Lot 28: President Clinton on His 1993 Renewal of Most Favored Nation Status with China
Presidential Letters, Free Franks & Speeches: Washington to Bush + Important Autographs in History, Science & the Arts
26 October 2016
New York, NY, USALive Auction
Description: Clinton on His 1993 Renewal of Most Favored Nation Status with China: “…the Administration and the Congress have sent a strong message to China that it will be held accountable for its human rights record and its trade and weapons proliferation practices…”********** CLINTON, BILL. (b. 1946). Forty-second president of the United States. TLS. (“Bill”). 1p. Small 4to. The White House, June 5, 1993. On White House stationery bearing the blind-embossed Great Seal of the United States. To Senator DANIEL PATRICK “PAT” MOYNIHAN (1927-2003). ********** “It was good seeing you at the ceremony last week for the announcement of conditions on renewal of MFN for China. By speaking with one voice, the Administration and the Congress have sent a strong message to China that it will be held accountable for its human rights record and its trade and weapons proliferation practices. We have clearly signaled as well that China must take measures to protect Tibet’s distinctive religious and cultural heritage. I appreciate your support and believe we can improve not only the condition of human rights in China but also advance the economic interests of the American people and strengthen our security.” ********** Clinton, a former Arkansas governor, became the youngest president since Kennedy upon his election in 1993. His re-election four years later made him the first Democrat since FDR to serve a full second term, and he left office with the highest approval rating of any president in the second half of the 20th century. Unfortunately, a series of sex scandals led to his impeachment and overshadowed his accomplishments. His 1998 impeachment was only the second time in American history that a president had been impeached (the first being Andrew Johnson in 1868). ********** Moynihan served the Kennedy and Johnson administrations as assistant secretary of labor until 1965. Following a failed bid for election to the New York City Council, Moynihan became director of the Harvard–MIT Joint Center for Urban Studies. Despite being a Democrat, he was selected by President Richard Nixon to be his counselor on urban affairs, and in 1973, he was appointed U.S. ambassador to India, the world’s largest democracy, in an effort to smooth over the two country’s sometimes uneasy relationship. Moynihan later served as President Ford’s ambassador to the United Nations and a longtime Senator representing New York from 1977 to 2001. Although Moynihan opposed Clinton’s health care reforms, the two enjoyed a close relationship. In 2001, when Moynihan left his seat in the Senate, former First Lady Hillary Clinton was elected to fill it, after receiving Moynihan’s endorsement. ********** During the presidential campaign, Clinton criticized President Bush for his policies on China. However, after taking office, Clinton reversed course, renewing China’s Most Favored Nation (“MFN”) status for one year in an executive order. In his May 28, 1993 statement, he sought to decouple America’s trade relationship with China from its ongoing concerns over ongoing human rights abuses, specifically, violent repression of free speech in such incidents as the Tiananmen Square Massacre in 1989 and its repression of Tibetan Buddhism, touched on in our letter. America’s trade relationship with China, its strategic military importance in the Pacific and its human rights record continue to be important topics in American politics. ********** In mint condition.