DATE=10/13/1999 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=CLINTON-TEST BAN (L) NUMBER=2-254993 BYLINE=DAVID GOLLUST DATELINE=WHITE HOUSE CONTENT= VOICED AT: Intro: President Clinton is vowing to fight on for eventual U-S ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty despite its defeat in the Senate Wednesday and he is urging other countries to ratify and support its terms. VOA's David Gollust reports from the White House. Text: The Senate action was a major political setback for the President, who had been the first world leader to sign the treaty in 1996. And he was clearly angry when he faced reporters after the vote to pledge to continue for fight for the treaty, which he insisted the United States eventually will ratify. Mr. Clinton said the United States will stay true to its tradition of global leadership against the spread of nuclear weapons and made clear it will hold to its own moratorium on testing in effect since 1992. He urged other countries including Russia and China to hold to their test moratoriums and for others to continue the treaty ratification process. He called the Senate vote a detour in the non-proliferation process but the United States , as he put it, "eventually always returns to the main road." Mr. Clinton says he regrets that a last minute compromise to postpone the vote had fallen through. He again criticized the Senate's Republican leadership for politicizing and rushing the vote, which he said came despite compelling scientific arguments and support from key U-S allies: ///Clinton actuality/// It is crazy for America to walk away from Britain, and France, 11 of our NATO allies, the heads of our nuclear labs, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, 32 Nobel laureates, and the whole world who had had been depending on us for all these decades to lead the fight for non-proliferation. Therefore we have to keep this issue alive and continue to argue it in the strongest and most forceful terms. ///end act/// Alluding to this week's military coup in Pakistan Mr. Clinton said the treaty could help constrain nuclear weapons programs in both India and Pakistan at what he described as "a time of tremendous volatility, especially on the Indian subcontinent." Republican opponents in the Senate had opposed the treaty as unverifiable and a barrier to assuring the safety and reliability of the U-S nuclear arsenal. In the final debate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman and bitter treaty opponent, Senator Jesse Helms of North Carolina, said ratification would have saddled Mr. Clinton's successor in the White House with a national-security liability: ///Helms actuality/// The next Administration must be left free to establish its nuclear-testing and its own nuclear non-proliferation policies - not have them dictated by the Clinton Administration. Unencumbered by the failed policies of the current outgoing Administration, the next Administration can make sense with the kind of treaty it sends to the Senate. ///end act/// But the senior Democrat on the Foreign Relations panel - Joseph Biden of Delaware - lamented the impending defeat of the treaty as a tragedy for American policy and leadership: ///Biden actuality/// I must tell you, and I'm not being melodramatic. My heart aches that we're about to vote down this treaty. I truly think, I honestly believe, in the 27 years I've been here that this is the most serious mistake the United States Senate has ever made or is about to make. ///end act/// In the final vote, 51 Senate Republicans voted against the treaty while all 45 Democrats joined by three Republican moderates voted in favor. Ratification would have required a two-thirds majority or 67 votes and analysts say the treaty stands virtually no chance of being revived and ratified until after a new Congress is seated after the year-2000 elections. (Signed) NEB/DAG/PT 13-Oct-1999 21:56 PM EDT (14-Oct-1999 0156 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .