Saturday, April 17, 1971 - 4:41pm - 4:42pm
Richard Nixon, Patrick Buchanan
White House Telephone


President Richard Nixon: Yeah?

Patrick J. Buchanan: Yes, sir.

President Nixon: The other thing I was going to mention—I forgot to mention—is how really amusing it is these doves are so thrown off balance by this China thing.

Buchanan: Yeah.

President Nixon: They're really in a titter.

Buchanan: Oh, sure.

President Nixon: Yeah, you know, they [unclear] a little old blip like that, you know and then they're off and they really don't know what to do – that's one they don't know how to handle isn't it?

Buchanan: That's right, that's right.

President Nixon: For sure.

Buchanan: Well they're ecstatic over the initiative of course—they just, I mean—very euphoric about the whole thing, and at the same time they are going to have to sort of give you credit for doing it. Presents a [little] bit of a problem.

President Nixon: Yeah, because nobody else did it.

Buchanan: That's right, that's right.

President Nixon: And also it was good that [Emmett] Dedmon asked the question because it allowed me to point out that I had said it two years ago, said it in an editorial conference, referred to it in an article in Foreign Affairs.1 That it was not something you just – and at the same time of course, I as you know dodged the issue of recognition -

Buchanan: Right.

President Nixon: —by the UN [United Nations]—

Buchanan: Right.

President Nixon: —which was very important. [Say], you know, we're not going to go too fast, boys.

Buchanan: Yeah.

President Nixon: Because we've got other friends too. We don't want to let down Taiwan and uh—too hard.

Buchanan: Right.

President Nixon: And we won't. I just – I think that they're uh—think that what is really interesting on the China thing is the way that it forces the liberal press to get off of Vietnam for a while. Doesn't it?

Buchanan: Mm-hmm. It does. It wiped it right off the front pages, you know.

President Nixon: At least for a while.

Buchanan: Mm-hmm.

President Nixon: Yeah. Well, we'll see what they do next week with it. OK..

Buchanan: OK.. Yes, sir.


1 Emmett Dedmon was at the Chicago Sun Times. (↑)

Original tape courtesy of the Nixon Library. This transcript is a working draft. Please let us know if you find important errors.