Tony A. Smith

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Building Presidential Consensus

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Twenty-four years ago I had written a few letters concerning some of the issues of the day to our new President at the time – Bill Clinton.  I actually received a letter back from him.  I guess he got tired of all of my letters.  It was kind of him to actually acknowledge my concerns.

His first few months of office were very busy after being inaugurated as the 42nd President of the United States on January 20, 1993 three months prior to the time I wrote my letter to him.

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On January 25, 1993 Bill Clinton announced that Hillary Clinton would lead the task force on National Health Care Reform.  The President hoped to reform the National Health Care system so that all Americans had health insurance. It would ensure what he called “Universal Coverage” which would hopefully control health care costs which were continuing to rise out of control.

On February 5, 1993 President Bill Clinton signed the Family Medical Leave Act that requires companies to provide workers with up to 3 months of unpaid leave for family and medical emergencies.

Then on January 26, 1993, six people were killed and more than one thousand suffered from injuries after a bomb was placed under the World Trade Center in New York City. This explosion marked the beginning of threats against the United States by both domestic and foreign terrorists.  Who could foretell the dark days ahead relating to terrorism?

April 19, 1993 the day my letter was postmarked – In Waco, Texas Federal Law officers under the orders of Attorney General – Janet Reno fought a 51 day stand-off with a religious cult led by David Koresh.  The battles resulted in terrible fires that destroyed the cults compound and killed 75 people.

Our country faces issues today, just like we did during Bill Clinton’s presidency 24 years ago. Although there are many things I did not agree with President Bill Clinton on, I can agree that we need to have a consensus to work together as a country and a people.  After all, we are all in it together and we need each other.