254. Memorandum From the President to the Secretary of Agriculture (Benson)1

This morning I was visited by the group of Senators and Congressmen who represent the States in which sugar is a significant [Page 782] product. They request that we immediately initiate the investigations and studies that will necessarily provide the foundation for whatever program the Administration believes should be adopted after the expiration of the present sugar agreement with foreign countries.

They believe that whatever plan is adopted should be submitted to the Congress this year, but I repeat that it is not intended to interfere with or vitiate present agreements, but merely to be ready to become operative upon the expiration of the present agreements.

Senator Holland 2 pointed out that this is particularly important to the cane sugar states for the reason that cane is not an annual crop.

This matter of course vitally affects the State Department and our relationships with other countries. Consequently, while I think that you should initiate and supervise the studies and analysis, the State Department must, of course, not only be in close touch with every step of such a development, but its views must be definitely represented in whatever solution we propose.

I think you should immediately confer with the Secretary of State and agree upon a plan for the approach to this problem, and thereafter let me know the result.

D.D.E. 3
  1. Source: Eisenhower Library, Whitman File, DDE Diaries. Personal and Confidential.
  2. Spessard L. Holland (D.–Fla).
  3. Printed from a copy which bears these typed initials.