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it's been does is it mm hmm unidentified man any information all
right and in the senate of the united states in nineteen seventy two he's a senior correspondent today one request president nixon flatly refused to give it be ervin committee or the special watergate prosecutor the white house tapes which might determine the truth or false charges made against him personally <unk> instead he listened to some of the tapes and they supported his
version of the truth but the president said they were open to misinterpretation and they would remain in his position senator evan and the committee then voted unanimously to serve two subpoenas on the president for the tapes and other relevant presidential documents the first time in the history of the nation and congress has subpoenaed a president that isn't historic confrontation tonight white house counsel and a diamond accepted the two subpoenas they have twenty four hours to reply senator evan said he deeply regretted the president's action and he felt the people of the united states were more interested in getting at the truth of watergate than an abstruse arguments about executive privilege this exchange dramatically overshadowed the interesting testimony of gordon strong the former aide to which are all women strongly supported john dean's credibility attack that of jeb stuart magruder and further set the stage for the testimony of john ehrlichman tomorrow and bob haldeman later the crux of the president's larger letter to senator and today is contained in the middle and longest barbara degrades
the fact is that the tapes would not finally settle the central issues before your committee before their existence became publicly known i personally listen to a number of them said the president the tapes are entirely consistent with what i know to be the truth and what i've stated to be the truth however as in any verbatim recording of informal conversations they contained comments that persons with different perspectives and motivations would inevitably interpret and different ways furthermore barring separately interspersed in them a great many very frank and very private comments on a wide range of issues in individuals holy extraneous to the committees and we're even more important the tapes could be accurately understood or interpreted only by reference to an enormous number of other documents in tents select open them at all would begin an endless process of disclosure an explanation of why the presidential records totally unrelated to watergate and highly confidential and make sure they have the clearest possible example of why presidential documents must be
kept confidential that is the essence of mr nelson's refuse a letter and a prayer breakfast followed by quote accordingly the tapes which have been under my sole personal control but remained so none has been transcribed or made public and none will be and caught and the course of the evening you will hear senator and read the full text of the president's lead a committee subpoena for the presidential tapes was much today by a similar move by spurs sure what a great prosecutor archibald cox who were and speed specifically it's really still his investigators cox doesn't think the president has much of an argument he said careful study before requesting the tapes convince me that in a blanket claim a privilege to withhold this evidence from a grand jury is without legal foundation and then cops noted happily hours is a system of government in which no man is above the law what may come out of this song is a legal action by the special prosecutor who officially as part of the executive branch that could bring the white house decor or the watergate committee
simply sit by and watched it happen the president's refusal to release those tapes that i could have a definite effect on the criminal prosecution of those involved in this mass called watergate john cranmer and the georgetown university law center and watching washington watched it all unfold was today with prayer tell us about that specific aspect of the effect of this or not being able to listen to the tapes professor the byproduct of hearings was really a byproduct of a letter sent to mr cox well professor reich of the university of texas was working in the white house on this matter as a matter of constitutional law some reason decisions in the past eleven years and the supreme court made quite clear that in a criminal case the prosecution as in its exclusive possession material that could be relevant and useful possibly to the defense and that material is not disclosed to the defense and the prosecution was terminated as a matter of fundamental fairness or like a fundamental difference in this instance the prosecution does not yet have the material and possession after all his
compositions on subpoenas barton's to write is terrible human ordinary prosecutor and was a part of the executive branch as well as an officer of the court and therefore since the executive branch has the steps and will not disclose that it seems to me that it follows almost automatic but that would be on the prosecution of mr bean is beholden and ehrlichman and connection that is just a few of the big ones would not be prosecuted as long as the president withheld the tapes from them when there were so much as a practical court matter attorneys for the defendants in each one of the government's case as you just mentioned or any others could say i demanded nearly another tape recordings that exist and i won i won't leave their contents in addition evidence as a kid claire me of complicity in this crowd is that and then they would be able to get him and the judge threw the case out a separate case ford started i think about affect mr wright is pushing a possibility because in his letter to mr cox he says a successful prosecution of those who've broken laws is a very important national interest but it has long been recognized they're other national
interests and specific cases male riders cities contemplating dismissal on the prosecution's in favor of the closest associates of applause guards all the people that you mentioned though the exception of metal in the best location your the other people being all americans haven't yet been charged with a crime so that wouldn't anticipate if they were however they couldn't be tried or possibly could not be tried those who are patient still get mr cramer at will be back at close tonight's broadcast a big joint that time now by stephen hess former nixon aide author of five books on political affairs american now senior fellow at the brookings institution despite a flurry of activity today between the white house and capitol hill the testimony also offered some new developments areas and that are rye arguing that and they'll bring our gordon strong testifies that on orders from hr alderman you jill gordon liddy to transfer his intelligence operations from the muskie campaign for the mcgovern campaign and after
the watergate break in strong says that halderman told him make sure our files are clean and the second hour strong says he believes haldeman was aware of charles colson is dirty tricks operations after his opinion of john dean's testimony about conversations with the president strom says i believe john dean would be telling the truth and the third hour the committee really owes its response to the president's letter refusing to release the record conversations with german reads the next letter which concludes none has been made public and non wealthy german ever known offers his constitutional arguments for release and suggest the president should exhibit of our moral leadership of the public also when the third are going strong justifies about white house plans to withhold money and other support from republicans were running against democrat friendly to the white house and it reveals that white house aide richard moore had access to fbi files on sobriety in the fourth are strong says he attended a meeting in mr obama's office in which
is really important for the florida senator edward kennedy strawn admits there was a feeling of distrust on the part of white house staffers towards the reelection committee that is why some private homes were down from the white house an opportunity now to the earrings themselves jerusalem this is bala i was there in nineteen seventy for example in the nineteen seventies
where we belong yes sir now they do then again this year believes is that this is a little olive easy two years one of those big donors and my
responsibilities for the first couple of months to get all the polling files of the office which are expensive in order but then juliet mccain for a certain amount of time he has no staff assistant that is a pair of papers that would be going home and put them in the workforce be that action fyi personal as well as a mature was going to the president that we want to review those folders and taken in tehran and noon and then again at the end of their own sex oh yeah the rawlins novels shifted location and moved into a staff secretary complex it was and from january one through the election might
primary duties were in the area of polling and in the area of political data bank at the white house as character says service the layers on between mr haldeman and the committee as you might imagine they're very substantial contacts between all members of the white house staff and the campaign organization so i was the liaison between mr haldeman and the committee recommended to receive you well received information from us and also for many other people on the staff astronomers particular interest for advertising and polling and i dealt directly with those senior people in those two areas i also tell people in the political area in order to acquire as
much information isn't the one receiving information on the committee and reporting the muscle i'd characterize the discussion is very little that's right or be confident that he would've learned the information from some other source now i'm steve inskeep well mr haldeman had a well deserved reputation as a very very tough stance than there were constant pressures to perform well and i worked very
well what is this list of all among us that's director and has been keeping in touch with the middle of president what would be yours soundbite of bell he is very organized he had a system for example on his telephone were invited indicate whether he was in his office not be disturbed or in the president's office or push a green light would light up on one of his preschool age phones then that would be your opportunity to take care matter intimate was an ordinance obama i would spend as little time as possible
in there not to waste his time but unless you want you're welcome he had no mr erlichman for a long time they resume or close friends play tennis together day i've had direct phone lines to each other than walk in and out of each other's offices a character as it is a very close relationship they knit community with all of the important to make the more i don't know that as a matter of fact that i was truly a cinnamon what will be his relationship with mystical mr higby had worked for
mr haldeman for i believe for five years before i joined the white house staff his title as distinguished minus that assistance was administrative assistant he was the senior personal aide to mr haldeman i think they had a very close personal relationship and personal friendship on social time together or parole ms solomon was obviously quite interested in the campaign he would express his views as the way certain things would be done in particular he insisted upon clearing that is personally approving my initial on every piece of advertising your radio tv whatever that one option the committee i'm audie cornish
these issues will be communities no not all matters would be communicated for action he had very little interest for example in the field organization would be doing i would advise him on a five basis of who have been selected to head the campaigns in the various states that he showed very little interest in iowa for when you want to well thank you well as i mentioned in my opening statement that appeared periodically usually once a week or once every two weeks memoranda untitled political matters mammals these memoranda which summarized the information that i had accumulated from politically active people on the white house staff
to coal seams japan information it lightened from seventy no one the first aid organizations he had gotten that certainly throughout yet quite an interest in california so talk that california people and then i would write a memorandum usually quite long eight nine ten pages without several attachments as backup so the main purpose of attaching the tampa bay that i would refer to paragraphs information and i thought he should read in the original form and what attention as a time where some of the medications but he prefers to communicate in writing it of course i have oral communications with the great bulk of information that he received from me regarding the campaign would be in writing about
it a little history and you write its comments and asylum or check the item as he read each particular paragraph kazan he'd write his views on the political matters memorandum on the paragraph about that particular subject and then and this is i think of you and what you want to do well usually on his comments on assignment be he recently had a disagreement as the way things were being done at a committee he would sign a memorandum to john mitchell on occasion to jeb magruder
or make a note to me that i should contact a particular individual bats an eye i'm listening to you it wasn't yes i wouldn't dare compare what would be characterized as a talking paper they were fairly structured formalized mr holmes offers they're meeting for example a john mitchell i worked there a talking favorite subjects that i thought we should cover so imagine by an idaho that means you know what that indicate that he read that the ruble
whether it was the freighter that they give you information concerning the committee didn't give you any information concerning it and lamb march thirty nineteen seventy two prior to march thirty nineteen seventy two yet i know not now yes i am scientists at the meeting they communicated about the contents of the meeting and in fact sent two copies of the so called living lamberton but the greatest testimony
of inestimable even know you did not on his recruiter and i read his testimony carefully relies on the fact that automatically materials would have come over to me federal bureau of investigation has established that is not true nature is to not automatically come over to me and in this particular case out there and they interviewed several of his secretaries and people in his office they indicated that matters are not always sent to mr strong or to the white house that they will be held back and express directions from so it's true that important matters matters the significance of what the us an overview on what you not upgraded at a plan a significant matter
obviously as a significant matter that i think mr ritter probably relied upon the fact that john dean was present at the meeting to report the appropriate people to live set their relationship yesterday he had a line responsibility as distinguished from my staff responsibility you have a certain amount of independent authority and what function and projects on its own and reports of mr haldeman and mr lippman on madison much needed guidance for me twenty seventeen for instance and that would be a really
expect visiting with that point that all this evidence so because mr demers aware of interest over the six months previous of interest in political intelligence justifiably reporting well the subject that i was expected to race in talking papers and periodic follow up with chinese certain individual projects were on track we don't know i'm sorry well it was particularly interested i think this is the
first question he was particularly interested in the area of political intelligence and information about senator kennedy now you said yesterday the expectation reports meeting in fact the report this morning for you their responsibilities and making records and getting information through various members of the white house there was i say get my responsibilities at numbers that people under him he handled the conflict of interest matters would usually have an opinion as that what standard procedure taken legislation and so forth i'm my role on this trip almost partial staffers to follow up what sean dean on certain matters that he was working with are the best example as one that john he was working on the pleasance as they plant
and then research on the subject in private law practice and work closely with john be known that he would prepare memorandum addressed too mr haldeman ehrlichman and i would have a chance to look around but they were joined in their original state yeah no not necessarily mr dean had a remarkable facility almost out of a litigator to remember facts and to keep track of which backs which that members knew or should be informed about and if you haven't decided and experiences remarkable qualities of the two
separate would want to see what that's well observed that the whole time i was on the white house that whatever the particular so who was handling which tax returns which people should have access to which parts of which tax returns very tough questions of crack an internal politics most particularly during the summer of nineteen seventy two for example when he interviewed me regarding says reading he'd interviewed me in shape and all of us knew something about this subject yet and he was able to keep out which of us knew was perfectly straight you believe that
well i have confidence in chinese ability to state the facts as he recalls know and you're not with the usual conclusions concerning is getting any one time he thought was the whole about that my community that john dean were disclosed the facts in this trial now your testimony after the federal authority and when there was an installation a wiretap equipment and the war gave the democratic national committee headquarters that particular time with his testimony
believe it not and if you read his testimony carefully and previous statements he did not charming gemstone while his statement this couch with as i recall i call them up as i recall he came over and as i recall he read it he told mr altman within an hour after talk to prosecutors or strong may have read the gemstones are missouri's sworn statement is that when he pressed part in the questioning of mr mcgregor about that crucial fact mr ritter answered that he quote could not testify that strong had read jim's farm many of the here and now well
i think his testimony usually send you you're welcome his testimony that was too sensitive to send over as inconsistent with his testimony that he sent automatically the budgets over to if the budget's contain bugging and wiretapping i was struck me as far more sensitive america sent through the normal messenger channels in some file with other witnesses and indicated was not plainly illegal in space we're saying that you
never gives the jensen farms writer never invite you over to sit and that really meant a lot of anecdotal libyan government plan that's correct that's right yes i was aware that mr mcgrew would be going down to key biscayne to review several campaign decisions that accumulated during john mitchell is working on the itt primal he called me up fairly fairly brief telephone conversation and reviews of thirty years so a new campaign decisions i took notes on a telephone conversation and appeared shortly thereafter political matters memorandum for mr hollande summarizing that telephone conversation as well as other information
yes mr berger told me that a sophisticated political intelligence gathering system had been approved and i reported that mr holm we know where i was or decision that went down you know i was not in that report that you know that's terrible or two well shortly thereafter i would guess you know friday march thirty first maybe saturday my secretary recalls the memorandum on friday as sophisticated plan well i concluded that mr mitchell had approved only one mr mcgrew was going through the decisions and away i would usually reports mr haldeman would be that mr mcgrew reports that
mr michel has approved a foreign matters call an anonymous the items yes it was one of the thirty items that was listed as sophisticated as the system with a budget of three hundred watt balance three hundred thousand dollars and almost all memoranda that i wrote mr haldeman island we want the last three zeros because usually the figures that we were dealing with were very very large thank you it is yes it was
i'm the memorandum of the us but that the ripple through the campaign and forty into the campaign in a little further apart but her i wrote twenty eight now you received any information innovation and that led to the political memorandum number eighteen specifically yes practice when he would reach such a memorandum to make notes and check off those paragraphs which it had indicated a name right up in the upper righthand corner two strong this case became a man should be returned repeatedly and i would go through those memoranda after he read them and this
particular one i re read than noted is checking off all paragraphs that on the one side the assad director concern about that was unclear black check now shortly afterwards when you're just to do anything of the internet i'm sorry i'm sorry i don't understand st louis has given them and then that this was checked are indicating you that it read what happened afterwards the senate that didn't matter to us that your
final you know well after the memorandum came back home and was going to meet with mr mitchell oh four stalin had a system on his telephone's where he could push a button and have one of his aides monitor cell phone conversations what does the summit of an extension if it on an extension of the different from an extension on because he can protect the fact that it was because there was no way that the person listening on the phone making noises about talking about sectors typing indicate that that there was someone else on the fall and they want to do we didn't think it was a button on the color of the phone i had an hour which would was when i was to pick that lineup and pushed down the
button mostly the conversation well i'd been doing it well mr mitchell indicated that he was you're going to return or have returned from florida mr holman took me said oscar winners they stayed and their vacations from more than limited that well we better get together and talk about some matters all the nastiness three o'clock that they would be convenient april seventeenth nineteen seventy two and a meeting on april fourth wedding attended meetings i could justify that there was in fact the fact that they're talking paper for the meeting which would include a talking man the computer went into
his office and came back out afterwards i did you include sophisticated well yassin was talking papers i would frequently posed the question is he intelligent systematically says proposal on track just to get the conversation going on the subject and in this particular one i did include that her people of the wind i know you know
but usually if the matter have not been discussed you indicated that it should be raised again in this case it was raised again indicating it would have covered this event i'll put it back in the file with the political matters memo eighteen miles and there's no indication that's correct now after that didn't even as the vigil and has to haul and that there's going to be some innovations that we're living yes mr allman called me up into his office character for him he told me two consonants in it and tell him to transfer whatever capability from
muscatine a governor with a particular interest in discovering what the connection between mcgovern and senator kennedy was yes are taking notes as he dictated to me i walk down to my office and called gordon liddy adam cleared in the white house and come over to my office and literally read a statement richard overton turn on the radio descriptions later that that's what you do if you want a brownout than about picking up a conversation in atlanta
community so that was the hall and asked me to get his message right orange is right what they didn't know i didn't accept that suspected that there were plants and muskie's campaign was fairly common knowledge that the skis driver was either in the pay of the crp or supplying information doesn't presume that these employees would
be transferred over to senator mcgovern well it was well i think you have to make nobody's left you do
no not really that's correct what do we do you know information can connect through the right channels you know that was all that i ask with respect your opponent or what people
expect it every second generation owners are all in that would normally follow up on particular matters whether he would get a report back on all messages that he delivered frequently does assume that something was going to be done in the nineteen eighties well to his personal aide see you would explain his dissatisfaction in no uncertain terms there you are i'm sitting in my car
at simon's drugstore was inside shopping in ireland radio what when you get shocked disbelief surprise what you do well i drove to the white house to get telephone number for mr mcgregor in california to calm and find out if you know anything about it no i did not are calling back and then an inch at a common demand even in average in place the third call on sunday washington and asked him if he knew anything about this rather expected a phone call from a gentleman
and he said don't worry about it this morning with the bow union known in iranian to call mister hanging out because i didn't really believe that the river had talked to mr haldeman thought was that it was game as jamie told me that yes and that was that yes i expected mr oliver cromwell and asked me what i knew and if i knew anything while reported to him the
usual very tough questions you announce any of the body have to draw one of the three conclusions on your new about any time you know you didn't expect me to report to them or you'd receive a report on income it was either one of the later to either you or even expect me to report an organ to you now at your cell but in anything the white house wants him to get that i was in the white house for a minute sunday and what that was for the next day monday i
mean that's correct i begin going through files to see if there were any indications or any information that would be in any way related to the sat whether there was anything in the final yes i pulled out several documents was particularly the political matters memorandum number eighteen that's correct melissa what all that talking about that i did not take that up to this problem for what we believe in that
we believe that a reporter who was in fact related as planned i know for sure but i have very strong suspicions that you mean there's no wrong show that to people about this idea i believe it is the morning june twenty he had returned from florida again and ultimately be that i thought i should see mr haldeman some images officer timothy political matters years before good morning he fired
now remember at me he said almost jokingly well what we know about the events of the weekend and i was quite nervous and retreated to sort of legal and objective terms and i said well sir this this is what can be imputed to you through me your agent and open the political matters memorandum to the paragraph on intelligence showed it to acknowledge his jack and that he'd read that and said that he had not read the tablet had been attached to turn began reason initiative and reading these these are quite interesting read the tabs what was that i was an insurer to and
he told me yeah oh make your files are clean others related how do you feel that you were making sure that you're following the women's education and nonbelievers following his orders that's correct maine yes yes i did go through a major talking
mr haldeman and mr mitchell on people for our shredded a reference to was just great shredded mr securities telephone number of disputes between whether or not this is a great engine continue out in the field functioning someone in the pennant the summer grader wrote a memorandum to mr mitchell i taught that matter a potential embarrassment and which he described as individual the field now that individuals should be under the direction of mr liddy i am mr mitchell had a copy of that and mr holman at a copy that mr holman had told me to cause a great talent to expect a call and his directions from somebody i sure that that memorandum also so we gave a chameleon lizards
do with their particular vigil before yes i think i said that that was one of the items now and the letters on twenty one bestseller to john dean's office and that gave him a list or a link to the documents that i had shredded and told him that those who had been the strong winds instructions one of funding was as you know the counsel to the president and the man who would presumably be handling this problem you know white house
yes i've come back into an executive office building office from five twenty two to go through the files well they contain political matters memorandum accept them are at risk well i don't know did you hear in that music more than two years on july one thousand violent to go out with the presidential party on air force one there going to be a
series of discussions afterward mr mcgregor now running the campaign i had done a political matters moment for the preceding two weeks and then i join mr haldeman and mr higby on that flight and at that time i refuse both the most recent political matters memorandum and the fact that major the files were clean all the reaction and at this point the great thing about the segment of his reporters a matter fact in women or something else and you are your recollection all i remember of polio is a reasonable thing to do yes he asked me how many copies of the political matters memorandum have been
prepared i told three m and he told me at that time to that number down to two over to receive a name mr coleman for me this is weekend edition yesterday i talked with mr malik on the trip out to california and he talked to mr mcgregor about how good i thought about really wasn't as an administrative assistant and the decision was made to move on really become perpetrators administrative assistant and i continued to work very very closely with mysteries the usa today reports
none of it it does i think that and zoning meetings that well we'll we're not really certainly never attended any i don't like i was specifically aware of that they were having all these meetings on what has turned out to be awarded and we ever met a state administered being in the midst of the so there is a point of
unity all facts and people sort of more i don't think he ever told me that things haven't always means committee or for a certain oneness to the president you see at central that's correct and i would guess he would report directly rather than through the united states unintelligible as the subject of the disgust time for a couple of months before that what
this would be december nineteen seventy one through april seventy two his office conducted extensive polling and he told me at one point when i was the discussion of this to come back to make sure that we have an ample supply of cash to pay for these polls much talk with john dean about a writer arranger john been a method for holding the money eventually told me that he could not be that on april sixth that prepared a memorandum for mr hollande so if we're going to get that money from the committee before the new finance law we have to get very soon chanting cannot make arrangements for a year or for other
alternatives he checked the one imitating a nashville pick up the money i'm a friend who would hold the money than the money one overdue seventy no one to the committee to reelect president yunus to come on zappos or too slow in the us yes it was what eventually turned over to walk into his office nicolas began counting and then he said he would get to his friend i'm renee montagne is this right definitely
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1973 Watergate Hearings
Part 1 of 4
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Robert MacNeil and Jim Lehrer anchor gavel-to-gavel coverage of day 26 of the U.S. Senate Watergate hearings. In today's hearing, Gordon Strachan testifies.
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Politics and Government
Watergate Affair, 1972-1974
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Anchor: MacNeil, Robert
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Chicago: “1973 Watergate Hearings; 1973-07-23; Part 1 of 4,” 1973-07-23, Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed April 25, 2024,
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APA: 1973 Watergate Hearings; 1973-07-23; Part 1 of 4. Boston, MA: Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from