Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activiti...

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.Caucus Room, Russell Senate Office Building
Year Shot:
1973  (Actual Year)
Tape Master:
Original Film:
[00.32.09-GURNEY questions DEAN, clearly trying to make DEAN'S role in planning the Watergate seem very significant and central] Senator GURNEY. My reaction was that you testified that you told him that, he was never to discuss this thing again with you, is that correct? Mr. DEAN. That is correct. Senator GURNEY. You told him that if any plan was approved like this that you did not want, to know about., it. Mr. DEAN. That is correct,. Senator GURNEY. At this particular time, Mr. Dean, were you not the counsel for the President? Was that not, your job? Mr. DEAN. That was my title and that was my job. Senator GURNEY. You were not counsel for Mr. Mitchell and Mr. Magruder, were you? Mr. DEAN. No, I was not. 'Senator GURNEY. Why did you not go back to the President and tell him about, this hair-raising scheme? Mr. DEAN. Well, I did go back. But I did not have access to the President as I think I explained. I went to Mr. Haldeman. Senator GURNEY. Did you try to gain access to the President ? [00.32.59] Mr. DEAN. Senator, I did not try-- I had never been in to the President or called by the President before. My reporting channel was through Mr. Haldeman and I went back and told what I thought was the proper reporting channel. I told him what I had seen, told him my reaction to it, told him that I thought it was unwise, unnecessary, and Mr. Haldeman agreed with me. Senator GURNEY. Did you ever discuss after this meeting with Mr. Mitchell and Mr. Magruder, whether this plan was going to be implemented or whatever happened to it? [00.33.35-a point which the White House disputes DEAN'S testimony] Mr. DEAN. I never heard about the plan again until, as I have testified, Mr. Liddy came into my office some time in February or March, I do not know the precise date and told me that he could not get his plan approved. I reminded him that I was not going to talk with him about it, and he said that he understood and he did not talk about it. And we went on to whatever our business was that day on some other election matter. Senator GURNEY. When was this? Mr. DEAN. I believe it was February, some time in February or March I am not sure of the date. Senator GURNEY. Did you ever report that to the President? Mr. DEAN. NO, I didn't,, sir. [00.34.22-Sen. GURNEY takes another opportunity to take potshots at DEAN'S professional ethics concerns] Senator GURNEY. Let's go now to the break-in at Watergate. But before we do, let's go back and clear up some testimony of yesterday. I have never been entirely clear on this law firm incident. I came in the middle of Senator Talmadge's questioning yesterday. could you go over that? What exactly happened? You were representing a law firm in connection with some television application-is that it? Mr. DEAN. No, sir, I read into the record Yesterday a letter, I don't know if the Senator has had a chance to see the letter. Senator GURNEY. I haven't had a chance to see, it. Mr. DEAN. I might read it to you. Senator GURNEY. No, I don It think you need to read it if you just summarize quickly what happened. Mr. DEAN. All right, I was in a communications law firm and doing very little communications work. I had some connection with summarizing findings of fact and things of that nature that were before the FCC, but I could not, term myself a communications lawyer in any respect. I had been at the, firm a very short while. I was not happy at the firm and was contemplating leaving the firm. One of the men who was at the firm was not a lawyer but an in-house representative of the senior partners in the firm, who had television interests around the, country as a result of their processing applications. This man came to me and began to discuss, he said, John, you are leaving, are you interested in investing any money in a television station? I said, yes, I might be, let's explore it. We had some preliminary discussions about it, with the lawyers who he had selected to represent his application, a, man by the name of Earl Stanley, who is a senior member of the communications bar, and I think a very well respected member of the bar. At that time, I raised with him, was there any conflict for me to become involved in that while, I was still at the firm. He indicated to me so long as I was out of the firm by the time the application was actually filed, which would have taken mechanically months to prepare, and Mr. Stanley and Mr. Fellows, the, man I was referring to in the, firm, were going to prepare the application. I had some--I had accumulated some papers on the matter in my desk and apparently, one night, one of the partners was looking for some other unrelated matters and came across, this. [00.37.00]