President Carter declared yesterday that he will not demand the resignation of Treasury Secretary G. William Miller because of charges Miller's former company made payments to foreign officials and lavishly entertained Pentagon employes.
The president made the statement to reporters as he walked from the White House to a helicopter for a flight to Camp David.
Miller said Friday that while chief executive officer of Textron from 1968 to 1978, he was "not personally involved in any way . . . with any illegal payments to govervment officials any place in the world." He said he did not intend to resign and the president had not askd him to.
The uproar over Textron involves two types of alleged payments.
One involves $600,000 for entertainment of Pentagon officials, which the Securities and Exchange Commission said Thursday Textron spent from 1971 to 1978 with Miller's knowledge.
Miller, in his Friday statement, said the Senate already knew about entertainment outlays when it confirmed him last year, that the practice was gradually phased out after Senate Banking Committee Chairman William Proxmire (D-Wis.) inquired about such matters in 1975, and that they were small outlays -- less than $100 per quest -- expended in the normal course of business contact.
The SEC began looking into the payments, which Miller said were not illegal, on grounds the company had not fully disclosed them in financial reports. The reports did not name the officials who had been entertained.
The second type of alleged payment was to foreign officials in connection with military sales by Textron. This issue was brought up at Miller's confirmation hearings and he said Friday that he did not know about them at the time they were being made. "I have to take full responsibility for not being adequately informed," he said.
Senate Majority Leader Robert C. Byrd (D-W.Va.) said yesterday that he expected the Seante Banking Committee will be looking into the charges and therefore he would not comment on whether Miller should resign.