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Kennedy, Oil Imports, and the Fair Trade Doctrine

  • Thomas W. Zeiler (a1)
Abstract

In his efforts to secure passage of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, John F. Kennedy had to placate not only oil and coal interests at home, but also traditional trade partners like Venezuela abroad, and he also had to foster the broad national security aim of retaining domestic oil reserves. This article argues that Kennedy was able to utilize a fair trade doctrine to gain enactment of legislation that would both lower trade barriers and assist domestic producers hurt by increased imports.

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1 Spero Joan E., The Politics of International Economic Relations, 3d ed. (New York, 1985), 122. For the free trade/protectionist dualism, see Lenway Stefanie A., The Politics of U.S. International Trade: Protection, Expansion, and Escape (Marshfield, Mass., 1984); Aggarwal Vinod K., Liberal Protectionism: The International Politics of Organized Textile Trade (Berkeley, Calif., 1985); Finlayson Jock A. and Zacher Mark W., “The GATT and the Regulation of Trade Barriers: Regime Dynamics and Functions” in International Regimes, ed. Krasner Stephen D. (Ithaca, N.Y., 1983).

2 Ambrose Stephen E., Rise to Globalism: American Foreign Policy Since 1938, 5th ed. (Baltimore, Md., 1988); Williams William A., The Tragedy of American Diplomacy (New York, 1972). For decision making, see Blair John M., The Control of Oil (New York, 1976); Engler Robert, The Politics of Oil: A Study of Private Power and Democratic Direction (New York, 1961); Hogan Michael J., “Corporatism: A Positive Appraisal,” Diplomatic History 10 (Fall 1986): 363–72; McCormick Thomas J., “Drift or Mastery? A Corporatist Synthesis for American Diplomatic History,” Reviews in American History 10 (Dec. 1982): 321–28; Painter David S., Oil and the American Century: The Political Economy of U.S. Foreign Oil Policy, 1941–1954 (Baltimore, Md., 1986), 206–7.

3 Becker William H. and Wells Samuel F., eds., Economics and World Power: An Assessment of American Diplomacy since 1789 (New York, 1982); Zeiler Thomas W., “Free-Trade Politics and Diplomacy: John F. Kennedy and Textiles,” Diplomatic History 11 (Spring 1987): 127–42. For decision making and the security argument, see Anderson Irvine, The Standard-Vacuum Oil Company and the United States East Asian Policy, 1933–1941 (Princeton, N.J., 1975); Kaufman Burton I., The Oil Cartel Case: A Documentary Study of Antitrust Activity in the Cold War Era (Westport, Conn., 1978); Krasner Stephen D., Defending the National Interest: Raw Materials and U.S. Foreign Policy (Princeton, N.J., 1978); Lenway, The Politics of U.S. International Trade, chaps. 1–4; Nash Gerald D., United States Oil Policy, 1890–1964 (Pittsburgh, Pa., 1968); Pastor Robert A., Congress and the Politics of Foreign Economic Policy, 1929–1976 (Berkeley, Calif., 1980), chaps. 1–4; Randall Stephen J., United States Foreign Oil Policy, 1919–1948: For Profits and Security (Kingston, Ont., 1985); Stoff Michael B., Oil, War, and American Security: The Search for a National Policy on Foreign Oil, 1941–1947 (New Haven, Conn., 1980).

4 Bohi Douglas R. and Russell Milton, Limiting Oil Imports: An Economic History and Analysis (Baltimore, Md., 1978), chaps. 1–3; Nash, United States Oil Policy, 202–6; Chester Edward W., United States Oil Policy and Diplomacy: A Twentieth Century Overview (Westport, Conn., 1983), chaps. 1, 3, pp. 140–57; Kaufman Burton I., Trade and Aid: Eisenhower's Foreign Economic Policy, 1953–1961 (Baltimore, Md., 1982), 8990. For a history of oil policy, see U.S., Senate Subcommittee on Multinational Corporations of the Committee on Foreign Relations, Seport on Multinational Oil Corporations and U.S. Eoreign Policy, 93d Cong., 2d sess., 1975 [hereafter cited as Multinational Oil Hearings].

5 Kennedy to George W. Mills, 19 March 1959, box 724, Pre-Presidential Papers [hereafter cited as PPP], John F. Kennedy Library, Boston, Mass, [hereafter cited as JFK Library). See also Petroleum Week 11 (8 Jan. 1960): 13; Oil and Gas Journal 58 (18 July 1960): 62; Speech, The Economic Problems of New England: A Program for Congressional Action,” no. 3, 25 May 1953, box 774; New England Senate Delegation to the President, 5 March 1959, box 724.

6 Public Papers of the President of the United Slates, John F. Kennedy, 1961, 138 [hereafter cited as Public Papers, 1961]. See also Briefing Paper, Oil Import Situation, 1960, box 993, PPP; Justinus Gould to Cong. Wright Patman, 16 May 1961, box 288, Papers of Tom Steed [hereafter cited as Steed Papers], Carl Albert Congressional Research and Studies Center, Congressional Archives, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Okla. [hereafter cited as Albert Center]; New York Times, 18 Feb. 1961, 25; Senator Robert C. Byrd to the White House, 17 Feb. 1961, box 23, White House Staff Files—Myer Feldman, JFK Library [hereafter cited as Feldman files]; Oil and Gas Journal 59 (27 Feb. 1961): 56; Bohi, Limiting Oil Imports, 149–50.

7 Oil and Gas Journal 60 (8 Jan. 1962): 29; John M. Kelly, In Support of Proposals to Amend the Oil Import Program, Charts 6 and 7, 21 Nov. 1961, box 23, Feldman files; Summary Minutes of the Interdepartmental Committee of Undersecretaries on Foreign Economic Policy, 13 Dec. 1961, box 32, Papers of Kermit Gordon, JFK Library [hereafter cited as Gordon Papers]; Myer Feldman to the President, 14 Dec. 1961, box 63, President's Office File, JFK Library [hereafter cited as POF]; U. S., House Hearings before Subcommittee No. 4 of the Select Committee on Small Business, Small Business Problems Created by Petroleum Imports, pt. 1, 87th Cong., 1st sess., 1961 [hereafter cited as Petroleum Hearings—I or II], Clarence W. Nichols, State Department, 198.

8 Summary Record of Meeting on World Oil Problems, 15 Jan. 1962, box 33, Gordon Papers; George Feldman, “The OECD, the Common Market, and American Foreign Policy,” attached to Lawrence O'Brien to Cong. John McCormack, 10 Jan. 1962, box 237, White House Central Files, JFK Library [hereafter cited as WHCF]; Remarks of Stewart L. Udall to the American Petroleum Institute Meeting, 27 July 1961, box 93, Papers of Stewart L. Udall, Special Collections, University of Arizona; Petroleum Management 34 (April 1962): 1.

9 Oil and Gas Journal 59 (25 Dec. 1961): 81; New York Times, 31 Aug. 1961, 39; Petroleum Management 34 (May 1962): 12; Rabe Stephen G., The Road to OPEC: United States Relations with Venezuela, 1919–1976 (Austin, Texas, 1982), viii, 109–10, 123–29; Schlesinger Arthur M. Jr, A Thousand Days: John F. Kennedy in the White House (Boston, Mass., 1965), 766; Wall Street Journal, 3 July 1961, 1, 10; Petroleum Week 12 (6 Jan. 1961): 40; Harris William G., “The Impact of the Petroleum Export Industry on the Pattern of Venezuelan Economic Development” (Ph.D. diss., University of Oregon, 1967), 1; General Economic Situation [Venezuela], 5 Dec. 1961, box 235–238, National Security File, JFK Library [hereafter cited as NSF].

10 Rabe, The Road to OPEC, 97–140; Betancourt Rómulo, Venezuela: Oil and Politics (Boston, Mass., 1979), 387–88; Current Political Situation in Venezuela, boxes 235–38, NSF; Arthur Schlesinger, The Current Crisis in Latin America, Part 1, 1961, box 121A, POF.

11 Rabe, The Road to OPEC, 117–20, 158–60; Pachauri R. K., The Political Economy of Global Energy (Baltimore, Md., 1985), 5658; Tugwell Franklin, The Politics of Oil in Venezuela (Stanford, Calif., 1975), chap. 3; American Embassy, Caracas to Secretary of State, 5 May 1961, box 192, NSF; Multinational Oil Report, 88; Foreign Service Dispatch, Caracas to the Department of State, 5 Dec. 1961, box 24, Feldman files; Position Paper, The President's Visit to Venezuela and Colombia, Oil Import Program, 6 Dec. 1961, box 235, NSF; Petroleum Week 12 (10 March 1961): 24; A Request for Elimination of Restrictions on the Import of Residual Oil Filed with the Office of Civil and Defense Mobilization, Petroleum Hearings—I, 309.

12 Betancourt, Venezuela, 389; John Kelly to Myer Feldman, 22 Oct. 1961; Feldman to the President, 14 December 1961, box 24; Feldman to the President, 15 Dec. 1961, box 23, Feldman files.

13 Public Papers, 1961, 808. See also Eomgn Commerce Weekly 66 (11 Sept. 1961): 39; Department of State Bulletin 45 (11 Sept. 1961): 463–64, 467–69; Briefing, The President's Trip to Venezuela and Colombia, Dec. 1961, box 235, NSF; Public Papers, 1961, 804; John M. Kelly Oral History, JFK Library [hereafter cited as Kelly Oral History], 21.

14 Oil and Gas Journal 59 (11 Dec. 1961): 5051; Stewart Udall to the President, 2 Feb. 1962, box 23, Feldman files; “Steed Fears U.S. Oil Policy Not Adequate,” Oklahoma City Times, 24 Nov. 1961, box 1, Steed Papers; Oil and Gas Journal 59 (11 Dec. 1961): 51; ibid. 60 (8 Jan. 1962): 3.

15 Commodity Research Bureau, Commodity Yearbook, 1963 (New York, 1963), 8283; Petroleum Hearings—I, 185.

16 Business Week 1699 (24 March 1962): 32. See also Thomas Kennedy, UMW, to President Kennedy, 28 June 1961, box 489, WHCF; Oil and Gas Journal 60 (24 Sept. 1962): 8586; Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, John F. Kennedy, 1962 (Washington, D.C., 1963), 709 [hereafter cited as Public Papers, 1962]; ibid., 249–50.

17 Coal and the Trade Expansion ACt, 30 March 1962; Energy Policy: Coal, Hydroelectric Power, Natural Gas, and Oil, 2 Feb. 1962, box 31, White House Staff Files—Howard C. Petersen, JFKL [hereafter cited as Petersen files]; U.S., House Subcommittee on the Impact of Imports and Exports on American Employment of the Committee on Education and Labor, Impact of Imports and Exports on Employment (Coal and Residual Fuel Oil), pt. 1, 87th Cong., 1st sess., 19–20 June 1961 [hereafter cited as Coal and Residual Import Hearings], Harry Gilroy, “U.S. Coal Men Face New Woes in Declining European Market,” 199; U.S., House Ways and Means Committee, Trade and Expansion Act of 1962, 87th Cong., 2d sess., 1962, pt. 3, Thomas Kennedy, 1714 [hereafter cited as TEA—House]; Senators Robert C. Byrd and Jennings Randolph to Lawrence O'Brien, 28 June 1961, box 5, Feldman files; U.S., Senate Committee, Trade Expansion Act of 1962, 87th Cong., 2d sess., 1962, pt. 2, Senator Paul Douglas (D-Ill.), 568 [hereafter cited as TEA—Senate]; Coal and Residual Imports Hearing, G. Don Sullivan, National Coal Association, 38; Petroleum Hearings—II, C. J. Potter, Rochester and Pittsburgh Coal Company, 465; TEA—House, pt. 3, Thomas Kennedy, 1714; Henry Wilson to Lawrence O'Brien, 20 Dec. 1961, box 3, White House Staff Files—Henry H. Wilson, JFK Library; Mike Manatos to Lawrence O'Brien, 14 March 1962, box 1, White House Staff Files—Mike Manatos, JFK Library [hereafter cited as Manatos files]; Joseph Moody, National Coal Policy Conference, to Secretary Udall, 3 May 1962, box 5, Feldman files.

18 New York Times, 17 Dec. 1961, 3: 1, 7; Oil and Gas Journal 59 (18 Dec. 1961): 40; press release, Texas Independent Producers and Royally Owners Association (TIPRO) Information Service, 11 March 1962, box 23, Feldman files; TIPRO Information Service to President James F. West, 2 April 1962, box 14, Petersen files; E. A. Smith, Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association to Robert Bleiberg, 8 Dec. 1961; Joseph Moody to Cong. Tom Steed, 1 Dec. 1961, box 288, Steed Papers.

19 TEA—House, pt. 3, Harold Decker, IPAA, 1724; Memorandum for Meeting with Prime Minister Diefenbaker [1961], box 113, POF; Chester, United States Oil Policy and Diplomacy, 138–39.

20 Commodity Tearbook, 1963, 245, 247; Petroleum Hearings—I, 66, 496; Petroleum Hearings—II, 540; Bohi, Limiting Oil Imports, 22–23, 25.

21 For campaign bankrolling from oil producers, see Caro Robert A., The Path to Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson (New York, 1983), 663. Congressional Becord—Appendix, vol. 108, reel 11, 10 Jan. 1962, Cleveland M. Bailey, A12, A14, and 7 Feb. 1962, Arch A. Moore, A943; Coal and Residual Imports Hearing, Dent, 139; Legislative Highlights, 26 Feb. 1962, box 50, POF.

22 Oil and Gas Journal 60 (7 May 1962): 63; ibid. 59 (4 Dec. 1961): 102; ibid. 59 (27 Nov. 1961): 64–65; Petroleum Hearings—I, Steed, 2, 413; Minutes of Meeting, Subcommittee No. 4, House Small Business Committee, 18 July 1961, and Record of Meeting between Steed and leaders of the Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association, 21 Dec. 1961, box 288, Steed Papers, Congressional Record—House, vol. 108, pt. 5, 18 April 1962, Steed, 6958, and pt. 11, 20 July 1962, 14385; Steed and Moore to Colleagues, 12 April 1962 and attached bill, box 307, Steed Papers.

23 “Congress Speaks on Domestic Fuels, Oil Imports, and National Security,” National Coal Policy Conference, Inc., March 1962, box 30, Petersen files; Congressional Record—House, vol. 108, pt. 8, 13 June 1962, Exhibit 1, Advertisement from the New York Times, 1 April 1962, 10429.

24 John Evans, Independent Fuel Oil Marketers to the President, 28 Aug. 1962, box 23, Feldman files; Coal and Residual Import Hearings, Humble Oil and Refining Co., 128–30; TEA—Senate, pt. 2, John H. Lichtblau, Petroleum Institute Foundation, 566; John Evans to Myer Feldman, 30 April 1962, box 23, Feldman files; Petmleum Hearings—I, Charles W. Colsen and James S. Couzens, New England Council, 291, 294–95; TEA—House, pt. 3, Edward M. Carey, Independent Fuel Oil Marketers, 1830.

25 Commodity Yearbook, 1963, 1, 245–48; Petroleum Hearings—I, 445–46; Oil and Gas Journal 59 (27 Feb. 1961): 5758.

26 Congressional Record—Appendix, vol. 108, reel 11, 7 March 1962, Hastings Keith, A1980, and “Protectionism in Oil,” Boston Herald, 30 Dec. 1961, A1718. See also Congressional Record—Appendix, vol. 107, reel 11, 12 Sept. 1961, Fascell Dante B. (D-Fla.), A7167 and Silvio Conte, A7542; Mike Manatos to Lawrence O'Brien, 8 Nov. 1961, box 1, Manatos files.

27 Henry Wilson to Lawrence O'Brien, 23 Feb. 1962, box 14, White House Staff Files—Lawrence O'Brien, JFK Library [hereafter cited as O'Brien files]; Lawrence O'Brien to the President, 6 March 1962 and attached memorandum from Cong. Tom Steed, My Proposed Conference with the President, box 50, POF; Address by Udall to the IPAA, 30 April 1962, Udall Papers; “Petty's Oil Letter,” in The Oil Daily, 28 March 1962, attached to James West to Lindley Beckworth, 6 June 1962, box 14; Question to Harold Decker, IPAA, on his testimony before the House Ways and Means Committee [1962], box 10, Petersen files.

28 TEA—House, pt. 2, Udall, 804; Howard Petersen to Johnny Mitchell, 25 April 1962, box 599, WHCF; Proposed Exchange of Letters between the President and Congressman Clark Thompson, 11 May 1962, box 23, Feldman files; Truman Richardson to Ross U. Porter, 14 March 1962, box 307, Steed Papers; Congressional Record—Senate, vol. 108, pt. 9, 5 July 1962, Bailey Cleveland M., 12798; Ways and Means in World Oil 154 (1 Aug. 1962): 23; Myer Feldman to the President, 25 June 1962, attached to Memorandum for Congressman Clark C. Thompson, box 23, Feldman files; W. E. Turner to Cong. Tom Steed, 28 March 1962, box 307, Steed Papers.

29 Congressional Quarterly—Almanac 18 (1962): 618–19.

30 World Oil 154 (1 Aug. 1962): 14, 18. See also “Plan's Oilgram,” 4 May 1962, attached to Henry Wilson to Myer Rashish, 10 May 1962, box 14, Petersen files; Oil and Gas Journal 60 (27 Aug. 1962): 4344; Congressional Record—Senate, vol. 107, pt. 2, 20 Feb. 1961, New England Delegation to the President, 7 Feb. 1961, 2363; Mike Manatos to Lawrence O'Brien, 7 April 1962, box 327, O'Brien files; Sen. Harry Byrd to the President, 12 April 1962, box 599, WHCF; Coal and Residual Hearings, G. Don Sullivan, National Coal Association to Secretary Udall, 9; Congressional Record—House, vol. 107, pt. 3, 2 March 1961, Robert C. Byrd, 20801 and 18 Senators to President Kennedy, 3137–38.

31 Morgan Anne H., Roberts. Kerr: The Senate Years (Norman, Okla., 1977), 221, also 209–10, 242.

32 Morgan, Kerr, 232–33. See also Myer Rashish Oral History, JFK Library, 28–30; Luther Hodges to the President, Memorandum Reporting the Status of the Trade Expansion Act, 20 Aug. 1962, box 51, POF. The “whales” included Richard B. Russell (D–Ga.), Carl Hayden (D–Ariz.), Allen Ellender (D–La.), and James Eastland (D–Miss.).

33 Morgan, Kerr, 210, 233.

34 Robert Kerr to John Cosey, 4 May 1955, box 34; Kerr to Cleo Ingle, 13 April 1955, box 34; Kerr, “The Reader Writes: Senator Kerr's Amendment,” Christian Science Monitor, 26 July 1958, box 1; Address to the Midyear 1958 Meeting of the IPAA, 29 April 1958, box 8; press release, Kerr and Senator A. S. Monroney (D—Okla.), 28 Feb. 1959, box 18; transcript of Television Show on the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, Washington, D.C., 14 June 1962, box 25, Papers of Senator Robert S. Kerr, Albert Center [hereafter cited as Kerr Papers]; press release, 28 March 1962, box 56, Petersen files; Oil and Gas Journal 60 (23 April 1962): 65; ibid. 60 (30 July 1962): 90; press release, Kerr and A. S. “Mike” Monroney (D–Okla.), 20 June 1962, box 56, Petersen files; “Kerr, Steed on Different Sides on Oil Amendment,” Oklahoman, 1 April 1962, box 307; Kerr to Thomas Williams, 16 April 1962, box 4; Kerr to J. Howard Edmondson, 21 May 1962, box 4, Kerr Papers; Morgan, Kerr, 233.

35 Kelly Oral History, 43–46; Luther Hodges to Myer Feldman, 2 August 1962, box 23, Feldman files; Kerr to E. A. Smith, 8 Oct. 1962, Kerr Papers; Congressional Quarterly—Almanac 18 (1962): 289; Transcript of Television Show on the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, 14 June 1962, box 25; Statement by Senator Robert S. Kerr, Trade Bill-Compensation for Import Damage, 9 Oct. 1962, box 25; Statement by Senator Robert S. Kerr on Trade, 9 Oct. 1962, box 11, Kerr Papers; Harold Decker to the IPAA, 12 Oct. 1962 and attached copy of Congressional Record, statement of Russell Long, box 11, Kerr Papers; Congressional Quarterly—Almanac 18 (1962): 688.

36 A Report to the President by the Petroleum Study Committee, OEP, 4 Sept. 1962, box 23, Feldman files; Public Papers, 1962, 715; press release, Proclamation 3509, 30 Nov. 1962, box 23, Feldman files; Bohi, Limiting Oil Imports, 107; New York Times, 1, 29; Kelly Oral History, 42; Myer Feldman to Harold Decker, 19 Dec. 1962, box 13, Petersen files; Robert Kerr to E. A. Smith, 8 Oct. 1962, box 4; Remarks of Kerr to the IPAA Annual Meeting, Dallas, Texas, 29 Oct. 1962; “Kerr's Magic Sways Oilmen,” Oklahoman, 4 Nov. 1962, box 11; Statement by Harold Decker 30 Nov. 1962, box 25, Kerr Papers.

37 Report by the United States Delegation to the United States-Canadian Discussions of Petroleum Policies and Programs, 13–14 Dec. 1962, box 104, POF; Bohi, Limiting Oil Imports, 107, 132–34; Rabe, The Boad a OPEC, 198.

38 AUSAID-Caracas to the Department of State, 21 Sept. 1962, box WH-23, Papers of Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., JFK Library; International Commerce 68 (2 July 1962): 33; ibid. 68 (27 Aug. 1962): 47; ibid. 68 (29 Oct. 1962): 68; Alexander Robert J., Ramulo Betancourt and the Transformation of Venezuela (New Brunswick, N.J., 1982), 554–57; U.S. Ambassador C. Allan Stewart to the Secretary of State, 2 July 1962, box 92; CIA Reference Biographic Register of Juan Pablo Perez Alfonzo; Visit to the United States of Venezuelan Minister of Mines and Hydrocarbons Dr. Juan Pablo Perez Alfonzo, April 1962, box 192, NSF.

39 Report of Myer Feldman on Discussions with President Betancourt on the United States Oil Import Program, Attachment 1, New Regulations on the Oil Import Restrictions—First Personal Impressions of Dr. Juan P. Perez Alfonzo, box 104, POF; Betancourt, Venezuela, 390–91.

40 Betancourt, Venezuela, 391; Report by Myer Feldman on Discussions with President Betancourt on the United States Oil Import Program, box 104, POF; White House Situation Room to General McHugh for the President, 23 Dec. 1962, box 192, NSF.

41 Ambassador C. Allan Stewart to the Secretary of State, 30 Dec. 1962, box 192, NSF; Rabe, The Rood to OPEC, 198; Valdez Magin A., “The Petroleum Policies of the Venezuelan Government” (Ph.D. diss., New York University, 1971), 67; Shaffer, The Oil Import Program, 95; Bohi, Limiting Oil Imports, 146; Commodity Research Bureau, Commodity Yearbook, 1971 (New York, 1972), 254.

42 Rabe, The Road to OPEC, 116; Harris, “The Impact of the Petroleum Export Industry,” 12, 77, 93, 102.

43 Commodity Yearbook, 1971, 93, 253; Bohi, Limiting Oil Imports, 23.

44 Secretary of State Rusk to the American Embassy, Caracas, 20 Dec. 1962, box 192, NSF; Rabe, The Road to OPEC, 194.

45 Lowi Theodore, “American Business and Public Policy: Case Studies and Political Theory,” World Politics 16 (July 1964): 685.

46 Betancourt, Venezuela, 390; Ambassador C. Allan Stewart, to the Secretary of State, 2 Jan. 1963, box 24, Feldman files; Public Papers of the Presidents: John F. Kennedy, 1963 (Washington, D.C., 1964), 188.

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