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:
[00.24.22-GURNEY continues to ask DEAN about his conversations with NIXON] Senator GURNEY. I am talking about -meetings prior to March 21. Mr. DEAN. All right, fine. There was discussion on the meeting on the 28th, when I tried to tell the President that I didn't feel--- Senator GURNEY. I am talking about, prior to the 21st. Mr. DEAN. That is prior, February 28. Senator GURNEY. Oh, February, 28, excuse, me. I thought you were talking about 'March. Mr. DEAN. When I discussed with him the fact that, I thought he ought to be, aware of the, fact that I had been involved in obstruction Of justice when I made it known to him that I had been made a conduit for decisions. He said, John. you don't have any legal problems to worry about, I Just don't believe you have any problems at all. and it Was left hanging at that. Senator GURNEY. Did you discuss any specific instances of obstruction Of justice? Mr. DEAN. Well, I, Senator, based on conversations I had with him. I had worked from---- Senator GURNEY. I am talking about this meeting. [00.25.19] Mr. DEAN. Yes, I understand. I am answering your question. I can tell -when I am talking with somebody if they have some conception of what I am talking about, and I certainly had the impression that the President had some conception of what I was talking about, Senator GURNEY. But I am not talking about impressions. That is what I am trying to get away from. I am talking about specific instances. Mr. DEAN. All right, I told him that I had been a conduit for a lot of decisions regarding support and for silence and things of this nature, and I felt that involved me in an obstruction of justice. The President didn't think it did. Senator GURNEY. Did you mention any of these decisions specifically? Mr. DEAN. I beg your pardon? Senator GURNEY. Did you mention any of these incidents specifically? Mr. DEAN-. I did not get into specific instances. I rather gave him a general outline, or picture of my conduit activities. Senator GURNEY. Now, go on to the, other meetings where you discussed specifically the coverup of Watergate, anything about it. Mr. DEAN. That subject about my involvement in an obstruction position also came up at a meeting which I cannot date, -but I recall that Dick Moore was present, I had mentioned this to Dick Moore and Dick 'Moore. was another one who thought I had no legal problems and Dick- was at that point fairly aware, of the, situation from the fact that he had been at the La Costa meetings. [00.27.02-as DEAN looks at notes, shot of GURNEY, look of great consternation on his face] I am now at the March 13 meeting, where the, matter of executive clemency and the million dollars came up. That would be the, next instance in the sequence. Senator GURNEY. March 13? Mr. DEAN. That, is correct, Senator GURNEY. And what happened then? [00.28.01] Mr. DEAN. At March 13, there was a number of unspecified demands for money that had come to me through Mr. O'Brien. Thad also been having conversations with Mr. Mitchell. I might, mention this because it is just--I have just remembered this now. There, was at one point in time, after Mr. Moore had been to visit with Mr. Mitchell in New York, following the La Costa meeting an effort to have Mr. LaRue, go out and raise money. This had been discussed earlier and Mr. LaRue had done some activities of this nature. Mr. Ehrlichman mentioned to me the, fact that someone ought to go to Mr. Pappas, who was a long-time supporter of the President, and see if he would be, of any assistance. Apparently, Mr. LaRue and Mr. Pappas had had some business dealings and as a result of those business dealings, Mr. LaRue, was encouraged that something might be able to be done. But he told me that Mr. Pappas might want to have some favorable, considerations from the Government on some oil Matters that- resulted from this mutual venture they were in. I reported this to Ehrlichman and he told me to just give him a call whenever anything was necessary. [00.29.23-DEAN testifies about telling NIXON of the demands for money from HUNT in exchange for his silence--blackmail] So there was this general problem that was existing before the 13th of March as to who was going to raise the support money and how it was going to get there. That is -what prompted me to raise, it with the President at the, end of the meeting, because it was on my mind, and I told him that, you know there were money problems, there was no money to pay these people and he said, "How much will it cost?" I said, "My best estimate is a million dollars or more." [00.29.50-NIXON was aware of the purpose of clemency for HUNT-to buy his silence] He asked me who the demands were. coming from. I told him principally from Mr. Hunt through his attorney. At that point in time, he said something to the effect that, well, Mr. Hunt has already been given an assurance of clemency. He said, I talked to Mr. Ehrlichman about that and then Mr. Colson came and talked to me about it after he had been instructed not to talk to me about it. So that was the next occasion that came up.