Statement by the President: Budget Surplus (9/21/00)
                              THE WHITE HOUSE

                       Office of the Press Secretary
                             (Flint, Michigan)

For Immediate Release                                   September 21, 2000

                        STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT

     Today, the Department of the Treasury is announcing that, for the
first eleven months of this year, the surplus stands at a record $171
billion, more than twice the surplus at this time last year. In total, we
are on track to pay off a record $360 billion of publicly held debt over
the last three years, including over $220 billion in this year alone.

     This dramatic fiscal progress did not happen by accident.  A long-term
commitment to tough choices and fiscal discipline, not to short-term
political gestures, has helped put America on track to pay down the debt by
2012.  The majority in Congress should not jeopardize the longest economic
expansion in history by failing to adopt our long-term strategy to make
America debt free for the first time since 1835.

     Let?s work together to invest in our future by strengthening Social
Security and Medicare, including a voluntary, affordable Medicare
prescription drug benefit, making investments in key priorities like
education, and putting America on course to be debt free for the first time
since Andrew Jackson was President.


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