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tv   In Depth  CSPAN  November 7, 2016 12:00am-3:01am EST

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programs on my netbook >> since the presidential election is on tuesday, we thought we would do something a little different for this month's in-depth program. instead of focusing on one author, we have three presidential historians. a this was taped elections and the white house. earlier today. : >> it's a change with a new figure in the white house, a new figure of state and of course the passion of the voters and so forth. >> when you talk about a symbol of state, how important is that? >> very important to. having the presidency is all from the kingship and it's a
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two-pronged thing, symbolic president and manager of the government and it has been from the start and some are good administrators and some are battle-- better symbols and i think it's the characteristic of the office. they have to be both, really. >> in your book, the leaders we deserve and if you didn't, you write that if great or near great presidents were shaped by numerous experiences with people from all walks of life the unsuccessful spent most of their adult lives in a single pursue politics. >> that's correct and if you look at some of my failures, james buchanan probably had more jobs than anyone. he waited all of his life to be president and it was a goal from the time he was in the state legislator. he conspired behind his wife's back to run for president.
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she did not even know he was one of the candidates and joshua was stunned when he received it. we think of others. daily or i often say brings a lot more out than a so not a very good relationship with the father. he might have been president without it. he was called the feather duster by his legislators.
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these things help a great deal in testing a president's character. i will make one exception, george herbert walker bush. there was a unique head of state not very partisan. one could argue he threw away his presidency seeing therese might be called ahead in the seh middle east. he should have explained why he did that later on but still, he's the one with the endless resume. martin van buren, terrible luck as president. i say that and stand by it. >> host: abraham lincoln had no business being president. when you look at his past.
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>> guest: yes and no. if you're looking at government experience, we have one term in congress. we forget he was the leader ofpt the party and we really forget he was the most prominent lawyer and his county or state or region he was a very famous defense attorney. so if we were to look at someone like david boyd comes to mind, he wasn't getting any attention in those days, but he certainly understood politics and how to get clients and how to cash in to some degree.
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he depends on a rich, but he certainly died middle-class for his time. if you are looking at are government office, i has galvanized by the fugitive slave act and above all, the judge scott decision mobilized with a passion that he had before and that passion is what drove him through the base and the presidency. before we go on, we have to remember this when the state legislature picked the senator. we always talk about gerrymandering to get out the versus r vote. his party did much better, but they picked the senator. everybody knew i he was a pilot
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victory. he gets the telegram to come to cooper union and you know the rest of the story. >> host: kate & devour is the author of the white house and first women.ho here's a quote by rachel jackson, andrew jackson's wife. i would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of god int and to n in a palace in washington. >> i think it' >> i think it's difficult for a lot ofhi the first ladies. martha washington talked about being a state prisoner, michelle obama talked about feeling like a prisoner in the white housed and i thought it was interesting what she said, some don't even tell their wives they are going to be running until they win. loowith backend ladybirds johnsn even though she was very financially supportive, he was very dismissive of her and he didn't even tell her he was running the first time until far
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along in the process. another thing i think there is a sense among the women and it's a sacrifice for them. forced to give it up you don't get paid and then you are criticized for everything you do. she talked about how frustrating it was and knew there would be a segment of the population thatte hated her which included being called the steel magnolia andns made fun of eventually. i think the two of them have a lot in common if rosalynn carter would have been born later she
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would have been even active and it would have been unthinkable in the 70s. it's like hillary clinton having an office but didn't work well for her and in 94 she blamed herself for a lot of thought. so i think there is this element.: here's >> here is a little bit of the video of michelle obama talking about living in the white house. >> i guess we don't have that video. i apologize. >> she was the first first lady they were cruel to an me and thy never forgave john quincy adams dot there was a stain on the history. she was married to another man and they went to claim they were
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married but there is no record of there ever being married. they went back to nashville and married again and his best friend judge overton wrote a long essay about this trade should.. >> host: what has been your involvement in the white house? >> guest: starting and ending with president nixon. there was support for the white house they publish things andd raised money occasionally by a
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family objects. the security wasn't like it is today. >> host: how did the whiteor house, though originally?t was a >> guest: they called for two buildings. he realized they had to have bricks and mortar so he settled on the white house and thett capitol -- instead of the capital.
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first what he agreed almost five times the size of what was built then he agreed a family on a country house. he watched every stone that wene into it. he wanted it done november 1 that was the deadline. it was a little house by comparison. >> host: how big is it, how many floors, how many were?est:o >> guest: there are two basement levels and a state floor and a second and thirdmils floor which is the private
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living quarters that includes al incredible room overlooking the washington monument and it's a family room and in fact the obama's released on the cover which is incredible because they are guarded in this area as you can imagine it's the only place they can relax. it has different levels of the head staff and then there's the kitchen where the staff gathered to have lunch together. i thought it was incredible it was like a version of johnson ty
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abbey. i never thought about the butlers that serve the family or who runs the private side of the white house and i think it's fascinating that relationship they develop as lifeliness because you feel isolated and in fact wore a -- wore a bush. it's more than lipservice commits real devotion. >> if you read the memoirs you think that's not usual, they don't write memoirs. they are like family. it's a good thing to an english country house not because they were trying to be shelley buttr because it works.
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it's public and private, first private, but that's what makes. it work. the work goes on constantly and it is like a country house. >> host: how did you get th access to so many of the employees for your book the residents? >> guest: i interviewed close to 54 staffers. it is difficult to get them to talk. several of them would only say positive things. they don't want to reveal any secrets about the families that would make them look bad and anyone negative things were even set in a positive way. when i talked to one aboutyone's
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monica lewinsky he told me a story about hillary clinton during the height of the scandal coming down from the second floor asking to go to the pool with some books. the president just admitted his affair and she just wanted to time alone by the pool it was as small but telling the story that it was an effort to do this for her. she didn't want anybody to seent her so sh he described this gargantuan effort to give her an afternoon sitting out by the pool and she looked like she'd been cryinshe hadbeen crying anf staff felt very protective of hillary clinton at the time. m she had been through so much and it was embarrassing. long story short it wasn't easy to get them to talk.
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they love the families they serve and there's a love of allegiance. there was a wonderful memoir thabutjackie kennedy was reallyd that he did it. it's not something the first family likes. >> host: you have a quote about to skip out when about the clintons. >> guest: team left on goode terms but there are some of allegiance that form. they do have opinions. they are not overtly political.n he talked about how the clintons changed the phone system.
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they wanted to be able to make calls themselves which i think is understandable but the ushers would say it's the case everything is about tradition and they don't like anything being upended so that speak to the sense they were doing something differently and it didn't sit well within thead staff. >> i don't think of them as traditional at all. >> you're talking about the social half of the white house with the buck lawyers and things. >> they had a different relationship with the sea service. >> why do you agree with that
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statement? use at all the presidents do. >> you get close to people and you see that no person is a hero they. they all have likes and dislikes and i would expect some of the rumors we heard, it was a rough transition between the clintons and the staff. one of the ushers said he hader moved out. >> he called and asked for help.
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if they sold it differently some liked the secret service and others with just drop their code [inaudible] >> there are things they have to do professionally and sometimese it doesn't blow up with the family that had their own independence they don't want to conform to that but the secret services and theoretically under the president. >> it goes back to the first in mrs. roosevelt.
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remember he came in after the assassination. he would go skinny dipping in the potomac. his wife was terrified he was around washington for himself bd nobody would protect him. he managed to get a pass from the secret service so if somebody says i can't stand down, you have to talk to treasury, then i guess mrs. roosevelt would have to deal with that later? >> 58 times we've gone to the polls. >> i often told my students to think of the president as the ti
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uninvited guest. that wasn't true in the early days where i'm not sure unless y you were a hero like andrew jackson. lincoln of course being martyred his photograph was in every schoolhouse. it wasn't until the job becamek more. someone did a poll as recognizable as any other but he didn't do what fdr did. he didn't speak off-the-cuff.
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getting ready to work tomorrow. the same stories were in chicago. it was very hot and he walked several miles per exercise. every radio had his voice.kenn not as a transition. was the second ar or the third t the first everyone had television and it was a universal thing. the president of the primetime
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performer. [inaudible] >> i think your microphone fell off and we are going to get itt. on. this is from 1912 i think yougu will be able to figure it out. >> it's called the old way and the new.
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they are dusting off portraits of theodore roosevelt and william howard taft in thisf dog together as an example of the old way of doing things so he is dispensing favors and there's all sorts of political corruption contrasted with the new way of doing things as a champion of the common man it ends with a plea to send 1 dollar to the democratic national committee on behalf of the woodrow wilson campaignus because woodrow wilson that republican guard with the wealthiest.
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>> they would watch whoever else was purporting and have [inaudible] against the establishment whohew would represent the small guy against big guy and very few have the farmer. >> you write that the white house has become just as much a part of america.
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>> you can't separate the two it's such a symbolic combinati combination. eisenhower proposed a high-rise to the south and he would live on the top two floors. the public went crazy. we don't know whether that would happen. i wondered was it grover cleveland -- >> he was 20 years older than she was and what the press was
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intrusive with her and didn't h want her at the white house because she went to formal occasions but had a big house out of town. she had chickens and rabbits and dobermans. but truman of course moved to blair housethat. >> i would be surprised any president would be able to go to far away.
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he had no choice to do what he did. i wanted to extend from 17th street. all of these places. it wenif went through and then s stopped and they took the phone he asked no one and paid the money out of the household budget. >> welcome to book tv on c-spa
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c-span2. usually we focus on one author put this month. bill is one of the authors about the white house including temples of democracy, the white house, the history of an american idea, the presidents house and warehouse. he's a professor that taught ato columbia coming university of houston and has spent quite a bit of time as they come to attend. and all is the author of the book the leaders that we disturbed.
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he taught for george washington for quite a while and princeton and served as spokesman for ther commission. her tube fo to presidents inside the white house and the grace and power of america's first first lady's. f she's worked at cbs and fox as well so we will be talking with him about the history. (202)748-8200, seven 488201 for those in the mountain and pacific. you can dial make a comment on
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the facebook page or send an e-mail. earlier on we talked about her. >> the white house is a place attention played out in the administration. its purpose the stress of being in that house and one of the challenges is to make.
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when i come home at night it's to fintofind that space of prot, those things that allow you to privacy you need but also to revel in the house that you are in. >> graceful people that's like you are living in a beautifulr e hotel. you're going to interact with a group of people, special visitors and staff and you feel like greeting them and then you get into the elevator and go to your personal space and it feels like you're th you are the onlye living here. >> it's interesting to see the first lady's overtime deal with negotiating in the white house
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and i think for someone like michelle obama, she felt a lot of pressure. when i interviewed obama she taught about how they didn't necessarily look to the first ladies of the past because she has a unique position and there was an amount of scrutiny that she was going to have to deal with so fitch is a reality but it's interesting to see. americans are not very forgiving in terms of what the first lady is allowed to do and we will see if we have a first gentleman ife that changes anything. from jackie kennedy to barack gp
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obama you have trained to raise a young children in the white house so i think the presidentei staffers who i view as the favorite family to serve was george bush senior and barbara bush because they knewho children's names and i think part of that is because they didn't have children and that they didn't have that added burden. michelle obama even talked about how conflict did she felt watching her daughters ge daughg to the secret service for the first day of school she thought what have we done. i think for women there is an added level of custer that thes
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women feel.who ha >> host: >> guest: i think that somerviee people liked working for her. if sh she's that i would six don roses on that pedestal she was specific. if she asked for asparagus andyo you gave something else youu better have a good excuse. of course they came from the historic visit in the 1980s she had a flower arrangement hae changed three times in one day in every room at the white house because she wanted to knock
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their socks off. >> a word of sympathy i thinkknb number one, it will be kind to michelle obama and the president we have to weigh out the memoirs and a lot of things.he we had that awful cover. there were certain people and it wasn't helpful. then we had a list that was long, long gone. she is certainly one of them.
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the speech at the convention was the most human speech ever. at the other tribute nancy reagan, there was a telling comment. if ronald reagan met her before he would never have been president. [inaudible]ust she was the president's protector in every possible way and took a hit for him and was willing to pay.
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sitting with the transition te team, [inaudible] do you think they've been there in any personal sense most [inaudible] she went to george h. w. bush and said we have to get rid of him and he said i just can't do it so she said if you are not
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man enough to, i'm going to. so their son talks about the mother in glowing terms and as you say she took a lot of heati because she wanted what was best for him always. and there was an article [inaudible] the management at the white house wasn't unlike the management of a film in hollywood.
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i always [inaudible] what was life like in the white house from 43 to 45 >> he meant a lot of time there but people he wanted to see, they would have to come spend the night. they were ther there all the tid was filled with kids and they got permission.
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roosevelt had his own group and she made a group for herself. na it's an interesting pointnt because she really nabbed him constantly. he would see her coming and they no think so as progressive. i got to this point at the end of the day it got really annoying for him. just schedule a lunch for me and they started scheduling. if she did get into trouble for
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sitting in on the cabinet meetings. fdr used to have famous parties. eleanor would put the bag down and told them about her day. in the current and be fair she tells the story about when no ordinary time cannot.
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she said that she and her husband and bill and hillary were trying to get all these people in here and decided ittmm wasn't possible. people even read memoirs about being a white house staffer so late at night they would rearrange furniture because they were told when they wouldectly o rearrange they know where every one is that i could imagine them poring over a blueprint.
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>> i worked on the blue room and she participated and what problems the committee and her father was obviously successful. >> ahas every family had an impact? >> it's always been a link in melodrama and it's a very compelling story this family
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torn to pieces. it's how they live and what he do and the things they do get changed often. >> host: are abraham lincoln and john f. kennedy the only two that are taken back? >> guest: versus here ten. christie six they hire a department store owner and he
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did, writing ceremonies everybody followed since and it's gotten simpler and simpler. but the mirrors used to be covered up. >> i don't know if he was taken back to washington. he was in the capital but this may have been.
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everyone thinks of replicating that there's a great history and he just happened to order yardsd of this. it's not quite as beautiful as you would think it is.ary of >> they have the historians working all night.
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to the point she called him at 6:00 in the morning and said we need to move out all the tanks and i don't want -- >> host: she was making calls on air force one on the way back. >> she must have been in shock and the amount of stoicism for someone 34-6.
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it's incredible where you have to think she is in completefeltt shock. she couldn't cry because she was being so stoic. he recalled standing there and she was coming in to see her husband's casket. they turned to face the wall. >> guest: when you see the movie the butler how long has that were?ke him, >> guest: i think it is an amount of may from --and he amalgamation.
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his mother wasn't an out ofma ad pollack. he was trying to ask for a raise i'm told. it wasn't eugene allen but it was a book at how many staff dealt with life in the white house. they had their own debuts. name after the light fixtures, the silver, the chairs, everything was taken to one ofs the big hotels and it was a veri classy event.
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>> they wanted all of the women. i interviewed one who formed an association in the 60s and 70s and he said i was introduced at thes to these elae parties and the hostess would say white house server. >> posted his daughter who spend to take yourself out.t me >> guest: $75 after my book came out to thank me for bringing her father's wife to buy it. that's the kind of people they are. if you go to funerals, i went to
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cletus clark. the staff are not too keen on talking to a reporter. >> you have a reputation now that the residents has come out? >> guest: when i first started they were very very. it was easier to talk with him until 2014 he wouldn't talk. i went out and interviewed him because i think there is -- >> host: east end central time
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zone (202)748-8201, mountain and pacific, and you can alsou contact social media. we've all scroll through the different ways. you will see american history tv as well as white housewhite ho documentary and a blair house documentary.ailable all of these are available to watch at we will continue to use the resources throughout the program. let's start with a call from danville in cleveland ohio.
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>> caller: i like to visit presidential musings in libraries. i've been to eight in also far. how well do they present presidents?neville, >> guest: >> host: which ones have been your favorite classsh >> caller: i've been to both bush in texas, truman, the one gerald ford has in grand rapids and also jimmy carter's and bill clinton. i still have a few more to get.
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>> host: thank you. >> guest: extraordinary list. as time passes and the presidents become a part of history they become less the official story of the staff andr protectors. truman has been done many times since at least twice that i know of and the johnson museum tried hard. i suspect it's not the highexceh
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point. to talk about how the war and the presidency but it took a long time to have panels the last year on the vietnam war jobs. the early nixon exhibit is controversial how they presente watergate. i would say that about it but they are pretty they are managed by the presidential foundation and of l vary a loss in accuracy and objectivity. but it will take off and people tell you it takes a few decades after a president left office
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and new papers come out. they are able to see replicas and i can't stress the importance to them >> host: is there a time capsule at the white house?it w >> guest: everybody witnessedpoo it and people that weren't supposed to put anything in. 50 years later when presidente y reagatrue and rebuild everythinn the inside, so a new time was createtime wascreated and put ir
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with the old content and new ones and yes it does have a time capsule. what was the book that came out about a year and a half ago about the meeting with truman and the way of dealing with himh she goes on to the lecture that comes close to saying. i would like to but i'm not a
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historian. do any of you know about this or have a comment? >> guest:. it became very fashionable for the new historians. they took a very dismissive vi view.. he was dealt from the ticketke because many people saw him as too close to the soviet point oe view. while it was supposed against
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the berlin airlift, against nato and against helping greece and turkey, i made. we have a famous photograph of the sailor kissing the vendorsse at "the new york times." they took a major part of. you don't see too many because they were taking the biggest hit in the east. .. not important in soviets.
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so i tack a much different view than shes to, but many people agree with her. >> host: just a month or so before his death, franklin roosevelt spoke in 1945 at his inaugural. >> i, franklin del delano roosevelt, swear i will faithfully execute ooffice of president of the united states and will to the best of my ability preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the united states. >> so help you god. >> so help me god. [cheering] >> the president delivers a brief inaugural address. >> we americans of today, together with our allies, are passing through a period of supreme test.
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it is a test of our courage, of our resolve, of our wisdom, of our essential democracy. if we meet that test -- black >> >> of historic importance of men and women and children. as a stand here today, haven't taking the solemn oath of office beforere my fellow countrymen, and the presence of our god, i know it is america's purpose that we should not fail. >> water reseeding? >> results is dying at that
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point. they had the first inaugural swearing-in on the south porch of course, he is dead in three months. >> with the official public swearing blacks. >> it is always at the capitol. >> when did they move it from march to january greg. >> that roosevelt louver transition was a long one. favor frustrated because they didn't want to except his 80 is so nothing was happening they said no president elect shall never go through that again. >> you write about rosalynn w carter saying that was too long for her to remain in the white house quick. >> and dave would bring in
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the interior decorators to do that. >> but you don't have a chair to hang your pants on as a hollywood decorator did john crawford but it was livable for the first time ever. >> i apologize but i meant they lost the election and she is stuck in the house. >> when i talk to her the biggest regret is that they 2
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lost 35 years ago but again and again of this bitterness of the matter who follows you but these womens campaigned very hard so getting to the point of presidential libraries that is huge. >> so with every a presidential library wanted to make a perfect and her assistant talks about howw sweet that was the issue is set in her office that the of library with this fake said that in his office and how much she enjoyed it and nancy reagan on the anniversary of the ronald's reagan death was sitting by is grave only with one secret service agent so i
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would say it is one of the most beautiful and one of the best. also with margaret thatcherple i normally important people to speak in just to make that commitment to solicit money of i of that real bipartisanship because of course he was killed obviously and to be happy to get support for the library and reach out across the aisle. >> and it is active with the george did the bush. >> both first lady's participated in the american president serious and here
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is how little bit from deeper johnson -- ladybird johnson. >> when he said he would quit? >> yes. we talked about this actually. >> why did he quit greg. >> >> my opinion is that he didn't have four more years. and it was costing too much
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if he lived he could not do the job that he wanted to do. >> he said his family was cursed after they deliver after a certain age but i think that protection that they need to protect their husbands so she believed shet was not running again. so this is something that i interviewed in this c. johnson talks about the of whitehouse. but i think what she says is what all lot of women would feel in their heart of hearts they didn't want president nixon to run again he went into private practice.ted to g social wanted to get back
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into a deere is the great letter that jackie kennedy wrote that they walked away from each other and she writes to mrs. nixon your dreams are here but essentially but be careful what you wish for.omethi she knew that this would be very livable for their family. >> with the richard nixon, memoir he publishes a letter basically saying the whole time you got to congress you finish with a direct tie and now you have to start all over again. but one thing about ladybirdla but in addition with the beautification but she made a very risky decision she knew they existed i want to
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give you the commercial butall s you see all the faults and all his virtues and bad language.ought, b and she thought blemishes and all that they would rise above that i that that was a very courageous decision on her part as bearish was the first to campaign alone and an emissary to the south lot of southerners were not happy that was an incredible story people were chanting black bird go home.of the they even had the secret service to make sure there were no bombs on the of railways.
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and her letters are fascinating probably the linchpin for the firmer bond negative former first ladyof thi with dock height the b iran the hostage crisis she neverne stopped. >> she came to everything. >> so to mention those phone calls. >> general over the next day or so with southeast asia i just one-third -- wondered what your schedule was and how that would affect you. i would fight to get your w advice.eed to do if there is anything you need to do this way but if you did new york or
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gettysburg guy could at that talk anytime bad it suits you that while you are here i will call you in and invite you to come down and counsel with me. i am a little concern to leaving the appearance of an emergency. >> ic. >> if you have anybody in york that you need to talk to. >> i have a publisher. >> why do you go back there and got my played well, pick you up you can visit him then you can come down here to spend the day with me at the white house and let me say for the public that i
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understood you were in new york and i wanted to advisor with you on the general public and i ask you to come down and visit with me so what does it look too dramatic that we have a real divergence see it isn't that deep but i want to talk to you. >> i love the the languages funny and local budget makes the point quickly he doesn't drag it around to. >> to marvelous segments after johnson gets the firstas press conference because the former journalist he easily won he would take that
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dressing down from the also sense of management 19641 of his days is arrested. [inaudible] he was arrested at the ymca. >> this is how ladybird is it incredible person the mike doesn't want the public to make an issue of it like the current president's it is to be managed but he has six children and wife may have a lot of servants working for us. they're watching to see how you are treating theth colleagues and we cannot let that happen and they say just give the matter of the public we will deal with
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that but later that that would be an issue so empathy and management but that is the other conversation. >> afternoon. thank you to c-span i tried to watch this everytime it is on.ler: more >> it is more of a statement gu and to talk about it.-front w with millions of soldiers and right when he passed away there was one phone line to the cottage u.s. day
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not cut i found that interesting and this says a lot about how the government worked or how it works with fdr that something like that could have been leading the war to the people and he had the overall objective that veryhands-off in that way pdf. >> but those if you have not visited and dad i urge you de do so. you can see how he liked to relax you can see the of martini mixers in the public is taken with him. but the first concern of the
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secret service was to get her out of the house from eleanor but the greatest commander-in-chief in some ways roosevelt had bettert luck and worked very hard he was not sitting over his shoulder he loved george marshall and his selflessness. >> and not after his death say he was a great man. he would not say it. to and he ordered his staff with very special care he's the only way i can get to the president. >> what was the white house like as the war center and wrote more to crack.
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>> o white house adapted toth begin with it was a stone house.and they des was a fire trap. he would not hear of it. so he suggested they paint the house black to put camouflage on the roof and he said no, sir he consented to have wet buckets in every room and it was to have such a wonderful job but that down in the basement of the ground-floor that was inspired by one churchill with a utilitarian room but
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he was a wheelchair over there when he was in town he was often down there.he men w in and then that work there and that area the east wingg was built and so he has the plans he considered himself the commander in the minute the war started after pearl harbor because they were building a bomb shelter but they didn't really want thatthea couples were not finished and staffed moved in that immediately.d.
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>> they will lead cover-up with such top-secret information if they would clean the room they could not see what was going on but the layers of history this is where bill clinton was the first to testify in front of a grand jury that is what i find fascinating is the layers. or like jackie kennedy and and they found a writing desk to bring back and the green room is after he died ridley was laid so it is incredible to think about bed different path with the relatively short period of time. >> his son was in the>> greenroom. >> i was talking about the map room. but to think about.
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>>e roosev >> did hillary bring them back? >> but then they come on to the market now and then. >> >> alias want to see that. and to be very relaxed. >> thanks for calling. go-ahead. >> i have a comment your eighth question that david rockefeller is one of the world's most of its wealthiest families and
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roads in his book memoirs. to create a new world order to talk about conspiring of cab a more integrated structure. >> what is your question? >> talk about that sovereignty. >> okay we appreciate your comment now we move on to kalispell.ft >> caller: that with the staff then the soldiers that is what i would like to know >> referring to the secret service agent who can now with the book. >> and there has been a couple.when i int
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and the housekeeper during the clinton only has had clean things to say how kind she was. but then the head engineer had to dismantle said then chandeliers in one day on d inauguration day that the three was clear and annoyed was and done quickly enough. it depends on who you talk to. there was sympathy especially it was a very public and humiliating. it is not black or white tie the issue is did say incredible to me though with of vitriol the people that do hate turbot those who know her largely due say nice things about her. that she is incredibly
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compassionate so then to talk about some of aids as first lady to visit theseen very sick children in romania so everyone and her staff was crying it was a terrible scene so at the end she got into the car with sunglasses her aide said i know how you keep it together she said imagining started to cry a to see the first lady cry for them it would make it worse. so to have the image of power hungry but there is a dofter side to her. >> then negative head housekeeper one of the clintons left for of years quick.k.
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>> she did she got into a fight with nancy reagan. choose very upset she had these porcelain boxes daylight to collect thingsgs because they don't have to dust around them. [laughter]d mrs. r so she had these wonderful beautiful expensive items one was broken by a secret service agents and other was a maid. said she was called up to take a verbal lashing and told me she was very close to talking back and that is what caused her to leave naturally somebody said i will take over from here you have heard enough because she had them packed up intoa storage until she felt comfortable taking them back out again berger she came back with barbara bush.
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>> and a place with 60 people and there you are to come in and out. and with that thread over the door. you don't have any control. youy i did there are too manyey eyes and the white house right now. are really do. the kennedys try to get people to sign. >> that did look bad. i am shirt if you are with that type of intrusion and
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then goes to the home of the president they done c. penney place but then they never forget it.t he has all of these memoirs that may not be true but have senate did 1/2 to sign nondisclosure agreements which people are surprised there really isn't anything in keep them from breaking. but if gives you the human element that you have no concept the issue was sosh outspoken. >> book tv's c-span to.
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>> caller: good afternoon. i would just like to know what first lady enjoyed being first lady or living in the white house. >> we will even take ite further in telling us which president enjoyed being president. >> it is one of the easy answers because in modern history undoubtedly barbarara bush said the sheer love every minute of it she said she would go back and she did have to have any of the responsibilities. - the of the huge, the chef said she was so complementary and did that annt anything changed. she would go out for her daily swim and visit the florist and the residence
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staffers said she was the most relaxed first lady. she has a very biting sensehu of humor but she was just fine and when joke around and loved every minute of it- ey >> general grant's wife she begged them to run again and he would not do it. her she describes in a memoir when she got out of the private car or the railroad car after the inauguration of the successor she did not want to leave. and to be extremely popular first lady. she was a character she knew everybody's birthday.
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>> but she loved that. and but they have there first house up bank gettysburg and they love did.lane. and he liked to fly a plane she said she did not trust i him but people liked her. but it was an endless and people just loved her summation love children the some people say not that he didn't have talent but there is always interesting people. she was not so kind to jackie kennedy.
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in that transition is very hard.t to >> going to the white house he was the first with huge at thes of people. but and then mostly businessmen but then to tell the chef. then she said du run the office and i run the house. >> when those jackie tapes came out. >> and she just had a c
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section she had asked for a wheelchair. that it is a great story and with that whitehouse to wordtion -- it never showed up so she had to walk through and paindard dark interface she was excruciating pain so later on day said what was wrong? i never got my wheelchair but i was so afraid to ask. -- l >> very 1950's. >> part of the first lady series visited the gettysburg, of the eisenhowers you can see that mamie pink is still
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prevalent everywhere. and those that were serving dinner to clear the plates. let's take a call from mississippi. >> caller: i think yout have a great job if he ever want to retire i will take your job. [laughter] >> i agree. >> caller: my question is for the panel if they are able to address thele possibility of having the first man instead of the first lady in the white house summit that would look like talking about men use. if you want to address the history as well. >> i have spoken with people about this in the new york times over the summer that
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it is likely to have been but it could be to have the first gentleman which is historic. the presidency never had a man and his position was channel surfing is hysterical playing a woman president and is then laughable because of dense with the first woman president getting pregnant and deciding to quit to be there for the family. but it shows how far we have come some now seems very likely to men probably not have the east wing office social talks about having a hand that anybody would expect her to
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if they had and got involved in that part of the white house.secr but as somebody who has done that before as chief of protocol and social secretary but really wildrl bill clinton is an emissary round of world to talk about putting him in charge of the economy. >> it takes a full-time job. so they never say this at the time but you might want to read a couple of n and how they came.
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and then to know that there is no shrinking violet.and lo of course, long-suffering for thin but one thing that comes to mind with these e-mail's they are true or not and those to understand and did those nancy reagan type of roles. also to be a very good advisor and not the social secretary but most first lady's did take on the cause . and has done a great deal with the foundation and as president.
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but very good one to manage it. but with all of us trials and should deletions at four in the morning he has read books about all of their predecessors many times with that extraordinary memorabilia collection and then to address more than anybody in history stops every town to give the speech and george bush's inaugural so he led every minute of it even when he was having his problems he
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enjoyed a.ur >> we will combat after this break. we will ask each of our guests to recommend books of presidential history and be will show those to you now.
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>> host: one of the poock >> 19121 of the books that you recommended how they change the country quick. >> that was an amazing election that was just interrupted and that was is a catastrophic given to indecorous with the socialist party it was an election that seemed like it would end everything and was
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surprised and that is why i recommended the book ont. account of all of that. >> and from presidential courage greg. >> with those thought problems could be managed and civil-rights became more of an issue to be sure that the right the protest is protected so the judges in the governor's and he saw a german shepherd -- but that
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they were a promoted act. >> how franc further presidential or first lady quick. >> i think might turn by a nancy reagan is very honest. there was no love lost between nancy reagan or barbara bush is and have a close relationship she talks about before during the convention of these two that were competing. that reagan tried during the primary. and betty ford was there. >> but then talking our hernd addiction to a alcohole hous
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teeten she's a question for self everyday illness sitting room but most everyday took a very detailed notes of whatem happened that day his assassination in a plucked it was light. >> maybe a little bit. >> ladybird johnson. >> it is really long. read one. i read the most interesting it is incredible to have that she is at work and is committed to keeping the diary teeseven our discussion continues with
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our historians and authors. now hollywood florida you are on booktv. >> we will have to move on i am sorry turndown the volumev on your television. camden main. >> caller: hello. then headmaster from where kennedy attended ask what you can do for your country know what your country can do for you and that was the
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regional'' bayou confine sending in the oliver wendell holmes mitt matter that they were drunk at this speech did they send weather is it was consciously are not. plan would refer to the chris matthews book and he spoke about that particular piece. but the way his mind works from the great speech at the berlin wall. but he says. >> he was a graduate and is
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called the wave of the future but to rego the way the bolshevik but the title was in his mind. he read it and he used it working material. the 20-something years later , it is not so in a spot that he grew up in. >> but that is the patriotic speech about savings america he is going to college.
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and i think you'll find more >> when hillary rodham clinton did not divorce her husband of -- report -- are sealed. life the kid is ahead but then darkening the name those the were a professional to isn't over problems. why would i think but she grew up with the alcohol and fled and father the life.
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>> they know exactly with the area into to say did create some make enter her number they were talking about downhill and eleanor court had very old-fashioned and and point. you cannot anon and did kabila little bit off-putting because she was not the of the heaviest setting. economic divorced these
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abundant food time the payment. >> was a mitt - - terribly ladylike to speak up in this type of way but to be seen and not heard. but the first lady should make her hat fits right laugh laugh. >> one other comment on the kennedys joe kennedy commented in then to be born later in the course we remember her from the special olympics also talk about the area of mentalal retardation is another example in her day you go to the federal women's school.
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>> and their lives were half empty but she is speaking in french. but she did not know what was going on. and that has to be incredibly painful but there is a lot of great upsides obviously. >> but the election is 1788 was that like? >> >> george washington's first.ery
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in a was not very do i think this is where it came from. but you have to start somewhere. and washington was silent at the constitutional convention everybody is trying to read their body language.
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but to stop in philadelphia and hamilton new jersey to support the revolution for of the route was a large bird she carried it too will street fat and a '06 but now audited is intended so somebody would feel as if having. >> river betty knows that adams was the vice president now to sit there to say i want john adams but the fifth incumbent alabama
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please go ahead. >> caller: but this election that we deere in the middle of no comment is the dirtiest and the most obnoxious of american history. that is the harbinger. >> please go around the table and put this into perspective and i am eager to see hand because the truth and denied the with
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the systems being waged at their bobby page if but in the case of mr. trump, i hope that i am looking to see what happens -- but there's only so many waysc, if here can pull the social fabric without having nothing left. is takes a great deal of pounding with watergate or the lack of.
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>> i will be back. >> that is like saying she wants to be president of all the people. you asked about the head of state reseed that all thee time. >> i worry about it. we can't come back later come ba especially the top five that is what we talk about. i don't think it is the dirtiest campaign if you take television away. i think they have teased both sides with emotional
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attitudes and prescience and scared and depending on who was elected. but the television but making a story but if they assume it people will believe it.i that is the worst part but they're only one is conservative but this is this way or that. soap they've made it the worst but it was real bad if and men have but to say
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these are very hard-working reporters in the do think the institutions are very important and freedom of the press of when people trashedtu the media at this behemoths. >> is very important that uh washington post's says that these are the facts it is factual everybody has an opinion all the time there is some undeniable fact. >> what amount that dirty campaign in the past? >> where they will so prostitution and from uh
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genesis. en jackson that we talked about before to procure young girls from russia and we heard and read him being a bigamist and in the case of cleveland he was accused of a woman that the child in the white house but then the speaker of the house was taking bribes creating a
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scandal. but there was no e-mail's. here is the receipts then here's what they provide you. so then to talk about in the state of maine that is of reference is that the root and then we have that rebellion with the episcopalian priest said instead that they should vote for blaine known york was the largest catholic setkn the time. >> >> it is nothing new.
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but that is politics. >> undeniably does not look presidential whatever that means. we kreno her very well. on and off we had an election like this. to have no experience in politics over 25 for 300 years. teefour woman is a huge part of this and undeniable part of the. . .gret on this great day
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, this is the last time i could ever call you dick, mr. presidents i said jerry, this is the last time i will call you jerry, mr. presidents. brought a tear, also, to his eye and i think to mine, also. we shook hands. host: he's recounting 1974 conversation he had with jerry ford. guest: yes, the white house, east room was the big ceremony where they had that big ceremony and poor mrs. nixon went down and stood at the door and said you did not tell me the press would be here. it was very upsetting through the whole thing and it was a very sad time at the white house. i was there. i was not in the crowd at the east room, but i had just started this book. host: where were you?
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guest: ground-floor of people were watching on television and it was a crowd, a mob on lafayette square on pennsylvania avenue of some queen was giving out her picture and he was like a hanging circuit was like a hanging, 18th century england, everyone went jerky sort of made a route-- rambling emotional speech and they went to the diplomatic reception room through the court and to the helicopter. it was very tense. it could have been kind of scary thinking of the hundreds of people, maybe thousands of people on the street looking in. guest: i think mrs. nixon was very mistreated by the staff. guest: i think so, also, at that time anyway. guest: absolutely. she was called plastic pat in the press for being kind of wooden, but i spoke to reporters that traveled with her and they said she was incredibly sweet and funny and had a great
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sense of humor, but she was not allowed to show it to your coming president nixon and his staff wanted control of everything to the point of they wanted to make sure that the butlers weren't standing outside of the state dining room during toast at state dinners and did not want them listening in and for the butlers at the white house it was one of the great treats of being there was to listen to these toasts and halderman put a stop to that. it was a very difficult place to live and work and she was one of the very tragic first ladies with the way she left. guest: i agree. guest: i interviewed her chief of staff who has sadly passed away, connie stewart, and she said that if the nixons had won in 1960 would have been perfect, but when pat nixon came in and 68 the world was changing and people wanted a woman who was a little bit more of a feminine i mean pat nixon had trained eisenhower's knee and was more of a 1950s housewife, so it
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didn't not work so well for her at the time. i mean, she really wanted to win and 60. and speaking of elections, the idea that she thought that the kennedys stole the election, john kennedy's father, of course, rumors of that exists and she also demanded a recount privately. i mean, pat nixon was very upset and there's a great photograph of her with tears in her eyes when nixon is congratulating kennedy on his victory. i think that nixon is one of the really overlooked first ladies. guest: parenthetically, if i may add, this has nothing to do with politics, but the way they are moved out of the house is interesting. nixon let them know the day before it became very quiet that he was going to resign and they immediately the moving crew came in and started at the west end and they go room by room in the family uses everything until finally when they go out they will never go in there again and their things and closer
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removed and carefully packed and sent to california. finally, they are in the yellow room, believe it was, before they went downstairs and this was all like a clock the way they-- the obama's may remember because they were like here and they may send some things away, but that is usually the way it happens. it's all organized. host: when you were there on that day, did you witness the happening? did you see the cruise going through? guest: no, i knew about it since i've researched it, but and another thing that happened that night was a someone went the west and with the sitting room is with a huge window and looked down and saw the filing cabinets being taken out of the west wing and blew the whistle. that's when all of the filing cabinets were sent to the national archives. guest: wow. guest: under guard. host: kate andersen brower, you tell the story how they walk out to the helicopter and richard nixon is still present and they walk back in and gerald ford's pictures are up. guest: barbara bush describes
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how quick the transition is and we will see in a matter of months where the resident staff are the ones to move the family in and out for security reasons and they do it all and there is a lot of organization beforehand in the bushes, in particular, with the obama transition were very good about that, making sure their things route. about, the resident staff does this all in a matter of six hours. everyone is working at the siri-- swearing in ceremony, but this swirl of activity at the white house is incredible and they are there with the interior decorator of the new president and first lady and by the time the family moves in the toothbrushes are in and everything is perfect. guest: close in the closet. guest: like a five-star hotel that's what nancy reagan called it. it couldn't get better than the service at the white house. host: for our first lady series here at c-span, we interviewed several of the past first ladies including barbara bush who sat down with her in her living room in houston, texas. here's a bit of that interview.
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>> i remember hearing that one of the first ladies said it was so costly being the wife of the president. it's not costly at all. you don't pay your telephone bill. you don't-- you do pay, i guess, you pay for your food. we had guests all the time and it would say, so-and-so, one egg, 18 cents, i mean, you never could live as cheaply as you look at the white house, so it costs, i mean, 90 some people taking care of you. you did pay, i think, for your dry cleaning. we had someone we took that lived with us, still doing our ironing and washing. she lived there. and we did take care of those things, but, i mean, it was great to entertain at white house. host: kate andersen brower.
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guest: it's funny because i asked her that same question and she said the same thing. [laughter] guest: i was quoting back to her what rosalynn carter tommy, which was we got a bill for $600 and i remember thinking this is insane in the 70s that was quite a bit of money. they do pay for their own breakfast in their own meals. i think people are surprised to hear that and i did ask barbara bush about the clintons and i asked her because for the residence my book about the staff and i asked her, i understand the staff was very attached to you. do you think it was easier for your family than the clintons who did not grow up with great wealth and she said hillary clinton was the wife of a governor and lived in the governor's mansion. she was used to having staff, so there is a bit of defensiveness about that. guest: rosalynn carter. guest: know, hillary was married to governor clinton. i mean, she was the wife of a governor, i mean, she was from a middle-class family, but
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the idea that, i mean, by thesis was that the bushes were so beloved because they knew had to deal with being surrounded by step because they were both from patrician families. barbara bush does not like that story line. although, will say that nearly everyone i interviewed said that barbara bush was their favorite first lady. host: ira, cambridge, new york am a good afternoon to hello. thank you for taking my call. i have two questions. the first two are about the johnson library and i think it was professor brouwer who talked about labor johnson's taking daily notes of all of the activities in the white house. i was at the johnson library and fascinated to see the re- creation of her office,
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supposedly the office that lady bird used. it had a orange formica desk with a steel legs, which we don't think of as something that would be in the white house. you think of historical furniture and the second part of the first question for bill seale. the lyndon johnson my very and how he was so quick to get to the point while he was twisting someone's arm and i must say i thought that his political skills for and are estimated or under discussed while he was president and afterwards. host: thank you. let's hear from kate andersen brower and bill
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seale. guest: lady bird did do that recorded in the blue sitting room on the second floor of the white house and so i suppose they did bring and then their furniture and mean brett-- ford brought in a couple chair for herself and the president to watch tv in the reagans satin watched "who's the boss", so it's not as though they are all in these traditional chairs, so it is possible that she would sit in a room and half a sort of what would have been modern at the time. if that answers the question, i think. guest: i think lyndon johnson was recognized as a great maneuver an arm twister, but he was put into different context at the white house. it didn't work. he was expected with a different kind of leadership. guest: the treatment, i think, was something that everyone knows where he's looming over some poor congressman. so, at the time if people do not realize
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that, but certainly since he has been lionized i mean as this incredible leader of the senate. i don't know if robert caro is responsible for that. guest: it's been brought together. guest: the term johnson treatment comes from that wonderful book called: lyndon johnson the exercise of power. coteach with these tapes sometimes and i tell them their biology teacher will tell you it's impossible to hear a human being sweats. you are now going to hear it. [laughter] guest: lyndon johnson is talking to hubert humphrey and humphrey's still in the senate and johnson is auditioning humpey to be vice president and humphrey says he can't get the education bill passed because the congresswoman made edith green would not let it move and lyndon said, when i was in the house, when i was in the senate, no one ever thought edith green have that kind of power, but huber, if that is
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true maybe i should run with her you could hear humphrey sweat. so, lyndon johnson could do the impossible and make a human being audibly sweat. guest: lyndon johnson verbally abused humphrey and he was abused by kennedy. guest: johnson had been unhappy presidency and rather than be generous to the person who succeeded him he treated humphrey very shallow. host: what makes for a successful president? guest: i would think the first thing would be character. character is the one thing you have when you come in and the one thing you have when you move out. it's tested in many many ways. it helps to have a sense of vision. is at the right sense of vision for the country? third, competence and that's where many of them fail now your cow do you tell whether someone will be competent who has had the president before. we try to think, maybe
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there's another job with anticipation, maybe governor is the closest thing you can be without having a foreign-policy. some of our generals have done particularly well, particularly eisenhower in washington. the, is that missing ingredient, but i would say character. many of our scandals are rooted in character. if not the president himself in the kind of atmosphere that he allowed to grow up without him. it affects your choice of advertisements, how well do you take criticism. or do you want yes-men around you. are you willing, like kerry chairman to try to get people who knew more than you knew reagan and nixon's case of henry kissinger. we are now learning in many ways that nixon really was the driving engine foreign-policy, but he let kissinger take some credit for it. nixon before even met
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kissinger had an article in foreign affairs about after vietnam recognizing and bringing it in front the wilderness. in that sense nixes had ambition went to be a foreign-policy president sadly, other things got in the way, which gets back to what i said in the beginning. same thing with bill clinton. a lot of his problems are rooted in character, not innate challenging and serving on confidence. in terms of the issues and running the white house and the rest of that bill clinton was one of the test managers we ever had. he got welfare reform through. every republican congress having vetoed it twice to balance the budget, think that's the last time it happened several times in a row. passed nafta, something george bush couldn't do. needed a republican vote to pass it. so, i mean, in that regard, clinton's competence as governor came out and in present
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came out, so that's what i was sick of those three things. host: fourteen presents have served as vice presidents, 16 in the u.s. senate of the last six presidents for have been governors. carolyn in a georgia, hello, carolyn. caller: hello. just wanted to make a comment. i think the most influential person living-- women living in the white house now, i don't even know her name. it's michelle's mother. guest: marion. caller: she's the president's mother-in-law. she's grandmother those two girls. she's michelle's mother and she is very influential. has a book been written about her? host: kate andersen brower, you write about marilyn. guest: i do. she had just joined a running club in chicago and has been a lifelong chicago and and had to give up everything to come here. to help raise the two young girls and she has been a rock.
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you are absolutely correct. president obama has joked about the only person that can go out to a cvs and not be mobbed any they are envious of that freedom that she has, but i talked to george haney who was a butler for the obama's and he was one of six butlers who worked on the second floor the white house and i interviewed him and his wife and he said he felt so bad for marion because she was very lonely. she was in a suite on the third floor with a living room in a bedroom. he felt so bad for her that he asked his wife to take her out to a suburban mall for lunch and they would go shopping. so, they did that. he would not tell me which mall they went to because it would be a security issue, but she wants to get out a little bit she does not want to feel completely imprisoned and she's really one that really can in that family. host: you also write that she takes her meals separately from the family. guest: she does. she was to give them privacy. they do together occasionally. ..
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>> confidential head of the house and he did we did errands and he was over everyone in the place and james was minister and he brought that back, the title back and staff began to increase
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. he had a staff beneath him. that's what it is. he goes to congress and gets the budget for the household and everything else and he runs everything. >> john adams shows up at the white house, what was it like for him? >> well, it was pretty star, there were talks about abigael wasn't a lot of times. he spent a lot of time away but he didn't like living in washington. abigael, the few times she was here said it gave her and dried close, so it was stark there.
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>> if you could pick up microphone. somebody will come in. >> he had to walk up to get into and that was unfinished. repute for the workers. it was a very rough place when the adams moved in. >> people said things about the food she had. general washington was rich, we are not. he had every pot in the kitchen. she had -- they had farm helpers come in with them, i don't know how many of them. one of them married in the white house. girls and boys, young from farms in new england came in to help
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them. then they had two adults that weighed but didn't suit congress at all. it wasn't good enough and adams would stand in the dining room by the portrait and black velvet suit and had one made too. smelly-old thing. he would stand in front and people hooted about it. she got mad because there was washington's birthday but no adams' birthday. >> were there slaves living in the white house? >> oh, yes, all the people from the house had them, they all came. frankly, everybody, yeah. >> that reminds me your point of abigael adams wasn't rich like
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the washingtons. run the house and don't believe what you read in the press. we don't have nearly as much as money as they say. probably not true. the first lady goes to the usher and say i want to keep the costs down. it's just -- the male costs were getting exorbitant. and it was crazy that the first lady would ask for leftovers. she doesn't want -- i don't think that they want cuisine every night. >> the president was paid 20,000 a year and they had to save every penny. jefferson did and went home and cosigning a note for a cousin
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who never paid. that was all out of their pocket, servants and everyone but they learn today place people in other federal offices like a clerk or somebody who was a butler at the white house. >> didn't the slaves cut down on the costs as well in the white house? >> i do talk a little bit about that. that would make sense. and the staffers don't get paid exorbitants amount of money. it's kind of a unique position. you're not a government staffer who essentially is a professor with tenure that's hard to fire. you -- you can be fired for any reason like the fellow we mentioned that talked to bush about memoir. that's not a case you can argue if the first lady wants you gone. i think it's a particularly challenging job. i interviewed head pastry chef
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but he would never leave this position. of course, it's great when you leave and you can trade off of that for the rest of your life. >> some do. >> they should. >> they used to be paid if it was official entertainment and the state department made the list, it was a wonderful document where lincoln was going in and goes to secretary of state and they draw him a picture, a table with 60 people and he talked about rank and the diplomats were particular about that. they weren't embassadors yet. they were still ministers, 1893 but in our time the party pays for things. they will have evens on the south lawn for 2,000 people and the political party would pay for it. they did a lot of that at the end of the carter
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administration, but numbers and now east wing is involved in state dinners which is always just the secretary of state. so lincoln was so upset about, she didn't get to make the guest list. >> david, san josé, california, please go ahead with question or comment. >> my question does deal with marry lincoln. i do feel with lincoln and the civil war and on top of mrs. lincoln, my question is did mrs. lincoln actually have some sort of mental breakdown between the period when the -- of the inauguration march fourth, 1861 to the time when the first troops arrived, i guess from baltimore to protect the white house because it was unguarded for a period of time. i know lincoln was very concerned about that, confederates can come across the river and take them by force. thank you.
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>> a few things about mrs. lincoln, like mrs. reagan, she's had a very bad press, don't accuse mrs. reagan of being insane and having mental problems. she's had a better relationship with ronald than nancy -- nancy had a better relationship with ron, jr. than robert todd, no doubt about that. let's remember a few things. we talked about bill clinton, bill and hillary, buy one, get one free. that she was very important part of campaign. mary todd was married, was a cousin of lincoln roommate in legislature, he said, you ought to come home and meet my cousin. well, one of the most socially prominent southern bells in kentucky society, the father was a big donor of henry clay, she brought some of the speeches.
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she wrote letters to the editor that lincoln signed an lincoln's name. she had 3 by 5 boxes of people wholingon had done favors with who were going to help the next campaign. she was indispensable and that's part of the story that's left out of the biography. she was a difficult woman. she had a difficult childhood. mother died young and father married three times and siblings from each married. three of her half brothers fought for the confederate. she loses another son, willy, you see this very clearly in the
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spielberg movie. she begins to show emotion distress. she dealt with some of the stress on going shopping sprees and after talk about transition, i don't think the johnsons thought she was going to leave. she ordered fabrics, dresses, the whole thing when she wasn't home she had some sent back and he would ask donors to help pay bills because she was getting to be difficult. mother, if you don't cut this out we are going to send elizabeth to the hospital, a mental institution in those days and she was so with it that she would snap out of it because she thought it was serious. there was a big love affair. domestic disruption, but he always remembered the woman he
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married and but for mary todd would not have had a career, he would have had a career but not that far. her son after the assassination does have her committed and it's a great debate about that whether women could handle property and women handle an estate and commit her so she can become guardian. all very complicated. maybe roberts had a bad press. let's say she was tightly emotionally upset. a couple of years ago they asked historians to rank first ladies. [laughter] >> she came in last. she came in last primarily because roberts defenders written biographies of her. she
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spent a lot of time with the soldiers. with two children dead and one surviving, she wouldn't let him serve and perhaps lincoln, roberts is going to serve and insisted on serving, lincoln said i can't have a third child die, give him a desk job and you see robert lincoln there. it's very complicated marriage. >> you know, another thing, al, that i thought about with her, she wanted to be a queen. she wanted to be wonderful but she followed harriet lane who was a gal and had lots of fun, a friend of queen victoria and they use today say it was the most -- most splendid white house he ever saw, queen victoria, the young queen in
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england, the dplam our girl, the spanish girl, the british hair. mrs. clinton was middle age late -- >> harry lane was the niece -- >> the house was just haunted by the fact that she was there. >> she was very young. were is it fair to make the comparison of lady byrd jackson following jacqueline kennedy, older woman? >> i think that might have been incredibly difficult and when i talk to johnson social secretary she described moving into the white house after the assassination, the first time -- well, not the first time, the most recent time whether you moved in and this is terrible feeling and lady byrd johnson incident someone from a
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different generation, obviously. she obviously wanted to apparently get her nose done. she always thought her nose was too big. i should have done it earlier because all of a sudden she's the wife of the president and jackie kennedy thought her hips were too wide. this is an example that women are always the harshest critic. but, yeah, it was very difficult and, you know, lady byrd johnson was the pitch hitter for jackie, meet with the girl scout troop or one of the things that first ladies have to do they would call in lady byrd johnson. saint byrd, jackie's staff would call her saint byrd because she came in whenever she was needed and i think of lady byrd did incredible job as first lady. do i think the lady byrd special is incredible and you see her in all the way, i don't know if you
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saw that but on hbo, the tv version of it, they had given a prominent role, the broadway role was criticized by not giving her enough attention and she was very integral in the civil rights act and she would talk about driving with their cook from texas to dc and not being able to stay at the same hotel with their african-american cook and she would argue with the people, you know, late at night and they would pull into a hotel and the person would say, we are not going to let you stay here with her and lady byrd johnson would found a place where they could stay together. what a great example of someone who had a moral backbone. >> we have spent a lot of the -- almost three hours now talking about first ladies and in 2013, 2014 a series on all the first ladies, if you go to, you can click on series and you can watch the entire series online.
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but there's also a companion book and it just came out in paperback. there it is. first ladies and you can get that in your favorite bookstore or your online retailer. little bit more about our guests, let's see the books that they've written. kate anderson brower, the residents and first women came out recently. keys to a successful presidency, leaders we deand a few -- deserve and a few we didn't. >> this is a political biography of william buckley, jr. who knew many, many presidents who was a confidant of least three that i could think of. conservative movement and television on the highest of
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civility for three years and newspaper columnist for about 40 years. right until the time he died. almost every conservative we can think of right now beginning with george will and a whole group of people that came after that. an intimate friend of ronald reagan and talk about the buckley we didn't see, behind the scenes political adviser, mentor and like nancy reagan, defender and enabler in most cases. i got the title because two things, in bill's early days, he was used to telling presidents and kings what to do over the age of six when he wrote a letter to king george the fifth in england. isn't it time that they pay us back for the great war all the way to george w. bush what area
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and odyssey was a book that he wrote, about a book of letters that he received over the years, the former communist and journalist who had exposed the espionage. they called it audity of a friend. >> brand new book out a man and his presidents bill, temples of democracy. >> it's about state capitol. >> the white house and history of an american idea. [laughter] >> and the president's house and the last two that i mentioned were beautiful, very beautiful books here. we want to make sure that we get to see this. this is a beautiful coffee table book and this is a -- this is put out by the white house. are you still associate -- d -- >> what's the most common
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question you get there? >> at the association? when is the next issue coming out. >> let's hear it from randy in pennsylvania, randy, thanks for waiting. >> good afternoon, gentlemen. i often wonder how can we pride ourselves and to say one person one vote when we have an electoral college that with negate the votes completely if they want. i rest my cases on 1824, 1876, 1888 and the supreme court in 2000, thank you. >> well, i will start by defending our system. one thing the framers were terrified on was the men in a horseback, dictator and bribing the masses, if you want the way césar put on circuses. they had checks and balances and
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entrust mankind, they wanted and informed jefferson used to say that a nation that expects to be ignorant and free and expects what never was and will be, that was fine until andrew jackson came along. the system is rigged. the elitist all speak french. that can't go on. the idea was that one man one vote at least in his mind, one white man one vote, women didn't count and slaves didn't count. the idea is to flood the electorate and that was to inflate the turnout, that was the birthday of the political machine. we didn't have too many fraud cases so jackson came along. to victory comes the spoil. jefferson even talked about jackson as an american napoleón. they put all the checks that we will have the electoral college and i will start my class on
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this by saying where is the electoral college, how do you get in and what is this thing. this is a design today check the possibility of a dictator or a demagogue squeaking in. they found jefferson -- the vote of these callers we listened to who follow history and follow politics and that their vote can be cast, negated by somebody who doesn't know anything. it's perfectly willing to take a chance but any way he wants and in certain cases be paid to vote and they thought that there would be a way to check that. that's a system we live in. maybe one of our candidates can also say that the system is rigged because congress can override a presidential veto or congress has to pass the presidential budget or a court can negate an act of congress. they wanted that.
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were i wonder what they would think of citizens united which a lot of people blame for money is everything right now. i think the founders would be appalled. >> i would agree with that. >> no one can rise to this level of national prominence without a huge pocketbook. >> although even without citizens united, first six presidents, i take your point. they would have been appalled by it. >> january is in wilmington, north carolina, hi. >> i guess my question is for everyone. they talk about the president's legacy and he does that for a legacy or he doesn't do or we have obamacare which is falling apart legacy, when is the history of a president accurate, when does it stop being political and the truth either -- either legacy poor to begin
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with or gets better or good at the beginning and it gets worse, when does it actually become a reality? >> well, al has really answered that, i think. i think it just takes time. the sweet package later on that they promote in the libraries an as time goes by they reevaluate and people understand or don't understand what it is. history will always tell. >> president george w. bush talks about how there's still books written about tboarnl washington. so we will see. maybe 500 years from now our great, great grand children will have a sense of what obama's legacy will come. >> the legacy will come. history is a story without an end. we always rethink thingsment when john kennedy was writing andrew johnson was seen as a great president. seen as a great president or near great president because he stood up to congress, he stopped
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america -- johnson impeached the argument went that we would have a parliamentary system because parliament can run the government and not the white house setting up the program and he wrote that. we say johnson set relations a hundred years, we changed our mind. >> and with the first ladies. jackie kennedy was spending too much money and when first lady, everybody loved her. she was stuck to stick to her knitting by one of the staffers. now people idolized her. it was a mix bag. she is not beloved because of what it is now. >> do we have time for a quick story? okay.
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roosevelt being a politician was not interested in civil rights, not in a public way. he may have intended some of his programs to help left african americans but he never talked about it very much. but his wife certainly did. we know the story about marian anderson, she couldn't sing at the event and the secretary of the interior and eleanor memorial. one of the southern segregationists committee chairman goes to roosevelt and protest. i don't like what you're doing to these people. you're supposed to be for these people and democrat is a blah, blah. i'm with you all the way. not bringing down segregation. well, every time your wife is sitting in the gallery. you tell me what is going on. i don't know about you but i can't tell my business. this is how he started viewing her in the corner unless she was needed and sexism and other
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things that she's venturing out of her place. but that's how presidents have used their wives sometimes. maybe he's very happy what she was doing. >> maybe he wanted her to. >> don't blame me. i can't control the woman. betty ford, when ford was going for election, you have to do something about betty. she's doing all the interviews. you know where her office is right down the hall, you can go tell her herself. he knew he couldn't keep her quiet. that wasn't their dynamic. >> let's hear from -- is it ernst in virginia. high, ernst. >> hi, sir, i'm voting for trump but my question is how did we let the president of the united states use air force to campaign for clinton? >> my understanding -- go ahead.
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>> the democratic party pays for it. >> the democratic party and pays the taxpayer. >> the president only uses that on a business -- for business purposes. he doesn't send it out to california to bring back. certain passengers pay for their own way, the press pays and for their food and all of that. it's pretty tightly managed. it's like the white house. >> it's very expensive. the press pays equivalent to first-class tickets. you have to have a lot of money to be a wire service now because you have to pay. >> one more point about that, which i think is a good question, the secret service, if they can keep the president where they're prepared to take care of him, that's where they like. after that attempt on president regan's life they curtailed everything.
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he didn't go out anymore to places. and i think that's just still very much it because they -- they have the facilities to protect them. that's why the bush the first while they were president because they want the governor to move secret service. they would stay in a hotel in houston that had secret service above and all around and stayed that way. >> does the secret service have a final say on a lot of things? >> i think they do. you have to listen to them. seeing last night what happened with donald trump at a rally where he was suddenly moved on stage, this is very serious, the reagan assassination attempts was a turning point for the secret service. that's why when there's friction between the first family and the secret service it is pretty serious and i think it has to do with the fact that the first family often feels like their privacy, they can't be alone in the residence and the carters
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had the secret service station move further down the hall in the elevator so they didn't see them and fell them all of the time. that's something that everyone can relate to. >> when theodore roosevelt was president, they were so interesting and they had never been a close family before. it was the white house that brought them together. but the letters and threats that came in were so horrible, a little by -- the little boy when to alexandria to school and they got where they were absolutely terrified. they used to go on a buggy and letters threatened to cut off his ears at that point withdrew the letters from the family. i guess they could happen if they wanted to but they are all over the place. go ahead.
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>> thank you for being on
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