Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activiti...
.Caucus Room, Russell Senate Office Building
1973 (Actual Year)
[00.12.13-GURNEY continues to question DEAN about his meetings with NIXON around the time the coverup was starting to unravel] Senator GURNEY. 'Now, who was at that that meeting? Mr. DEAN. "Well, initially, Mr. Ziegler was in there as I recall, and as -we sat down and assembled Ziegler left. It -was from there that the meeting really got down to a discussion between Ehrlichman, Haldeman myself, and the President. [00.12.31] Now, during that meeting, I recall a number of ideas were being requested and the like. At that point, it was the first time I had ever mentioned in front of Haldeman, Ehrlichman and the President the fact that I thought they were all indictable--not including the President-- I said that Haldeman, Ehrlichman, and Dean could be indicted. For that reason, I disagreed with whatever they were talking about. The President on a number of occasions turned to me and said, Do you agree? I said, No sir, I do not. After doing this a number of occasions, I finally said I think that Haldeman, Ehrlichman, and Dean are, indictable and got a very, I might say a chilling look from Mr. Ehrlichman. Senator GURNEY. Was immunity discussed by anybody? Mr. DEAN. On a number of occasions, I discussed the concept of immunity -with Mr. Moore, as -a device-- Senator GURNEY. No, I mean on this occasion. Mr. DEAN. In the, meeting? Senator GURNEY. March 21. the meeting the afternoon. Mr. DEAN. 'Not to my recollection, other than the fact that I had Once, conceived, you know, that the way to get the truth out Would be to have everybody have some sort of immunity, because everyone involved would have a criminal implication and I thought, at that point that the most important thing for the American people was to get the truth out. And as I say, Moore and I had discussed a number of concepts as to how to do this in the past and we had never really found a solution. [00.14.03] Senator GURNEY. Was there, any tentative decision by those present, that is, you and Haldeman and Ehrlichman--to go to the grand jury and tell the whole, Watergate story? Mr. DEAN. No sir, there was not. To the contrary, I had kept raising the fact that as a result of the Gray hearings, it was going to be a matter of time before I was called before the, grand jury. It just presented a real dilemma to me. because I was, going to lay out the, facts Just as I knew them. And there -was a lot of discussion about executive privilege applying before the grand jury and things of this nature. Senator GURNEY. Then there -was no discussion, as I understand it from your testimony, about going to the, grand jury, ever, and telling the whole thing as possibly this immunity business Mr. DEAN, There could have been some discussion about my immunity concept. I don't recall that everybody said, let's walk down to the grand jury -and tell the, story, no, sir. To the contrary, I think it -was quite evident in the meeting the next day, where the -real concern was this committee and that continued to come up again and again. [00.15.17] Senator GURNEY. My question really was, there -was no discussion about going to the grand jury, is that right? Mr. DEAN. Well, other than, as I say, in the context. that I had raised the fact that I thought I would be called before the grand jury at some point in time. Senator GURNEY. Well, I mean about you going voluntarily and the others, too. Mr. DEAN. No, sir, not to my recollection. I don't believe I ever heard Mr. Ehrlichman and Haldeman volunteer to go before the grand jury. Senator GURNEY. Was there also a discussion at this meeting and later at the one on the 22d that all of you might put, this down on paper as to what you viewed as your role in the Watergate? You and Haldeman and Ehrlichman?: [00.16.15-DEAN suspects that he is going to be set up by HALDEMAN and EHRLICHMAN] Mr. DEAN. Yes, sir. The first time I heard about writing a report again occurred when I arrived at Camp David on the afternoon of the 23d. The telephone was ringing as I 'walked into the cabin my wife and I -were staying in. The operator told me it was the President on the phone. It was not the President. It was Mr. Haldeman on the phone and he said, while you are up there, why don't, you sit down and write a report, on this thing. I asked him, was it, going to be for internal or external use and he said, that hasn't been decided yet. We had already gone through what I called really an effort to put out a fairy tale on this thing that had been turned down on December 13. I wondered if we were going to go through this exercise again, because, if we were going to do it again, I wanted to know how to proceed. Senator GURNEY. Then it was after that that the President asked you to go to Camp David? Mr. DEAN. Well, the President called me, on the, 23d. In the meeting on the 22d--I might mention this: As early as February, when I had a meeting with the President, he asked me had I ever spent any time up at Camp David? I said no, I hadn't, I had been up there to a meeting once right after the election a very brief meeting with Ehrlichman and Haldeman. He said, you and your wife ought to go up there on some weekend, it is an excellent place to go. He mentioned that on a number of occasions and I told my wife, I said, the President has been very gracious in saying that you should go to Camp David and mentioned it to her. [00.17.40]
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