8. Letter From President Johnson to Secretary of State Rusk 1

Dear Mr. Secretary:

On July 18, 1963, President Kennedy, in a Special Message to Congress on Balance of Payments, outlined a comprehensive program to eliminate the deficit in our balance of payments, and stated that this nation will maintain the dollar as good as gold, freely interchangeable with gold at $35 an ounce.2 I have reaffirmed the July 18 Message as the policy of this Administration.

The Cabinet Committee on Balance of Payments has reported to me3 that substantial progress has been made since last July in our program to eliminate the balance-of-payments deficit and that, with continued effort, the targets set in the July 18 Message can be attained. I am gratified by this report and wish to commend you for the contribution that your Agency has made in this effort.

While we can take justified pleasure in our progress, the deficit is still with us and much remains to be done before the job is finished. It remains imperative that we continue to push all parts of our program to achieve equilibrium in our international accounts. Only in this way can we assure that confidence in the dollar will be maintained and that the United States will continue to meet its national objectives, both at home and abroad.

I count on you to continue your efforts.

Sincerely,

Lyndon B. Johnson
  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, FN 12 US. No classification marking.
  2. See footnote 3, Document 5.
  3. Document 5.