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:
[01.01.00-MacNEILL in studio] MacNEILL states that the second day of DEAN'S testimony has ended, with many of the committee members seeming unsure about how much credence to give to DEAN'S testimony, remarks that Sam DASH has been quoted as saying he is looking forward to another chance to question DEAN, and Senators BAKER and ERVIN have not yet had their chances. MacNEILL states that the likelihood of DEAN'S testimony taking longer than expected puts more pressure on the committee's plan to finish with the first phase of the hearings by early August. LEHRER introduces comment by Steven HESS of the BROOKINGS INSTITUTE, former member of NIXON'S White House staff, and John KRAMER of Georgetown University law school. LEHRER states that things got a little tedious at the end, asks if the guests would call it a totally lost day. KRAMER says that it was not a totally lost day, but it could have been sifted down to about a half hour of worthwhile information. States that three things were learned: First, did seem to change his indication about NIXON'S involvement; had said before that he did not think that NIXON was fully aware of the implications of the coverup etc, but today, DEAN said that he meant NIXON was unaware of the "human implications" of the coverup in terms of close associates being criminally liable, rather than the facts per se. Second, it was clarified that ZIEGLER did not have complicity, and that DEAN was denied permission by EHRLICHMAN to brief ZIEGLER on the Watergate matter. Third, it was clarified that Henry PETERSEN was not complicit in the coverup, although, as LEHRER notes, the testimony of the day before was not favorable to PETERSEN. KRAMER notes that the questioning by Fred THOMPSON took away much of the aspersions from ZIEGLER and PETERSEN. LEHRER asks HESS the same question. HESS (sounding like a paid NIXON MOUTHPIECE) states that seldom is something so potentially dramatic as DEAN'S testimony reduced to such "instant boredom". Very little in the way of DEAN'S factual charges or his credibility has been affected, and HESS hopes, given statements by BAKER and INOUYE, that the cross-examination tomorrow will be more effective in either establishing or rejecting DEAN'S credibility. [01.04.28-TAPE OUT]