bill does go to the floor, I will be willing to state on the floor of the House at the time it is under discussion that if there is any possibility of compromise on this at any reasonable hour I will be for it. I will state that.
You asked me what I thought "reasonable” was and just thinking back through the years, I would think that 2 days, or what would be known generally as 8 hours of debate or 10 hours of debate, then read the bill for amendment.
Mr. Davis. None of that is provided in here.
The next witness, then, is Congressman Peter J. Frelinghuysen, Jr., author of H.R. 4634.
(No response. The next witness, Congressman Perkins Bass, author of 4683. (No response.) Congressman Charles A. Boyle, author of H.R. 5677. (No response. Congressman Henry S. Reuss, author of H.R. 4637. STATEMENT OF HON. HENRY S. REUSS, A REPRESENTATIVE IN
CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF WISCONSIN Mr. Reuss. Mr. Chairman. Good morning, Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee.
Mr. SPRINGER. Mr. Chairman, I did not get the one point that I wanted to make and if you will pardon me I want to say frankly I could not and would not support a bill such as was brought from the Senate. I want to make that clear so there will be no misunderstanding.
Mr. Davis. Mr. Reuss.