tv Five Presidents CSPAN December 20, 2016 10:15pm-11:02pm EST
your work and riding? >> i think as the new deal unfolded and as he saw what was possible especially about housing and security there were so many changes that were wonderful and i think there was henry wallace and he was very important. i think that fdr, i didn't write that. the editor called the book the defining years because i think that was apt and it really is, who can we be? what can we be in this country? can we really be a democracy? can we have opportunity for everybody, housing for
everybody, education for everybody and that became the goal. became franklin's goal and eleanor's goal and there were some effort really to make that happen during the height of the new deal and it was eleanor roosevelt who fought for the g.i., their rights, education for everybody, real opportunity. this has to happen and reagan defunded and the bones so much and the reagan revolution is really horrific and this neoliberal what the hell is that moment i think a new movement, new movements are a warning and we just have to continue to fight. it's never over until it's over.
revolution is about the process. it's not an event. [applause] >> thank you blanche. [applause] >> i wonder if we could ask. >> thank you very much blanche, congratulations and we will have a reception upstairs in the book signing in the four freedoms are meant thank you all for coming and once again thank you so three. >> thank you. [applause]
>> i think the challenges are very great and i think we have unfortunately over the course of the last many years done serious damage to our capabilities. >> we are living in a period. there are a lot of flashpoints in the and strangeness going to have to look at that kind of world and obviously define policies that we needed in order to deal with that but then develop a defense policies to confront that kind of work. >> amidst the shifting sands of contemporary culture and while we have stood without apology for the sanctity of life, the importance of merits and the freedom of religion. >> friday night beginning at 8:00 farewell speeches attributed to several outgoing senators including harry reid, barbara boxer, kelly ayotte. this week in primetime on
[inaudible conversations] welcome to the 21st annual texas book festival to thank you for coming out today in support of our authors. the festival is celebrating great literature. as you may know the texas book festival is a nonprofit organization that works year-round to strengthen literacy in texas by awarding library rants and to this reading rock stars program sending recognize that there's no strangers to title i schools and donating books to the students. by being here today and buying books you are funding these important initiatives. thank you. may i ask you all to please silence your cell phones and clint hill and i will be signing her books "five presidents" to
the session data books are available in the sales tended we will be signing in the main author tent just around the corner here. before we begin clint did you want to say something? >> hello austin. [applause] it's great to be back in the hill country where i've spent a great deal of time. >> a great deal of time with lbj and we are going to get a glimpse into our book "five presidents" as much as we can and 35 minutes and then we will open it up to questions and answers for the last few minutes. first of all i have to figure out how to make this thing work. it takes a minute. clint hill was born 1932 in the middle of the great depression and his mother realized she couldn't care for him so she had him baptized and dropped him off
at the north dakota children's home in fargo north dakota. fortunately when he was about three months old he was adopted by a wonderful family chris and jenny hill and their daughter janice. he grew up in a home in washburn north dakota population 912. plants growing up in a tiny town in north dakota did you always want to be a secret service agent or how did that come about? >> no, not at all. my intention when i went to college was to become a history teacher but the korean war intercepted and i had to go into the military. i went through basic training in the u.s. army and they selected at the army intelligence center where they trained me as a special agent in counterintelligence. i did that for the united states government for a number of years. when it was time to get get out i looked around to find what i
wanted to do for the rest of my life and i wanted to continue that same type of activity that found the secret service was an extremely small organization had a great history of investigations so i applied. unfortunately only 269 agents in the entire organization at that time worldwide so was almost impossible to get in unless somebody died or retired in my case the german retired and i got his slot. that's how i became a secret service agent. >> that was in 1958. dwight d eisenhower was president. but many are venturing the secret service he was promoted to the elite white house detail and clint was it like working for president eisenhower? what kind of man with a? >> he was a wonderful personal individual but he had spent almost his entire life in the military and he brought that bring with them into the oval office including some members of
the former staff of his or military officers. he was one of those individuals who if we told them we had to leave at 9:30 in the morning at 929 . 30 he was in the car ready to go. we never have to worry about the schedule with eisenhower. he referred to us mostly as his troops. he didn't call us by name he would just say hey agent and we would respond. it's one of very nice things about him, he loves to play golf and that gave us a chance to be on the golf course with him. we would have agents parallel in him and i would be alongside the fairway carrying my bag with three golf clubs and a 30 caliber carbine rifle and down the fairway we would go. we had the opportunity to see some of the best golf layers of the world including arnie palmer who got to be a friend. he was a joy to watch.
he hit the ball off the tee and it would go down about 200 yards, 3 feet off the ground and zoom skyward and right on the green almost every time. it was really a pleasure to work with president eisenhower. >> in december of 1959 clancy got to go on a fantastic journey with president eisenhower visiting 11 countries in 19 days. >> yes, the air force had acquired 37 the seventh and made them available to the white house. president eisenhower took advantage of it and we took off one day and we flew to rome and from rome we went to ankara from ankara to karachi in from karachi to kabul down to new delhi a side trip to see the taj mahal and then we flew to tehran to meet the shah to see the king got on board a big ship in the mediterranean the uss des moines and we took that over to
indonesia. then we got back on the ship got from express train to paris and met with degaulle went to madrid to see general small franco who÷ went to casablanca to meet with the king and friend got to come home. >> that was your first trip outside the u.s.. >> my first overseas trip. >> not bad for a kid from north dakota. >> you could see the crowds and this is the photo in new delhi. president eisenhower was tremendously popular around the world and you were also have involved in the election of 1960 during the campaign. >> president eisenhower hadn't done much to help vice president nixon in that election in 1960 but he finally decided he would then we went to new york and went outside of new york to long island and westchester county but then we came back in
manhattan and my job was to secure the parade route through what we call the canyons of new york city up to herald square. i had both the president and the vice president in an open car and there were millions of people on the streets looking out of windows and hanging out of windows. it was a very dangerous situation. >> in 1960 john f. kennedy won the election in there was a transition from a 7-year-old general to this young man from massachusetts. what was that transition like for you? >> it was a 70 okay five at 2430 other, guess he was 30 years older at the time and a wife who was only 31 who was pregnant at the time so we knew it was going to be a different activity level once the kennedys moved into the white house. >> you weren't assigned to president kennedy as he thought you're going to be.
what happened? >> i was on the golf course with eisenhower the day after the election 1960 and kennedy won and i got a call from my boss telling me to get on the first plane back to washington to see if they want to talk to me. i flew back to washington went to his office and was met by the chief deputy chief in two inspectors. they began to interrogate me and they did so for nine minutes. he asked me questions and i knew they are to have the answers to them because of my back round information. they went to a coroner corner confirmed and said we made a decision. you are assigned to mrs. john f. kennedy. >> how did you feel about that? >> i was devastated and angry. i did want that job. a new with the agents did with bess truman and mamie eisenhower. they went to tea parties and fashion shows.
they watched canasta games and that was about it. >> you didn't want any part of that. >> i wanted to be where the action was. >> is that turned out clint hill had the best job protecting jacqueline kennedy. what the things he found out she was so popular that the people's front of her all the time i want to get closer. set the biggest problem with crowd control because everyone wanted to touch them and see them or get an autograph so became a difficult situation. >> you spent a lot of time with them in hyannis port. >> they had a regular schedule. they would go to hyannis port for the summer through labor day and then they would go on thanksgiving and christmas to palm beach but on the cape they spend almost all their time out on the water. the president would come up there and fridays from the white house flyover on air force one
and get in the helicopter and fly him over to the kennedy compound. he would get in the golf cart and yell at anybody for ice cream and his nephews and nieces carolyn and john would come running. they would take them two blocks away to the ice cream store. >> when he was up there he was on vacation but really a president is not from vacation as he saw up close. >> there's no such thing as a presidential vacation. believe me, the press says there is but there's not. this is mrs. kennedy at the children and their dogs a cape cod. he is on the telephone and that's what went on constantly. the president is either on the phone being briefed by an aide going over material that has to be acted on immediately or
having to solve some problem in some foreign country that is just developed. it's 24 hours a day, seven days a week 365 days a year. there is no downtime. >> because you are assigned to mrs. kennedy that you ended up going on a trip to texas. >> mrs. kennedy came to me and told me she was going to make the trip to texas in 1963. she said she in 1960 was not able to do as much as she should do to help president kennedy get elected because she was pregnant at the time. this time she said she was going to do everything possible to help them get reelected. >> so this is the great photo of clint taken on november 22, 1963. >> the trip began on the 21st in the flew down to san antonio for the president made a speech to dedicate a hospital and then we flew to houston for a meeting
with a group of hispanic people and then to pay tribute to the space center and then went to fort worth to spend the night got up the next morning of the present had a breakfast to go to. we finally got in the car and went out to air force one at the air force base in flew over from fort worth to dallas. that sounds kind of ridiculous i'm sure to everybody in this entire audience because you don't just fly from dallas to fort worth for fort worth to dallas. you drive. we would have preferred driving but the political people wanted a photograph of president mr. kennedy coming off of air force one in dallas so that's what they got. >> tell us what we are seeing in this photo here. >> this is love field after we got everybody in the car in the motorcade going to the trademark
and dallas were the present was going to make a speech. we started in love field and went to the town towards main street. the crowds began to build and became larger and larger. we went down to main street and they were so large the driver of the car was keeping the cards the left-hand side of the street to keep a president who was in the right rear a way from the crowd on the right side that put mrs. kennedy right up next to the crowd on the left-hand side of the street. i would get up on the back of a car periodically to get is as close to her as i could so nothing could happen to her. we get down to the end of mainstream we had to turn right on houston in order to get over to al street to get on the freeway going toward the trademark. having made a left turn on down we were going down elm street and we were maybe 150 feet down elm street. i was standing to the left of the grassy area and the
trademark triple underpass is in front of us put all of a sudden i heard this explosive noise over my right shoulder data came from the rear so i started to turn toward that noise but i am the goddess bars the back of the presidential vehicle because i saw what happened and how the president responded. i saw the president grabbed his throat like this and then he started to fall to his left. i realized this was a gunshot and i jumped from my position on the follow-up car immediately behind the president's car and started to run towards the presidential vehicle with the intent of getting on the back for a barrier or shield to protect mrs. kennedy. when i jumped i had to get between the motorcycle officer who was on the left-hand side and the car i was writing in both making considerable engine noise. they told me later there was a shot that came during that
running time of mine. i didn't even hear that but as they approach the presidential vehicle just about when i got there i heard and i felt the third shot. the president was at that point had his head way down to his left, something like that and shot the person in the back of the head in it exited above the right year. it took with it the scalp and the bones from the school but out of the wound erupted was and brain matter on fragments all over mrs. kennedy and oliver maisel. when i got out of the back of the car mrs. kennedy came up and she was trying to grab some of the material that came out of the president had and she did manage to get ahold of some of it. i got her and i put in the backseat. when i got in the backseat the presence body fell to the left
with his head in her lap. his eyes were fixed and there was a hole in his skull that i could see there wasn't any more brain material in the entire area so i assumed it was the fatal wound and turned and gave a thumbs down to the follow-up car who turned and scream to the driver to get us to a hospital. we raced to uptown speedway being led by chief curry from the dallas police department. >> you on the back of the car for about four minutes rushing to parkland hospital. what was going through your mind at that time? >> all i could think about was could we get there fast enough to do any good and i was quite sure the wound was fatal and i couldn't see how he could survive. he was just a matter of getting there. tonight you can see the position in the back of the car. they were going at speeds up to 80 miles an hour and their world the three shots fired that day but he did note that only three
shots were coming. he was in a position to protect the occupant of the car. clint you were there when the transition to place to the new president aboard air force one. >> i was on board air force one as vice president johnson took the oath of office and he asked mrs. candy stand beside him when he did so. she willingly did did so achieve those important people see there was an orderly transfer of government but also she refused to clean up or change she wanted people to see what had been done. so we took off from love field in flew directly to andrews air force base in maryland and transferred the body to bethesda naval hospital where not pepsi was performed. >> you were assigned to stay with mrs. kennedy for one more year. >> they decided they should have
someone with her and i asked her who she wanted and she asked some of the agents who would then with the children stay with the children she asked if i could stay with her for that year and i did. >> this is a photo taken in october of 1964. it actually was a photo that we found in clint's collection and was not published before her latest book came out. what was going on here that day? >> johnson was running for the presidency for the first time in its own time in its own right and i to 64. bobby kennedy was running for the senate seat in new york so mrs. kennedy at move to new york and i was living there myself in the carlisle hotel. president johnson one to see mrs. kennedy while he was campaigning in new york city came to her residence to pay his respects to her. as we see in this photo. it's mrs. kennedy and president johnson robert kennedy and myself.
>> in november of 1964 clint was transferred back to the white house under president johnson there was that transition my going from jacqueline kennedy to lbj? [laughter] >> it was quite a transition.÷÷÷ going from the banks of cape cod to the banks of the personnel is from clam chowder to chilly. but it was one of those things, was part of the job. >> from what you told me president johnson was not manually as predictable as president eisenhower in then for kennedy. >> he was not predictable at all. he is the opinion that if he didn't tell me but he put his plans were nobody could do them harm and that includes us. oftentimes what we would see we would be on post and we would see the valet come out of the door with his satchel and the hangup tag.
we knew the valet wasn't going anywhere but the president was. we didn't know where. given the golf cart and headed for the parking zone where we had a helicopter and we had cars so he had one choice out of three. use either going to fly to st. louis or detroit or houston take a helicopter into austin or get in a car and go to a neighboring ranch. he didn't know it until he got there we would have to quickly respond and react. >> he loved their ranch and you spend a lot of time down there. the president would bring all kinds of people there. >> he brought heads of state members of congress and members of the cabinet. this photograph is a group of the joint chiefs of staff, secretary of defense and the assistant secretary sitting on the front lawn of the lbj ranch deciding the budget for the next year and how best to do things
in vietnam. >> than you were there for the evacuation of 1964. >> yes, i was. i was --. >> this is a 1965. >> the car that was used in dallas was the secret service car. that was the car that president kennedy was assassinated. it was as specially fabricated parts of the event that was not not armored and didn't have any armor at all. just a plastic top we could use but immediately after the assassination of car was taken back to the ford motor company and reconfigure completely produced completely enclosed and completely armored and so in 1965 when they not duration to place for president johnson that is me in on the right rear
fender as we went down pennsylvania avenue. seen at the same car, same position as you did november 22, 1963. so now you have an armored car but president johnson found ways around that. >> yes come he stopped the motorcade got out of the car neither crawled up on top or get up high enough so everybody could see him. it made it a wonderful target if anybody wanted to take a shot. we really didn't like it but there was not much we could do. >> this was during the time the vietnam war and he had a real-time -- hard time with protesters at entire. >> a matter where we went they were there, the protesters, demonstrators. there they are on the sidewalk on the north portion of the white house across the street in the square down around the reflecting pool and between the lincoln memorial and the washington monument. they were at the pentagon.
they were everywhere. no matter where we went we had to contend with large demonstrations, antiwar, anti-johnson. >> at the end of 1967 that was you had risen through the ranks still working under president johnson now you were the special agent in charge of, the number one guy in charge of protecting them. >> it was rather strange because in 1964 when i first appeared at the ranch having left mrs. kennedy he spotted me and he knew that i had done with the kennedys. he called my supervisor and said he didn't want me there because he didn't think he could trust me. he didn't think i could be loyal three years later he made me the agent in charge so there was quite a transformation. >> this is a photo on air force one during an impromptu around the world trip that happened a
month after you got this assignment they tell us what happened. >> the prime minister had drowned. it was december 1967 so he wanted to go the funeral because they have become pretty good friends so he flew down to australia to attend the funeral ranking immediately upon completion of the funeral he could turn to washington but when we took off we didn't had to washington. we headed for thailand. we were going to karate air force base. from we flew to vietnam. we wanted to be with the troops. there you see me right behind him amongst the troops. they flew over to karachi pakistan because he wanted to meet with the president. from karachi we flew to rome, italy. wanted to meet with the president of italy.
now we get him back on the airplane we earn from and heading for washington but we had to stop at the funeral. it's christmas eve 1967. johnson gets on the plane and puts on his pajamas come he gets into a swede and he goes to bed and he goes sound asleep. jim cross the pilot realized nobody on their plane had a chance to buy anything for any of their families for christmas. he radioed ahead to their commanding officer and asked him to keep the dash of the people on the plane could buy something for their family members. we arrived in the azores and all the people tried getting off the plane and i told them you guys go on i will stay here with johnson. he is sound asleep, don't worry so i'm walking back in worth by the foot of the ramp and i turned around and i hear hey clint where the hell is everybody? i turned around i said
mr. president they have all gone to change. it's christmas eve and they want to do christmas shopping. haven't had a chance to do that. he said i haven't had a chance to do it either, let's go. >> is standing there in his pajamas. he is at the top of the ramp he reaches into the closet pulls out of fresh-cut and puts it on. down the ramp in the stares he comes in the stares he comes and i grab an air force card put in the backseat of me go to the exchange opened the door and he walks in the place absolutely froze. nobody in their could believe the commander in chief the leader of the free world was walking round in the pajamas in the middle of the night. [laughter] >> unfortunately the press had taken a different route so there was no one there to take a photo of that. >> now we go to 1968.
and that was quite a year. >> it was kind of a bad year. it just started out wrong. president johnson decided he was going to address the people of korea but talk about vietnam war and so i was sitting at home like everybody else. i was watching television and i knew pretty much what he was going to say until they got to the last line of the speech and he said and i will not accept the nomination of my party for another term as your president. i just about passed out. i almost fell off the chair. i couldn't believe. here this man who'd been a leader in the senate the vice president of the united states has obtained at high officer present and was going to give it
all up. what people didn't realize was vietnam had taken its toll. usually about 2:00 in the morning he would get out from his bedroom walk down the hall go to the lincoln bedroom and pick up the phone. he would call the situation room he wanted to know what the casualty figures were for that day and they would tell him, how many were killed, how many were wounded and he would go back to his bedroom or he would call us and we were taken down to a church off of main avenue in washington d.c. where he would sit down with some priests and talk and release some of that emotional baggage knowing that they would never say anything. it was taking an emotional toll on president johnson and he just decided he couldn't resolve the situation, and so he left the
presidency go. >> i was march 31 in 4 days later martin luther king was assassinated and clint you were with him at the memorial service the very next morning and then a few months after that robert kennedy was assassinated. what did it feel like as all of that was going on? >> it got more tense as time went i. it was very hard to predict any of this from happening. things were just kind of going awry and we just had to do the best we could with a limited number of people we had and that was one of our biggest problems. there were only 40 of us at the white house at that time. three agents were worth the two children with the kennedys and two of us were with mrs. kennedy. when the johnsons came in was almost exactly the same. the two girls and with mrs. johnson and the rest of us were worth the president, president johnson so is
extremely limited as to the number of people we hadn't made it very difficult for us during that period of time. >> in august richard m. nixon got his party's nomination and president johnson bided him and his staff to the ranch. clint you were there that day when they all came down. >> he decided to have them at the rest of brief them on the presidency so they came down as you see in this particular photo. vice president agnew, church of the cia to accounts, ron sigler nixon's press secretary, nixon, johnson assistant secretary cyrus vance, bob halderman one of nixon's staff jim jones tom johnson and secretary of state dean rusk. they were there to confer about the presidency. >> this is like if you can imagine president obama inviting donald trump over to have a little chat to brief him and kc
won won the presidency. they spent some time together but i want you to notice what president johnson is wearing. those were his ranch close. >> that's vessel they called them come his ranch close. that morning as they came to work and went to the security trailer the agents were on duty said hey letters a package from you from the president. i took the package into the backroom and i opened it up and gave me a ranch close like his. put them back in the package went through the day without thinking too much about that after nixon agnew left i went back to the security trailer and pretty soon the phone rang and it was president johnson. he wanted me to put on those ranch close come out by the swimming pool where he was swimming because he wanted me to show him that they fit. he wanted me to model them for him. [laughter] so i did, as you see here.
you will notice the valet in the yellow shirt laughing at me. >> understand you still have those ranch clothes. >> i still have them. they are a memory of the 1960s with the johnsons at the lbj ranch. i couldn't get into them if i wanted to but i still have them. >> in 1968 richard m. nixon won the election but once again you were not assigned to the president. >> they came to me after the election in 19608 and said clint we have a problem. next week is -- he didn't like johnson and he didn't like kennedy. you are with both of them and he knows it. we don't think you and he are going to get along. said you probably got that right. [laughter]
he said we would like to make a change. we will make it a special agent in charge of vice presidential protection. they made some promises to me about personnel staffing and equipment and i agreed so that change was made. >> you were there were missing yet another presidential transition and once again in the inaugural parade you were with that same car. >> this time we were using the same car at this time it was being used for the vice president and this time i'm inside the car in the right front seat and the other agents you see there because of their position, they are talking things being thrown at the arcade by the crowd on inaugural day, rockets, bottles and cans. >> what kind of person was richard nixon? what kind of man was he from your perspective? >> he was a different type of
individual. the newness of the that the vice president may seem to change a lot when he came into the presidency. he had become much more of an introvert, so much so he came to the oval office like everybody else and thus were very want to go but he established a separate office in the executive office building and that's where he spent a considerable amount of time questioning people to come there on occasion. but he was really much more of an introvert than most people realized. >> then came a phonecall in the middle of the night that you received. >> i was home in my bed sound asleep and i had a phone right next to my bed with a direct line to the white house in a rang. it was the intelligence division telling me they are going to break and the democratic national committee headquarters could somebody at raqqa and to larry o'brien's office so i said what does that have to do with the secret service?
they said we are not so sure but with a given name for the five men who have been arrested. so they listened to the five guys and they got to the fifth name james mccord. i thought i recognized it. i wasn't sure so i wrote them down i thought i had better call my loss. he is in tight with the nixon's staff so i called him and told him what happened and started reading the names and i got down to jim mccord's name and all i can hear on the other end of the phone was a whole bunch of swearing. i knew i had really struck a chord and then i realized and remembered i'd didn't know jim mccord. he was retired cia agent. he was a specialist eavesdropping bugging listening devices and that's what he was doing at the democratic national committee headquarters but he also at the time was employed by an organization that we called
the committee to reelect the president, president nixon so we knew there was a direct line between what happened in democratic national committee headquarters and the white house staff. c is at it came quarter gave the quarter gave a simple vendor's investigation to the vice president agnew and eventually vice president agnew ended up resigning. >> yes, he did. they just take took him over to baltimore and he gave up. c so nixon had to appoint a vice president and he appointed gerald ford who was sworn in in december of 1973. >> which was a big surprise -- a price only gerald ward but to his wife betty and her four children because the land to retire in 1976 and go back to michigan where he was going to practice law. that had all been interrupted. >> then a few months later nixon
resigned and gerald ford became president becoming the fifth president clinton had worked for in less than 17 years. and clint you were there the day of nixon resigned. >> i was there on the south grounds as nixon had reefer talk to his staff in the east room and he and his wife pat accompanied by then vice president his wife betty walked out of the south portico with julia and the two nixon daughters. a report in the helicopter to go to andrews air force base get on air -- aircraft to go to california. nixon walked up the steps the helicopter but the topic turned and raced the audience of people that were his close friends, staff and allies and they were
mostly leaving and he threw his arms forward in the victory sign my keys to do. i stood there saying to myself but the hell does he think he has one? [laughter] leaving in disgrace so was a mystery to me why he reacted the way he did. >> land was there when gerald ford took office. >> and he made that famous speech where he declared the national nightmare is over and for most intents and purposes it was. it was a relief to have someone there that most people trusted, most people like but it was a big change from what had been. >> so clint was there during the ford for one year he retired in 1975 it age of three.
clint you told us when you were young boy growing up in washburn north dakota that yours wanted the history teacher. i think that turned out to be a very good history teacher. [applause] >> thank you. that's very nice. [applause] [applause] c thank you ladies and gentlemen. [applause] thank you, thank you. >> just a few minutes for some questions if anybody has some. there is a much or phone there. .. ÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷
that is when he appeared to be the happiest i have ever seen him. dedicated to the children and she tried her best to give him some relaxing times in the evening she would have small dinner parties and the white house with just a scam so for maybe an hour and a half or two hours he could get away from the oval office. john was a little bit too young
to realize what had happened although taking him to a park one day a photographer tried to take his picture and he said why are you taking my picture, my daddy is dead. it was difficult for the agents that worked with him to try to keekeep them up but it was a difficult time. >> based on your comments a while ago based on the day of the assassination in their memoir he said basil and assassin and you indicated you pulled a shot from behind you. did you see anyone fired from the grassy knoll that they? >> i did not because nobody did. [applause] all three shots came from the sixth floor and no other shots were fired. that is
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