Date: March 2, 1928
Location: Washington, D.C.
Several recommendations have been made to me for filling the vacancy in the judgeship. I don’t know whether any recommendations are of people outside the District. Of course, I should consider any recommendation that was made of any one that was legally eligible, but I should not go outside the District unless I thought he was a very much better man than any one that appeared to be available in the District. Very likely there would be objection also to the appointment of anyone that lived outside the District. If that was the case, I should have to give that very careful consideration.
I stated at the last Conference that the Monticello and the Mount Vernon were not usable as passenger liners in their present state. They had been used for transport ships during the war and subjected to very hard treatment and could not in their present state be used as passenger liners. If they were reconditioned, then of course they could be used as passenger liners. I do not know with what success. I refused to recommend to the Congress in the Budget any appropriation for reconditioning these two vessels. Nevertheless, the Congress has gone ahead without saying anything to me by any one up there and made an appropriation for their being reconditioned. I don’t know what I shall do with the bill when it reaches me.
I understood from my conference with Senator Jones that he has drafted a flood relief bill which is very similar to some suggestions that he made to me last week, and the bill has very many good features. It adopts the recommendation of the Engineers, it appoints the Chief of Engineers and the President of the Mississippi River Commission, and a civil engineer to be appointed by the President to have charge of the work and make incidental changes in the plan which may be necessary to carry it out, and gives them authority to make changes as broad as those which would cover the differences between the Mississippi River Commission plan and the Engineers plan. It is estimated that the cost would be $325,000,000. There is almost no provision for local contribution. There is some provision for that for the purpose of doing some work on the present levees that go up and down the Mississippi River. There is no provision for any contribution to be made on new levees that are to guard the spillways. Those new levees run through territory that I suppose much of it never made any contribution to the building of levees. I am not certain about that, but I judge that to be the case. Some of it is timberland owned by lumber companies, which I should suppose were perfectly able to make a contribution. Those are the chief features of the bill, as I recall them.
I talked a little with Sen. McHary and Rep. Purnell to see what progress is being made on farm legislation. They didn’t know just what was going to be done.
A telephone communication was received today from Northampton stating that Mrs. Goodhue is not so strong as she was the other time my wife saw her. But so far as her sickness is concerned, it tid not seem to be at the present time critical.
Citation: Calvin Coolidge: Remarks by the President to Newspaper Correspondents
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