WASHINGTON -- After a long trip to China that his aides believe strengthened the president against the Republican Congress and Kenneth W. Starr, the independent prosecutor, President Clinton returned home this weekend and immediately
took to the air waves on a domestic issue -- his high hopes for improving fruit juice.
In his weekly radio address yesterday morning, Clinton did not mention human rights or economic growth in China, or the future of U.S.-China relations. Instead, he announced new regulations to increase the safety of fruit and vegetable juices.
In what has become a favorite formula for this White House, Clinton dropped his foreign trip cold when he touched American soil and instantly turned to domestic policy.
His aides planned events on health care, drugs and juvenile crime to remind voters of the president's devotion to fixing problems that might seem more pressing than Chinese rights or rockets.
With some of his closest advisers deeply pessimistic about the chances of getting major legislation passed during the rest of the year, Clinton plans to issue a series of executive orders to demonstrate that he can still be effective.
At the same time, with an eye to the brewing budget fight and the congressional elections this fall, Clinton is expected to step up his criticism of the Republican Congress.
On Tuesday, Clinton intends to hold a ceremony to issue an executive order to promote greater access to health care for federal employees, aides said.
He will couple that move with a plea to Congress to pass his "Patients' Bill of Rights" legislation to set standards for managed care.
In the Republican radio address for the Fourth of July, New York Rep. B. H. Gerald Solomon underlined the party's efforts to reduce taxes.
"Yes, on July 4th, 1776, we won the battle of independence from oppressive taxation.
"And today, 222 years later, the Republican Congress is winning another battle to restore a larger chunk of that freedom from taxation," he said.
Solomon, who chairs the House Rules Committee, gatekeeper for legislation headed to the House floor, vowed to continue efforts to eliminate the so-called marriage penalty tax, overhaul the tax code, and create education savings accounts and federal vouchers for private-school tuition.
Pub Date: 7/05/98