Press Conference, April 12, 1927

Date: April 12, 1927

Location: Washington, D.C.

(Original document available here)

I expect to make an appointment during the recess of a judge in the Northern California District, but no one has been agreed upon out there yet, so I don’t know when the appointment can be made.

As we have every expectation that the Chinese will make some appropriate response to the note we have filed with them, we haven’t given any consideration to any further action that may be taken in relation to the injuries that were suffered by our people at Nanking.

I have no information as to any study that the Department of Agriculture may be making relative to the cooperative methods of handling wheat in Canada. I think the Department has full information about that. I don’t know of any especial study that they are making of it at this time. I learned from the Secretary of Agriculture this morning that Mr. Nagle, the Ex-Secretary of Commerce, who I believe is Chairman of some Committee that is making a study of the agricultural situation, was to be in town today and he would be in consultation with(Mr. Nagle and some other member or members of his Committee) the Agricultural Department.

I don’t recall any complaint having been made to me relative to the contract for carrying air mail between New York and Chicago. Now, some complaint may have been sent in to the office. If it was, it would go in the usual course of business to the Post Office Department.

Miss Genevieve Cline, of Cleveland, is one of the names that has been suggested for appointment to the vacancy of the United States Customs Court caused by the death of one of the judges, the Chief Justice of that Court or the Chief Judge, I don’t know just how he is designated. There have been several other names suggested and no decision has been made.

I haven’t in mind anything especial about the vacancy, if there is one, or the authority to appoint a second Federal judge in south Texas. That may be one of the appointments that are to be made. There are several judgeships to be appointed. That will be taken up in due course with the rest.

General Crowder, our present Ambassador to Cuba, is a man advanced in years who has performed most excellent services in that country and I understand that he contemplates asking to be relieved in the not distant future. That is as far as anything has progressed in relation to that position. We should be very sorry to lose his services there, but I have known for some years that he was staying there when it was rather beyond his strength and had expected that he would askto be relieved.

I haven’t in mind any calling of a national conference for the prevention of crime, the main reason being that most of the complaint about the commission of crime is complaint about the violation of state laws, rather than national laws, so that it is something that if dealt with at all it would have to be dealt with by the states. So far as I had thought of the question, it hadn’t seemed to me that a national conference for that reason would be especially helpful. If it was a new question and there was the desirability of arousing public interest in it, something might be accomplished by a national conference, but I think the public interest is already aroused and various states are taking action. I do not know of anything that we could suggest that would be helpful as the result of anything like a national conference. The local conferences of course have my hearty approval and the local efforts that are being made to check criminal activities are very much improved and I am very glad to encourage them in any way possible.

There aren’t any new developments in the Chinese situation that haven’t already been reported in the press. Of course we get reports daily about the activities of various military bodies there, but it continues in about the same situation. Whenever there are military difficulties in China, there is always trouble about the navigation of the streams and that trouble exists at the present time. One of the experiences that always develops is the firing upon our boats that are going up and down the streams and the firing upon the boats of other nationals. The Chinese do not seem to be able to differentiate between their own craft which they might want to resist and the craft of foreign nations. This firing becomes rather indiscriminate. Any boat that goes up and down those streams is subject to being fired upon. It is seldom that any damage is done. The practice has been resorted to of returning the fire if it becomes at all active, which usually results in its being stopped. Most of the fire is rifle fire and machine gun fire. Once in a while it is done with guns of a larger calibre, but not always.

I haven’t any information about an application by Earl Carroll for executive clemency. I don’t know whether one has been filed with the Department of Justice. If it has been, it will be acted on there in the usual course.

I haven’t made any decision about where I shall spend the summer. Sooner or later I expect to send some one out there to make some investigation of some of the different places that have been suggested. Meantime, I hope that the summer advantages of all desirable localities will continue to have adequate publicity.

The breakfast that I had at the White House this morning was entirely casual. There were some people in town that I wanted to have come in and have breakfast with me, some of the members of the Senate and the House and some visitors that called in, partaking entirely of a social nature.

The Secretary of War reported this morning on his visit to Porto Rico, Hayti, and I have forgotten whether he went to Cuba – he went to Panama – and found conditions in the places he visited encouraging and the relationship between the different countries and our government activities in them on a very friendly basis. The countries seemed to be prospering fairly well and the activities of our Government officials in those places seemed to be acceptable and on a very good standard.

Question: When the Secretary left he indicated he would investigate the Nicaraguan Canal situation.

President: Well, I don’t think he did anything about that. He didn’t say anything about it. The nearest he went to that country would be Panama, which is some 500 miles away. He may have mentioned that to people incidentally. He spoke about the large amount of business done and the Panama Canal. They had supposed before the month of March that they might do more business there than in any other month, but they didn’t quite come up to the high record. They missed that only by about 100,000 tons, which indicates that the use of the Panama Canal is steadily increasing. I have known that from the monthly reports that come to me showing the amount of tonnage and the amount of revenue that is derived and the tolls that are charged for boats that pass through the Canal.

I shall be glad to see all of you at the ball game this afternoon.

Citation: Calvin Coolidge: Remarks by the President to Newspaper Correspondents

The Coolidge Foundation gratefully acknowledges the volunteer efforts of John McLeod who prepared this document for digital publication.

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