Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum

Truman, Harry S., 1884-1972; Snyder, John W. (John Wesley), 1895-1985; Webb, James E. (James Edwin), 1906-1992; Donaldson, Jesse M. (Jesse Monroe), 1885-1970; Barkley, Alben William, 1877-1956; Johnson, Louis Arthur, 1891-1966; Tobin, Maurice J., 1901-195
Cabinet meetings

Cabinet Meeting Minutes, August 29, 1950. Matthew J. Connelly Papers - Notes on Cabinet Meetings II.

CABINET MEETING, TUESDAY, AUGUST 29, 1950

Acheson absent
(Webb in his place)

BILL BOYLE

Asked Cabinet to pass on to little Cabinet and executive officers to make themselves available for speeches in September and October. Also asked for assistance in getting lists of absentee voters from departments.

THE PRESIDENT

Asked Adm. Dennison to give report on Magnuson Bill - Public Law 679 - amendment to Espionage Law of 1918.

ADM DENNISON

Outlined purpose and intent of the Magnuson Bill - to protect against entry of vessels into ports if there is any suspicion of bombs or subversive characters on board.

THE PRESIDENT

There is one catch in putting this into effect at once as it involves abrogation of a treaty we have with Poland.

WEBB

Thinks we should go ahead at once without notifying the Polish Govt which is a satellite of Russia.

THE PRESIDENT

The law is on the books and if it is not implemented and anything should happen in any American port it would be in the President's lap. It is almost impossible to enforce but we must do the best we can to do so.

TOBIN

If we take it in two steps - (1) to inspect now without diversion to 2 specific ports (Bellingham, Washington & Portland, Maine). Then later if Soviet makes any aggressive move we can go the whole way and divert to the 2 ports.

TREASURY

Agrees.

DEFENSE

Disagreed. Thinks it should be completely implemented now.

ATTY GEN

Thinks that taking such a step would be declaring an emergency which up to now the President has sought to avoid.

THE PRESIDENT

Thinks the gradual approach is the better idea.

VICE PRES.

Thinks there is possibility of greater embarrassment to the President if it is not implemented in the near future.

DONALDSON

In July Post Office receipts up 7%. Expenses down 5% as compared to July 1949.

VICE PRES.

Trying to get tax bill out on Friday this week.

4:55


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