The Future Presidents Club

Future Presidents on the White House Tapes


Through their interactions with the White House while Congressmen, Senators, or Governors, several future presidents have been captured on the White House tapes. For Presidents' Day, we have pulled together some of the recorded conversations with Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, and Richard Nixon before they moved into the Oval Office.


Gerald Ford

 Gerald Ford


LBJ appoints Jerry Ford to the Warren Commission

Of all the congressional members on the Warren Commission, Ford was the least known to President Johnson. He had been first elected to the House in 1948, the same year Johnson won his Senate seat. Ford's first and only intensive encournter with Lyndon Johnson had occurred in 1957, when both men served on a bipartisan House-Senate committee formed to draft the legislation creating NASA.

It ought to tell the enemy that all this division is superficial rather than real.

President Nixon calls Ford to congratulate him on a House vote defeating a Vietnam withdrawal deadline.

He's nuts! . . . He's either drinking too much or he's taking some pills that are upsetting him mentally.


House Majority Leader Hale Boggs had accused the FBI of tapping congressional phones and had called for FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover to be fired.

I think we're going to win.

A vote to resume financing of the Supersonic Transport plan was going down to the wire.

We've got some guys that really stuck their necks out.

A vote to resume financing of the Supersonic Transport plane ultimately went the way Ford and Nixon wanted. 



Richard Nixon


Richard Nixon


I've been very careful with you and very careful with Humphrey, and I've told both of you the same thing.

LBJ and presidential candidate Richard Nixon discuss Vietnam during the 1968 election.


A Vietnam Peace Deal?

LBJ and President-elect Richard Nixon discuss prospects for peace in Vietnam.



Ronald Reagan

Ronald Reagan


I said, "I don't give a damn." I said, "The test goes forward."

Nixon tells Reagan that he was prepared to defy the Supreme Court in ordering a nuclear test at Amchitka.

I want Henry [Kissinger] to let you in on some of the things that are going on that we can't say publicly.

Nixon and Reagan try to set up a meeting in California.