Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum

Public Papers
Harry S. Truman
1945-1953

President Harry S. Truman.  Source: Truman Library.

The Public Papers of Harry S. Truman contain most of President Truman's public messages, statements, speeches, and news conference remarks. Documents such as Proclamations, Executive Orders, and similar documents that are published in the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations, as required by law, are usually not included. The documents within the Public Papers are arranged in chronological order. President Truman delivered the remarks or addresses from Washington, D. C., unless otherwise indicated. The White House in Washington issued statements, messages, and letters unless noted otherwise. (Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Harry S. Truman, 1945-1953. Washington, D.C.: United States Government Printing Office, 1966)

The Public Papers contain items such as the Statement by the President Announcing the Use of the A-Bomb at Hiroshima (August 6, 1945), the Special Message to the Congress on Greece and Turkey: The Truman Doctrine (March 12, 1947), the White House Statement Announcing Recognition of the Government of Israel (January 31, 1949), the Statement and Order by the President on Relieving General MacArthur of His Commands (April 11, 1951), and The President's Farewell Address to the American People (January 15, 1953).


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Provided courtesy of The American Presidency Project.  John Woolley and Gerhard Peters. University of California, Santa Barbara.
 300.  The President's News Conference
December 13, 1951

THE PRESIDENT. Please be seated.

I have no special announcements to make, but I understand that there are quite a number of questions that you would like to ask, and I will listen. I am ready. [Pause]

Q. Mr. President--[laughter] --

THE PRESIDENT. Well! Yes, Eddie? 1

1 Edward T. Folliard of the Washington Post.

[1.] Q. Chairman McKinney told us the other day that you were planning to take drastic action, looking to a Government housecleaning. 2

THE PRESIDENT. Well, Eddie, let's use a different verb on that. Let's say continue drastic action. Whenever it has been necessary to take drastic action, it has been taken by the President whenever it is necessary, and I will continue to do just that.

2Frank E. McKinney, chairman of the Democratic National Committee. On November 1, the day after Mr. McKinney became chairman, the White House released the following letter from Mr. McKinney to the President:

"When you asked me to become chairman of the Democratic National Committee, you told me of your firm purpose that the Federal service be maintained at the highest standards of integrity and ability and with spotless honor. My every effort will be directed toward that goal. I will seek its accomplishment in every way possible.

"Toward that end I recommend that Collectors of Internal Revenue be brought under Civil Service and subjected to the selection standards of that Service. It is your objective, I know, that the public have every confidence in the integrity and ability of our Federal tax administration. I believe the adoption of this recommendation will further that objective."

If you will study the history of the situation, you will find that there has never been one of those things that you refer to that has come to the President on which he has not taken drastic action. That is what he proposes to continue to do.

What are you looking at me like that for? Do you want to write a sob sister piece about it? I don't need any sob sister pieces!

Q. Mr. President, are you going to implement it this time?

THE PRESIDENT. What do you mean ?

Q. Are you going to set up any special organization to take action, or are you going to do it through regular channels?

THE PRESIDENT. If I make up my mind on that, I will let you know, Pete.3

3Raymond P. Brandt of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Q. The general idea is to have a special committee like the Roberts-Pomerene 3a

THE PRESIDENT. It's not a committee like anybody's. If there is one, it is going to be mine. It's going to be an original one.

3a Owen Josephus Roberts and Atlee Pomerene were appointed by President Coolidge in February 1924 as special counsels for the United States to prosecute the Teapot Dome oil fraud case.

Q. It is going to be like the previous one, called the Truman committee ?

THE PRESIDENT. Yes sir, I had a Truman comm ...
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