ABC Evening News for Friday, Apr 07, 1978
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(Studio) Senator Frank Church's statement noted that Senator won't change reservation in Canal treaty giving United States right to keep Canal open by military force. Panama government's objections to reservation, in letters to United Nations and to OAS, noted; Panamanian government statement that it's taken no official position yet on reservation reported Apparent Panama fears of jeopardizing vote on 2nd part of treaty stated. Earlier report on letter from Panama to Organization of American States cited; report is on how information with regard to this letter was obtained.
REPORTER: Frank Reynolds
(DC) Details given with regard to receipt of information on Organization of American States letter from official at Panamanian embassy in Washington, DC and his later statements that information was not intended for public consumption. State Department's report that it has heard of Torrijos letter, that United States hasn't received it, despite being member of OAS, stated. Panmanian ambassador Gabriel Lewis' call home for consultation reported Apparent attempts of both Washington, DC and Panama to cover word of Torrijos' objections to 1st part of treaty in order not to jeopardize passage of 2nd part noted.
REPORTER: Ted Koppel
(Studio) Panama Canal as problem for Republicans, in 1976 president primary campaign between Gerald Ford and Ronald Reagan, and its continued presence as problem for 1978 elecs. reported Republican kickoff for 1978 elecs. with fund-raising dinners across country and attempts to ignore Canal problems are subjects of report
REPORTER: Frank Reynolds
(Houston, Texas) Opposition met by Senator Howard Baker on attending fund-raiser in Houston, Texas, detailed. Boycott of dinner by state GOP chairperson Ray Barnhardt noted. [BARNHARDT - thinks Baker's appearance here under present conditions is unwise and inconsistent with party's position. Notes Baker's stands on Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) II and labor reform.] Local reporter's questions to Baker cited. [BAKER - thinks Panamanians ought to know that slightest provocation from them could cause whole treaty to be defeated.] Statements of Republican leaders at other dinners around country in reaction to President Carter's handling of government reported; comments of Ronald Reagan, Gerald Ford, John Connally and Baker outlined. All speakers' lack of mentioning Canal treaty issue noted.
REPORTER: Don Farmer