Jimmy Carter will formally launch his re-election campaign on Labor Day in one of three locations, according to a top White House aide. But these locations have not yet been disclosed.
Carter began his 1976 campaign at Warm Springs, Ga.
The aide said the President's campaign planning is "in good shape" and Carter can't wait to "get out on the stump."
Top White House staffers were to begin a series of intensive consultations Aug. 18 on Carter's proposed new economic revitalization program, which will be a centerpiece of his campaign. Members of Congress; leaders representing labor, business, and minority groups; economists; environmentalists; and others will be canvassed for their reactions and ideas.
The list of big-name Democrats who have not endorsed Carter, meanwhile, is shrinking. New York Gov. Hugh Carey, who spoke out in favor of an open Democratic convention and who was seen in some quarters as a possible running-mate for John Anderson, now has given the President his backing.m
Sen. Edward Kennedy will not say if he thinks Carter would be a better president than Anderson. But he is urging disaffected Democrats to support the party ticket anyway because it has the best chance of beating Reagan.
Kennedy believes that although the Illinois congressman seems to be drawing votes equally from Reagan and Carter, that will change as the campaign wears on -- and that one of the major party candidates will suffer.
The senator suggested that his lack of enthusiasm for the Democratic ticket can be changed by concrete steps the President can take to improve the economy.
As for his presidential ambitions for 1984, Kennedy said he has made "no judgment. . . . I haven't had to. I think we've all seen over the period of this year [that] it's a volatile time."
He said he intends to run for re-election to the Senate in 1982.
Ronald Reagan said the President's "distorted charges" against him at the Democratic convention were an effort to avoid talking about the Carter record.
"They just can't sell that to the American people," Reagan said.
Referring to Carter's remark that Reagan lived in a "fantasy land," he said: "If you're in a fantasy land, maybe eveything looks like a fantasy land."
Reagan joined running mate George Bush for a meeting with reporters Aug. 16 before the latter's departure on a nine-day trip to China and Japan. Reagan said his call for official American relations with Taiwan -- instead of the private basis that now exists -- would not mean closing the US Embassy in Peking.
Bush, who served as US liaison to China in the Nixon administration, said his discussions with Chinese leaders in Peking "will be on the United States as a deterrent to Soviet aggression [and] on our commitment to trade."
Reagan began a four-day campaign trip Aug. 17, with stops in Chicago, Philadelphia, and Boston.m
Anderson's running mate apparently will not be Boston Mayor Kevin White, despite suggestions that the independent candidate was looking for someone who represents a major Northeastern city to share the ticket with him.
The two men met over the weekend at Anderson's request, but said later they had not discussed a White vice-presidential bid. "We didn't talk in that context at all," White, a Democrat, told newsmen afterward.
"We want over my platform on urban problems," Anderson said.
When asked whom he favors for president, White responded, "I'm not telling."
Anderson will join President Carter and Ronald Reagan on the list of speakers at the American Legion convention in Boston this week. Anderson, it was announced, will speak to the legionnaires Aug. 19. Reagan is scheduled to speak Aug. 20 and Carter Aug. 21.m