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December 03, 1985
A crisp day—but finally bright sunshine all day & how I’ve missed it.
N.S.C. briefing with Geo. Shultz present—followed a meeting with Repub. Cong. leadership. A brief report on Geneva then a discussion on tax reform. House Republicans have a package differing from the Dem. Ways & Means bill. I just listened. What I intend to do is announce both bills have some flaws that should be corrected but main thing is to move a bill through the House & hope the Sen. will pass it’s own version & then see what we can get in Conference. I dont believe the Dem. House will pass the Repub. version but just so we get a bill to the Sen. Only the House can originate a tax bill. If they fail to pass one—tax reform is dead.
In the N.S.C. meeting Bud brought up his retirement. John Poindexter was there & maybe Bud intended that I should name him then as his successor. I hadn’t discussed it with anyone so remained silent. Later talked to George & Don—then phoned Cap in Brussels & Bill Casey. Tomorrow we’ll announce I think—Buds resignation & that John P. will replace him. Over to the East Room to address a group who have set up an org. to link technology to help the disabled. Two young people who have been helped were present—one a young girl who cannot speak & can only move her thumbs. A computer scientist has worked out a method where by with thumbs alone she can create a message on a small screen attached to her wheelchair.
A Cabinet meeting to discuss a bill before the Sen. to give the Pres. the power to shut off private credit & bank loans to the Soviet U. I came down on the side of not doing that.
A meeting with Paul Laxalt who wanted to hear about Geneva & I called it a day.