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June 10, 1985
Pres. Barletta of Panama in for a short visit. He needs Ec. help & I dont know how much leeway we have. He’s supportive of our position on Nicaragua & believes we cant use a carrot unless we have a stick to back it up. Today was the day we told Congress & the world what we intended doing about SALT II. Apparently my decision was right—at least I’m being called a Statesman by both the left & right.
This morning an unusual & exhilarating experience. I shook hands with & addressed some 250 local & state office holders who in recent months have switched from the Dem. Party to Repub. Bulk are from the South. Geo. Shultz came in—just back from the N.A.T.O. Ministers meeting. It went well. George saw Helene V.D. in London & told her our feeling that having married a native Austrian she should resign as our Ambas. It hit her pretty hard as I was sure it would but she took it well. She’s been a darn good Ambas. & is very well thought of by the Austrians. I dont think this will take effect until the end of the year.
I recv’d. the new Pro Basketball Champs in the Rose Garden—the L.A. Lakers. Then a long interview with—a “Readers Digest” editor.—End of day.