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felt that the information, the investigation they had conducted, was very pertinent to what the committee was doing.
Now, I thought that decision was wrong. And so when this Administration has come in, I have always insisted that we should cooperate with Members of the Congress and with the committees of the Congress. And that is why we have fumished information. But, however, I am not going to have the Counsel to the President of the United States testify in a formal session for the Congress. However, Mr. Dean will furnish information when any of it is requested, provided it is pertinent to the investigation.
Q. Mr. President, would you then be willing to have Mr. Dean sit down informally and let some of the Senators question him, as they have with Dr. Kissinger?
THE PRESIDENT. No, that is quite a different thing. In fact, Dr. Kissinger, Mr. Ebrlichman, as you know, not only informally meet with Members of the Congress on matters of substance, the same is true with members of the press. As you know, Dr. Kissinger meets with you ladies and gentlemen of the press and answers questions on matters of substance.
In this case, where we have the relationship that we have with Mr. Dean and the President of the United States his Counsel--that would not be a proper way to bandle it. He will, however—the important thing is, he will furnish all pertinent information. He will be completely forthcoming-something that other Administrations have totally refused to do uncil we got here. And I am very proud of the fact that we are forthcoming, and I would respectfully suggest that Members of the Congress might look at that record as they decide to test it.
* * Q. Mr. President, are you concerned, sir, that any of the confidencial FBI interviews that were conducted in their Watergate investigation were in any way compro. mised by Pat Gray's having given information to John Dean or talked with John Ehrlichman or others?
THE PRESDENT. No, I am not concerned about that. I would say that there is no possibility whatever that any information from the FBI, chat may have been provided in the line of their ducio to a member of the White House Staff, would be bandied about in the press.
I would express concem on another point. In my long. time association with Mr. Hoover, he always was hardline in dealing with the Members of the Congress and with Congressional committees in terms of what he called "raw files," and when I first came into this office, he showed me a raw file. I had not seen any before.
And when I saw the gossip, the hearsay, and unsub stantiated kind of slanderous stalonentslibelous, in this case, because they were in writing, having been made orally and then transmitted into writing--I was really shocked.
Mr. Hoover, after showing me the raw file, then gave me an appraisal by the FBI of what could be believed and what could not be believed. And in the case of this pare ticular individual-the reason I saw the file, it involved a check of an individual that I was nominating for a position, and I needed to get the facts, and, of course, I always have access to those files what we found was that every charge that had been made against the individual was false.
Now, for the FBI, before a full committee of the Con. gras, to furnish raw files and then to have them leak out to the press, I think could do innocent people a great deal of damage. I understand why Mr. Gray did, because his hearing was involved. But I would say that should not be a precedent for the future.
The way Mr. Hoover handled it with Members of the Congress was that he would show the raw files, for example, to Mr. Eastland, the chairman of a committee, and the ranking minority member, where a judge was up for confirmation. But nothing ever leaked from those files. And the sanctity of those filo must be maintained, and I believe that the practice of the FBI furnishing raw files to full committees must stop with this particular
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Q. Mr. President, one of the revelations made by Mr. Gray during the course of the bearings has been that Mr. Kalmbach was involved with Mr. Chapio in the hiring of Mr. Segretti for amounts up to $10,000. Cao you tell us, sir, did you know of that relationship, and did you know of that transaction, and if not, can you tell us your opinion of it now that it has been revealed by Mr. Gray?
THE PRESDENT. This gives me an opportunity to not only answer that question, but many others that I note you have been asking Mr. Ziegler.
First--and incidentally, I am not complaining about the fact you are asking the question of me or Mr. Ziegler; it is a very proper question-a Senate committee is conducting investigations. These investigations will go on, I understand, over a period of many months. I respect the right of the Senate to conduct those investigations We will cooperate; we will cooperate fully with the Sene ace, just as we did wich the grand jury, 15 we did with this Administration has been more forthcoming than any Democratic Administracion I know of the Senale feels that they want a court lest, we would welcome il Perhaps this is the time to have the highest court of this land make a definitive decision with regard to this matter.
I am not suggesting that we are asking for it. But I would suggest that if the Members of the Senale, in their wisdom, decidc that they want io cost this matter in the courts, we will, of course, present our side of the case. And we think that the Supreme Court will uphold, as it always usually has, the great consututional principle of separadion of powers rather than to uphold the Senate.
che FBI, and as we did with the courts when they were conducting their investigations previously in what was called the Watergate matter.
As far as these investigations are concemed, there are all kinds of information, charges, et cetera, et ceters that have been made and will be made in the future. I could comment upon them. Mr. Ziegler could in the future. I will not. He will not. And the reason that we will not is that when the committee completes its investigation, we will then have comment, if we consider it appropriace to do so. But it is the right of the committee to conduct the invesugation. All the facts can come out.
I have confidence in all of the White House people who have been named. I will express that confidence again. But I am not going to comment on any individual matier that the committee may go into.
Let me say, with regard to the committee, too, I do not intend to raise questions about its conduct. I have been very pleased to note that Senator Ervin-at least this is the way I read what he says-has indicated that the investigation will be bipartisan, that it will look into charges that have been made against both election campaigns, and that is as it should be. He has also indicated that he, as a great constitutional lawyer, will accept no hearsay, that he will not tolerate any guilt by innuendo, he will not tolerate any guilt by association.
As long as the committee conducts its investigations with those very high guidelines-guidelines I tried to follow, incidentally, in the Hiss case; not perhaps as well as I might have, but I did what many thought was pretty well-but in any event, as long as it is conducted that way, I do not intend to make any statements with regard to matters before the committee. That is for the committee to look into.
Q. Mr. Presidens isn't there an essencial difference really berween your invesugation of the Hiss case and the request of this subcommittee to Mr. Dean to appear? In the former, foreign affairs was involved and possibly security matters, where here they only wish to question Mr. Dean about the breaking into the Watergate?
THE PRESDENT. Yes, I would say the difference is very significant. As a matter of fact, when a committee of Congres was invesugating espionage against the Government of this country, that committee should have had complete cooperation from at least the executive branch of the Government in the form that we asked. Al that we asked was to get the report that we know they had already made of their investigation.
Now, this investigation does not involve espionage against the United States. It is, as we know, espionage by one political organization against another. And I would say that as far as your question is concemned, that the argument would be that the Congress would have a far greater right and would be on much stronger ground to ask the Government to cooperate in a matter involving ospionage against the Government than in a matter like this involving politics.
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Q. Mr. President, does your offer to cooperate with the Ervin committee include the possibility that you would allow
your aides to testify before his committee. And if it does not, would you be willing to comply with a court order, if Ervin went to court to get one, that required some testimony from White House aides?
THE PRESIDENT. In answer to your first part of the question, the statement that we made yesterday answered that completely-not yesterday, the 12th I think it was, my statement on executive privilege. Members of the White House Staff will not appear before a committice of Congress in any formal session.
We will furnish information under the proper circumstar.ces. We will consider each matter on a case-by-case basis.
With regard to the second point, that is not before us. Let me say, however, that if the Senate feels at this cime that this matter of separation of powers-where, as I said,
Q. Mr. President, you have talked about the respons sibility within the White House and the responsibility between Congress and the White House. Where do you feel your responsibility for the Committee to Re-elect the President begins and ends, Mr. Mitchell or any other people who were working for them?
THE PRESIDENT. Well, the responsibility thers, of course, is one that will be replied to by Mr. Mitchell, Mr. Stans, and all of those in due course. None of them have the privilege, none of them, of course, will refuse to testify, nonc has when he is asked to. And I am sure they will give very good accounts of themselves, as they have in the court mallers that they have been asked to.
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'Sre page 53 of this isolle.
9 Presidential Documents 271-77
Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation
Statement by the President on His Intention To Withdraw the Nomination of L. Patrick Gray III, at Mr. Gray's Request. April 5, 1973
Pat Gray is an able, honest, and dedicated American
Because I asked my counsel, John Dean, to conduct a thorough investigation of alleged involvement in the Watergate episode, Director Gray was asked to make FBI reports available to Mr. Dean. His compliance with this completely proper and necessary request exposed Mr. Gray to totally unfair innuendo and suspicion, and thereby seriously tarnished his fine record as Acting Director and promising future at the Bureau.
In view of the action of the Senate Judiciary Committee today, it is obvious that Mr. Gray's nomination will not be confirmed by the Senate. Mr. Gray bas asked that I withdraw his nomination. In fairness to Mr. Gray, and out of my overriding concem for the effective conduct of the vitally important business of the FBI, I have regretfully agreed to withdraw Mr. Gray's nomination.
I have asked Mr. Gray to remain Acting Director until a new nominee is confirmed.
NOTE: The statement was released at San Clemente, Calif.
9 Presidential Documents 335
The Watergate Investigation
The President's Remarks Announcing Developments and Procedures To Be Followed in Connection with the Investigation. April 17, 1973
Ladies and gentlemen:
I have two announcements to make. Because of their technical nature, I shall read both of the announcements to the members of the press corps.
The first announcement relates to the appearance of White House people before the Senate Select Committee, betier known as the Ervin Conimittee.
For several weeks, Senator Ervin and Senator Baker and their counsel have been in contact with White House representatives Jolin Ehrlichman and Leonard Garment. They have been talking about ground rules which would preserve the separation of powers without suppressing the facts.
I believe now an agreement lias been reached which is satisłactory to bo!lı sides. The committee ground rules as adopted, totally preserve the doctrine of separation of powers. They provide that the appearance by a witness may, in the first instance, be in executive session, if appropriate.
Second, executive privilege is expressly reserved and may be asserted during the course of the questioning as to any question.
Now, much has been made of the issue as to whether the proceedings could be televised. To me, this has never been a central issue, especially if the separation of powers problem is othervise solved, as I now think it is.
All members of the White House Staff will appear voluntarily when requested by the committee. They will testify under oath, and they will answer fully all proper questions.
I should point out that this arrangement is one that covers this hearing only in which wrongdoing has been charged. This kind of arrangement, of course, would not apply to other hearings. Each of them will be considered on its merits.
My second announcement concerns the Watergate case directly
On March 21, as a result of serious charges which came to my attention, some of which were publicly reported, I began intensive new inquiries into this whole matter.
Last Sunday afternoon, the Attorney General, Assistant Attorney General Peterson, and I met at length in the EOB to review the facts which had come to me in my investigation and also to review the progress of the Department of Justice investigation.
I can report today that there have been major developments in the case concerning which it would be improper to be more specific now, except to say that real progress has been made in finding the truth.
If any person in the executive branch or in the Governmert is indicted by the grand jury, my policy will be lo immediately suspend him. If he is convicted, he will, of course, be automatically discharged.
I have expressed to the appropriate authorities my view that no individual holding, in the past or at present, a position of major importance in the Administration should be given immunity from prosecution.
The judicial process is moving ahead as it should, and I shall aid it in all appropriaic ways and have so informed the appropriate authorities.
As I have said before and I have said thmughout this entire matter, all Government employees and cspecially White House Staff employees are expected fully to co operate in this matter. I condemn any attempts to cover up in this case, no maiter who is involved.
NOTE: The President spoke at 4:1? p.m, in the Briefing Room at the White House.
9 Presidential Documents 387
Attorney General and White House Staff
Statement by the President Announcing Resignations
I know that their decision to resign was difficult; my de cision to accept it was difficult; but I respect and appreciate the ateitude that led them to it.
I emphasize that neither the submission nor the acceptance of their resignations at this time should be seen by anyone as evidence of any wrongdoing by either one. Such an assumption would be both unfair and unfounded.
Throughout our association, each of these men bas demonstrated a spirit of selflessness and dedication that I have seldom seen equaled. Their contributions to the work of this Administration have been enormous. I greatly regret their departure.
Finally, I have today requested and accepted the resignation of John W. Dean III from his position on the White House Staff as Counsel.
Effective immediately, Leonard Garment, Special Consultant to the President, will take on additional duties as Counsel to the President, and will continue acting in this capacity until a permanent successor to Mr. Dean is named. Mr. Garment will represent the White House in all matters relating to the Watergate investigation and will report directly to me.
I have today received and accepted the resignation of Richard G. Kleindienst as Attomey General of the United States. I am appointing Elliot L. Richardson to succeed him as Attorney General and will submit Mr. Richardson's name to the Senate for confirmation immediately.
Mr. Kleindienst asked to be relieved as Attorney Gen. eral because he felt that he could not appropriately continue as head of the Justice Department now that it appears its investigation of the Watergate and related cases may implicate individuals with whom he has had a close personal and profesional association. In making this decision, Mr. Kleindienst has acted in accordance with the highest standards of public service and legal ethics. I am accepting his resignation with regret and with deep appreciation for his dedicated service to this Administration.
Pending Secretary Richardson's confirmation as Attorney General, I have asked him to involve himself immediately in thc investigative process surrounding the Watergate matter. As Attorney General, Mr. Richardson will assume full responsibility and authority for coordinating all Federal agencies in uncovering the whole truth about this matter and recommending appropriate changes in the law to prevent future campaign abuses of the sort recently uncovered. He will have total support from me in getting this job done.
In addition, I have today accepted the resignations of two of my closest friends and most trusted assistanus in the White House, H. R. Haldeman and John D. Ehrlichman.
9 Presidential Documents 431
37-434 O - 74 - 2