Senator Couzens to the Secretary of State

My Dear Mr. Secretary: I am in receipt of your letter of the 28th,7 discussing the question of the Salvador loan.

I am very glad to have your views on the subject and gather from them that the policy you adopted in connection with the Salvador loan is one that is generally used between American companies and Latin American Governments. Your past experience must indicate the policy is safe and sound, otherwise I am sure you would not have adopted it. However, I have some misgivings about the policy, because I feel that public officers of the United States must necessarily [Page 829] have a leaning towards American citizens in matters in dispute. I think that some unofficial board of arbitration or arbitrator would be safer for both countries. If, however, the American companies doing business with Latin American countries do not feel that way about it and desire the United States Government to take cognizance of these contracts in such way as you have done in the Salvador case, then the agreement should be public property and approved by the Senate.

I am informed that it has been the practice of Secretaries of State in the past to submit these agreements to the Senate for confirmation, and it seems to me sound that that should be done. I should be pleased to know if you have any objection to the Senate approving of these agreements, or if it would in any way unnecessarily handicap your office. I am seeking information for the purpose of keeping this country out of trouble and not to in any way embarrass you. I should much prefer to have your views on the matter before introducing any resolution in the Senate calling for a general inquiry into these questions.

Trusting that you will find it convenient to give me your views in the matter,

I am [etc.]

James Couzens
  1. Supra.