thumbnail of 1974 Nixon Impeachment Hearings; 1974-07-29; Reel 2 of 6
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it's big because of a constitutional government of the great tragedies of the cause of law and justice and to the manifest into of the people of the united states where four richard m nixon by such conduct wars impeachment trial and remove from office california the feminine many it's quite clear from a full reading of political to that relevant of that article is an abuse are on the part of the president of united states that concept of abuses at the various places i
use of the word misuse and in use of the word interrogation of constitutional rights is just a violation of those rights the question is whether an abuse of power all within the meaning of the phrase high crime to a misdemeanor as we can in the time a lot of eighth if it does not then my point of order the thing if it does that we should proceed with a confederate about it my problem the chairman is that i have no quarrel with the music on that when that conduct does in and of itself violate the law if that be the case that we should be impeached because of those violations i do have serious concerns as to whether or not comeback which does not violate the law but which may be characterized by this committee of congress as abusive falls within the phrase i crimes and misdemeanors for parents on the proposed article that its author believes that music on that is
unthinkable my problem is this just what is that what is that mean i suggest that that is an mp for it having meaning only in terms of what we pour into him it must reflect our subjective views of impropriety as distinguished from being objective views and ninety eight advice society in its laws it ought to be clear that this committee a committee of lawyers that such a phrase as abusive how abuse of how is sufficiently imprecise to me the past required by the fifth amendment in my view the chairman the adoption of such an article would've been our constitutional history for the first time the very first time the principle that a president may be impeached because of the view of congress that he has abused his powers also he may have acted in violation
of the law if that is true then we truly are a product line the statement attributed to the now vice president at impeachment means exactly what the congress says it means at any given moment by declaring punishable conduct which was not illegal when done this congress is raising the issue of available playing contrary to the restroom for the constitution the argument of mexico's backed the legislation is now before us if we are to declare punishable that on that which is not illegal under our laws in so doing mr chairman we ought to recognize the momentous nature of such a decision because we are taking a step toward a parliamentary system of government in this country rather than a constitutional system which we now here we are in effect saying mr chairman that a president may be impeached in the
future if a congressman smith of no confidence in his own power not because he has violated the law but rather because of that congress declares his conduct of the abusive in terms of that very subjective notions of propriety in terms of future must have recognized the chairman what standard are we setting for president or president in the future howell any future president will precisely what congress may be tired of the abusive especially when they have failed to legislate against the very acts which they make them i think it's holding up to a future president an impossible standard that he must anticipate what congress may declare to be abusive in the future under the law mr chairman we have no right to impose our notions of mortality and propriety
upon others and make it their legal duty to comply they're with but that's what we're doing when we say that a president may be impeached for abuses of his office when the acts of alleged abuse are not in themselves violation of the law i have much more to say later with respect and they care a lot about reserve that incident under separate subjects they are the border the gentleman from california mr chairman no i apologize for mr gates he repeatedly about this point of order in if you i must speak in opposition in my opinion mr chairman this is possibly probably i'll make that stronger it's certainly the most important article that this committee meeting
the offenses charged in this article is truly a high crime and misdemeanor within the purest meaning of those words as established in anglo american jurisprudence over a period of now some six hundred years the offenses charged against the president in this article are uniquely presidential oath and since no one else and commitment to your ira you are the most lonely and violate any of this back into our criminal code but only the president and violate the oath of office of the president only the president and have used the powers of the office of the president when our founding fathers put our
constitution together it was no accident that they separated powers against the backdrop of four hundred years of history of angle here and will affect in jurisprudence they have realized the need to have a big fight it's a constitutional means removing from office a chief magistrate who had violated its solemn oath of office and i respectfully submit that the impeachment cause of our constitution which fortunately we were going to be used now for the second time is that means these are high crimes and misdemeanors meaning that they are crying for offenses against the very structure of the state against the system of government the system that has brought to the american people and have preserved for the american people the freedoms and liberties which we still cherish this is uniquely a presidential offense mr chairman and the most important thing
that we have in this year there are some like to respond right now there are some among us there are many conscientious dedicated americans who harbor a feeling of fear and apprehension that is rotating i think i i submit that if the sensitivity to prevail through which our republicans now after what they feel they recognize they sense that this is a serious a most grave responsibility and proceeding as something that should not be done because it might harm the presidency mr chairman i submit that only the president and harmed the president say no one but the president and destroyed the presidency and it is our function acting under the impeachment was to preserve and protect the presidency and we preserve and protect every other part of our marvelous dark your government and we do it through the five do it through this process someone in the opening
statement referred to this being a situation of we the people act we the people are acting for that procedure for the wonderful provisions put into our constitution the american people mr president are entitled to and want a government which they can honor and respect and they could have the american people vote for president are eager to revere their president they're entitled to a president to make an revere mr chairman i ask is not the violation of the solemn oath of office an impeachable offense it is not found in our criminal code it is implicit in our constitution but it's necessarily implicit in the constitution or otherwise why would there be an oath of office of the officers
charged in africa with radical i respectfully submit mr chairman our offensive which go directly to that salam breach of a solemn oath of office and anyone argue that if the president reaches evolve a lot that he should not be removed i say not and i respectfully submit a point of order should be denied the jurors heard arguments one one of water and an opposition to the point of water and they jared prepared to rule the chair makes reference first of all the article one section two of the constitution which throughout this whole power of impeachment a nautical through searching for the declaration that impeachment shall live or fees and bribery and other high crimes investigators it's really an issue of impeachment and the nature of
an impeachable offense is as the gentleman knows the very nature and subject of these proceedings no one of water can possibly lying in the nature of a challenge yesterday a peach ability of such offenses that is a matter as the constitution has already clearly stated for the committee which has been delegated with his responsibility by the house the house itself and ultimately the us senate to decide the gentleman will be given full opportunity to debate this question an attempt to persuade his colleagues that no grounds for impeachment against it in the article that the issue does not state a point of order rather the issue presented in a point of
order is a constitutional argument that mosque persuade the congress therefore the chair rules against political a gentleman from missouri the chairman we're going for the lifelike that unanimous consent the debate on an amendment to the substitute including amendments in the nature of a motion to strike the limited that period not to exceed forty minutes to be divided equally between the proponents and opponents of the man without objection it does things done in california all things down in california for going into the problem for skillful way have they done for uppity less from one third of that
or ask people if they knew what it was like to have a lot of a faun and i think this morning i know what he meant to all i can explain is that sometimes when he practiced law you find the best cases couldn't come in through the most ideal client and that's the problem that i apologize to my colleagues for the latest with which they received my substitute but i'm all them to be distinguished enable attorneys and conversant with a factual problems before fear and i should make it clear that we are indeed substitute a really a distillation of the fatah many members are many areas and are differing political philosophies and the input of many the cable members of this committee which i only think
it would be rather difficult they're impossible for me and five minutes to explain all the points that should be and will be considered innovative here visit my colleagues i know are learned on the various of paragraphs that one through five and will outline this in more detail and honestly i believe in california similar elements that are correct in that basically as i see it article one involves of work standards of conduct that may be true and basically perhaps what we have today involve abuse the powers and whether we shall
say that you can be president as long as you're not subject to any formal charge whether that's the level that we require a rather we chose a somewhat higher standard and whether we felt that that standard so that we will realize that the oath of office of the presidency leave what it meant the madison and founder of before the foundation for the constitution with even completely know so we believe that if we find their own and any one of these five sub aircraft would support impeachment and i think more would believe that a combination of one or more would support impeachment because we notice that i think and consider repeated violations
and many cases the repetitive conduct within the article a certain repetitive conduct through i mean within these are paragraphs and certainly repetitive conduct and throughout the five articles on i would think that if only one instance of improper conduct and it perhaps could be quite serious i don't know that we would be here today i think this sort of impeachment trial was deliberately set up historically so that those who are in political life and political figures trying to present a political figure but you can understand some of the writers and nuances involved in serving in a public position and for my part i think there's a more tolerant and fifty political body and one would find in just the body without the experience of the
pressures difficulties in public life i say again if only one violation of a carrot i doubt that we should be here when arguing you're frail but i think we discussed and considered very briefly here a consistent this forgotten or give an example it's not worthy of the problem for us i think if a man's readings prior to cross the center aisle let's not around for a whole lot of punishment breaking his license to thoroughly incarcerating them but if he crosses the center i'm fifteen times ever a mildly dr murphy insists on straddling satellite all the time and i think we find action has to be taken from point i had a gentleman there
the proposed article of impeachment now being debated in the charges that the president violated his oath of office and his constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed charges that he's done so by repeatedly engaging in an unconstitutional and illegal on the wording of those are going to raise a number of serious questions that i hope will be addressed by the performance during the course of this day while i spent years the dispute as a matter of fact the evidence establishes the president has repeatedly engaged and unconstitutional among local honore i am curious as to what the veterans of this article perceived to be the legal significance of the allegation that such acts have been done that repeatedly what was the occasion are there specific instances of it with our lives with any of these individual
allegations of standing alone for an article of impeachment are they known him onto impeachable can the considered an aggregate someone's standing on others how many of these allegations of us remember believed to be supportive of the heavens before he would be just justified in voting for them by article even if each and every allegation local crew is it fair or has a grossly misleading statement the president have violated his often repeated repeatedly names again and again for the isolated or even they can only come over regular persistent or so from that warning a belief that they allege that ms barr characteristic is it really
fair because the effect the whole truth to examine the entire record of this administration during the past year is to examine the totality of countless tens of thousands of official actions taken by the president or by members of the white house staff melissa martin of officials and the call from that huge mass of official action is a relative handful of specific allegations and that derived from them the proposition that the president's plan that has been repeatedly unlawful consider for example the question why are there i do not acknowledge that these wiretaps were on justified under all circumstances as a lot of the time but even if some work with i do not see an often as kennedy said that both through
wiretaps most of which were instituted in pembroke that over a one year period and the last two with terminal in february nineteen seventy while furniture evidence of repeated violations of the constitution as in the case of the evidence relating to the plumbers operation they show a specific presidential response to a specific and serious problem namely public disclosure by leaking sensitive information bearing upon the conduct of american foreign policy during that very turbulent period or domestically and internationally what effect the virus one effort as our staff made the ring before this committee a coherent comprehensive reconstruction of the climate and the circumstances of the nineteen sixty nine to nineteen seventy one period in which those wiretaps or weaver no eloquence their memory is the rest of the
violence and the disorder and the war with nearly a year of this nation and news at the time richard nixon the president's prosecutors with others view the actions in which they complain when they were ripped from the very context of the events that precipitated giving that even lip service to that syria's government of problems which they were designed even if designed to go after german i will vote against this ill conceived article of impeachment and the gentleman from michigan chairman of the article not in the rebel government the article is open for a man i'm prepared all the general for disappointment to discuss
the proposed article of impeachment it seems to me that this really gets at the crux of our responsibility to redirect attention to replicate though the president's constitutional role and his constitutional obligation well there is and nothing mysterious about and others nothing the more malicious about it directs its attention directly to this responsibility that is and has been reported and the president this is certainly not the mccain there were not thinking up on a fence and then charging the president with a violation of it we are calling the president's attention to the fact that he took an oval office and that he had in his oath of office a solemn obligation to see through the faithful execution of the law this is quite different and distinct from the elements of criminality that are involved in article one charging the president with a conspiracy and all kinds of criminal acts of misconduct and obstruction of
justice and so on an article which i did not support because i don't believe that that support that kind of chant some of those who have expressed themselves in support of radical won the conspiracy and cover a period included feelings of the possibility and bitterness and political bias in my support of article two based upon that they care clause of the constitution which specifies a solemn obligation of the president of a kerosene to the faithful execution of a law's i want to make perfectly clear that it never know about us i figured no evil thoughts or conduct of the president of the united states i expressed no bitterness no hostility when they do want to make clear is that the president is bound by its solemn oath of office to preserve protect and defend the constitution and they can see that the laws are faithfully executed while many of the paragraphs and then an article who may appear similar to those found an article one which i oppose it important to
note carefully that the pattern of conduct which is delivered which is dominated in article one is quite distinguishable from that in order to for one thing i would point out there is no clear proof of conspiracy and the fact that other surrounding the president have been found guilty actor growth ms khan however there's a clear violation of the president's responsibility when the permits and lovable acts of wrongdoing by large numbers of those who surround him and positions the greatest responsibility and influence in the white house the establishment of the plumbers and many of the activities attributed to them are wholly unrelated to watergate that's the same case with the risk with respect to his misuse of the fbi and the cia and the irs nothing to do with watergate for the most part but these are unclear at the misconduct which it seems important for us to take notice in other words the next incumbent upon which i feel an article of impeachment should be presented to our colleagues is strictly
constitutional relate narrowly and directly to the president himself and it's personal of the law well this article may seem less traumatic and less sensational than the watergate break in and cover up is nevertheless positive and responsible and positive and responsible approach on our part as investigators of misconduct one purpose of the impeachment process it seems to me is to set a constitutional standard or persons occupying the office of us approach are cast in constitutional terms he we will be setting such a standard it and the beauty of the house of representatives as something other than serving as it this report out of all the president accountable for that if you're a criminal violation of criminal law i think we can agree that the president should not commit crime but if we are to set a constitutional standard we must take a different view of the facts we must raise our charges in constitutional terms so that residents to come in or what is meant by our actions
if we are to establish are proceeding as a guide for future presidents we should speak in terms of the constitution and specifically in terms of the president's all those obligations under the constitution it will be of limited value to a much richer presidents not to obstruct justice uncover however it will aid future presidents to know that this congress in this house judiciary committee will hold them for their oval office in their obligation to take years to go into the law i realize there's no nice way to impeach a president of the united states i realize also that the distinction between criminal conspiracy theory of the criminal conspiracy theory on article one and that clearly constitutional aspects of article two maybe misunderstood but as a member of those committing a lot like windows to exercise my independent judgment to surgically my conscience both reason and wisdom that pay the judgment i'm going to make and
foreigners article to drop the fire now this sheriff brings us back members however would like to speak on the substitute will have their time reserve one ongoing recognize that those members who has taught the perfect man and i recognized the gentleman from california i remember that i have unanimous consent mr chairman that my amendment be deemed to apply to outlying regions of paragraphs one and three those are exactly the same words and that you know that language was ready and there's an allegation here just a few moments ago
my point of the fbi right exactly they want after the word has strike the words i think personally and through his subordinates and agents and add the following personally and through his subordinates and agents acting with his knowledge or pursuant to his instructions i i believe my work you and i'm really trying to avoid any possible
ambiguity created by the language which is now in some paragraph one really going back to the introductory work an article to its faith in athens richard nixon has repeatedly engaged in combat make it clear that we're talking about and yet when we move to some paragraph one we deviate from that standard and we say as presently propose that he had personally and through his subordinate i have no quarrel with impeaching president nixon by reasonably act of his subordinates in egypt so long as we know that we are talking about those acts of his subordinates and agents which were done with his knowledge or pursuant to his instructions and we are not seeking to impeach the president vicariously by
reason of acts of others about which he had no knowledge and contrary perhaps two years and i have every reason to expect that all the land that my friend the gentleman from illinois to support second amendment because this is in essence what he was talking about yesterday that he was willing to impeach the president by reason of his personal misconduct but was not willing to impute vicariously the acts of others my amendment or some paragraphs one and some paragraphs are used to make this concept abundantly clear an hour or so you know sharon under your proposal would that also cover is that
situations where agents never acted without the president's personal knowledge in advance but such acts with iraq to ratify or condone the president if i would not necessarily that i realize the president left says the actions of ordnance and that the axis of ordinance may not be personally know the president but so long as those actual facility is instructions or perhaps policy use a word the things around here why is that so if he can quiet now they're after and ratified in effect though the fire activity within the moment it was a little bit from a gentleman supporting amendment speaking in support of the twenty nine
whatever time i have the law in effect we're going to hear is not my understanding that i personally have personally supported what were if i knew that my time or another time another debate i i thank the gentleman for yielding i hear only the same i think the same questions that were raised by the gentleman from maine but what worries me about this president in some cases perhaps had knowledge not initially perhaps the learned of improper activities and software to either condoned or acquiesce in such activities what i'm wondering is it because the intent of his amendment again let's make it very clear the agenda in ten of your amendment she
won't rule out that kind of what i believe is a serious misconduct ms bowen is bleak recovery situation we have the testimony on that the president would give instructions sometimes saying i want you to get this done but i don't care how you do it one for him i think the instructions are subject to interpretation and elliot for an eye i could not see that the president was by authorizing the killing of an illegal act so long as the acting consistent with a reasonable interpretation of developing a direction i have no quarrel with that
i don't know gentlemen welcome back within the scope of their second in baltimore from laredo the beach or offensive against united states constitution and the american people we've got clearly establishes that richard m nixon and here's a sought and obtained a confidential facts information from the internal revenue service and a man on our private by law in for a local park specifically he and his subordinate made repeated throughout the selection of citizens to be privately or what it another special action by the internal revenue service in a sworn affidavit to this committee danny welcomes former irs commissioner
at it in the summer of nineteen seventy two john ehrlichman requested the irs to check out the income tax return to democratic national committee chairman bart all right the irish jack o'brien returned to convey the relevant information through then secretary of the treasury sure that mom was not satisfied and demand o'brien was interviewed on august the seventeen nineteen seventy two the irs to copy of your rhyme conference reporters secretary show is a shorter show to inform walter bergman was still not satisfied well just told you that there was nothing else they are asked to do on august twenty nineteen seventy two in a joint on a political advertisement by secretary chu water damage assessment irs commissioner roger barta was told that a writer turned were quote that there was
nothing for borrowers to do that and then cold war theory and i wanted them to turn up something and send him to jail before the election and unfortunately it didn't materialize ehrlichman and i would agree with that the right quote i've turned two wrongfully then a breakthrough thirty five was indicating that the fed threw me quote i'm goddamned proud of your writing it's an hour of status will run operation in testimony before the watergate committee actually stated the reason that yet i previously stated he wanted something turned out before the election unfortunate didn't materialize on september eleventh of seventy two john dean
gave walker a list of the democratic presidential nominee staff members and campaign contributor is instructing the irs began investigating for our examinations of the people named on the lips war has testified that he advised the complex with the request would be disastrous for the irs and for the administration and that he would recommend to show the irs nothing with a request for days later h r haldeman this connection met and discussed among other things means working through the irs at friendship although september the fifth meeting at the following hearing parliament between bands he's doing he's moving restlessly on the investigation of mcgovern people getting teased up and all that i just don't know how much progress you've making because the president
the problem is that an apartment that all of them chop chop has gone through you know i've worked on the list and been working this thing through rs and in some cases i think some other unintelligible effect he's he turned out to be tougher than i thought it would which is what this president yell and later dean joined the president and haldeman and continue their meetings we've not received a tape recording of this portion of the conversation but dean testified that at that meeting there was a discussion on gun running mates oh the irs follow up on the white house directly it will have the following exchange took place between the door and lifted the method or if you've got your assignment with respect in iran for the president during a meeting on september fifteen with again i'm not sure how directly are specifically had came up but there
was a n d ever have extended conflict discussion with the president on the use of iran's he made some rather specific comments to me which in turn resulted in me going back in the water again lifted or when did you say you're right when you say the years of irs what are you talking about receiving well as i recall the conversations we're talking about the problem preventing irs conduct audits and i told him that we hadn't been very successful appears because mr walters had told me that you just didn't want to do it i did not i did not push the sport i was concerned how it all will look i've done what i've been asked ai related this to the program and he said something to the effect well it filled think he'd been put over there to be some sort of mania is mistaken you about any problem you just don't tell me and i'll get it straightened that has expired and a moment republican david dennis will take up the opposing arguments and
that videotape coverage about that as your committee's impeachment that they will continue shortly this is pbs public broadcasting service i'm ron lane year it sounds familiar feel that it was really a scene and when i came down the line our i'm martha let it the great american dream a theme and feel good way of being
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as judged by nicholas ray and stan vanderbeek the piece be it's been amtrak's coverage of our judiciary committee's impeachment debate
continues over go back to the year and the congressmen are debating an amendment which would add words saying the president was aware of the misdeeds of his aides remember correctly my colleague i think this amendment is a very important one which we ought to give careful consideration actually it would be my belief and certainly my hope that this is what we and good substitute means even have on the man because when you say acting personally and through your subordinates and agents surely that means through actions of the air which you may have order or of which you have improved approved under normal principles of law in any kind of a
criminal or phrase that criminal situations such as we can hear you i appreciated that i'd like you to my friend buster hundred and i will of obscurity i probably correctly states that money recklessly convention wrapping ugly and execute that plan and really my argument would be that the members or four for that reason they don't agree i think that argument well i ever eleven of that is what the gentlemen didn't knowingly germans capacity is a distinguished lawyer i i thought confident that that is what he meant by that that being what he meant in other words there does have to be with the knowledge or in pursuant to the instruction of the principal there can be no harm and writing that can and i think it's extremely important that we do sell for one thing if we for all
the second amendment down with the author of the original amendment agrees james what i say means at them seems to indicate that the majority of the many things that mean something else and for another thing it's quite important that this principle be nailed down here because as you go through this listen to the arguments here awful lot about when you hear awful lot about early man at your lady here the mention of the president and it's important that we keep in mind that there's got to be a connection that he's the man we're going to a plea to anyone at this as just a matter of are very narrative we all have bad of our own not nearly as large as the protein i think but i think everyone else is that enough experience to know that people on your staff and get into some very very embarrassing situations and
things which you do nothing about it and authorized it in one of the dome and to be held responsible and therefore it just to illustrate you saying that one which could come home because it's coming familiar now i would i would save towards ratification here as ordinary lot of it is agent went out did something improper a nice little time as great i'm all for fruit ratified everything my judgment as ordinary warm up a lot to what other law you've got to have an instruction and then you've got to have not really knowing where you got to well it's gratifying and i agree there really are staying here we're just making crystal clear what he and ivory is already
reasonably clear and under their under the actual circumstances here and under the the frequency with which we hear testimony about other individuals and the frequency with which we're a thing about the president and the importance of not forgetting the nasa nasa they and the importance of a connection i think in simple as a reasonable and important and then went and i hope it will be a life threatening or at lunch and the extent of our agreement require ratification of an agreement that i would understand that the president will hear from all the and i think the language of the
original one i think there is a very religious i wish i understood i understood my friends say that he agreed with the language acting with is niger river so diligent fractions i would be glad if he doesn't agree with their family and the amendment the country mandatory importantly does not have it well i'm a gentleman doesn't agree with that then we're in a situation where it's going to be suggested that the president should be impeached directions of his subordinates who were acting without isn't it not to feel want to even against the instructions i was home and without a ratification are after and really and truly i wonder whether the majority of the committee which is already indicated was that remark of impeachment wants to think that line that i think even for them you're
fine the car is built who wants to have the privilege of taking part in a small part in the drafting of the us proposed the article and i think it's a good article which rapid at the present time i interpret this article as that which embody take care cause of the constitution and i just like to read just one line from this body and which is made available to members of the congress interpreter in the constitution and with regard to the take care cause for vonnie reads as follows four the constitution does not say that the presidential execute the laws but that he shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed that is by others were commonly but not always with strict accuracy turn his subordinates and noble and other words what we are charging here is that the
president has a responsibility to see through the faithful execution of a lot we're not charging that he's gone out and personally committed some criminal act but we are saying that the twenty some persons oh it either charge or convicted or serving time are already completed their service of time being engaged in criminal conduct in and around the white house some of his top aides and i think that this is involved here we weaken or the president can only act through his agents and subordinates but is he and if he tolerating and have a current this kind of conduct in the white house and in and around the main that that's the tribe for making and i think that you do and we wrote this a charge him and what it would be a mistake and i think that they are content with the way this novel that will help heal them will be my
family and i to oppose the amendment offered by my colleague with a wig and i respectfully submit that if this amendment were put into the articles that would undo liane unnecessarily limit and respect the proof with the managers will sometimes be compelled to make before the senate i can see that the manager must approve each and every charge before conservative basis for impeachment but they should not be unreasonably an unrealistically limited in that groove the wording of the proposed amendment would require that there be pro that the president in each and every instance know in advance the precise act it was going to be carried out by his agents and subordinates i respectfully submit that that's unrealistic let's look at for example a mistress or great
use of pauses it reasonable to suppose that mistress are ready if we were to prove that he was authorized why the president who commit these dirty tricks usable that he picked up the phone every time just before you get one of them and all the president said mr previn i am now a bow to order four hundred meters for mr murphy fundraiser that's unrealistic an end yet the language of mr whedon mm hmm what would require that type of prior action by the president any president in each and every instance i respectfully submit that the managers before the senate must rule each and every charge against the president but this must be done in the context of the real world if they should prove that the president knowingly and intentionally sent one of these forces in motion then the president is responsible for the natural improbable consequences of
having set that course involved i mentioned cigarette use dirty tricks there but they're both this goes to many other things that they can of the watergate burglary someone mentioned properly the other day i was improbable that the burglars called it the president on key biscayne instead of me with my colleague mr randall mr previn were about to make a hit of course but if it can be shown that he's that this force and motion and that the activities of the perpetrators were the natural improbable a culmination of the forty seven motion and i submit that he's responsible you know we hold the president to a higher standard of conduct a map of the market he is the person who has to set the moral and ethical standards of the nations of the entire republic i submit that mr wiggins amendment would and billy and
unnecessarily respect through and for that reason it should be defeated i yield or my father and you know my feeling and i'd like to raise a basic question as to the organizing committee's in the proposed amendment by courting the president saw just before the establishment of a promise the president speaking to mr alderman industry calls an economist to go so that today that in the case said that the president said i want the police to be stopped i don't want to be told why it can't be done i don't want excuses i want results i wanted done whatever the cause i have difficulty in accepting the proposed amendment in view of this type of blanket authorization are you mr white of course i don't believe i don't think any other member believes that the president should be held responsible for the activist subordinates under general doctrinal respond yes a
ferry are which simply says that he's liable for whatever they do within the scope of their general for it but where the president has failed to take the actions to make sure that his agents have stayed within the scope of their legitimate authority and furthermore as the father dr indicated as tom i don't care how you do it just get a pun implying that he didn't care about the demise of the law or anything else why we have a totally different situation and yet the amendment recall would not taken a cup that type of situation are delighted and killed by freddie mac a chairman if the president set forth a general policy or general instructions and presumed heir to invade misused the president's power than the president alone and be held to account time of the gentleman has expired part of the event they consumed ten minutes in there was
opposition and consume twelve minutes during the salmon all i wanna be recognized and support women and it wouldn't be true would be truthful than drive because so many things to happen to try them so i guess we're following a normal courts but it isn't that really the crux of what it's all about the gentleman from california and truthfully and only two were sets or yes we're going to be responsible for that he can be removed from law and my colleague from california says us that knowledge of the wrongdoing before it happens already has to be that person directing
the wrong be committed now maybe were making lawful presence and i was at my colleagues on the other side something you may have a democratic president you wanna know live up to all these gun laws if you're mike and we heard yesterday that the fifth amendment due process and become outmoded you want that to apply to you a president like you try to apply for this one you want to be one of these things to be done with the hard way let's go through just a couple of lanes and an icon of prolonging argument on the specificity long word but isn't this why you wanted greater that particular thing which wanna leave abuses are you going with that the pro which wobble and now
we understand it don't help when in with panels of reasons for it that if you can show that the president didn't know about it or they didn't direct it no other human being can be held responsible for the actual invasion and any kind of a criminal conviction unless he has won are the color of gold i read that we make a simple sentence out of each tried the opposition have danced around that request now for several dates this i think points to precisely why you want those through some mistake i suppose i guess only argument surfaced that he'd fallen outside new
orleans saints fights out with early nineteen seventy he directed wall on top of my time at that and say the president that it's an element of that was in nineteen seventy the next thing if you have your ok too john caulfield a member of the youth that he did something at the request of hallman it doesn't say at the request of president now i talking about the incident on march thirty four and filed a no because of that so when your concern about should i don't have much of a case they've gotten no inherent in the spring of seventy two ehrlichman what some information on all planned but there's nothing any of fallen from the year that was an interviewer once that and if that involves the president another thing another time ehrlichman tall not not yet her like mental health authorities say the president told
jokes and we get down to ehrlichman polka president in ehrlichman and this is another day september seventy two is that the one you rely on we should know that in addition to that the plane is walla walla carolina are hurting as a conversation on september thirty nineteen seventy though where if you listen to that tape there is no question but the president is extremely the star on what bean is telling him and it is there that he explodes about health it is ugly words they can buy them solve a terrible but the important thing about that conversation september fifteen nineteen seventy two there is no proof of them printed by this committee or any other committee that show the rather than follow that up quite parting shots rang out and innovation that why don't we for the
first time about that not a single on it was made on a single fall on that let's this i think is important this again is why you won't agree on specifics you will not nail down that one day that one act and now on the whole to taking away the right of wearing that president have knowledge of the wrong knowing that you're entirely wrong and you know that should be about kind of the gentleman has expired recognize the ancient remains that just indicated that the motion of mr lincoln's adds just two things really failed state i think that omits one very important thing and that is the question of ratification the radisson about expressing support ratification in his proposed
amendment know there are two major concern for many in the subject of abuse of agencies and the internal revenue service and the fbi now for example we do have direct evidence before this committee taken for the mit economist jon payne but on september eleventh during which time he presented a list of political enemies of the purpose of having those enemies on until now there was no evidence before this committee in my opinion that would justify saying the president knew in advance with the day's activities a lever on september fifteen the conversation to witness the senate just referred to we do have direct evidence about that was it samantha got to indicate that or fail to point out i should say that we were missing seventy minutes of the september fifteenth eight which was not presented to the committee which we have subpoenaed this is the alleged portion of that when the fifteen
whereby the president directed him to go back in the jewish children beginning their cooperation to let him know now the question is is the incredible well we have direct evidence from the internal revenue commissioner testified before the senate select committee that indeed being didn't come back to him on september twenty six but several days thereafter his conversation with president presenting a reduced risk again asking for the audience now i suggested this committee president activity on september fifteen would indeed constitute a ratification of the prior acts which would make him responsible for such activities with respect to the fbi abuse or specifically to the investigation of daniel schorr there is evidence before this committee that the end though short of criticizing the president's speeches and that while aboard air force one with all men as the fbi to conduct an investigation again we have no evidence before us
and to save the president knew that they had called while aboard air force one to ask that investigation but we do have direct evidence before the committee taken from the lives of the polls the polls until this committee that once that fbi investigation was exposed to the press that he then came to the president and said we've got a problem where we're in a jam what you think about sending out a statement that indicates that mr shortz being investigated because we're considering and as a consultant to the white house with the president approved i was on the committee that that in turn would constitute a ratification of the prior activities on behalf of the fbi which i think we're going to do this for those reasons i cannot without express wording in the emotion of urbanist we can support that without the word meditation and i yield to the gentleman may i just take one moment but i feel like that we want to complete what was texas list of books reference to the old ryan the
investigation point out that there is among the evidence which abroad for our attention dr affidavit of mr thompson with reference to the conversations with mr fred was hard on behalf of the white house in which he had that on september the fifteenth nineteen seventy two he reported on our this investigation of marijuana there would be some question in my man who under this amendment as to whether that would in fact beyond the realm of an invisible boat on the proposed amendments are sensitive i messed up and i'm quite satisfied that word in my judgment the proposal by mr williamson expressing excludes opportunity for ratification in evidence the ratification and i think that's very significant i am not mine i find
it view i agree with my colleagues who say that we cannot impeach the president for wrongdoing as aidan said so myself i think there's a very strong case a partial culpability on his part as mr mccormack indicated a number of low and short time remain private song myself we have these words on record of one of the strongest things are performed all going to me is one of the department of justice filed recently overtaken says there's no record of any wiretaps or any overt conversations evolve for the reason they filed those bridges that was not in the files of the fbi and why was that in the files of the fbi because the assistant attorney general martin flute example many and personally discussed the matter with the president not his aides personally with the president and he said what shall i do with these records and the president said the lever them all to the
white house and mr martin testified that he delivered them to the oval office he said warm and did you give them he said i'd rather not say one who sits in the oval office except the president and then they were given erlichman american and kept them in his files outside of the our records of the department just that this is one of the reasons the aldeburgh case was dismissed which i think was a calamity insect february seventy three when time magazine came out of our with a story about a white house wiretap program the president personally approve the cover story as he did in the van daniel schorr case if there was no such program on our three minutes remaining in support of the opposition to the man directly to the wrecking the the year he denied the existence of the
wiretap program when time magazine came out with the story that's in february nineteen seventy through three in a nineteen seventy three he publicly states that he leave the president personally authorized and directed the electronic surveillance of seventeen persons i know these wiretaps were blatantly illegal that was no justification for them whatsoever under criminal or domestic security and is it reasonable reasonable and prudent and include but white house aides were tapped the phone of the president's own brother without his approval in advance i think there is ample material linking impeachable offenses directly to the president not to his aids directly to him i agree that we should do that and i think we have done so lemon of the gentleman has expired five minutes remaining those in supporting the amendment limited those in opposition the abundant than like a cello
those would be recognized this attack in a short film and its allies is a roll call vote and that vote is not accomplishment or the military procurement authorization and the chair world that are going on in numbers on other side until we have return on the roll call at one very real reasons and i do thirty i'm sorry to just look four time for debating the amendment ran out the committee members recess for a vote on the house floor and to some large when i returned the debate was on a man who is a particle designed to now the charge against mr knecht and then you have come to attack and that committee recess beyond pollen so the amendment the gentleman from california that have been consumed at minutes and the proponents of the
gentleman's amendment they're consumed fifteen minutes on a five minute slot recognizing our the gentleman is but the main imus this week iranian opposition to the memories of my friend from california because i certainly do not want to do anything anyway whatever responsibility the president may have already very outrageous attempts to use the internal revenue service for political purposes yeah i consider the evidence shows that the approaches that were made by mr rubin and mr erlichman i threw a commissioner randolph thrower and through commissioner gary walters' to be absolutely indefensible our tax collection system in this country
is based on a voluntary contribution to assess and played by people out on a voluntary basis and it will certainly be destroyed if people are evidence that is not being used to reward political friends and to hear a set of political opponents i think that not only does the president have a responsibility not to directly a pro deception the indefensible action but he has a responsibility not to ratify it accurate has occurred then as the responsibility over and above that to have enough idea of what is going on in his administration to be very sure that this kind of political prosecution of the internal revenue service
has not occurred there is nothing in this record which it to me is more disappointing or more cause for concern of the continuation of free government and the way in which this the internal revenue service was attempted to be used for this place for us long time for those in opposition and i recognize there anyone seeking recognition and one of the men or a lot more than it's not my intention to use in wartime i think he's been made question occurs now on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california all those
in favor of the amendment please signify by saying it follows a palm oil that no one mr wright well it's been a big deal he's trying to kind of those boots you know mr wooley list of flour oil as commander of this disarming of all this designer
and all you're going to know mr hutchinson i'm mr mclaurin now mr smith i used to say and i was to reopen well mr wiggins i visited dennis iowa mr knoll ms germain hall as mr hogan well mr butler
well mr cohen well mr lyle mr fairey used for more mr marti it used to like i was threatening know these two chairmen or nine members voting by twenty eight members voting no mr
williams i'm a substitute striking so far four words and concerning other matters reading this online concerning specificity i call your attention to the wording of some paragraph or is it charges the president with failing to take care that the laws are faithfully executed by failing to act in two respects one with respect to the unlawful entry into the headquarters of the democratic national committee and two with respect to other that it's my view the chairman of this push is beyond all reason the desire for a desire on the part of the majority do not specify what the peculiarity that conduct which they condemn i can
think of nothing more vague more uncertain than the language of concerning other matter if we start from the premise required by the constitution that a defendant in any proceeding then especially indie is entitled to resemble those of the nature of the charges against then i ask you what notice is afforded by the charge that he failed to act concerning other around we should not have extended debate on this mr chairman i would hope that the offer of offer rather of a substitute with state with particularly the other matters if he wished to rely upon but failing that it seems to me an appropriate as a matter of law and certainly as a matter of the good sense of this committee to strike the bay an uncertain language now contains a paragraph or that the president failed to act with respect to other measures
the gentleman and under the rule i take it that i may yield at this point but i cannot reserve my time that video that this plot but they're still is taking advantage of remaining chairman of the quantity of the supportive of the department our support through it or alcohol to escape the director of it and no conviction stricken farming support him and i am prepared to you for years mayer doesn't need much the baby i don't play because it's so obvious complain that under
any theory a lot of modern agent what everyone a call like here in five of them to know something about what you're charged word and as a matter of fact there's a certain amount of specificity in this article was that strong and we'd been given some justifications for article two up here which are fairly specific unjust mountaineer ed take care of the laws are faithfully executed and by failing back to when he had raisin all his subordinates were going to do certain specific things with regards the democratic headquarters in and throwing a casual and concerning other matters without any the definition all things obviously unfair i don't agree with my friend for a mile of an ear to the extent that i feel that those are people who
if approved for care and i don't think it is is i'm going to discuss further later when we get to evading the article proper body of proof we're here i think in many ways it this could be a more serious and people of france the map we have presented it under the artful another day because if we were actually out of a concern an intentional abuse of the garden duties of the presidency for political reasons or other improper reasons that i think you might have something worth in consideration but if you're gonna get into that particularly if you're going to include things is we're trying to clear which are not even violations of the statutes you at least owe it to everybody to send
out what you are talking about this is just so they in general if you go back it has far you can go and cover anything anybody my dream up it's so difficult to argue because it's so right so i supported supportive of them anonymously except for the country article itself in opposition to the amendment for this reason it's a big strikes me that a what me a break into the democratic national headquarters is only here
is only partly an end in my opinion only a small part of and this leaves the misconduct which is attributable to these days and assistance of the president and i were the president through it these individuals attempted to impede the department of justice may have unnerved who are otherwise airfare fresh breath of the ufo inquiry is for one thing a certain at the bacon about their feelings office and they don't events surrounding that far more a reprehensible in my opinion they are watergate break in at the dnc as a political matter but the other is unrelated to any political campaign and there are number of other activities that the i suppose they could be although many have but i think they're all well known now it's possible in some other some other appropriate language which
would cover this would be headed with that dispute the phrase other matters a great deal of the rice family from the year of break into the democratic national headquarters in other words while that seemed too would generate this has sort of clandestine operation which took place in the white house nevertheless it was only a small part of the overall activities in which all these different characters were involved and i would know it will be that we would retain this language or the at some appropriate more explicit language would be offered in order to cure what the government uses to a much of a generalization mr henri well i think
it would be preferable in the drafting of this was that we did include more specific items there are many more items than the break in at the democratic national committee i think this argument of specificity that my friends and colleagues and so effectively and articulately may it is in effect a red herring because we should not delude ourselves into thinking that the deliberations in which we are now engaged in a pretend patient on the evidence we do not intend to duplicate the ten week with evidentiary hearings which brought us to this point we're only trying and the most gentle way to delay a summary of the kinds of items which support the various archives in the article we are not presenting the evidence i will vote against the amendment of the gentleman from california but i do hope that some of our draftsman who are supporting the article to follow
it jot down some additional specifics an awkward additional amendment so we can clarify the objections raised by the jump in joplin mo is the quality because you are referring to in addition to the top of buildings office i think people are concerned it didn't mention justify the way that was of the activities involving a transfer of fbi records from the fbi to the oval office at the direction of the economy he'd be in a position to delineate specific guidance on which he intends to rely on back in town feeling
language of four if you were referred the first few lines of that concern when you talk of concerning other matters yes they'll take care that the laws are faithfully executed by failing to act when he knew or had reason to know we're talking of situations in which he should know or for every good reason and now and as we've said earlier the doctrine of impeachment to not really be very narrowly in finances brought of the king's imagination the past debates you can find a closely at upper be somebody bigger way around what about the findings situation the testimony evidence before the committee was that as i recall and we stated that mr klein the third would receive what we would get caught chewing out from the plane and forceful clear language and no
concerning a specific matter and then when he was before the us senate committee they were asked if anybody had approached him during the same matter it is i recall him he in effect had well the medication and mentioned on telling you the chilling he got referred to remember a lot of the avian certification for the remembered it now they'll be fine you know the president after the debate going before the american people and say what you know that this testimony has been given and we had reason for the new entries in the north just want is not true upholding the situation now there are other examples i'm totally and jaworski consideration also the gm cables these are the sort of things that would be covered here i you are how much
gentlemen please the recession consume in opposition or minutes and therefore a picture of that lonely gemini rise in support and the reason i do is because we was the subject in our obligation and the first portion of that paragraph where we limited the failure to faithfully execute the laws to be unlawful entry into the headquarters the democratic national committee now i happen to believe that the matter of the list of findings in the antitrust case might very well fall within the provisions of the general obligation for reform but we unlearn specifically the break in at the democratic national committee and we threw in just absolutely as an afterthought those last
four words and concerning other matters and i have not at all been thirty and what i have thought to be the objective of my friend and my calling from fb
1974 Nixon Impeachment Hearings
Reel 2 of 6
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National Public Affairs Center for Television
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Library of Congress (Washington, District of Columbia)
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Live and videotaped debate of the House Committee on the Judiciary, chaired by Peter Rodino, Jr., on the articles of impeachment against President Richard Nixon. This is day 4 of the Nixon impeachment hearings.
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Politics and Government
Nixon, Richard M.; Watergate Affair, 1972-1974
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Producing Organization: National Public Affairs Center for Television
Producing Organization: WETA-TV
Reporter: Lehrer, James
Reporter: Duke, Paul
Speaker: Rodino, Peter W.
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Library of Congress
Identifier: 2403168-1-1 (MAVIS Item ID)
Format: 2 inch videotape
Generation: Preservation
Color: Color
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Chicago: “1974 Nixon Impeachment Hearings; 1974-07-29; Reel 2 of 6,” 1974-07-29, Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed April 25, 2024,
MLA: “1974 Nixon Impeachment Hearings; 1974-07-29; Reel 2 of 6.” 1974-07-29. Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. April 25, 2024. <>.
APA: 1974 Nixon Impeachment Hearings; 1974-07-29; Reel 2 of 6. Boston, MA: Library of Congress, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from