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April 15, 1988
Trade Bill took up most of first meeting. Jim B. & Howard B. visited Bob Byrd & Jim Wright. They offered to drop the plant closing notice if I’d sign. Then Bob Byrd phoned Howard & said his people wouldn’t go along with dropping that—well then I won't sign.
Next subject was I.N.F.—This time Colin & Howard met with Bob Dole & Byrd. We want ratification before I leave for Moscow. Sen. Nunn is still the roadblock with some of our right wingers on his side. The issue is over conventional warheads on cruise missiles.
Then a little time on 2 of our Sens. Pete Wilson & Al D’Amato who want us to decertify Mexico on grounds of not doing enough to fight drugs. I wont do it. Mexico is trying I know but is dealing with a lot of corruption.
N.S.C.—Report on our Frigate hitting a mine in the Persian Gulf. List of injured up to 10—only 1 serious but Dr. is convinced he will live. He’s burned on 90% of his body. Mines had only just been laid—48 hrs. earlier ships had gone through on that same course. Later in day we had an N.S.P.G. meeting. Our mil. is now studying what retaliatory measures we should take.
There was a bombing near an installation of ours in Spain. In Naples the Am. sailor killed was a 21 yr. old woman. Colin sounded a little more optimistic about Sen. action on I.N.F.
Later in morning had a meeting with Jim Baker on the Trade bill. I’m afraid I’m going to have to veto. Then the N.S.P.G. meeting—we all agree on retaliation, new Chiefs of Staff are working on targets & details.
Over to St. Dining Rm. for lunch with “Vote America.” This is a volunteer group chaired by our Ambas. to France Joe Rogers. It was a good session with a fine enthusiastic group. Then it was over to the Cabinet room with Lt. Gov’s. group—22 of them—15 Dem. 7 Repub. A short meeting. Then Geo. Shultz’s meeting—report on Afghanistan & his upcoming meeting with Shevardnadze in Moscow.
Some desk time—then a taping session—6 affairs including Bob Hopes T.V. 85th birthday treating. Then off to Camp David.