LBJ-Alsop 11-25-63

 

Return to:    LBJ Phone Calls - November 1963
  TRANSCRIPT    (PDF: 407 K)

In this lengthy conversation, influential Post columnist Joe Alsop first listens to President Johnson complain about "some of the lawyers...at Justice" who are lobbying for a Presidential Commission, saying "...we just can't have them lobbying against the President, when he makes these decisions." Then Alsop argues, cajoles, and invokes the name of Dean Acheson in his persistent attempts to get Johnson to change his mind. The edited transcript of this conversation in Michael Beschloss' "Taking Charge" omits all but one reference to Acheson's name, but the full transcript makes clear that Alsop is calling on behalf of the elder statesman and former Secretary of State. Johnson agrees that he will "call Dean," though there is no recording of such a call in the LBJ Library archives (not all calls were recorded).

Complete Recording15:36WMAMOVMP3 

Excerpts

Excerpt 103:47WMAMOVMP3 
In this excerpt, Alsop lays out his argument for a Presidential Commission, buttering up Johnson while strongly urging that he take this path.
Excerpt 202:03WMAMOVMP3 
Alsop appears to backpedal, telling Johnson that "I now see exactly how right you are and how wrong I was about this idea of a blue ribbon commission," all the while continuing to stress it merits and urging Johnson to call former Secretary of State Dean Acheson.