Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activiti...

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.Caucus Room, Russell Senate Office Building
Year Shot:
1973  (Actual Year)
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Original Film:
[00.08.50-Sen. INOUYE introduces the questions from the WHITE HOUSE, which he will pose to DEAN.] Senator INOUYE. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Mr. Chairman. before proceeding I would like to advise the committee that we have had a bit of confusion here. Statements attributed to the press office of the White House indicated last evening that the memo which I presented to the committee might not been an official document of the White House, However about 15 minutes ago I had a, Personal chat with -Mr. Fred Buzhardt, I believe, is that the Way you pronounce his name? Mr. DEAN. Buzhardt. Senator INOUYE. Buzhardt, and he indicated to me that these questions -were in fact prepared by his office. and he was desirous that I Would use them in my interrogation of you, sir. Mr. Dean, before, proceeding may I ask one question. We have been advised that these questions have appeared in the -New York Times, have you seen those questions? TESTIMONY OF JOHN W. DEAN III--Resumed Mr. DEAN. No, I have not. Senator INOUYE. With that, Mr. Chairman, I wish to now proceed With the questions which were prepared by the of the Counsel to the President of the United States. Fred J. Buzhardt. Mr. SHAFFER. Mr. Inouye, I would like to advise the committee that I have seen the New, York Times this morning, that, I didn't see the questions. I looked at some photographs in the Times, and that I haven't discussed the, contents of the Times -with my client and I would like to make that statement in behalf of Mr. McCandless, and if you would like to put us under oath we, are both willing to be sworn. Senator INOUYE. Mr. Chairman, I don't, think that is necessary, sir. [00.10.20--ERVIN humor] Senator ERVIN. You know, my experience around Washington is that if several people get hold of 'a document, that the thing will more than likely appear in the morning paper-if not be telecast that night. [Laughter.] I think that the protection of information around Washington is about as much as the protection which a sieve affords to the passage of water. You may proceed. [00.11.01] Senator INOUYE. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Mr. Dean, you quote the President as saying on February 27 that Haldeman and Ehrlichman were principals' in the Watergate matter and that therefore you could be more objective. What did you understand by this? Mr. DEAN. Frankly, Senator, I never understood what the President was saying when he said that, they were principals. Before he said that he told me that the involvement of their time in dealing -with Watergate matters was taking them away from their other duties and then he also added to me that they were principals in this matter and, therefore, that he thought I could be very objective in it, and that was what subsequently prompted me the next day later to make sure he understood that I felt I was also a principal. [00.11.56] Senator INOUYE. Mr. Dean, did you have any evidence then or now that Mr. Ehrlichman had prior knowledge of the break-in? Mr. DEAN. That he had prior knowledge? Senator INOUYE. Yes, sir. Mr. DEAN. NO, I did not or I do not know. Senator INOUYE. The second question: Mr. Dean, if the President was referring to the post-June 17 events were, you not equally a "principal" as you claim to have indicated to the President, on September 15 Mr. DEAN. Well, as I just mentioned in answering the last question when the President raised this it stuck in my mind, and I returned the next day and after thinking about what he had said, and told him that I also felt I was a principal and that he should understand that. And then began to explain to him why I felt I was involved in obstruction of justice and he assured--he said "You don't have any legal problem in this matter," and the discussion was terminated. [00.13.00-the WHITE HOUSE questions try to cast doubt on DEAN'S power of recollection in making his statement] Senator INOUYE. Your 245-page statement is remarkable for the detail with which it recounts events and conversations occurring over a period of many months. It is particularly remarkable in view of the fact that you indicated that it was prepared without benefit of notes or daily diary. Would you describe what documents were available to you in addition to those which have been identified as exhibits Mr. DEAN. What I did in preparing this statement, I had kept a newspaper clipping file from roughly June 17 up until about the time these hearings started when I stopped doing any clipping with any regularity. It was by going through every single article. Outlining what had happened and then placing myself in what I had done in a given sequence Of time, I was aware of all of the principal activities I had been involved in, the dealings I had had with others in relationship to these activities. Many times things were in response to press activities or press stories that would result, in further activities. I had a good memory of most, of the highlights of things that had occurred, and it, was through this process, and being extremely careful in MY recollection, particularly of the meetings with the President. Before I did leave the White House while I was initially, well, I was ultimately denied access to the logs: I called the man who was in charge Of keeping the logs and asked him if he could give me a list, of all my meetings with the President. He did so on an informal basis before, he realized that--when I sent a formal asking for more information and a formal confirmation. then they denied me that information when I sent the formal memorandum. [00.15.10]