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Jimmy Carter and the Water Wars: Presidential Influence and the Politics of Pork By S ...

Chapter :  Introduction
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Jimmy Carter and the Water Wars:

Introduction a Shot Across the Bow

In many respects, the modern Congress is like the proverbial, stubborn jackass…you have to hit it between the eyes with a 2 – 4 to get its attention. Your best (some say only) 2 – 4 is the power to veto.

—Frank Moore and Les Francis1

On October 5, 1978, President Jimmy Carter sent a letter to all members of Congress announcing his veto of the Fiscal Year (hereafter FY) 1979 Energy and Water Appropriations Bill.

1 Memo to the president from Frank Moore and Les Francis, “Strategy on Various Appropriations Bills and Other Troublesome Legislation,” June 5, 1978, Office of Congressional Liaison, Box 26, Congressional Veto Policy 7/29/77– 10/10/79.