REPUBLICAN GOVERNORS' CONFERENCE 987
Looking back over the middle third of this century, President-elect
Nixon depicts the problem perfectly: "We find that we are getting
more and more government for the people, but less and less govern-
ment of the people and by the people. And in this lies the root of
much of today's frustration. "
The immediate problem is to scale down the paternalism of the
Federal government. The process of "letting go" is never easy. But
the Federal government must relinquish its excessive power if we are
to re-establish the sensitive balance of our Federal system.
Bigger government must not be allowed to masquerade as better
government. The Federal government has no monopoly on the
answers. In many cases the solutions must come from the State
Houses — not the White House.
A complete reappraisal of the complex, functional relationships of
the local, state and Federal governments is imperative. Further, a
plan to periodically review and re-allocate the resources and respon-
sibilities of government would be advisable. In this way government
can be made more easily understandable, procedurally simplified, and
brought closer to the people.
To this end, President-elect Nixon has proposed the establishment
of a commission on governmental reorganization with far broader
objectives than those of the two previous Hoover Commissions — ob-
jectives not just limited to increasing the efficiency of government,
but also to heightening the responsive-ness of government.
The transfer of many feasible functions to state and local govern-
ments should be fully explored. But let me make it clear that re-
sponsibility and resources must be transferred. Further, such moves
would have to be accompanied by sufficient safeguards for the national
interest and the citizens' tax dollar.
What I have just said may sound like generality, and frankly it is.
But the specifics are well in mind — in yours and mine — and will be
developed and refined in hundreds of work sessions at all levels.
Some of you may be speculating on how I interpret my new role.
I was a controversial Governor. I have been a controversial candidate
for Vice President. There is no reason to believe that I will be any
less controversial as Vice President.
I do not intend to play games with the secret meaning of words or
practice the gentle art of the platitude. I do intend to rely on die-