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it's b one state now that was a that was a prior episode during the primaries and pre convention rid of that nineteen sixty campaign i ask and observant rejuvenate been abandoned as he did he have been running he decided not to be decided to get back in and he was making a tour of the midwest lots of convention delegates so i went there for that purpose
other than being a dryer in a motorcade and simply absurd position through mutual friends i think it will i don't imagine that it really hurt anybody else now at sixty one well i was doing and it is b
that's right the rest of it it was near the beginning of nineteen seventy five i can't recall exactly the first couple months and it i think he held the same positions throughout the region well as closely as this was the reason for the massive fire well we hear individual as thorough as assistant legal system president president i know i haven't i had nary a responsibility in which i was
in the sense that i think like a year so it's never going to selections that an identity as it developed we have a separate bucket so that i went to was not a workaround for the white house budget request poland had responsibility for and my responsibilities were on a direct line to the president rather than as previously how are you well i don't think anybody on the white house or considers anybody else senior to him well it's a it's at a sort of a metaphysical concept among the assistance to the president and then there's that was here on my reporting relationship so this week that was directly the
president at that point and only on in a limited number of cases that i come under mr haldeman's area of answers so stay since you have a working relationship this doesn't matter i mean every morning and that was for the purpose of cable and anything that the others needed to know about other business major we tried at that meeting early enough in the morning so that before the president
open dozens of history here we had all those things in that mutual knowledge and understanding of everybody and that was a group of well actually quite a large meeting and and and one of five to eight seniors that and the white house we're certain a well organized and i think he has the ability not to want to know all the facts which is one of the big problems of sifting out what you need to know from what just waste your time and i think what was important and what wasn't
and in january nineteen seventy well yeah it would be three four times a month on subjects that we share a common interest or concern that they might be problems of next substantive and and technical writers such as this whole problem of income appropriate clubs which was mostly a substantive problem from my standpoint and from a budgetary standpoint and a very tough technical legal problem which was gene was working on in conjunction with the justice department so we would come together on that one well
yes mr dean i would think was in the indian second wind just immediately and i was exorcist i don't know hopefully and so this area oh i don't know what the arrangement was developed between the two men when i was counsel to the president that was my line in the report and eventually it got more money directly to the plant but that the counsel to the president is housed in the white house that and he's in the white house that budget and his line of reporters to the chief of that staff and in this case as
well with some exceptions that's a question your letters council president on a frequent basis but the president the president right now what the pants if there is a
matter in which the president has taken a little interest subject matter which is taken prisoner he might very well ask for a direct reporting relationship with mr dionne that's a bit and in fact it appears on the other hand what would be an example something that might relate to say that the white house grounds and a contractual relationship with a partner partner something of this kind you report the famous moment when a reason to establish a direct relationship with the press will get you the direction it will come to my attention from time to time that he was doing
you know he's right the times in nineteen seventy actually no i don't think the number of face to face contacts is really the test question of the flow great deal of my work resumes with the president i wouldn't you know on a lot of my personal contacts with it raises an individual who worked off of these words face to face and so i think there's a real danger now oh
i didn't have a beneficial relationship in the sense that he was on my team from time to time he would have it in his office which also had a lot of substantive substance of the more typically mr golson as for the white house a man who organized interest groups would come to me with a well you also as an advocate for his clientele so sweet and say oh you believe those delegates veterans hospitals open because veterans groups are really worked up about this and i just had a meeting with them and they say this and this and this and here's the facts of maybe you don't act so it's those kinds of situations typically that i would be hearing from the
rolls along i learned a great deal more about today's environment for you wear that all you know how you wear a seventeen i thought it tells the oil sector well the answer to that question is yes now why
a feeling of who and it was well i was aware of any of the feeling of them even if you're not i was aware of a proposal which eventually i believe was put into effect to establish a small office in the justice department to calling and coordinate in and bring together in one points what the various law enforcement agencies both in and out of the federal government knew it about these terrorism bombings and the violent street violence in these other these other activities because it looked that what there really was a patent and that was a coordinated plan and then executed one way one part of the country to the other in the year that if police knew for assistance or any art to be
shared with police in other parts of the country and you get a whole lot better in response to this kind of wobbling so under mr martin see just this effort was made to bring together the the things that were announced all the law enforcement people around and i did not know about the houston plan until i was invited to attend a meeting that i think has been previously referred to hear in the president's talks various intelligence agencies i mean it was an accomplishment you know
me we discuss any aspects of the plan well i don't know that there were there were quite a few years at the meeting from the white house staff and i gather that was and i was simply given information yet to get information that was literally you know yes i heard that the director of the fbi in fact scuttled by his objection with the support to prevent you know why
i don't think i ever knew of any particular why it was pretty obvious to me from here and what occurred in the meeting that he was losing a good deal of sovereignty and that the bureau was going to be asked to do that to enter into intelligence gathering activities that the director didn't want him allison and i'm not sure really what do we do and while it was on
but that time is over you know as for domestic affairs the political intelligence oh it was the uaw that this time will be created in the white house i don't know what it would do to restate the question for me i
said when you're in the white house or intelligence gathered thousands now you're listening to special duty in the white house and major national security area and in point of fact that was strictly in terms of your question i was not asked to set it up junior member and he was as i was one koch the common problems in connection with that and the presidents have also the coming year at the
beginning of the seventies you do as originally conceived was to stimulate the various departments and agencies to do a better job of controlling least an fab four or other exposure of national security secrets from within and it was it was a group which was to speak of the various security offices of the department of defense and state justice and cia to get them to do a better job i was against it no no idea what it would have been no need to gather facts and that concept exceptional that there had been an perks like to require
voters and very active effort on the part of that responsible people in the department and agencies to find out who was responsible how it happened that nature oh man now when you say some people well we'll see what the prosecutors as originally set up and can see this was not an investigative unit in the sense that your question implies it was it was fine the security people in the archives and agencies to do a better job of their
job subsequently it was because it became an investigative unit says as in a literal sense it is actual i do the real essence of this as we go along and i don't need to be i don't want to leave us as we are awaiting a wide range of possibilities of this particular unit law both in the beginning
at the beginning of any point in time in connection with the pentagon papers as a whole series of events one of the powers secret secret it were turned over to the russian embassy i knew this because i had a call the martin the assistant attorney general at the justice department have this farm the attorney general came over and report to the president that this family had evidently been perpetrated by a number of the conspiracy and that some of the people were notified by the department of justice as having
had previous ties to domestic communist activity attorney general van recording in response to an important ingredient mr crow came to me and said i'm having real trouble getting the fbi to movements and so i said well this was basically my fault see what i can do which i get it turns out what are called me back and he said we have a very tough problem it appears that eight top man in india put in a routine request that mr rosenberg says father of the interview
the director has given that top man knows that he's going to be transferred and emo and is further given those that interview and interviews of that family are not take place this was the area which has dakota and special unit or pricing for the department of justice to bring information together as was her job of the attorney general said i want to reverse this decision on the part of the director transfer his men and the most recently at a very touchy situation with a director mr solomon in the same way set siren disagree strongly with a director in this matter i don't know what mr sullivan make way to resolve this this whole it was a very very touchy given a beer so what are our chances of getting the bill to move ahead on this right away
so it was from this set of facts and the real strong feeling of the president that there was a legitimate and vital national security aspects that it was decided mr coats recommendations with my concurrence the two men in the special units who had had considerable investigative experience this on the follow up on that then leaves and red or rather general leaves which weren't for now we're living now you know i have never met no i don't allen and i think that that he may have been in my office
once again say where was before or after in connection with a i was working with mrs are responsible it worked as a kind of approach mr crowe maintain the same reporting relationship mr young again reporting to me at the time of the journey
as cj so we didn't have a system a weekly reports or monthly report that just when something came up that requirement attention and i would hope that most of it would handle things and so they usually get to me neither the routine domestic things that got to me as alaska or they want to present yet i was asked to ratify a number of their decisions from time to time in their practice practice to be sending periodic information reports or status reports of progress reports and sometimes those would contain requests for your approval of a decision that they have made a proposal that's the agency
that later became plumbers yes that was never a term that was familiar to me and it was used in the practice you know may be apocryphal nature now you know i had a meeting with mr golson minister after he was there it was in july of nineteen seventy one and i believe that's the only time i've seen up going i suppose it was an accomplishment that i think i saw
i met him at the cia didn't do so well i can't recall ever make it says oh now you said that the major major responsibilities well it's legal the strategic arms limitations negotiations were underway in the summer of nineteen seventy one and a newspaper obtained united states negotiating position the he in effect a secret script for the united states' negotiators in that negotiation that came close on the heels of the pentagon papers
episode and that was a major cause of concern for the president and for those dealing in this area of foreign policy special unit was asked to see if they could as a possibility but in general terms i do i know that they went through the security people at the state department defense department and they narrowed down the improbable source of that leak and then i believe there were some personnel actions taken as a result you know
and also because the the answer questions that is yes it was in relation to an investigation in nineteen seventy one young that i cannot do yes i do i did not know at the time the details of those that citizen who was being tapped as the standard so it generally that such things will you
know i don't recall until me unlikely specific well obviously in the last few months i learned a great deal more about that whole episode and i mean previews were you ever receive the law yesterday evidently do without here's iris even from as a martyr martin was at the justice department in the pursuit of justice
he gave them to me because he felt that they should be in the custody of the white house and proposed that they be moved out of the justice department because he was president i did not know that until i've written test whether that here in point of fact i referred to question to the president perhaps unnecessarily after mr martin originally talking about it take us to do very quickly he told me what they what they'd reportedly said they were which was the logs and correspondence in an essay nazis of a national security investigation in nineteen sixty nine when i relate to that moment describe
it a lot that's understand a tudor are combination filing cabinet in one of the rooms of miles whitney nineteen seventy one the state those papers and all the papers in my office where than turnover as presidential papers on the
other side well there's only one other business in the public domain and i know that is a an investigation into the circumstances of leak of a cia got relating to relations between india and russia would you break it now they do it will all other lines from that and
power in this area the actual national security generally national security objectives and i'm wondering if i'm under a structure which really doesn't permit me today they're responsive to your question thank you in nineteen seventy one that was sung in nineteen sixty nine as counsel i authorized an attempt
you would know it was past its leaders council in nineteen sixty nine or in my relationship with his unit in nineteen seventy one where are you yeah it is there was a national security purposes now yes you came to my attention i think john the time that he came to california as he's
described as just well i can't vouch for the hearsay aspects of it he says it's very difficult you know oh yeah thank you he suggested do you say
wow i can i can testify to my own recollection on that in a furnace to whoever is simply not only way before the committee in a year as an account of how you know i do remember the episode and you know i believe that he was really looking for i don't know why relationship with him so to speak and then at the time that i shifted jobs in early nineteen seventy he was he was a kind of facility the counsel's office and he sort of went with the job now
it was nineteen seventy one now that was the fact democratic that i mentioned before immigration debate that with the secrets of the directions of the dilemma we have the bureau not moving it is within days or political i don't know exactly one week
no lower court and i asked willa cather that it was a plan for him to go out and set up a an investigation agency or detective agency basically so as a republican i know right and that it was a three or four page double spaced typewritten respects it's about that moment at that time i was very much into the domestic policy business and very much out of the business of politics or in our political inquiry and so i said you know this isn't anything that i could help all over well it wasn't it wasn't terribly specific about actors it was mostly a selling piece about the kind of people who would be involved in your ability to
do it i think yelling even though the medical world and the white house intelligence gathering was that was appealing to foreign leaders and that these activities in the square law an auto tuning in to scramble jets that these are all our separate subjects and there you've taken over a span of three years and you've taken into vital national security really need in our law enforcement system in the country for corporation you dump them all around sixty
thousand one thousand and eight and lead you get people like well would improve the rebels as an isolated so they absolutely right you know what's i'm scott simon well not particularly for knowing what the sheriff's police department new york city and the state patrol california new and bring it together and comparing what's going on around the country actually came into being it was a lull for five or six in an office overlooking the justice department and they did a fine job of bringing together this information and putting out on various places in the country that these bands of bombers and and and people of that time around blowing things up
now one said i know there was a concern the original plan was to having the convention in the senate and that i can recall mr dean asking me in order that we could talk to him about the realities of the probable protest demonstrations at the republican convention in san diego and i know there was a concern you know
in the creation of the committee two questions yes now that you know doesn't agree with her work at the white house when i met him there in connection with it says i can't say specifically and the creation of the committee specifically i don't i don't think he was obviously the media one on the white house staff who was designated to be the primary interest in the campaign
you know there's a moment as an official that's it and i think so my opening statement that's which is the truth and that is that really this whole theory of the politics of the committee reluctance on was less than half of one percent of what i was doing in those days and that it may seem surprising that i was you know it was very strong
you know and i have no recollection i'm having a nineties there's no question maybe there's something else
of course that's right i think you're right yes here it is i was just really one of the witnesses who set of crows said here in algiers area that he had to get my approval for leaping over to the committee and that's the first that i remember that i was supposed to have approved use he was i am
you know so you know i think well listen he's both all right
i don't know and i think that that was a matter of general conversation and offers his own startup funding a matter fact he may have been the one the first latino libby was involved in and has the same when he was a boy i think that fb anyway you know
i know it was the following response now his name was mentioned in the original temple mr barnes of the secret service well one of the people arrested at his name in there and there'd be like i wear them that the afternoon of the nineteenth and the following monday
is it identity of the individuals he told me that he had talked to libby i think that there are possibly was the next april madness that libby had told him that it was his operation in effect of the libby was and all that that no wave the white house i think that was about the police really need it you know
mr nelson yeah he was working at the committee responsibilities i'm absolutely do all right it does well this was by monday was a campaign issue and within a matter of
hours the opposition have filed lawsuits that were making public statements and there's no question about the fact that it was a an important campaign issue yes i was concerned about it all i mean i'm standing now a plate so they were they were certainly identify those as former white house people in the in indianapolis that was that
the white house i wouldn't think so was a very intensive national security investigations which have been in a very high security classification likelihood of that being disclosed was very far number two those people were operating these guy i believe they were operating under express authorization in a day national security situation under a situation and subtle moments of the nation
in the top secret documents and they're of her delivery the soviets i'll never was my view that commonly as individuals i had had done something that was completely irrational in invertebrates they're operating international security setting and priscilla to eat your instructions or authorization and that being the case which i considered well as a state well you know they would talk about or what a prosecutor talk about it they told him no one area and were you aware of the national security characteristic of the talking
well the only assurances when i suppose that i didn't think there's a lot of what you have and a couple of individuals here with long training and experience as law enforcement or intelligence people in the government for twenty years in libya for seven or something in his back and it just didn't it never occurred to me to be a a series like that now and it was
there is well i certainly disagree with that reconstruction agreement i considered at the special units in the world the president's inherent constitutional pop up and this particular episode the reckoning in california like not to have been within the president's inherent constitutional powers is as though spelled out in eighteen to you as well that's
great yes it is i think i think what is normal in the press these days is perhaps at a difficult thing for any of this to the law particularly in the senate at the time of the pentagon papers where you have these people stealing top secret document dealing with the one or taken at the time of the campaign it's been
1973 Watergate Hearings
Part 2 of 5
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Episode Description
Robert MacNeil and Jim Lehrer anchor gavel-to-gavel coverage of day 27 of the U.S. Senate Watergate hearings. In today's hearing, John Ehrlichman testifies.
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Politics and Government
Watergate Affair, 1972-1974
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Anchor: MacNeil, Robert
Anchor: Lehrer, James
Producing Organization: WETA-TV
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Library of Congress
Identifier: 2341707-1-2 (MAVIS Item ID)
Format: 2 inch videotape
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Chicago: “1973 Watergate Hearings; 1973-07-24; Part 2 of 5,” 1973-07-24, Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed January 27, 2023,
MLA: “1973 Watergate Hearings; 1973-07-24; Part 2 of 5.” 1973-07-24. Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. January 27, 2023. <>.
APA: 1973 Watergate Hearings; 1973-07-24; Part 2 of 5. Boston, MA: Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from