Title: Pat Dodson
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Title: Pat Dodson
Series Title: Pat Dodson
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7i7y^E I
Tape A

I: How about some beginning biographical details, like: places, birth,

-type things, you know.

D: My father is a Tennessean. His family came to Tennessee in 1809 and

lived at the Hermitage, and was in fact associated with Andrew Jackson

in a number of ways.

I: Hm. What ways, sir?

jb: Well, I had...I had an uncle who fought with him during the Creek War.

I had another who was...a great-great-grandfather who was allegedly

a pallbearer at his funeral. I think the Dodsons are mentioned in

Jackson's letters a number of times. And, ah, their farms were next

to each other, so.... The one named Ridley, Jimmy Ridley, he fought

with Jackson. We had a family tale that Jackson said, "If I had ten

thousand Jimmy Ridleys I'd storm Hell and take the Devil." Ah, but

he came, he went to Vanderbilt Med School in Nashville and graduated

in 1926. And about 1928, he came to Florida to...as physician with

Bagdad Land and Lumber Company. He interned with...for the

Hospital in Birmingham, and there met my mother who was a RN. And,

so, ah, they got down here about '28, I think, 1928. I was born in

1929 here in Pensacola at the old Sacred Heart Hospital, October 27,

1929. Ah, Daddy was a, a company physician for Bagdad Land and Lum-

ber Company which...oh, one of the largest lumber companies in the

United States. They had their own towns, their own trains, their own

machine shops, their own everything, their own doctors. And he was,

ah, he was the doctor who lived in the largest town. And we lived

ah, comfortably, but it was a little frontierish. And I remember

very well, in the logging trains I used to ride in the coach from


camp to camp. He would treat company patients, stop at the company

commissary and get a Coca-Cola, hobnob with some of the company

officials. I was supposed to be a doctor. That was all set up.

I: Sure.

D.: Everybody

I: Like father, like son.

D: Yeah. So anyway, and, ah, I had a sister who...about fourteen,

fifteen months younger than I am. We later on had another sister

who was born in Pensacola. At that time, the four of us, five in

1939...Bagdad had cut most of the timber in, ah, Santa Rosa County,

Florida. I guess they went into Okaloosa and Escambia County,

Alabama. We lived in Alabama. We lived above the line for a while

in a place called Alflora, First we lived, in Munson, Florida. It

is now the headquarters Blackwater State Park. Then we lived in a

camp that no longer exists called Alflora, combination of Alabama

and Florida...in another town called Florala which still existsbut is

not the same. And finally in 1939, we moved to Pensacola. We had

some interim years, when they sent me onto the Gulf Coast Military

Academy and I went to school at Nashville. They were trying to

get, get me a good start. They sent my sister Barbara to Milton,

one of the little schools out there where there was one or two teachers

per school. Ah...they were public--I thought they was. I wanted

to go to the lumber camp school, but they sent me off to a terrible

military school in Gulf Coast. And it was like, ah...

I: All military schools, all that bad? They weren't, ah...

J: I'm a little rough on the I tell everybody I went off to

the Foreign Legion. It was about that bad. We marched, and we were


disciplined by young children--I mean a young boy, a year or two older.

That was...I was six. I was six when I went there. I went there a

full year, including summer. I made two grades in one year

I'm getting too much detail. I finally, ah...fourth grade

I went to this school, Bruton Elementary School in Bruton, Alabama,

which was the nearest Alabama town. So by the time I reached the fifth

grade, I had gone to school in, ah, probably the fourth state. I had

gotten around. And we lived on East Hill for about two years. In 1941

we moved over to North Hill, and Daddy set up practice here as a General

Practicioner, but very shortly thereafter went into Obstetrics and

Gynecology. He had gone to Powell Clinic, New York, and then after he

got to the lumber company he was taking some special work. But we

were...being a doctor's family we were...we certainly were not wealthy,

but we were not poor either. We always had two cars, but it was...

we moved to Pensacola in 1939, just before the end of the Depression.

It was...

I: I was just going to say you, if you could...?

D: Well, Daddy was...I suspect Daddy was scratching. That was when if

you made two hundred dollars a month, ah...as a matter of fact, well,

I guess that two hundred dollars a month was a good salary. You were

safe, too. He makes two hundred dollars a month. Ah...anithings were

pretty tough. Pensacola at that time, ah, and a great deal of East

Hill had sandy streets. The WPA was paving the streets at that time.

I remember watching them work. And Bayview Park was a big center.

We moved to North Hill which was...this was a little uptown, I guess,

in '41. Ah, I guess it waswell, after World...right before World

War II started. And, ah...but I continued to go to A. B. Clubb Junior



High School on East Hill because I had started there, and my sister

went to P.K. Yonge Elementary School and, ah...it was just right down

the street. We moved into a house built...I remember, was it Walter

Willis? Willis is an old Pensacola family with great kin. Ah, Byrd

C. Willis came here in Pensacola in 1820, so I just.... And we were

within a-half a block of Old Fort(Banadl, the old Spanish fort that,

ah, works at Galvez and was used to take Fort George in 1781. I used

to play on the remains of that fort. It was all hilly and blown up

from an explosion, I understand. But at any rate, we lived a comfor-

table life. We had a family tragedy. I had a sister born with cerebral

palsy. She was born when I was in Pensacola High School. We had a

tough time, and she finally died when she was about fourteen or fifteen.

That left quite a mark in the family. And I enjoyed all the water

sports and the fishing and the other things that a Pensacola boy would


I: Still does, I think.

1b: Still do, and, ah, owned a couple of old boats. One of them was an

old shrimp boat, you know. And I ran around with a mixed group of

people--some of them from old Pensacola families, some-of them not.

But I never restricted my friends. I remember running around with

some Navy boys, fathers were captains and admirals

Their most son, Wendel, he got killed over

in a plane crash in Vietnam. Frank who later became associated

with me in my business--Dodson, 'CradAock, and Bri, Inc. Jack H. Egler

who is mayor pro tem of Pensacola. And a few others that I don't see

much any more as sure as life goes.

I: Sure.

b; And finally I graduated from Pensacola High. I played a few sports



badly before I graduated. I sang in the Glee Club with Reuben Askew,

who nobody ever dreamed in their farthest imagination would ever be

Governor. He was a rather likable, lean young man a year ahead of me

who sang tenor with me. We both sang tenor in the Glee Club for a

couple of years together. I think he was a cheerleader. He liked

to clown a lot, wasn't particularly serious. And we were...

I: That's surprising.

>: ...and we were friends and ah, I could go into great details about

Reuben, but I think that's a sufficient amount. And so finally I

went to Vanderbilt, which was a family tradition. I was fourth

generation, two ways in that...

I: Were you still intent on being a doctor?

1: Yes, two ways and I took two and a half years of pre-med, much to my

chagrin. I didn't like it. I never liked it there. I took German.

I took biology. I went into organic chemistry. I took all the things

that I didn't like. And finally I said, "I've had enough of this,"

and without even telling anybody I switched to English and immediately

I started making A's and B's. And I got into being an editor of the

paper--and you know, I was somewhat of a campus personality. I was

president of my fraternity, Sigma Nu. I was editor of the paper, and

I was actually mixed up in campus politics.

I: I was going to ask you the obvious questions. Were you a campus


J.: Oh, yes. Yeah, I was vice-chairman of one of the political parties.

I: Student groups.

D.: Student political parties, and we had the faction which was made up

of fraternitiesr-independents were involved in, ah...in, ah.... I



learned a great deal, you know--learned how to get betrayed and

learned that people cheat and lie and...you know, all the things

that...and that...and some of them that maybe you can depend upon.

And it was a good little proving ground that I got, for

life. We had a mass betrayal. The only reason I mentioned that is

that we had, ah...we had a fraternity who made a deal with the other

sidewhich hit my sensibilities strongly, because I have, ah...I

don't want to sound like I run a Boy Scout troop, just to be all

right, but loyalty is a big thing with me. And I still feel that

way, very strongly, And on every level of politics, without loyalty

there's nothing--no trust, nothing. But anyway...and I got the

first President of the Student Body elected presidentzwhich I, ah,

frankly hand-picked and ran his campaign and he was President of the

Student Body and President of the Student Senate. And I managed to

make the next editor of the paper; the next editor of the Newman

Magazine and that meant...

I: What got you in such a position that you could do all the hand picking?

1: Well, you just, ah...

I: I mean, what were you aware of...that even at that time gave you that

kind of political maneuverability?

b: Well, you work at it for one thing, you know. You always know a little

more than everybody else and, ah, you work with people, and you get

good horses. You run good horses. You pick good people that, ah,

you know, are...who are acceptable and, ah, powerful to the situation.

And...but I was disappointed. After I got the boythe editor of the

Newman Magazine, I went into Marine Corps and I never heard from him

again. You know, you'd expect that he'd send me a subscription,



anything. Again, lack of appreciation which I think is cognizant.

It's connected with loyalty, and I think...

I: Of course, you're putting this on a very personal kind of basis.

J.: Oh, I am and I do. I do. I'm that way. By the same token there,

you have people that you meet and then befriend and who you never

see, and yet, ah, you could call them tomorrow. You haven't seen

them in twenty years, they would do something for you or you would

do something for them. You miss seeing a lot of people that you'd

like to see. There's just as much warm friendship and loyalty,

certainly, as disloyalty--or more, I don't know.

I: Would it be fair to say, excuse me, would it be fair to say that

perhaps we could characterize loyalty and the issue of loyalty as

your central point in terms of you own political...

b.: Loyalty.

I: ...political philosophy?

D: Yes, and appreciation. Everybody needs help somewhere along the line,

you know. Everybody starts off, you know, with help from someone.

No, nobody's self-made in that sense. That's a false term. At any

rate, I went into the Marine Corps. It was actually the Marine Corps

Reserve and I was on active duty twenty-seven months. It was during

the Korean War and I was an infantry officer--0302 spec. number. I

got sent to the, ah...I got sent to Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, and

did a number of operations out of-there. I was in a platoon for a

while. And then they found out that I had an English degree, and they

got mad, of course. So they made an adjutant out of me. I went to

Labrador and to Europe with the Sixth Fleet and some other operations

off the east coast. Then I got out in September, 1953, and directly


went to the University of Florida.

I: For...

b: ...for a master's. Andrew(Byt, an old Vanderbilt man and a member

of the old Agrarian or Fugitive group--one or the other, I never can

keep them straight. I was there, and I joined some of my friends I

know at Vanderbilt there. Some of them who had been in the service

and we had a writing group there in fiction.

I: American fiction, by the way, or did you...?

b: Yeah, well, I mean...I mean yesjit was American fiction--we were

Americans. But we wrote and I did a thesis.

I: On what?

b: A novella. I did it--and the main story was political, by the way--

about, ah...called Coldwater. And it never has been published. I

almost got the thing published, but, ah arriving, but...

I: Is it fair to ask you whether you think it's good?

.: Yeah, I think it's good. I think it's a damn mistake they didn't

publish it. Ah, and it's...it seems to be a story of small town

politics and political infighting. Political, it's...it's really

a person's observant and total story that he realizes that he's

gone over in his life It's all beenthe sound

and the fury and when he's ready to die

But, yes, this story's called Coldwater. It's a chilling name.

And a couple more stories which probablyAnot as good--short, shorter

ones. And that was my thesis. And when I got out of school, I

could not find a decent job anywhere. I had two children by then.

I married Katie Barnes up in Dawson Nashville, who'd been to

Vanderbilt, and who was my uncle's step-daughter and my brother's



kin. And I had known her a long time, and dated her at Vanderbilt

some of the time. After I finished then, when she was with me during

the Marine Corps and at the University of Florida, we had two children--

a boy and a girl, David and Debra. And I finally got my degree in the

normal period of time, two years. And couldn't get a job in Pensacola

and went down and got a job with the Central and Southern Florida

Flood Control District. This is a joint state and federal operation

to solve the water problems of south Florida. I had had an assistant-

ship the first year at Florida in which I taught Freshman English.

But I got a research job the second year and was able to...which was

a lot more attractive and dramatic on Hamilton Disston.

I: Why?

J): Because he had dug those canals in central Florida. And the Flood

Control District had an interest in him.

I: So you've maintained an interest in him?

J): Oh, yeah, oh yeah. I was just tying the old string in my recent

book. So I dropped my fellowship to the dismay of the English

department, you know--had a year's investment in it. But I took

on research jobs and I...and we spent a part of a summer--I guess

of '54--down at Kissimmee. When I got out in '55 we went down

there and lived for...til January, uh, December of the next year...

uh, the same year. We didn't stay down there long. I had very low

pay and I also did a lot of public relations for the Flood Control

District. Anyway, I found a chance to get back to Pensacola as

editor of training publications. This was at the U. S. Naval Air

Station here, which was a lousy job but at least a way to get home.

And so we picked up and came home. I wanted to come back--I hadn't


pursued medicine, which was a disappointment to my father--at least

coming back and living in Pensacola. And I stayed out there four-

teen months and instead of firing me up more than anything I've ever

done--working in a civil service job--it drove me up the wall. I

worked with people who'd hated their jobs and said, "I've only got

12 more years to go before I retire." I couldn't understand it; it

was like living Hell to me. Their situation and in my situation.

So I've learned all sorts of things. I've learned; I've learned

letter-press printing at Vanderbilt in the paper. I spent more

time on the paper than I did on my studies. But I loved

And quit and went to work for a mobile adver-

tising agency for a year, then I couldn't get him to open up an

office over here. So I opened my own office. In 1958, in March

or April of '58-- Pat Dodson Agency. By 1962, I had

two other partners, Frank Craddock and Patricia Born. And we moved

into a nice office in the Mutual Federal Building in 1960 and put

on what I call a "coat and tie" image and you know, we were really

Pensacola's first advertising agency. You know,

started first. Then we had...you know, we departmentalized and we

had a high respect for art and copy. We were all college educated

and we had offices on the second floor of the Mutual Federal Savings

and Loan, a downtown building. And we had...and we got, very quickly

got most of the local prestigious accounts and prided ourselves in

our creativity.

I: Trend-setting in your instance worked here in Pensacola?

t.: Yeah, and it made a good liv--, it, you know, made an adequate living;

put shoes on our children and we found...we bought a house on



Hill--a modest house. And I began to kinda get on my feet. By 1964

I was able to...at least I had enough time by then, I was on my feet

enough, to participate in the Goldwater campaign.

I: Was that your first entry into practical politics in '64?

b: No, I had a...my father's nurse, Clarabella Jones was married to a

county commissioner, John R. Jones. And I had helped John R. as early

as, oh, I don't know, '58 or '59 in his campaigns. Being in the ad

business, we did some of his ads and then--guess '59, must have been--

he decided to run for tax assessor. And he took on the incumbent.

I: Was he running as a Republican?

P: No, Democrat.

I: Still running as a Democrat.

bi And I was still a Democrat.

I: Right.

b.: By the way, the family was all Democrat. I guess my grandfather could

be called a Roosevelt Democrat. He was active in politics in Tennessee.

I had an uncle, one of Daddy's brothers, was in the Tennessee legislature.

So there was some family tradition in government and politics. And any-

way, I helped John R. and we won the campaign. He ran on a platform that

he wasn't going to go to full tax assessment. It wasn't a Florida law or

anything, it was just a sort of a...

I: Popular issue.

:...sort of a moral issue, if you want to call it that. He said, "Hell,

no, he wouldn't go." And he claimed that the other guy was moving toward

a hundred percent assessment. And he beat him and he's still in office

today. See, that's '59, been a long time. This is '73.

John R. Jones. And I got...I learned a lot from him. I learned that...



such things that if you're running against an incumbent and he doesn't

win the first primary, the incumbent's in trouble. That's a basic rule.

I: Why?

.b: Well, because he's got his votes and he's not liable to pick up any more.

And all the opponents'...his opponents' votes are going to go over to...

I: Merge into his opponents'

: ...go to one man. And so even...I remember in that campaign John R. says

he came out second. And I said, "Well, I guess you're disappointed."

And he said, "Hell, no." He said, "We're going to win." He said, "I'm

number two and I'm going to pick up like seventy or eighty percent, you

know, or the third man's votes because they were, a lot of them were

voting against the incumbent." And it was true. And he picked it up

and he won. That's a good basic rule that's generally true in Florida

politics. If the incumbent doesn't win that first time, especially if

there's just three people in the race, he's in trouble. And I saw that...

I saw it happen as late as last year. But in '64, you see, you had

Kennedy for the incumbent, right? I

I: No, Johnson was the incumbent.

.t: No, no. Well, what happened though before Kennedy was assassinated?

It looked like that Kennedy was going to be the incumbent and it looked

like that Goldwater was going to be the nominee. So this situation

went on for six months or a year, and led to what, you know, a lot of

Southerners believed was a clear choice between someone in the East,

then, whor-as a liberal and someone, in this case the West, who was a

conservative. It looked like it was going to be a real simple choice.

Well, what happened, of course, is Kennedy was assassinated and Johnson

came on and that upset the applecart on that situation. Because then



you had a Southerner in instead of an Easterner--and a Southerner who,

at one time, had had some conservative credentials.

I: It's been reported by some political analysts and

I don't really want to get into the Goldwater '64 campaign at this time.

Goldwater even came very close to forty-eight some-odd percent in '64


D: Kennedy?

I: Against Lyndon Johhson.

D: Polls?

I: In the polls. Came very close. That it was the issue of retirees, and

the Goldwater stand against welfare and Social Cecurity perhaps had

something to do with his not carrying the state in '64.

D: Well, it's a very significant campaign in my-mind. You know, there's

an old saying that "victory is not always a victory, nor defeat, defeat."

That's exactly that. Because what happened was that the Eastern Repub-

licans lost control of the Republican Party.

I: For the first time, Eastern Republicans--you mean on the national front?

D: Right. For the first time in, you know, in,well, certainly most recent

history. They lost control. The Rockefellers lost control, the Lodges

and so forth. And here was this Westerner who got the grass root sup-

port in the West versus the East inside the Republican Party. And oh!

I think there was some--I won't deny that there was some--racial content

in the thing, but that wasn't really the heart of it as far as a young

Republican my age in the South. By that time, we looked around us and

we saw, to be really frank with you, a lot of uneducated Southern Demo-

crats in office, and, frankly, just people that we didn't want to be

associated with. They represented everything that is stereotyped and



bad about the South. They were all your old crooked county sheriffs,

all your uneducated school boards, all your courthouse gang, and so forth.

And right on up--I guess even in some cases to the governor's office.

And someone who'd been, you know, gone to college, in the Marine Corps

and come back, we simply did not want to associate ourselves with that

party. I went to a rally. And I remember it distinctly and I know

who it was 'cause he's still around, someone running for the school

board, murdering the King's English.

I: What year was this? Was this '64?

D: This was about, oh, this was around '62 or '63, in that area. And I

had...I had...

I: This is local?

D: Yeah, local. And I had...I have other...I helped a young fellow named

J. V. Hopkins run. We in the advertising agency at that timeI helped

several people on a quasi-friendship-professional basis. We got paid,

but...it was fairly good ad business, but very disrupting; we finally

eventually got to a policy where we would not handle political campaigns.

It took us several years to learn that. There are a lot of pitfalls

in the advertising agency business and politics is one of them.

I: Difficult to remain neutral...?

D: Well, I just never...well, it's disrupting to your other business.

And I don't care to have...to help every slob who walked off the street

who thinks he wants to run for office. I mean, I took it too seriously.

And it was even disillusioning to even have friends who would get before

TV and shake, you know, shake like--be very nervous and so forth. How

you act in the political ways says a lot about what you are, in my book.

A man who runs his own race is a stronger man. If you got a bunch of



campaign flunkies and so forth doing all the work and calling the shots,

then chances are he's not going to call a shot when he's elected. I think

there's a great deal...there's a great deal of...a good analogy there I

thought...okay. Anyway, the Goldwater thing came up and I went to con-

ventions. We had a primary of delegates here in Florida. A Goldwater

slate, and a pledged slate and an unpledged slate. I don't...most every-

body...but we still had some of the old Post Office Republicans on the

unpledged slate. Mostly from down around St. Petersburg.

I: Center of the old party?

D: Yeah, and the head of the party then was Tom Brown. But the guy who

put him in was named G. Harold Alexander. And I, I hardly knew Alexander,

you know; I wasn't...Tom Brown I got to know during the campvin. He

came up here a time or two. He came up here when Strom Thurmond came up

and I remember it distinctly because Tom Brown wasn't very-strong-and he

was an attorney from Tampa. Still practicing, I assume. And he wanted

to be up there on the platform with Thurmond, and we wanted to put him

up there! And we had a tremendous rally through downtown on old Palafox

Street. We had first-class offices and we had a big staff and we put

together probably at that time what was the biggest campaign organization

in Escambia County. And probably in its history. We raised $35,000)

I think it was, for the campaign, which was a lot of mbneyratethat time.

And we had an office, as I said, an office right in the middle of town--

Palafox and Garden--and we had seven or eight people maintained all the

time. We had a full-time manager.

I: Is this strictly a Presidential...?

D: Strictly a Presidential...and Goldwater and Miller.

I: Right.


D: But that guy Miller, he faded out. We're near the airport. At any rate,

I, we, what we did, I changed. I finally chan--, I changed, I had changed

my registration before the campaign, sometime in that spring. And I went

out to the convention. I was not a delegate, but I...I big-dealed a

sergeant-of-arms pass and credentials and got in on the floor and I had

a big time. Ronald Reagan was a member of the California delegation.

They wore all gold. It seems like to be there were eighty-some delegates

and they were very impressive. They were all...Goldwater had won the

primary out there. I, I interviewed Reagan on a tape, just for kicks.

And he was very frank, likable.

I: While we're on the subject of 1964, Claude Kirk was running against

Spessard Holland.

D: Yes, Kirk was out there in '64. Kirk was out there and stayed at the

same hotel. I can't remember, it wasn't much of a hotel. And I heard...

I remember him out there smoking those little long black cigars and he

would--oh, yeah! He wanted...we tried to get him on national TV. That

was...that's always a trick at the convention. And I can't remember if

he ever got on; I don't think he did. But he was running against

Spessard Holland and he asked me if I could...I had...he had been by

my office. First time he came by my office, he waited thirty minutes

to see me. That's when I was

I dreamt about that. They simply came up without an appointment and I

was busy. And nobody thought he had a chance in Hell. He ran a pretty

good race against Holland.

I: Were you of any assistance to him?

D: Yeah, yeah. I got him a campaign manager and set up an office for him.

I'd forgotten about that. And I got a boy named I



can't think of his name, Smith. And, uh...but he was out there; saw

him out there. And so we had a mixture of...a delegation of some of the

old types, old Republican types in Florida, and some of the new types.

All together. Bill Cramer, I think, eventually came out there. I think

that he was a pretty good friend of G. Harold Alexander. And I went to'

several big parties and...there was a girl there, the daughter of Walter

Dean, and, uh, I don't know. I guess she was a delegate, I guess. A

delegate. And I...we palled around a little bit together and she was a -

little bit of a social butterfly, and got us into a couple of the big

parties at the big hotels. I remember very distinctly, :though, a party

toward the end of the Southern Republican delegations at a big hotel

and it was one heck of big affair. And it was then that I realized

more than ever before the Republican Party was going somewhere in the

South, because I saw there a number of my old school mates from Vander-

bilt. It looked like, you know, a lot of us had gravitated towards the

Republican Party and were building it.

I: Was there any trouble? Was there any sentiment for Nelson Rockefeller?

D: Not in the South. I'm ashamed to tell you that we all booed him.

I: Right along with the rest.

D: Right. You know, along with the rest of the convention. We were wild

for Goldwater and we looked at Rockefeller as an Eastern liberal and,

you know, looking back, we were discourteous towards him and it was a

bad thing. There was a lot of young men that went wild

but, you know, everybody did it, I mean. He made

a speech, but you know, it's a wonder he finished. That's strange today,

because today he's almost acceptable to the conservatives. You know,

things change.



I: How did they change? Let me ask you to react to a

statement that Neal Pierce wrote in his 1972 publication The Mega States

of America: People, Politics and Power in Ten Great States. And he

talks about Florida conservatism, conservatism, and he calls it a mixture

of, oh, about five or six things. Let me tell you what they are and ask

you to comment on each one or collectively, as you like. He classifies

a typical Florida conservative or conservatism: fiscal conservatism,

anti-governmentalism, opposition to any kind of welfare, and what he

calls "nationalistic patriotism," and a mild form of racism. Would

you agree with that ?

D: Pretty much.

I: Individually, collectively?

D: That's very good. Uh, except some of those--yeah, that's conservatism.

Now that's...that's...that can apply...

I: Either party.

D: To either party, right.

I: Yeah, this is where I'd like to start.

D: That's right, they can apply to either party. Oh, well, I want to go

back to the convention.

I: Okay, excuse me.

D: Jim Martin of Alabama was there. Kinda walked around some with him. He

had almost been elected United States Senator. Then he'd run and got

to be...gotten to be a Congressman, and he was a wise contact at that

convention. And Life magazine had a picture of Goldwater and Martin

on top of a hotel building and allegedly at that time he was a contact

with Wallace. Wallace had become a factor then. And I knew Jim, and

he used...Jim used to talk very frankly about it. He told me he'd met



with Goldwater and I don't know what they talked about. It was some-

thing like, you know, "if you run, Wallace won't run," or something like

that. I just wanted to mention that.

I: Sure, appreciate it.

D: But your breakdown on conservatism is very good. I'd like to go over

them one by one. ,If you'llrname-them, I'd like to comment on each one.

I: Fiscal conservatism.

D: Okay. Well, yeah. Physical, fiscal conservatism is probably)I would

think, more Republican than Democratic. This means low taxes and less

government activity because of low government taxes. And, uh, even the

so-called Southern conservatives in Congress, a lot of them are fiscal

liberals, although they wouldn't tell you that. I mean in my book.

Anti-governmentalism is a...that's an outgrowth of the frontier and

prevalent in both parties, especially northwest Florida. And that, this

is a basic distrust of government. It's sort of a curious thing in that

people seem...a certain group of people seem to enjoy politics, but at

the same time their families and everybody else are basically anti-

government. And it starts off, first you're more anti-anti-Federal

government than anybody, but it finally comes down to being anti-state

government, anti-city government. You don't get what you pay for, they

waste the money. I don't know. It's a very dangerous...they get to be

very dangerous and I have trouble with people in my own party. I think,

you know, my gosh, the Federal government runs the armed forces, uh,

services. And in northwest Florida there's a big military center. You

know, how do you rationalize that? Well, some people say, well, they'll

pick up their Navy yard check and cash it and then go out and drink beer

and talk about the damn Federal government. You know, you can't explain



it. But it gets down to they become anti-city government. And I had

to tell people...I've made speeches and somebody's got to patrol the

streets, somebody's got to pave the streets. And I'm not anti-government.

And some people might think that I'm a little less than hard-shelled

because of it, but with a nation of upwards of 200 million people, you've

got tohhve government--if nothing else, to protect ourselves from each

other. And somebody indeed does have to pave the streets, somebody indeed

does have to make new laws as mobile homes become a problem and as motor-

cycle noise becomes a problem and as society becomes more complex. The

third one: opposition to any kind of welfare. Oh, yeah. Well, that's...

I think that's...I can't speak for the rest of the nation, but that, I

would think that's pretty much Southern. You know, if you worked, you

get paid. If you don't work, you don't get paid. A day!'6 work for a

day's pay. And there's always been a saying by white people that the

sorriest people aren't the blacks, it's the poor white trash who refuse

to work. I've heard that all my life. So if that's a little bit racial

in content...

I: Do you agree with that? I mean is that part and parcel of your own

feelings on this?

D: I don't know. That's a pretty blanket statement. If you've ever seen

some real sorry white people, they're absolutely unbelievable. They are

the kind who can be nursed by welfare and so forth, and you'll do and do

and do and then they'll go out and spend fifteen bucks for a new toaster

or something. I mean, you know, it's lack of judgment. I don't know.

My sister got involved with some of these people. And she just crawled

up the wall. I would think that there are some people, generally because

of age and medical problems and so forth, that society has to keep. I



think there are a Hell of a lot of people that ought to be working.

Welfare, the type of welfare that encourages pregnancies and multiple

births and this type of thing--if that's a proper impression-I'm


I: I was going to say, but you, you do admit to it. You do depart from

opposition to any kind of welfare for Florida ?

D: Well arpart-6dfa mark of a civilization is to take care of the poor

people. And you can't...

........................... END OF:SIDE 1.................................

......... .. ........ ..'BEGINNING OF SIDE 2 ............................

D: And what used to worry me is that--I hate to start using this expression,

but I may as well go ahead and be honest--red-neck Democrats would haul

the blacks to the polls. And it cost..it used to cost ten dollars a car.

You know, you could handle a car and driver or something for between ten

and twenty dollars. They would pick'em up at the precinct and take'em

to the poll and give'em a slip of paper and tell'em how to vote.

I: What period of time are you talking about? What years?

D: Well, this went on in the 1950's and '60's. And yet they wouldn't shake

hands with one or be seen in public with one. But gradually the blacks

got smart and they would...they would compel them to come to certain

rallies and state their position. I remember the first one I ever went

to was Singleton's Ice Cream Parlor which was in what they call,tin the

colored quarters of town and you...if you run for officezyou went there

and at least by your appearance showed some willingness to cooperate

and so forth. I remember at that time a lot of the white candidates were

pretty nervous about doing it, but gradually it's gotten now where,

where the blacks have rallies and everybody comes and talks. At that 4tJ'



there was a black here named Cap Benbow who was a political strongman

and who could deliver fifty percent of the black vote, more or less.

And, you know, ran a funeral home and parlor and had allot of cars and

drivers and they would...you know, I forgot to tell you I was involved--

I apologize for this--I was involved in the campaign of 1960. I par-

ticipated in...

I: Well, we can go back to that.

D: You know, the Doyle Carlton campaign.

I: Yeah, we can go back to it, talking about state politics.

D: Yeah, but...I was thinking about Republican politics. I was trying to

get myself to Republican politics. I was involved in a major Democratic

campaign in 1960. He was a very nice fellow. At any rate, it's gotten,

I think lot better and now both parties will openly have black political

contacts and black...will deal with black political figures and they will

make black appointments. Now, the first black appointments in Escambia

County were made by the Kirk Advisory Committeefor which I was chairman.

I: What appointments were those?

D: It was a...the first appointment I know of was to the county civil service

board. We appointed Reverend Powell, a black minister, to that board. He

served very well. And then we appointed two...I think a couple of members

of the draft board, the Federal draft board. And then we were also instrumental

in getting Hollis Williams as the first black city councilman. But the

theory was that the...it was both pragmatic and then I think a little more

honest and some human warmth about it that...that number one, why let the

Democrats get all the black votes. And number two, well, number two, we

could deal with them certainly as well as a bunch of prejudiced, red-necked

Democrats. And number three, that there was certainly room in the party



for them.

I: How many registered black Republicans are there in EscambcutCounty today?

D: Only a few hundred. But registration is not the only thing. I mean,

you know, Ed Gurney says, "Don't worry about registration if you're

Republican." Having a large white bloc, I mean--having a large white

bloc or conservative Democrats who have voted Republican is as good as

having a bunch of...a large number of registered Republicans.

I: So you think that in fact there are many blacks also serving the party?

D: Oh, yes. As a matter of fact, one of our appointments was the president

of the NAACP, a man we appointed--I say, when I say "we appointed" that

meant the advisory committee of the governor. He was appointed to some

state human relations council. This was Reverend Bill Brook, who quite

recently has been involved in some degree with militancy in Escambia

High situation, but who is a good man and who I think has held the position

in the NAACP in order to keep the more militant types

from getting it, who would misuse it. I think he's a good Christian,

I think he's a good man morally--he's got a family of about five, wife

and five children, and I found him to be very fair and honest and I liked

him very much. He ought to be playing basketball for some pro team

somewhere--he's about 6' 8". Size means a lot to them, by the way. That's

true in the old Indian tribes. But there's still some prejudice, but

you can deal politically with the blacks without having to deal with them

socially--you understand me, it's the same old thing. Well, that's true

with anybody. The people you deal with politically are not necessarily

the people you run around with socially or the people you live with. So

I think we've made tremendous-progress and I would think now, in 1973 the

Southern Republican Party has the doors wide open to blacks. And there's



been a great effort by the blacks now to get a lot of their people

on the Republican side so they can parlay that power as they see fit.

I think it's a very smart move.

I: Instead of taking...

D: Instead of somebody taking them for granted.

I: Let's start talking a little bit about the Florida Republican Party.

One question starts right off the top and that is you're, you are in

the midst of the Panhandle, Escambia County, and West Florida is not,

nor I suppose has it ever been close to being a bastion of Republicanism

in the state. What's it like being a, really, a minority figure?

D: Well, we've got, we've got a lot of quality rather than quantity. And

I say that because a great many and sometimes almost a majority of the

young local leaders are Republican. And I mean this, this right now.

The president of the Chamber of Commerce right now is Republican. We

had three straight Republican mayors. I think, I think the man

I think he's still registered Democrat, but he's very

close to us. And the head of Action '76 is--the Bicentennial group,

which is a community action program--Warren is Republican.

I could go on and on. It takes a little thought but we have a lot of

people in their thirties and forties who have changed their registration

and are slowly but consistently building a Republican Party. And we

have, I don't know, the registration now must be something like 8,000

Republicans and maybe 65,000 Democrats. Bct we have a Republican in

the legislature that's been elected three or four times, Tom

Kirk carried Escambia County. Gurney carried Escambia County. We can

win elections with good people. Our biggest problem is getting can-

didates right now. And we are able to even put a coalition together



with Democrats in trying to get good government types in office. I

was...the Democrats are split into a good government group and an old--

there I go again--an old redneck group. And we have more in common

with the good government group, frankly, than they have in common with

the old courthouse people. So on a given candidate we can agree. And

last time I had one of the leaders of the Democrats call me and say,

"Can you get Bill Chisholm to run for the county commission?" And I

said, "I'll try." And I tried to get him. And if he had run, then

they would not put up a candidate. And they was for the Republicans.

It's getting so hard to get good people to run that the party doesn't

have that much to do with it.

I: Why is that?

D: Well, every time there's a new political scandal, I think it hurts.

And I think, I think the press and the media blow it up. You know,

you have a little meeting and somebody says something cross to some-

body else and it's a headline the next day. And you know, most people

try to be decent people and you can't...few people thrive on controversy

and even the most egotistical get tired of seeing their name in the

papers, especially in a negative way. And I think in an effort by the

media to report government that they actually do government a disfavor.

So it's a very peculiar thing and I could get in a pretty good argument

with my dear friend Earl Bowden, editor of the local paper. But a

reporter goes to a meeting, it's dull, it's routine, and there's one

little tiny outbreak of tempers during the meeting and that's going

to get your headline. He doesn't say, "They had a pretty damn good

routine meeting." That doesn't make good reporting. American journalism--

and you know, no matter how you say it or justify it--is based on



sensationalism. And I feel very strongly about that although I

love to read the newspapers.

I: Sure.

D: And I love, you know, I love the press. But it's the nature...we're

all, you know, the whole country's on stage. Everybody plays a damn

role. And the press is the script almost. The after-script. It's

a peculiar thing. YOu know, it's not how the play went, but what did

the critics say about the play.

I: Sure. Let me ask you this question. Mr. Dodson, certainly the fact

of the Republican Party in the 19th century in the ReConstruction

period has carried over at least in a distorted sense, I think, as

history has proven in Florida. But they were neither as corrupt nor

as venal as some people have said them to be. Has that been a problem

for you as a local Republican doing the rural areas of the Panhandle

organization and trying to deal with the traditional Democratic, rural--

what you have called, and care,,to have you comment further on it if

you'd like at this point--a "redneck" Democrat?

D: Yeah, a little bit of the older ones. Now my grandfather and grandmother,

my God, they used to talk about that they didn't like the King and Queen

of England, which was a throwback to the Revolution, you know. They

also didn't like Jews, Catholics and everyb--, you know,

it was typical Southern Anglo-Saxon family. And Republicans was at the

top of that list. However, I'm not so sure that if my grandfather were

living today that he couldn't adapt himself to the Republican Party.

My father never changed but he felt that way. I think the party changed.

The old...there are a lot of old-timers. Goldwater broke a lot of that,

you know, broke a lot of that, but there are still, I'd say, people in



their seventies and eighties now that will say, you know, "I never

have voted for a Republican and I never will."--type. But that's...

that's going out of style.

I: Do you suppose it's possible to...if you can't talk about Escambia

County, is it possible to talk in terms of state candidates, state-

wide registration in the Panhandle ever becoming significant to

the Republicans in terms of registration?

D: Yeah, I think it could happen. I think therire about a million Repub-

licans in Florida by the way, and I think it could happen.

I: What would be the factors that would produce this? I realize it's

an "if" question, but what kinds of changes would we have to make in

this area?

D: Well, I think that the...what, what's, as I keep referring to, localism

and Eastern dominance of the Democratic Party, and is the best thing

we've got going for us. We feel that way.

I: Even on a local level?

D: Even on a local level. Oh, yes. Oh, yes. And this, you know, and

then any issues that are--course I mean times change--but, you know,

pro-marijuana, pro-abortion, those pro-free love--a lot of these things

that the young Democrats, especially some of them, have followed in

their party line are fuel for building a Republican party in the Pan-


I: At least there's an association with the ?

D: Oh, yeah, yeah, and so one can register Republican and hold his head

high because he can point out what the national Democratic party

represents. And this started with...I don't know, let's see. It was

certainly true in '64, and since then I can't remember back, but it



still seems to be true, although I don't know. I think...it seems

like the Democrats are starting to react to that. When:Kennedy starts

playing footsie with George Wallace, I don't know how long...any time

in Florida that you could put a conservative Republican against a liberal

Democrat, you'd win statewide. Tbat's the way Kirk beat Robert King

High--aridKirk didn't win that election, people voted against High.

And the same thing with Ed Gurney against Leroy Collins. Collins had

been at that Selma thing and...but not only that, Collins had been

moderate or liberal on other issues. And there were a lot of Democrats

who voted for Collins so he could get in the run-off with Gurney. That's

an old trick, by the way. I was discussing that as late as yesterday,

uh, the other day with a Democrat friend of mine. That's the oldest

trick in the book.

I: Sure.

D: BUt that will generally work in Florida. When Claude Kirk ran against

Reubin Askew, he had...Claude Kirk had run, had lost so much of his

credibility because he'd come out for Rockefeller that he couldn't put

a liberal label on Reubin, although the stuff was there. But his

own credibility was shot so he was unable to do itand therefore he


I: How about the Republican Party in Florida as a whole? The Panhandle

trying to relate to a center of urban Republicanism like St. Pete.

We're a wide state. People are spread out. Is there a problem in

doing a...obviously I'm referring tojin some senses.to what happened

in 1970 between Governor Kirk and Senator Gurney--William Cramer-Carswell

thing--but is there a possibility of ever merging a cohesive Republican




D: Oh, I think we have a fairly cohesive party now. Now the state chair-

man is from Panama City, Tommy Thomas, Panhandle town. Aid I personally

know of--you know, I mean here I am living in west Florida but I know

all the Florida delegations. Skip Bafalis. Theycome up here...Bill

Cramer! Popular here. Know Bill Young. They come up here all the time,

one after another. Seems like there's one of'em up here. And they

respect the Panhandle vote. And the chairman comes over. We have no

problem with the state office. They moved the state office to Tallahassee

by the way, which is...which is also in west Florida. Now, how we

relate to the St. Petersburg type Republican retiree...?

I: That's really the question I'm asking.

D: Un, I don't know. I, you know, maybe you don't have to relate. They,

well, for one thing, when people start, generally peoplewhowhen they

age they get more conservative. So you've got that going for you for

that type of Republican. I'm also told they get more pragmatic, too,

by the way. Have you ever heard that?

I: Yeah.

D: You tell'em you're going to this and do that and it's a pro--, a political

promise. They'll buy your promise and expect you to deliver it. And

An older person has become that pragmatic, you know. BUt I don't see

any problems in relating. I don't, I don't...I don't see any problems

at all. Goldwater went down there in '64 and I don't...nobody can

understand. He said absolutely the wrong things. He talked against

Social Security.

I: Right.

D: You can't talk against somebody's pocketbook.that frankly in an election.

It's uncalled-for and it's just absolutely stupid. I don't...I don't...



I feel as if it were his advisors and I just don't know. But that

whole campaign was loaded with mistakes and we feel the press was out

to get him. And we feel like that Goldwater's probably got more prestige

in 1973 than he has in 197-, uh, 1964. But that's the way we do our

people in this country, anyway. You know. The further we get away from

Washington the grander and more saintly he is--Lincoln and Roosevelt and

all of them. I guess they'll make a saint ouf of Goldwater before it's

over with. That's the way, you know, that's a fact. We're very rough

on our politicians while they're in office. By the way, we're very

rough on our ex-Florida governors, too. It's almost a shame. They

tell me now that Fuller Warren is almost a pauper.

In...in Miami. And, well, Kirk's doing all right, because he's a

pretty industrious type. Farris Bryant set up enough things while

he was governor to last him a lifetime. And I know what I'm talking

about. Through bonding and so forth, Hayden Burns is making a good

living, I assume. But I know that Doyle Carlton, Jr.--I mean, Doyle

Carlton, Sr.--moved out of the Governor's officehe had to borrow money

to move furniture. I mean, out of the Governor's mansion. His son

told me that. He did all right, but, uh, we don't...no provisions.

I guess they got a pension now.

I: Right.

D: There seems to be some sadness in

Fuller Warren's situation. I don't know what to do. They can't put

him on welfare, but there ought to be something.

I: Well, with few exceptions also, the Florida governor's chair has never

really led anywhere politically past that. Spessard Holland was the

only man that...



D: That's right.

I: ...moved from the governor's chair to the Senate

D: That's a very good observation. One I've heard before, of course, but

that's right.

I: Sort of a dead end.

D: Sort of a dead end. And that almost seems the best way to the U. S.

Senate is through...by being a Congressman or elected to the State

Senate--Lawton Chiles. which I considered a fluke election. Nobody

understood Claude Kirk's sophisticated remark that he's going to run

for the U. S. Senate and swim, and swim around the state. Sounds like

a kooky remark; it's a very sophisticated remark. What he was saying

was if you're foolish enough to vote somebody in the U. S. Senate

because they walked around Florida, then I'll swim around the thing

and you can elect me. Nobody caught it. That's a typical Kirkism.

I: Before we get onto Governor Kirk, and I suppose we want to do that,

we need to perhaps set you in some kind of focus for posterity, if

nothing else, in terms of west Florida politics and Florida politics.

I've heard you described as a rather, well, what shall we say, king-

pin of west Florida Republicanism or something in that sense. Would

you agree with that? How would you classify yourself as a Florida,

west Florida Republican?

D: Well, in the first place, I don't believe you seek that kind of title.

I don't like people seeking honors; I don't like people seeking power.

If it happens, it comes...it comes because of work, okay? Here again,

if I sound like a Boy Scout I'm sorry, but I cert-, I am suspect of

people who are seeking honors and seeking positions. Usually it's

the wrong people doing it. I've been called a "kingpin" and so forth.



Some of it's by people who would like to have that power and some...

you know, it's--sometimes I'm a bit derogatory. When I was in Tallahassee

at the Department of Transportation, the News Journal used to have these

little minute editorials and they called me the governor of west Florida

because Kirk was in and I was calling the shots for Kirk! And indeed

I did. And I called a lot of;them. But you know, it...you can't do

a great deal by committee, you know. Committees are hard. We had the

most. We had a Kirk Advisory Committee here in Pensacola and we had

a West Florida Advisory Committee kinda made up of chairmen of the

different counties, and I was chairman...Reinhart Holmes, who was mayor

of Pensacola a short time and who was head of the Kirk campaign, was

the first chairman of the advisory committee and he got crossed up with

the governor and resigned. And I took it over. Very...it was very

early in the first year and Reinhart was older and had been in city

government and very well-respected, and then shortly after he died of

a heart attack. But...we had a committee of about twelve people.

We brought the county, uh, executive committee chairmen in. I insisted

that we do that as a matter of policy. And we tried to bring other

representatives of different Republican groups in and we had a pretty

good cross-section. And that committee voted on all the recommendations

for appointments to the governor and so forth. And that included

everything from the old Road Board, which was a regional thing. We

voted the regional thing, but obviously Pensacola carried a lot of

weight. Except...you don't on the very highest, like the governor's

going to pick the Board of-Regents. He's not gonna...the very big

ones, Turnpike Authority, things like that, the government's going to

pick'em from the people he knows. But when you get down on the county



commissioner dies and you have a reappointment, as we had with one called

Sam Honor which caused a great deal of trouble for me. I insisted that

we appoint a Democrat to the office rather than a weak Republican. And,

uh, time has justified meybut I couldn't see appointing some farmer

from the northern end of the county who would most certainly not be

able to handle himself on the county commission, and secondly would

get beat when he ran. We made some agreements which I'm not going to

talk about with the Democrat. He got appointed. He was later elected

chairman of the Florida Association of County Commissioners, Sam

Honor, and he's been a good force on that board. He's still in office

today. I think time has justified that appointment. In other words,

the man in this case was more important than the party. That's not

always true, but I think it's generally true. It's people--the party

is just a track to do something. It's a vehicle hopefully for good

government. A way of government. And you have to do it through

people. And a man's character, a man's character doesn't become

a damn bit better if it's lousy if he goes down and changes his

registration to Republican. As a matter of fact, I wish I could figure

out a way to keep him from doing it. And I have had trouble with

some of the other members of the party who'll support any damn

character off the street who goes down there and changes his regis-

tration and says, "I want to run for something." We've had some real

idiots run and they embarrass you. So I based all my recommendations

to the governor on people and character. And generally, you know,

hoping they're Republicans, but they're not always Republicans. And

some of them you get to change registration, but some of'em's influence

you can harness into the party. Even if he stays a Democrat and, say,



he has influence over two or three or four hundred or a thousand

people one way or another, through his business associations or

whatever, then we've gained. And eventually history shows that

they will change. And they'll just go down and voluntarily do it.

You don't have to twist their arm. The guy you gotta twist their

arm, you don't want to change his.

I: It's an interesting observation. What about the...let me ask the

question this way. Who served on the West Florida Advisory Committee
and did you haveAdifferent role or a different function with that

group than you did with the Kirk Advisory Committee?

D: Well, that's a loose organization, but we had...let's see, I was the

coordinator for it, the top guy, and we had a chairman in each county

and we met a few times, not too often. Maybe a couple of times a

year on some major appointments. But it generally turned out on, on

positions like the Game and Fish Commission, the Road Board--which

is now defunct--the Board of Regents, things like that the governor

made up his own mind anyway. So really it was a waste of time to

meet, but there were...I, I generally, they generally checked with

me on most of the appointments as a courtesy--I mean as a double-

check. Like the guy, the committee in Santa Rosa County has nominated

so-and-so and I, I have vetoed some of them. Then you get in a fight

with that committee over there. But we had infiltration in Santa

Rosa County. We had a Democrat who actually got people to change

registration and got on the county advisory committee, which is another

old trick. And I knew who they were, and I did my very best and I

think I succeeded in most every occasion in keeping them from getting


I: In this context, and certainly in this area...



D: Am I answering your question?

I: You certainly are, very well. No problem. I won't let you not answer

it unless you choose not to. Uh, and I don't...I now don't want to

call you a kingpin in that sense. (I don't know when else to use the

word) But in that context I'm really interested in your relationship

with the senior Florida Congressmn~--Bob Sikes, Congressman Sikes,

who is a Democrat--and in terms of... this kind of connection.

How does it operate appointments and so on in Washington in that


D: Well, today? Today?

I: Whenever you like.

D: Well, it's a very interesting relationship. I can probably...this

both pleases, amuses and amazes me. But I can probably get Bob Sikes

on the phone faster than most anybody. Either he appreciates my

position, he's that pragmatic or whatever, but we have a good relation-

ship and because of it.and because of his voting-record and.his, you

know, general support of the President and so forth, we don't have any

desire to replace him. Why should we? Immediately after the Goldwater

election, he...his voting record, you know--don't hold me to figures...

I: Sure.

D: ...jumped something like from about 55% to about 85% ACA rating and

he is very conducive to his constituents' wishes. If that's...that's

the proper way to say it. He does, he follows their thinking and he's

an old pro and he's not going to try to convince his constituents...

oh, I've seen him take some fairly controversial positions. He's not

going to buck the wind too long if it's pretty basic west Florida




I: Can you give me an example or two of what would have been controversial

in terms of west Florida? Anything pop into mind? That's a better

question for him to answer, but is there something which strikes you


D: Well, yeah, course generally he's taken care of our military bases,

which is a basic economic leg. Oh, every now and then he'll try to

move something to Crestview from Pensacola or something like that--

then we've caught him on that. But generally I...I went to Washington

and took my family and--and you know, obviously I recognize flattery.

I mean I'm not stupid. But he took us to the Congressional dining

room. We went out in front of the Capitol, he had a photographer

waiting--and not only that, he sent a picture to the News Journal

of his meeting with the local Republican leader and his family. They

didn't run it, they thought it was...they thought it was...they

thought if they ran that they would hurt me. But I wouldn't have

cared. And at the last Sikes testimonial we had, oh, I think that

out of a thousand people there, a couple of hundred of'em were Repub-

licans. He has a good relationship with Gurney. I call Senator

Gurney's office all the time and, you know, just by the tone of

voice .aid so forth, they...no trouble. And I'd say the only trouble

we have with him is the fact that in, you know, in organization voting

of the House, he of course has to vote Democratic. Besides that,

he's virtually a Republican. I think that's what you're getting to.

And my uncle who is in Washington says, "Why, Hell, he's a Republican,

you know." And I wrote a column about a year ago, a guest editorial

in which I said these things openly. No, no problem from Bob. But

he's courteous and he's developed a tremendous office efficiency.



He's got the staff and the people to respond to any problem that

an individual or a local government or what-have-you has. And there's

just no substitute for that kind of action. I can...we've been trying

to get a med school over here and E.W. Hopkinswho I got with Sikes,

recently called Sikes about it, said we're getting the short end of

the deal. He called Reubin over the phone and called E. W. back in

thirty minutes. He'd already talked with the governor of Florida.

That, that fast. That was a Republican that called. Ahd he knows

h how to do things. There's just no substitute for competency.

I: There's no no need actually for you to search out a

Republican opponent for Sike's seat.

D: We've got a...no, we got a...no, not particularly. We would like the

next Congressman to be Republican and to be from Pensacola. And

Pensacola has a terrible record under the Democratic party of not

producing leaders. We haven't had a congressman since the 1920's.

We haven't had a governor, before Askew, since 1885, I think it was--

old Governor Perry. We haven't had a U. S. Senator since Mallory,

before the turn of the century. And if I were running for office now

or running for Congress, I would point out Pensacola's poor record

under the Democrats. And I think that has a lot to do with some of

the, some of the...I don't know how to say it...progress the town

hasn't made, some of the problems. In roads--obviously we're hard

to get to from transportation. Whether it's air, land, sea or what,

you can't get to this town. And I think that the public servants

in the past that dropped the ball;-we haven't elected strong people.

We haven't elected people who are really dedicated to getting some

things for the town. We've got the same problem to some extent with



the present governor. He's afraid that he would get accused of

helping west Florida. My philosophy is that any public servant

worth his salt will take care of his own district, no matter where

he is, and that's part of it.

I: Always touching base...

D: That's right, and, you know, Reubin's al-, when Reubin was a state...

was elected from Escambia County, senator from Escambia County, he

thought he was Florida state senator. Now, he always operates on

one level higher in my mind than he, than he was elected.

I: I think I follow that.

D: Yeah.

I: Okay. Let's talk about Governor Kirk. Well, let me ask you the

obvious question to begin with. Where did you first meet him?

D: I met him when he ran, when he came over here in 19--, when was it,


I: He ran against Senator Holland. He was the chairman of the Florida

Democrats for Nixon in 1960.

D: Yeah, I didn't know him then. And I ...in 1960, as I told you, I

was involved in the Doyle Carlton campaign. As a matter of fact,

in the last few weeks I was even a local manager for Doyle Carlton.

He was a Democrat and he ran against Farris Bryant. And a very interesting

campaign. Maybe this is the time to comment on it.

I: Okay.

D: Carlton began his race late. That had a great deal to do with his

losing. But Carlton suffered from the racial issue. Bryant made

hay with the racial issue, uh, issues, which interestingly enough,

put me supposedly with a racial, racially moderate candidate. And



you go back to the statements and they said, at do you do if your
local schools integrated Farris Bryant said "I will send my children

to private schools." A Harvard-educated lawyer said that. And Doyle

Carlton, the Florida Cracker, in fact, said, "I'll send my children...

I'll keep sending them to the same school." And how in the world

that Farris Bryant got away with such answers as that during that

idiotic campaign of 1960, I'll never know. It was an unbelievable

campaign. There's a young.woman, by the way, at Florida State who's

done a master's thesis on that campaign and I'm quoted in it a little

bit. I turned over a Carleton scrapbook to the P. K. Yonge Library.

When I turned it over, I put a little analysis of the campaign. But

it was...Bryant spent his time walking in front of the television

cameras talking about what he was going to do about the racial problem

and about this damn Supreme Court and it was a lot of demagoguery.

And Doyle told it like it was. And how a Harvard-educated lawyer

could carry the Panhandle against a Cracker-type cattleman, God knows,

but he did it. And he...it was because Carlton was associated with

Leroy Collins. And the Miami Carlton people got an.'eleventh-hour

Collins endorsement which killed us. And Doyle Carlton somewhat loses

incentive. And it's the old trick, which we've pulled on other people.

But in this case I have no...I feel had no merit for putting the racial

onus on a:candidate. And it taught me in 1960 that the racial issue

was a phony issue. Politically, it's a phony issue. Nobody's ever

done anything about it, you know, even if you said, Okay, we don't

want integration, I don't know a single politician that's ever done

anything about it--George Wallace included. It's...you know, so I'm

not, I'm not saying what the moral part is. The immorality is that



it's been used as a phony issue in the South all my life to get votes,

and, you know, George Wallace has never done a damn thing to stop any

kind of integration of any type in Alabama schools, you know. And he

thrives off those racial issues. It's a phony deal. And in this case,

1960, I think we fought a man who didn't have a character and a lot of

of other abilities that, that I think young Doyle Carlton had--he was

only thirty-seven. And I think Florida was a loser, you know. What

was it? It was a lunch counter deal--the silliest, you know, and now

Aho gives a damn who eats at a lunch counter anyway. I'm not...you

know, I said this back then, by the way. It's not just something I

say today. It's...but I, I always thought that Collins was political

death. YOu know he still is. He got beat. You know it's unfortunate.

I don't know how would you have handled that thing...?

I: It's an interesting observation, I think, about race as a phony issue,

but, you know, not being able to do certain things. It's

getting way ahead of where I'd like to be, but I would like to get a

comment in connection with this. Governor Kirk in Manatee County

in 1963.

D: What'd he do there?l

I: What are your feelings about that in light of what you just said?

D: Well, I think...I'll modify...I'll modify my statement to this extent:

that certainly there's a point after integration of schools when you

get into bussing, you know. I think you start moving toward a point

of what can-be absurdity. And I, that's where the line is drawn and

we can finally say that if we're going to have a townhouse development

every other apartment must be colored, you know. I mean, finally

it gets in all kinds of services. Certainly at that point, uh, it's



a true issue. And a lot of people thought...I'm not sure, I don't

know what the exact problem was in Manatee County. I think that Kirk

probably played that a little bit for what it was worth. He had been,

he had lost a lot of his so-called conservative credentials in the

Rockefeller endorsement and so forth and then, and also in his campaigns

against George Wallace, he thought it was clever to go into Alabama

and campaign against Wallace. He was trying to show the Republican'

National Committee how brave and gallant he was! And that Manatee

County thing, I think he probably thought it was absurd--the bussing

thing. But then again, people, you know, people move out of mixed

motivations. That's, that's something a lot of young people don't

understand. We do things for maybe three or four or five reasons.

And also he had a little,,,I was, I was over in Tallahassee during

that time and had a professor out a FSU do a little research on

Jackson bucking Federal judges. YOu know, he had some pretty good

cases. And I gave them to Kirk 'cause I'd sent one to Manatee

I don't know if it stopped him or not. But having a

Federal judge tell a governor something gets into some, you know, that

kind of would make any governor's hair on the back of his head rise.

And so it was a rather complex and...he finally had to bow to the

Federal court.

I: Right. This was why I raised it

D: Well, I think there's a good, I think there's a good answer. But,

you know, I think we ought to start back.

I: Yeah, I agree. Okay. In 1964, he ran against...

D: Robert King High.

I: Robert King HIgh. And in '66 he ran again. And you made the state-



ment much earlier that you thought that it wasn't so much a matter

of Governor Kirk winning as it was a matter of Robert King High losing.

D: That's right. MOst thinking Republicans believe this. As a matter

of fact, I've even heard Kirk himself...

....................... END OF SIDE 2........ TAPE A ............... ....

S7AP( 8,

-... il .... S'z

Klingman interviewing
P. Dodson

*: twas identified with the Kennedys. ... had been done fairly success-

fully. Ed Ball was against him. Do you remember? He was a young

guy who had run a pretty good race against Cei4ns. People didn't

know a great deal about him, but he had some good connections

in Jacksonville, and some other people. He had

built a ... allegedly built insurance company that had done well--

American Heritage. And I'm told that the polls indicated even
to win
towards the end that by gosh, he was going / I remember driving

down to the campaign office that night for the party and it on

the radio that he won and I must admit that I could hardly be-

lieve it. He had come up here several times. I had made a

couple of significant moves for him. I got James Lee, a Demo-

crat and a member of the old road board, in fact he was, let's

see, I think he was the president of the board. I got James Lee

to come out for Kirk on television and here agin we had Rein-
hart Holmes as campaign chairman. I forgot to tell you/the Gold-

water thing the idea was to get a Democrat.

don't think they could get a Democrat to be campa--, --paign

chairman,- Zo' e__c- _'_7 i_ for the state offices. Maybe

... we had Mixon Daniel, a Democrat, chairman of the Goldwater

committee. Then I was what they call campaign ... he was chair-

man, I was manager. We sort of split the duty.

K: What was the r4QSOp ) ?

D: And well, it was, you know, ... to get Democratic votes. To

project a prominent/young lawyer who had a tremendous reputation,

UF PERS 5-3-

When they made the announcement, they ran his picture in the paper,

than than mine, which was fine.

K: While on the subject of the Goldwater campaign in '64 ... did you

have any feelings about Claude Kirk in '64 running against Holland?

D: Nobody thought he'd win. I can remember getting the family down, I

opened his office, but nobody, nobody ... everybody sorta felt like

it was a ... felt as if it were an exercise. And I think Kirk

I think he did. He was very loose and affable.

K: Didn't spend very much money.

D: We didn't have much money. Didn't spend much money. And we
ran a good race. It was a/ example of what one can do. It

set him up for the '66 race and so when the returns came in in'66,

well,, there was a 44 1" statewide, Ol high vote.

K: What got Claude Kirk the Republican nomination in '66?

D: he got it by default. I don't think, I don't

think there was a Republican primary then. In '64 a guy named (Ch/ej)

Holly had run for governor and had gotten about 35% of the vote.

But if you watch the figures Republicans had been getting an

increasingly large vote every time. There was always some Re-

publican I believe the record will hsow who ran who would pick
-t do 0Va t14 / HMc -
up 25%, 35% of the vote. And I mean I'm just saying

that Holly got, I believe Holly got 35%-40% of the votes.

K: I think that's correct ...

D: Yeah, and he was not a top candidate, at that time. He was a pretty

good man, but he certainly didn't have the charisma that Kirk

had to use a modern term. And he didn't have the general state-

wide ... Kirk had some pretty good people around the state

backing ...


K: Who were some?

D: Well, here in Pensacola he had ... he had, he had, well, he had

Holliday UC( ~I who, who'd become a Republican in 1960 in

the Nixon campaign. Reinhart Holmes, who had been on the city

council for a number of years. He had Bruce Smith, who was a

senior engineer out at Monsanto, which is a conservative, con-

servative hotbed---7000 employees voted against joining the union

the union, when they had the union vote. We had Roger Doyle from

an old Pensacola family. His uncle was b) /,* e\ae _

His family was here in territorial days. We had

D.A. Bob Shutti, who had been around quite a bit. We had Ed Riles,

a young doctor; myself, of course, and others. But we, you know,

we had, and then the Robert King High people here 4i rl / /

had a ... They had about the weakest organization

there ever was. There was an old county politician in there ...

they had a ... it was pretty bad. They had a, they had a homo-

sexual running the campaign office, I mean he, they couldn't get

anybody of any prominence.

K: This is one you thought you knew you were going to win?

D: Yeah, well, we thought we'could win the county perhaps, but we

didn't, we thought- statewide it would be tough and all of a sudden

the returns came in. Actually Kirk had won before the west

Florida returns came in ... you know, so ... So anyway when he

got, when he got elected, we got the committee together and I

said we ought to send him a telegram immediately to tell him we

want to confer with him on appointments! And so we did. I

drafted the telegram and then e V04 Bill Stafford,

who got appointed State Attorney later by the way. And I would


go down and meet with him. And I went down and met with him

_ the old Duval Hotel.

K: What town?

D: In Tallahassee. And I remember we had to wait while Bud Dick-

inson saw him ) q ic 'irr.'-,- )/, ok. /& V .' But im-

mediately all these cabinet members, you know, they knew what

was what, and we waited about thirty minutes while Dickinson and

Kirk met. And then Kirk met with Stafford and me and he started

off by saying, "I'll slap your wrist a little bit for sending

that telegram." He was a little, a little impatient, you know.

We didn't say "congratulations." We just said we want to be in on

the appointments! Ha, ha!! But he kinda like ... Kirk was, had a

sort of Andrew Jackson quality like that. He liked people who

bucked him, if there was a pretty good kick. And I, I bucked

him alot by the way during the whole four years. And I know one

time 40 when he hired Bill Saf/ire, who now is a writer with the

New York Times, and I got on the phone with him and I ate him out!

I told him that he didn't need him, and it was absurd and that,

you know, he had good people around him. And he hadn't, you know,

certainly he hadn't called on me for one. If he wanted to get

in the press, by god, we could get it. He didn't need Saffire.

And I raged for an hour, and you know, he really should have

thrown me out of the office but he didn't do it. And he was sort of

like that.

K: That's an interesting commentary.

D: It is. And I, oh, I can tell you just tremendous moments with

him. I, I remember when I, I made a big drive on west Florida

farms. I even made up a chart, and after about a year in office,

UF PERS 3ft-

you know, we were getting SIloA Ch4 fc in Pensacola. And

I, I made a chart of all the appointments and showed how he

wasn't ... how we were not getting them. And so he made ... he

appointed the Game Commissioner from Marianna. He reappointed

James Lee to the Road Board, which we'd encouraged. But, you

know, nothing out of Pensacola. And they started... there was a

little rumbling downtown. The Democrats wanted ... trouble

about something. And so ...

K: You weren't getting any major appointments?

D: I used to get on the phone to the governor's office and then

I'd say to him, and I'd go over a list. This was when I

was till over here. This was in '66 ...n&, it'd be '67 and '68,

wouldn't it? Yeah. And I'd go down and I'd, I'd recommend

people, the Board of Regents appointment was coming up ... he'd

ask me about that. And I remember I recommended a local fellow.

He said, "That pompous bastard?" He said, "I'm not going to ap-

point him to anything." He said, "He's the kind who gets appointed,

appointed to everything." And I thought ... and, and Kirk was

right. He was the kind who always got appointed to things no

matter who was governor. Kirk said, I, you know, why don't we

appoint some young guy? And he was real strong on young people.

He said the best appointment you could get was to appoint a

thirty-five, a thirty-year old lawyer to be sure. You know, a

good clean type, instead of these red-neck bumpkin types, who're

slinging pistols and wearing cowboy hats. He had a tremendous

feel for this type of man. And when I got appointed to the

Board of ReAgents, I was on one of my trips, and I went down there

rasing hell ...griping; I had my chart. And they're all grinning


like hell at me because they knew that Kirk had decided three

months ahead of time to appoint me to the Board of Regents

because when the presidency of the University of Florida

came up, Kirk wanted to appoint somebody besides Steve O'Connell.

Steve knows this. I think it was probably that congressman from the

Ocala area. I can't think of his name. At any rate Kirk didn't

have the votes on the Board of Regents. O'Connell got it. And

O'Connell had been heavily identified with politics. So you

know here was a guy who was governor, been in damn near two years

and couldn't, couldn't prevent, at least veto a major appointment.

You know it showed exactly what he told me. He says, you know,

we are just in here for a short period. We don't really have

this thing, the Democrats essentially have it. We're just occupy-

ing the damn premises. That's what he told me. And you know
they'll get us anyway ... and it / true. This type of appointment

was right. Now as soon as Reubin Askew became governor you can

bet your bottom dollar that he had ... certainly veto powers all

... on any college president appointment. I know this for a

fact. But he got control of the Board of Regents immediately.

Kirk did not have any control over the Board of REgents for two
years. Alright. So/I came there about September, raising hell

about appointments, and uh, after going through a couple of aides

who were grinning, I went into his office and he didn't say ...

"I'M going to appoint you to the Board of Regents." He picked

up the phone and called a press aide and he said, "Have you got that

release on Dodson's appointment to the Board of Regents ready?"

You know, it was, it was as low key as youould possibly ...

K: This would have been in September of '69, right?

D: Yeah, and I'm sitting there, you know. And I say, "gee," and


you know, he says, okay, and he hung it up and he turned around

and puffed on a pipe or something. And I don't even know what I said,

but what he had done because John had bucked him, he made,

he announced it early as a sort of a slap at FL'. I saw it and

it worked. You know so he comes out in the papers. Actually John

Pace and I are old ... he's, he'a generation before me. We were

friends and so forth. And I went down to the last meeting in

December with him and he broke me in and he was very cordial and

courteous and so forth, but, but on a turnpike appointment once

before ...he said... we, we worked, we finally worked it out,

he and I. He wanted to appoint Roger Doyle, who was a member

of an old Pensacola banking family, to the Florida Turnpike

Authority .. And Roger checked with his boss, A4 Reese at

the bank and his boss said "no." So I told Kirk, I said, /

Reese won't let him take it. He said, the hell with /rtf Reese,
I'll appoint him anyway. He said, when they see it in the paper,

then, then, he's ... Kirk didn't explain this but what his

thinking, his thinking was: what's he going to do? Call the

paper and say I'm not going to let my employee, who is my nephew,

take the appointment? Kirk knew how to handle power in that case.

And he appointed Roger. I4Pt Reese read about it in the damn

paper and Roger served on the turnpike authority and did a pretty

good job. I could tell many stories ... of gutsy things like

that he did. He didn't need Bill Safire to project a gutsy

image. He had a ... a true, sincere gutsy personality. And

alot of it was attuned to the young generation. Young people--

not the old establishment. Kirk was essentially anti-establish-

ment. That ... 'cause I'm telling you things that you know ..


... that never was projected in any public image.

K: I read two things about Governor Kirk before I came over here

that impressed me philosophically instead of imagewise, per-

haps is the best way to put it. First is when he came into office in -66

he was at least unencumbered by so many different ties. He

had an opportunity to do so many things because he was not ...

D: No promises.

K: No promises made and, and everything that he could start clean

with. And the second one and you can relate both together if you

like individually. The second
one that amazed me was the statement was made thatlGovernor was

an idea man; that he gave off ideas in an ~iti~ma sense "almost

like a pinwheel," was the expression.

D: That's very true. He didn't really, he didn't really want the

support of people who routinely supported government. And I, I

named some people to him I thought we could get. He says, 'Let

'em alone."

K: Like who for example.

D: Well, I'd rather not.

K: OK.

D: I'd rather not name tem but, but he said, you know, "hell, I don't

want 'em." And Z said, they've got power, they've got, you know,

but I, you know, he says, they'll want some-

thing, and I don't want to get them. You know I don't want ...

alot of time he didn't explain

the why, but he gave you enough hints that anybody with enough

brains could figure it out. And when he got in, it was the same


way on appointments, He didn't allow to appoint the guy who

always got the appointment. I've gotten redundant but it was a

healthy ... e was he was.really anti-establishment. This

was as fresh, you know, as the gulf wind in Tallahassee because

... and actually there was even in patronage, YI like in buying,

you know they've reformed alot of this stuff now but there

was a, there was a joke and I don't, you know. We had, you

htink we had no experience in state government. Now here we

got a governor, and 1, I say we, there was nobody. Hell, they

didn't ... I don't know if he knew how to'veto a bill; I mean

anything. He got Tom Ferguson in from the Secretary of STates

office and finally, you know, some young aides, and you know,

set up an administration. But when they first moved in, they

didn't know what kind of cooperation they would get from these cabinet

officers or v-a./^ And it was a, it was a strange thing.

All he got ... he got a p big popular vote and anyway he waded

in. And right away he made a decision to go for the vice-presidency

even before he got inaugurated. I know that for a fact. And ...

I know it from innuendo and so forth and 'course that was the thing

that wrecked him. At the same time it was very possible--look what

happened to Spiro Agnew. So g you've got to give him credit for

recognizing the fact that he figured the Floridians have got it.

As a matter of fact he still, he told me that he was still... he

was on a list even when Agnew got it of five, five governors. And

as a matter of fact allegedly when Kirk married Erika ... at the

... at the reception, Kirk had a father-in-law- from his divorced

wife who lived in Panama City, you know, old timer, who I used to

know. And every now and then I'd feed him something


UF pers 33B 71 V 4 / ?U 5 7 -

87 1f 6. And Kirk would call him.

He'd call him from the Mansion in the morning and he'd say, gee,

I forgot his name, but he'd say how're things going? You know

he just kinda looked after the old man. He was a wonderful type.

The old man had gone around and ... well, I talked to the Gover-

nor, the Governor said this ... Kirk didn't give a damn. Once

I told the Governor I said, you know I'm not going to go fly out

your name. He said,"go ahead, I IYA don't care. You know. You're

a good friend; I don't mind your throwing my name if

you want to." But what was I saying?

K: You were ready to say something Kirk's father-in-law allegedly said,

D: Oh. He said that, the old man told me that Nixon turned around

in the reception line, can't believe he was A in the reception

1 line, 'course I guess 4 he was, he wasn't, he was just an ex-Vice

President then, and said something to the effect that, "I'm going

to put that boy on the ticket with me" when he ran in '68. And I

don't know if the old man doctored up the talk or whether he A said

"wouldn't he make a good ..." you know he could said all kinds of

things; "wouldn't he have ...", "wouldn't he make a good guy on the

ticket?" The old man told me, it was "Uncle Cleve," by the way, that's

what they call him, told me that he said, "I'm going to put him on

the ticket." And he told, 'course he told Claude that. And Claude

had ... Claude Kirk had alot of reasons to believe that he would

get on the ticket. So he immediately had this in mind when he

started his administration, and I'm sorry to say, that, you know,

he, he hired Saffire I don't know when it was but, you know he

started doing some things that got him more in trouble than got him


on the ticket. It would have been my theory, and believe me I'm

not second guessing, all he had to do was be a good governor. And

he'd a gotten the damn thing. 'Cause Florida was indeed a border

state, ... and but he didn't do it. He got into confrontation-

type politics. He got into ... confront Rap Brown and... He

did, he did, some of those tricks were pretty cute. I'd like to

comment on the orange juice stand. OK. What happened--- down

around Sanford, wasn't it?

K: Umm, huh.

D: A kid opens up a lemonade stand or an orange juice stand on

the street;l and some Board of Health guy closes him down because

he doesn't have a men's and women's toilet.

K: 0C,4~El C9

D: Yeah, OK, right, right. And Kirk hears about it and hits th

ceiling. He say, you know, has, has free enterprise in this coun-

try gotten to the point where a kid can't open up a lemonade stand

without all this bureaucratic crap? So he goes down and says, you

know, I think, I think the state Health Department was pretty

much either under the cabinet or under the governor, one anyway.

And he goes down and reopens the stand with a ceremony and the

press did alot of ... 4 and so forth about...

K: .

D: But even, even with the circu4like on the thing, I guess

you might say, ,the fact is that it was a hell of a good example of a,

of a good-way of making an example of a, ofia pretty sad situation.

You know. And it was true that, that it had happened to pri-

vate enterprise. It was symbolic of what had happened to

US EgS 33B

private enterprise in this country. So it wasn't all that silly.

He made a comment at a Cabinet meeting once. "We ought to build
a wall at the Georgia line because/all the damn people

coming in." Oh, they jumped on that. You know. What an absurd,

ridiculous comment. Well, here in 1973 it's not so absurd and it's

not so ridiculous. If anybody could devise a way of stopping

immigration to Florida I think they'd do it. But he would ... he

would consistently make these crass comments ...

K: Was it a matter of his being misinterpreted or was it the way he

said it or was the press out to get him or was it a combination of

all three?

D: I think it was a combination of all three. And I think that ...

first place, alot of times he'd say these things in a ... he had

almost a slurring sort of way. He wouldn't ever say them in a

very coherent h#J manner. He'd say them almost casually. And then

second, I think they were more sophisticated than the press re-

ported. They were used to listening to a bunch of "pork chop

politicians" frankly. And thirdly, I think they were out to get

him. And I think the combination of the things ... you know, I

mean there's no doubt about it that $ Reubin Askew has had the biggest

honeymoon press in the history of the state's history. He's even
you know
two of them on his staff and/they will not criticize him no matter

what. Let me give you an example. Kirk, Kirk was criticized for

the party aying for his airplane. Now, you know, looking back

this is about as absurd as the, as the Farris Bryant lunchroom

junket. Reibin let's the state buy him a $600,000 plane. And he's

not criticized. You know it's a double standard. And the press,

when I say the press, I don't mean, you know, we're talking about


St. Petersburg Times and Miami Herald and you know, and certain

other newspapers who, who like to dominate state government.

The Tampa Tribune, if their, in Democratic times, if their

governor didn't win, they would ride the guy who did win for

four years. And that was the way the Trib worked. So naturally

when a Republican got in that wasn't their guy, so you know, ... they

rode Haydon Burns. They'll ride, you know, what the hell. Some-

times ridin' Claude Kirk was easy. And they rode him. It's, it's

right back to who's going to rule which is a basic question in

American politics. Who's going to rule? And you can clothe it

with alot of philosophy and alot of issues, some of them, some of

them truthful, some of them phony or what. But that, you know,

that's always the basic question: who's going to call the shots?

And when, and when the ones who are used to calling the shots

ain't calling anymore, they raise hell. And as I told you before,

I think that's a great part of the Watergate thing, not totally,

but a great part of it.

K: Let me ... I really didn't want to talk about controversial things

before I talked about his contributions, but while we're on the

subject of the things that made Governor Kirk controversial,what

about the 1969 audit? And the spending irregularities ... the

honeymoon trips ...?

D: Well, ...

K: The Governor's Club, these kinds of things. Things that came out at

least and again 4X/a.S I'm distorting it.

D: The first thing he got in trouble with was that Wackenhaut thing.

K: Well,

D: No, that's a good one. But ... he said that state ... if the


legislature hasn't appropriated, I think this was a thesis he

had, enough money to root out organized crime in Florida, then, we'll

raise the money publicly)y and get the Mafia and so forth out. And

you know, it had, it was a dramatic thought, but the only thing

about it, it led to all kind of problems about if you're investi-

gating somebody for political purposes.

K: Did you have any input into the formulation of that policy?

D: No no, I did not. He announced it at the inauguration. I had a

seat ..I was next to Claude PeppEr. But he broke it and I don't think

many people knew about it. I think Wackenhaut was a friend

of his. Well, and that would involve all kind of problems and ,

and I really think that some political inexperience was behind

that. I, I think, I think if he'd thought it out, he would have

realized that the I press would've finally got him on this one.

There was no way to run that thing in a pure manner. And then he

was sorta running up a debt with Wackenhaut. This meant that you

had to form a Governor's Club and so forth to raise money. Now,

every governor of florida has had to have private financing after

the election. In recent time, at least certainly in the forties,

fifties and sixties. Because there, there are many things that are

simply not provided for in the gub natorial ... governor's

office budget and so forth.


D: No. Travel is a good ... good one up to this time. Sure, you

could travel on a commercial airplane. But hell, it's still hard ...

and time becomes a premium. And a jet was absolutely the answer.

Kirk had the answer. And he was thinking forward and that's

most governor's fly in now anyway. I bet that's why Reubin flies


in one now. If it's not a jet it's some--, a turbo or something

like that. So he said, you know, I can go to Miami in an hour in-

stead of a five-hour milk run.

D: So that's one thing. Second, you just need money to do things

politically. How are you going to set up, how are you going to

set up any kind of basic organization to make a bid for the

vice-presential's bid without raising money?

K: Maybe this was partCef /. / ?

D: Yeah, let me Aive youn example. u, you do things that are

honest, but which require money. Like, a friend in a fellow state

who is running for Congress. And you've got a good man, "in the

family", so to speak, that you could run him. I mean a guy who

who could run the campaign for him. So he could get some assistance.

OK. You say, OK, and I know this, this happened. We sent a guy

to Mississippi. And he was a close friend of mine. To help someone

run for Congress on the Republican ticket. Alright, you send him

over. You got to finance it. So he goes over there and stays two

months. You got to pay him. You know, we're, we're talking about

something that's going to cost with expenses and all three or four

thousand dollars. There are all kind of things that, that are

legal and are perfectly natural, that require money. And you can't

take it out of the governor's office budget. That would, that

would be wrong. So there's always a need for money. Askew's had

to raise money. Haydon Burns was constantly raising money. As

was Farris Bryant. Well, obviously, this cant lead to some, some ...
Obviously any given governor can say, hell, we'll have a cause-4to

raise money. And I'm sure that's been done. A guy's in office,

puts out the word through his campaign organization that they


have a need for money and he's going to be in for three or four

years. It's pretty hard to say, oh, hell, no, we gave our money

during the campaign. I don't, I don't know the remedy for this

type of thing. I don't know the remedy for any disease it may


K: Within the party itself Governor Kirk, certainly in office was

from all that I've read, flamboyant in certain ... >1 V

perhaps, financially extravagant in some ways.

D: Yeah, of yeah.

K: There's some suggestion that the Republican Party got somewhat

tired of it in the end and ...

D: Oh, yea. Oh, yeah. They did.

K: What about this kind of thing?

D: Well, he did like to go-LpLA first class. He ... he was a

complex man and that was ... thrift, personal thrift, wasn't one

of his virtues. And it got him in trouble. He loved to go some-

where ... I was told out in California he was somewhere, he ordered

champagne for all the tables, ... and he liked to do that type

of thing.

K: Did he ever get any advice or input from the people in the party?

Did you, for tance, caution the governor at any time that this

was not politically sensible, if nothing else?

D: I never had occasion ... you know, I was involved with him on a

... it wasn't ... in the first two years, first three, "first

two years got my Regents appointment particularly. It was a

hit amd miss type of thing. I mean I did things like I went

out to Dallas once. I was advance I was advance man for him.


Before I got on the Board of Regents, I, I think it was the Board

of Regents, I was advance man ... it wasn t, it was Houston.

Everfett Dirksen was supposed to be the main speaker at a ban-

quet in honor of John Tower, Senator Tower. And Senator Dirk-

sen got sick, and so Kirk .. I think Dirksen recommended that

Kirk be the substitute. And they erased ... Tower had a $75,000

deficit from his campaign, I understood. And so I got a call out

of the blue, said, you know, the governor would like for you to

advance his trip to Houston. And I thought, you know ... I was in

my thirties then, a little younger than now and said, well, what

the hec'll go out to Houston. So I went out there and hobnobbed

with the wealthy Texan Republicans for two or three days. I

called on all the local newspapers and gave them a little infor-

mation and figures. Everything was very pleasant. e ad'a big

blowout at the Shamrock Hotel. The only nistake is they let ...

Dirksen called down there by telephone; they i couldn't get the

old man off the phone. So he talked to the banquet for fifteen ,

twenty minutes! You know. Then Kirk came on, but he did well.

And, and he brought Erika out there and he brought Bill Murphy out

there who was the party chairman. And I asked Bill at the time,

I said, you know, what's the game plan? What's going on? And

Murpbf\ said something to me like he didn't know. And that told

me for the first time that there was something that wasn't right

between Kirk and Bill Murphj, who was the state chairman. Murphin

had a rather stronkopinion of the state chairman's position and

power. And Kirk had a pretty strong opinion of the governor's


power. So it was quite natural that they fell out. I think

.eT P 7,L He flew a jet out : there by the

way. didn't come back with him because they flew straight to

Miami, I think but if you want to go to Miami,

come on, you know. But I stayed out there, I -

I think Anne Armstrong, who's now Counsel to the President, was

there. Quite alot of Texans. I remember John Tower was there.

It was a very interesting trip. But everywhere he went he wanted

to go first class. I don't know whether he ... I think he's still

kinda like that. But bein' governor ... You see, that's you

know de Tockueville in 1835 pointed out that Americans resent

their leaders going first class, to use a term. And it's a

problem in foreign countries even today that you have somebody

in an embassy or something and he's around in an old Army car

or something like that, not having a chauffer. So the europeans

think he's nobody. But we, we are that way about our leaders

and I, I think that ...


D: Yeah, yeah, that has ...


D: And I think that had something to do with the press getting on him.

Certainly he lived more flamboyantly than any other governor and but

you know, in a sense, in, in defense of Kirk he thought the

position deserved to go first class and he enjoyed doing it. And

he just overdid it. But I think it's a flaw in his ... it becomes

somewhat of a flaw in his character in : not recognizing that

he is overdoing it.



K: Let me pursue the point you raised about Bill Murphin's com-

ment to you in Dallas, ...

D: Houston.

K: I mean Houston. And it's something other to ... besides the money

issue. One man had a strong feeling for the-state Republican

chairmanship and Govennor Kirk had a strong feeling about being

head of the party he was governor of. Can you elaborate? That,

that aspect of what took place.

D: well, I never was ... I never was a Bill Murphin fan, frankly.

Murphin was in the drug business, you know, druggist, retail druggist.

And he ... had gotten to be elected state executive chairman and

... and he wasn't warm person, particularly, and I ... he was a

great improvement over Tom Brown, I guess he was I that he beat,

but uh, I still didn't ... I just never thought he was that good

a fellow and he just, he just didn't win me over. So I, I was ...

I always sorta leaned toward Kirk whenever a breach developed and

I think Murphin got tired of some of the spending; I think he got

tired of having to defend Kirk on some things he did. And of

course, the Rockefeller thing, I, I can't remember now when the

break was, but certainly the Rockefeller thing was ... he did ...

I understand, oh, lord, who was the ... the guy that got Kirk

in the Rockefller thing was that state road chairmanwho, whom

the Senate wouldn't confirm. What was his name? Well, at any
n 1
rate he was, he was from the General I c) company out of

Dayton, Ohio, or somewhere. Anway, Mike O'Neal, Mike O'Neal


was a friend of Rockefeller's. And I'm told that o'Neal was

the guy who got Kirk into that razzmatazz and .... You see,

Agnew came out for Rockefeller too.

K: Yes, indeed.

D: You know everybody forgets that. I think Kirk's reasoning was

and that, they called me, the local paper,and they were jumping

up and down some ... you know, down there. They were really, you

know, this un--) expected move and so forth, and I said, well, that

it would be quite natural if Rockefeller's not going to be the

candidate, that he pick, that Nixon pick one of his supporters to

unite the party. That's exactly what he did. And I made that

comment to the local paper when it happened. Some of the other

Republicans, we had one committee member who, you know, ; knocked

Kirk because of it, but I thought he had something in mind. I

think, I think. I'm not sure whether the thesis- I just gave

you was Kirk's thinking or the fact that by that time he .had

pretty well realized he was out of the Nixon campaign-- wasn't

going to get it. And therefore the Rockefeller endorsement was

a last straw thing encouraged by Mike O'Neal. Of course, any-

thing can happen at a convention and Rockefeller was certainly

in the running to some extent. Well, anyway, it ... that move

did more to kill Kirk in Florida politics than anything.

K: What about the 1970 campaign? First primary against Jack

Eckard and .... Foregone conclusion that ... he was in trouble.

D: By that time, by that time I was direction of administration, I

had gone off the Board of Regents. I got a call ... for the


record, I want to tell you about. I got a call one Sunday about

noon from the governor's mansion. And Senator Gurney, Lt. Gov.

Osborne, state chairman gi4 C(' ^ and Claude Kirk were

all there on a conference phone and ... I forgot who asked me,

I talked with several of them, to get off the Board of Regents

and take this very sensitive job in a part of the administration

and, and I took it for several reasons, mixed emotions on it.

One, I felt that you couldn't accept the prestigious jobs and

then when, like the Board of Regents, and when they call you for

one that's really tough and the/really need somebody and ... really

hard to find somebody to fit the bill, and he could say, "oh, no,

I'll take the prestigious job and you get somebody else to take the

tough one." That jA was one thing. Second I guess I was a little

bit flattered that they all ganged up on me. And third, I thought

I had, I thought I had a chance to be on the ticket with him as

lieutenant governor. And I told him that. I said, I think you will

understand that I've got, you know, a shot at it, and I said OK.

Whether I ever did or not you know it never worked out because

Osborne ... Ray Osborne attempt to run for the Senate.

was ... was kinda blanked out. He couldn't raise the money so

he was pulled back on the ticket. But I thought that f if I ,that

I, you know, had a good background with the Board of Regents
and then an appointment in the administration / would ...that

would strengthen my credentials and so forth. And then again

there was a chance to come down to Tallahassee the last year and



get in the thick of it, you know, be a good fight. And I was

a little ... I had already begun to start tiring of the adver-

tising business by that time, so I took it, you know. Here again,

mixed ... mixed motivation. And I'm glad I took it. I enjoyed

the devil out of it when I went dowilthere. DO you want to talk

about this?

K: Sure. Fine.

D: I went down there. He had put a ..I relieved Jack Cash. Jack

stayed around for about two or three days and I, I told him

q There was no ...

there was no directive, no trans--, director of director of trans--,

I mean there was no head guy. Mike O'Neal had not been replaced

and Kirk had picked Ed Miller, pronounced, or spelled M-u-e-l-l-e-r-,

and he had, he was still in Washington. He was still with the
National Academy of Science. And so for a little while/I was

the head guy. I was really always the head guy in a sense because

the governor's ... what do you call it, political appointee, while

Mueller was really an engineer and he needed a good front man. Al-

though Mueller was the real thing. We had a tremendous association

because I covered the so-called political angle and work; and

th&s relieved him of having to worry about it.

K: This, while we're on the subject,of the Department of Transporta-

tion and your role in it, of course I guess it's common know-
ledge that one of the problems in any/government is the moneyin

contracts and so on and so forth; what about the political reputation?


What, what did you manage to ---?

D: Well, first thing, well, uh, they spend an awful lot of money.

They spend millions. And I had about ten departments under me.

I had _j_ L- /____ acquision, I had the Florida Turnpike,

I had the Ahb/c)/ ,, the press, I had... name all ten of 'em,

I can't think. I had, I didn't have the engineering one, but I

had, I had an awful lot of, I had/the purchasing department

was under me. I had a awful lot of repsonsibility. The computer

was under me, and the road operation and construction were you

know essentially under the chairman. But ... it was the number

two slot and an official, being / governor's appointee, alot of

people thought it was the number one slot. I didn't ever have

any illusions that it was, but I had people tell me it was, you

know. But I, I was I tried to operate you know, as a strong

office and did. And immediately I started talking to the press

and I didn't even check with the governor or not. We had that ...

he knew I wasn't going to take it and have to have some flunky

over in the governor's office approve personally. I immediately

started taking phone calls, I had guys come up to the office,

I had investigative types come up, and I'd say what do you want

Now go get it. And I met I all the boys at AP and UPI and we

got, we started getting better press. We're still

Co U~v L f around there but you

can write stories about road building within ho j


First place all contracts are by bid. You let them out. Now

engineering consultant contracts are negotiated, because the

engineers don't ... the professional association doesn't want

to be by bid. And it's like bidding for medical service or

something like that. Now that's where the governor can give

the business to his friend. And in every state this is true.

Now you could say well, that get's abusing. Well, what if I

told you that one Florida governor set up his own engineering

firm and gave the business to that firm. That's how bad it can

get. And it wasn't elaude Kirk. It was a Democratic governor.

And I found out about that. And I thought it was terrible. YOu

know, that's ...

K: Are you going to tell me who it was?

D: No ...

K: Going to make me look for it...

D: I'll let you look for it but I ... it wasn't too many years be-

fore Kirk, I'll put it that way. And he simply took somebody

out of the Department of Transportation as I remember it and got,

you know, built his staff andgave them a heck of a lot of business.



D: ....I'm sure they made campaign contributions in 170:, although

I had ... I never had any dealings, political dealings, with

party or a campaign organization or anything like that. The only


thing that I did was supply him with information about road

building. And we even had at one time gg . e .,

Sj~, "rL~t~e e ,' with the governor when he would

go into areas and they would ask him about roads. I didn't,

I didn't play a big part in the campaign in 1970. And it was

a foul-up campaign. In the first place they got a guy named

Bob Lee who had happened to come down from Colorado in

the '66 campaign. Robert E. Lee, I think he was named. And

all of a sudden after the campaign the press was looking for

some kind of miracle man and they tapped Lee as the f genius

behind the Kirk victory. Lee didn't have a damn thing to do

with it. And he's, he got involved in that Ciebe/I case

though when they fV (.4ALL But he came up with

such bright ideas as putting (fC Uj e 's picture on

bottle caps and so on. And I think he was totally incompetent

and I'm not hesitating to put it on the tape. And one(i of

the reasons that we lost in 1970, was it '70(?), 1970 campaign.

He was not a political genius. He got involved down there

with the Queen Elizabeth or Queen *ary down in Lauderdale

and embarrassed the governor. But we had a meeting in Or-

lando, the only campaign meeting that we went to. Gurney was

there; Duke C' S who succeeded Bill Murfin, the state

chairman in office, nice quy, whose mother was a Dodson. And

all the ... Skip BAfalis was there. This was i I guess after

they'd ... well, I never have understood Bufalis. He, he

FP 33B

caused Kirk alot of headaches. Then they healed it...you know,

was like it was at the Green Corn Dance and started over agin, you know.

It took me a long time; I couldn't, I couldn't be that friendly,

I'm just that way. I think Bufalis ...

K: L Z 2 A .

D: Yeah, I think Bufalis helped beat
you know
Kirk. But there he was in that damn room there and/back together.

The hell with it. Well, I'm a friend of Skip's now but still

I'm, maybe I'm ... I don't know. But anyway Jack Eckerd was

not there. Anyway I told them that they ought to hit Askew

on .. you know for being an advocate of y_/4, socialism,

n/r/, a economic policy. I don't think anybody in the

amn room knew what I was talking about.

And ... otherwords call him a ,~i,u socialist. You know,

which was taking the liberal thing a little further and there

was some evidence that Reubin .'' followed these views. You know,

I obviously they were really cramped into finding something.

We found the pronography thing, but ... Reubin had a law partner

who'd been defending pornography cases. You know we're not

going to get to Askew but Askew's law firm could be his Achilles

heel even at this point. They were a bunch of swingers

But you know everybody in town knows that they

like to gamble, like to have a good time and one ,


You know it's not the kind of image .....

K: 1ir21^7W74 f' U^ -____

D: Yeah, the type, kind of Presbyterian elder image that they were

able to project. There's never yet been a real good in-

vestigative reporter on Reubin Askew's background. I can say

that right now. I think you know they found out who Claude

Kirk's first girlfriend was and everything else. But it's a

double standard and I'm telling you it's true. That's the

way the facts are, you know. You never hear about who Reubin's

father was. Or the fact that he had a brother ig who was a

bartender at the San Carlos Hotel. You just never heard of

these things. They are unspeakables that are unspoken. Well,

at any rate the campaign was sad. Kirk got crossed, according

to him, which was typical. Haydon Burns got ... I know Haydon

Burns got so cross

but I had a client who was close to him and I got on the phone

with him just a little bit. But you could he'd

use his own people. We had one staff meeting, Kirk said, you

know, you guys gotta make up your mind wether you're going to

stay here or J4 all are going to go home. Throw in the towel,

you know. I want people to start work. .And I understood ...

governor, we're all working. I said, we're not your problem.

You're your problem. You come out for Rockefeller. made an

ass out of A yourself down at the convention and got written

up on it. You know. And now you're having to reap your, your


harvest. Hell, I cant help it. You know I've done ... just what

I ... you know I never told him. I told him after ... I told him

last November I told him that it was-: .- -. --We talked for

thirty minutes. He called *~^ elections and he had,

he had a commentary spot on a, on a big Miami television station.

He was going to comment on the west Florida ret--, uh, the Florida

returns ;as- they came in. He called up here and I gave him a
rundown on west Florida and we got to / You know, I told

him ______ in a couple of years, and
I said,
he takes it!V You know ... nothing he could do about it./ You

know you don't have to be ... you don't have to work at being

flamboyant, you ARE flamboyant.

K: Would he still have a chance to get back into

in Florida?

D: Oh, yeah, yeah. He stood a better chance

He got ... he got that split in the party. Here w ad a tre-

mendous split in the party with Bill Cramer and ...

K: I do want to talk about that

D: All that, all that ... happened to contribute to his political

defeat. However, you know, a social, scientist at Florida

State University said the damn vote was strictly according to

party lines. He says, and the figures show that. I don't

know. I feel there were alot of Republicans who i gave


him feinthearted support. ... Everybgovernor has alot of

enemies. Every governor ... everybody who doesn't get an

appointment or get, or doesn't get the appointment they

think, everybody who doesn't end up eating at the

governor's mansion or and, you know, who, from the day you

start, you take office to the day, you know, you don't do any-

thing but make enemies.


D: You're the campaign, you're the then all of a sudden

you're forgotten about. That's all. And it'a an impossible

situation. ... Sure. Most, most .. the conduct of the governor's

office is, is about you know, eighty percent consistent no

matter who's governor. Askew has jealous aides. Askew has

trouble getting good men around him. Askew has financial prob-

lems. It's true for every part of the government. Now the

press can blow` it up. You know, and make it seem worse. But

generally it's the same basic problem--- the trouble with the

cabinet. Kirk said we ought not to meet ... let me give

you another example. ... ought not to meet but once every two

weeks. And they wouldn't do it. So they met without him. And

Askew, Askew's come out, we don't need but two cabinet meetings

a month. It's OK if he says it. Right back to the double

standard. And Askew had trouble with the cabinet because there

was a jealousy factor. Hell, they ... they want to 'r all be

governor. And Kirk had this same trouble. Kirk though just


bucked them directly. Askew is a little more diplomatic about


K: In terms of Governor Kirk's feelingabout the cabinet

the conduct of government, I guess really the one thing we

haven't talked about that we should in reference to Governor

Kirk and that is what actually P ..

D: Come in.

D: In reference to the conduct of government what about that which

may be in terms of the Kirk Administration perhaps his greatest
benefit in terms of contributions to Florida / : the whole

issues of reapportionment, .9/ d1 consolidation

-/~f~~f / ~ constitutional revision. All of

these things wer happening during this administration.

D: That's right. All the basic things happened and, you know,

& people still think about his coming out for Rockefeller.

We had a new constitution, it passed. He supported it in general.

We had reapportionment. He called the legislation together to

reapportion. Before the courts did. He called for a better

state law enforcement agency which we eventually g .

K: Bureau of Law Enforcement.

D: Bureau of Law Enforcement. He did some other basic thing which

I taught were great. He took the unions out of government.

The unions, when he came in, were docking their dues through

the state payroll, which is the greatest way in the world for

them to get set up. He stopped it. As soon as Askew got


elected he put it back in. This is very important. Now you

take the Department of Transportation. At one time they had,

I don't know, a thousand or fifteen hundred people were members

of unions. If their union dues are docked through their pay

check the union can operate efficiently, but when it's cut off,

and unions have to collect those dues man to man, they can't

collect them and the union doesn't ... you know, defunct. As

unions and state governments progress and become strong, then

this overflows into the local government, such as your firemenL

and policemen. And you get into a situation where the unions

have a grip on, on government and can call police and fire

and every kind of strike. And you know I, ... in my opinion

in my considered opinion you're, I think you're approaching

anar--, anarchy. And here again we never got any credit for

that type of thing. It was never explained ... I haven't explained

it to a single living human who doesn't agree. Even, even

working types. *Est-Lf west Florida anyway. You know, they

don't think that unions ought to be able to have policemen and

firemen strike. Askew appointed a boy named Skipper who

is known as a ; who was on Kirk's list, you know, of

people he would not appoint under any circumstances. Askew

appointed him this Skipper boy from Pensacola to a position on
E .cX Fighters
the State Cri4ke / Board or whatever it is, the first six
months he was /office. So this was the difference in a, in the

type administration. But this was the type of thing that we


never got credit for, you know. It was always the flambouyancy

rather than the day to day gutsy,_ solid, what I think is

solid work and things done

K: Whfat else would you include in that?
D: Well, we ,/t: more ... on the road building thing, we really we

really got going. And that last year and I had a part in that.

But we got the interstates going. We got ... when Claude Kirk

... even I think after the first, even to this point now, he

built, he built more miles j of Interstate 10, for instance

in west Florida than any other governor preceding him, including

Collins, Bryant and Burns. And we brought in a consultant on

a right of way acquisition--for instance down on I, 1-95, be-

cause you can't have a $7000 a year man talking to a millionaire

about -profit And when we brought in some people who could,

who could put little patches together and make a mile
SInstead of/getting to this mile or

this mile or this mile and I notice that they're still under

retention by the Askew administration. Well, you know. When

we first brought in that right of way consultant the Tampa

Tribune tried to make an ugly thing out of it. And I brought

the reporter up. Said, OK, let's talk about it. I explained

the 1-95 problem. It was an urban right of way acquisition

problem. You had to go through condominiums. It was terrible.

What we really need is a law. And you

five, ten years ahead of time and you restrict building in that


law. This California _they have a law. We had a

law. I lobbied, I was the j 's man in the legislature and I

attended every House and Senate transportation meeting for

that session in 1970 and gained the confidence of the committee

... Verle Pope was chairman of the senate committee and he,

you know, he thought I was weak when I first came in.
But he called me one day for something, for a little old/favor

and I did it. And after that he thought I was crazy and we had

a very warm association. He also was second cousin of Doyle

Carlton. But we ran, we ran a damn good Road Department. We

went to Washington; we saw Volpe, secretary ... I made a

trip to Washington with Kirk and we called on various cabinet

members. We went to the Pentagon and saw Laird. We went to

the Department of the Interior and saw, who was the guy that/ ?

No, the one that got ...?

K: Governor Hickel

D: Who was it?

K: Hickel.

D: Yeah, of Alaska. We also say Mitchell. He didn't ... he didn't ...
And we saw Laird at the Pentagon, regarding the/airport, you know,

the Everglades. And we saw Volpe about getting interstate

funds. And we got, you know, they always accuse him of losing

nineteen million dollars. And we got that back. Amazingly so.-

Working with Nixon's administration just because a Republican

administration's / in office doesn't mean that we could have


a phone to phone basis on highway funds and things like that. You

still operated pretty much, you know, through your regular ...

K: Federal-state channels.

D: Federal-state channels, yeah. And uh, I don't, I don't really

think that the administrative changes in Washington or in the

state make a great deal of difference I think alot of the

federal government has gotten A organized such that, just

politics. I think they could ... they could do you some favors

but I don't think this particularly got any.

K: What about Operation Concern?

D: That was the ... that was gone .-. they didn't A want it in

Gainesville. I think 1 that was a good program. Let's see.

Was that the operation where he went around to different cities?

That was a fascinating thing and I, I attended several of

those. One in Pensacola, I went down to one in Miami. I r~

tj4 i'/iteL/tL 4 The governor would, would listen

to the people and it was a fantastic thing. Anybody in the

community could come and they could take their time to talk

to the governor. An open forum. And it worked very well. I

attended one in Jacksonville and I don't know, I can't, he

just liked to hav some people with him. I, I think I attended

where, where the roads would come, or even, even maybe

higher education sometimes. I did, I did one in Pensacola, one

in Jacksonville and one in Miami. And they were all real good.

And, here again, I, you know, I don't want to sound paranoid


about it, but I don't think the press ever took them seriously.


D: But it was a tremendous thing. You know, Rockefeller's been

doing it. Sit up there and answer the questions of the people

and they get tough. We had one in Miami where we had this,

this gal who was a black militant who had only months before

she was ... she had emotional problems, that was her problem.

We'd get th&se types. It wasn't a racial problem, it was an

emotional problem. And she liked to be somebody and she be-
gan to realize that/she started talking loud at the meeting,

a public meeting, and startedraising hell and so forth. She'd

get in the paper and so forth. She had aIJ. some b tmId

down there that had killed, you know, ended up killing two

people about two months before and she came. &e
She, she she was ... absolved of if that's the/term,

She came to that meeting

< 1, > _i -)- and that was in Miami; we were in

a black area. I know we had a black, we had a black ... we

brought down a black highway patrolman.

K: I think he had black National Guardsmeng _C C t

D: Oh, did he? I didn't know. He had, we had several blacks

on the staff. Finding good blacks to work on the governor's staff

was a problem frankly. Finding good whites was a problem. It's

really a problem to get somebody to take a year or two or three



or four out of their life and serve on a staff. 'Cause every-

body else, it doesn't fit in with personal goals. You can get

some young buck lawyer or somebody like that, but hell, they don't

know anything. You really need somebody that's M got ten or

fifteen .years experience in business or government who really

has something ... we had some good aides. We had, we had,

I think we had Chuck erry, who's now president of Florida

Internati nal and who is doing a tremendous job. 4vO

y/i /____ Kirk picked up, you know, I think ... we had

Wade,/ 4 who he later appointed to the state Supreme

Court. AndWade 44i was a tremendous man. We had some

lesser aides that you wouldn't recognize. But J we had,

we had some guys that got into trouble. We had Tom Fergeson

who, who was a wheeler-dealer and who, who complemented Kirk

in the wrong way. He 9 added to Kirk's vices. Rather than

subtract from them, you know. While 0 Fergeson and I got along
he, you know,
toward the end/I felt like he was a bad influence on the governor.

I think if we'd had/Ak4 and /1 and/B tJ

who was brought over the last year, if we'd had those types

around Kirk the whole four years I think ... and they could

have said, "no, you don't endorse Rockefeller;" "no, you don't

get in a battle with Bill Murphin;" "no, you don't get mixed

up in the Senate race;" then I think that ... 'course I, I



apologetically include myself, you know. I wish I had ...

K: ) ,WAt apology.

D: Yeah. I would like to have been ... I don't have ...I was

close enough to him but, but not always physically, you know,

what I mean?

K: Yes.

D: I mean you know, he'd go out of town and you can't ...

K: Also C QA1fi/Q 4zl > Governor Kirk had a rather large ego.

D: Oh, yeah, he had a tremendous ego. He's still gotha.2 .4 tremen-

dous ego. Although he misses state government terribly. He

misses being governor. Nobody ever enjoyed the governor's

office like he did.

K: That's an interesting observation.

D: Nobody. Haydon Burns didn't. Farris Bryant. He enjoyed every

moment of it. He enjoyed the authority; he enjoyed the, the

... he enhoyed being governor.

K: That's very healthy.

D: I, I agree. I'll tell M you he, he's a complex man. Some

people said, you know, he wasn't quite URBLA But I, I

found his virtues were greater than his vices. And his wife

was no help to him. He married the gal he called "Madame

X" at that inaugural ball. Remember that he had / inaugural ball

and she was no help, she was a drag to him the i entire

time. All credit to her she didn't care a care a tinker's damn



about that little Tallahassee social circle who always sur-

rounded the mansion. And you know they had a mansion committee

and all this jazz and she couldn't care less. She was artistically

inclined. When she came into a room and the flowers were not

right she'd fix 'em and so forth. But she wasn't any help

to him as a governor, besides, you know just being a wife.

Politically she was, politically she was, she was not a, you

know, she started puttingon weight' The last couple of years

and she became ... she moved from being a mysterious German

girl from South america to a rather chubby German "frau", you

know. But she, she got rather demanding also on this and that.

She got used to going first class and you know ...

K: This added to the problems of the governor.

D: Yeah, ... no question, ... that added to his problems. He always

had to take care of her and I heard his staff commenting to

him about it'.

K: What about Lt. Governor Osborne? What was his relationship to

you and ... ?

D: Well, it was close. I recommended Osborne to Kirk. And I was ...

K: What wayour prior background?

D: Well, I had helped Osborne when he ran for state utilities

commission. He came over to Pensacola and I helped him get the

campaign organization going. I think we got Don Partington ,

a local attorney to be the manager I forget, I think

Partington had some relations J4 a____ So when the

slot became open, he seemed a good choice to me. He ran a good



statewide race, although he didn't win. He done well. He

was good looking. He's friendly. He's got a pretty good leg-

isative record. However I don't think that

SIt turned out that he

wasn't particularly aggressive. And we found out in the Senate

campaign that he couldn't raise large sums of money. And

he ran the Department of Commerce. I don't know a t great

deal about the operation. I would say that, I'm sorry to say

that he ... he didn't have the stature that I thought he had.

That's what ...his performance was one of things that gave me

71jAj to think that I could do better, well, I don't know

I ...he called me at the Deaprtment of Transportation two or

three times for some help towards some friends down in Tampa.

One time I, I simply bucked him. I don't know. I just don't

.... I don't think a lieutenant governor's been used pro-

perly yet.

K: ... recent yt

D: In recent times. And I think a lieutenant governor could. I

think the governor should bring him i and say, "I'm going to

make you the liason man for the Department of Transportation

and the Board of Regents and, you know, two or three things."

And say, "I'm going to spend my time running some of the other

things. I want you to report to me." And I think it could

work out. I think there are ten different ways it could work

out. But, but Osborne didn't seem to perform in my book,



And secondly, Tom Adams, you know, was dropped like a hot po-

tato on election night. And so we, you know, the office really

hasn't been given a chance. I think it ... I feel like it

could be a helpful office. 1- -- --

K: In reference to what ,4204 '-" constitutional

revision, of course, Governor Kirk had a great deal to do with

the success, I suppose you might say 7. 4 being

passed. It had one effect at least in the 1967 election in terms

of reapportionment. The whole, I'm really trying to

establish whether or not the Kirk administration felt that there

was this kind of movement; solid, advanced reform, cleaning

up state politics; you've referenced A yourself to redneck Demo-

crats and those kind of things. Were these very positive kinds

of achievements you # saw as part and parcel of a whole package

or werelthese things independent and individual acts?

D: No, I think they were the general feeling, a general feeling and

a general drive that there were alot of wrong things in state

government. A great deal of room for improvement. And that ...

there was, there was a we talked alot about olt-time Demo-

cratic hacks and political hangons. Now Haydon Burns had a

man, had two men, on the DOT, on the state Department of Trans-

portation payroll in-oa-eh Florida. One of them drew $10,000

and did absolutely nothing. And I could name him. He still

lives here in Pensacola. There was another one that ran around


with the Road Commissioner and he was just a flunky. I don't know

what he got paid. Well, Kirk fired those two guys the day he

got in. I mean, and I just don't know how much of that went

on. But a great deal of it must have. Oh, we had a few people

on the payroll that should have been let go. But we didn't have

'em, we didn't have 'em hanging onlike they were when we went in.

K: It sort of sounds as though there was a great deal of promise

in 1970.

D: Oh, it was.

K: It must have been tremendouly discouraging.

D: Oh, the promise, the promise, ...

K: ... '66.

D: The promise faded way before then though. The promise began

to fade toward the end of the second year. You know, after the

Rockehler thing, it was kinda patchy, at the convention they

were trying to patch the thing together.

K: j2Q zor2r-^--g ^ 4,'s c

,C _____ almost a watershed.

D: Oh, it was, it was. It really was. 'Cause I remember I was at

a local level at that time. And by that time they started
picking on the governor. Then he makes zl overt act to give

everybody a good reason to say oh, he's not a conservative after

all. Here he is doing this. And I, you know, guys on the

local level like me at that time I had to alibi out of the damn

thing. And such things as the constitution ...what-, whatever


he'd done. People just look at the big, sweeping,dramatic things.

Well, I think Nixons got the same problem now. You know, he

gets ... he's probably prevented a major war between China and
have ed
Russia which would/virtually destroy/the earth and they're, you

know, they're on something else. That's the way they are, though.

They ... Doyle Carlton had a tremendous record in the state

Senate and a tremendous personal alliance and so forth. He

told me, he said, "I thought people would educate themselves on

the candidates and see." And you know he said this in a very

unegotistical way. "... see who I was." But he said, they don't.

They don't do it. They read the headline and never the story.

They certainly never pass the first paragraph. It's a sad thing.

And television reporting doesn't help a damn bit.

K: What happened in 1970 in terms of, well, maybe we shouldn't

start there, maybe we should start with Senator Gurney be-

coming senator in 1968. What was your ...?
D: Well, he ran with that was/the Nixon campaign.

K: Right.

D: My role in that was I helped, I helped tga .the whole

west Florida campaign. I got him a west Florida coordinator

which was Bob Liggett, my brother-in-law. I got him a local

manager who was D. L. Middlebrooks, who later was appointed

Federal judge. And by the way Gurney has said that that was the

best appointment he ever had anything to do with. But the

Gurney campaign was a fairly easy campaign. He was very popular.


I remember we had trouble keeping people from working together.

Gurney always, we needed help 4 in some of these local races.

And he was somewhat the glamour candidate. I don't mean,that's

not disparaging.

K: No, I think it's very, very, he projects a very 6t"ai

D: Yeah, he was. And I have known Gurney when he was a congressman.

And I would say that the way we set the Gurney campaign up in

west florida was, it was ideal; we had the right people. We

came out with, here again, I think, I think the year was

Democrat when we first took a position. I'm not sure. We

had good people. Let's see, _, had been mayor?

'68, I guess he was mayor then

but ...

K: But no problems?

D: No, No problems.

K: No controversial issues?
D: No. He had a good conservative voting record,/he was from

Orlando. He wasn't from Miami which is always a bad thing for

a candiddate up here. We had a tremendous ... you know, they

say now that Bob Graham is going to run for state Gommissioner

of Education. He's the ... he's the fifth candidate, I think
the fifth candidate out-:/Miami. You know this terrible dread of

Dade County is a real thing up here. And, if you knowfanything

about Dade County, Dade county's starting to go conservative.

I don't know if it's because of the Cubans or what, but two or


three Republicans almost got elected last time. I think the

Cubans had alot 4 to do with it.

K: I'd like to pursue that but I would like to wrap up Gurney

first in .68.

D: Well, the Gurney campaign was smooth, successful. We had no trouble

raising funds. I was quite active in it even though ... and

we gave him the backing of the Kirk organization in west Florida

and, you know, we had everything working for us. We did not

insert Kirk in the campaign, but everybody, all Republicans worked

for him. And oh, he had no Republican opposition, did he not?

K: Nice and smooth.

D: It was one of the sweetest things.

Well, what happened in 1970?

D: 1970.

K: Cramer and the split in the Republican party.

D: Well, I was told, I'm told that they could not get Cramer to make

a decision. Now this is ... I got this from the Gurney camp.

You know, the Republican leaders.

K: Decisions as to what?

D: To run. They, OK, if you want to run, you know, run. We'll

support you. But Cramer vacillated. Now this is 9 just a

story. I mean this is what they told me. So finally they

got the idea, okay, 6C k / was a national figure. We'll

just put him in the race. And, and then if you'll remember, 4Sui

I think announced before Cramer, if I remember, or very



K: He had just lost the Senate, the Senate nomination for the Su-

preme Court.

D: Yeah, but I think that ...I think you'll find that Carswell

announced for U. S. Senate before Cramer did. don't know.

It's very close. Well, it doesn't make a great deal of

difference, but it sort of ... so anyway so I ( 4/// 24

that Kirk and Gurney were behind it. And they, I was talking 2 j

to somebody the other day that said, that you know, what they

should have done if Carswell was going to do it, was not

make some blatant announcement about it but build up alot of

press on the thing, that he's thinking about running.

K: What produced the split though in the sense of Republicans

suggesting to him ...?

D: Well, I think that, I think that Gurney found Cramer hard

to work with (j l~~rI v .

K: ,K .

D: Damn right. I don't, I'm not privy to all that but I think

that Gurney had some trouble, I think that perhaps Bill Cramer

resented, I just don't know. I know Bill Cramer. I had some

dealings with him in the Department of Transportation.

SBut by the way, I understand he's

doing very well practicing law in Washington. But anyway I


'II thought it was stupid. And I wasn't involved in it.

I was at Tallahassee at the time. I was, I was, I was at the

Mandion with Beth Johnson, Senator Beth Johnson. I took her

out to dinner. It was a crazy type thing. She introduced the

Bicentennial bill A ~/i r "- 7 The night that they
~V 'I
announced it, I didn't know it was coming. Let's see, I was

told by / who was a Kirk friend that something

was in the mill. And I know I was interested because it

effected whether or not there was going to be a lieutenant /C-oi

slot. So they you know, they j ssrs-ar back,

that, that killed that. And I, and I ... but obviously I was

disappointed for that reason. And ... here again I have no idea

really you know whether I had a chance at that thing or not. I just

don't know. But at any rate that, that killed it. And, and

Kirk was elated that he had sort of zapped Kramer on the thing

and I ...

K: Kirk had problems with Cramer, and later Gurney did too?

D: Yea, Kirk did too. And I guess Murphin too by that time.

So we had a deep split. Sort of Murphin--Cramer, and Gurney

and Kirk.

K: But you were on the periphery of it and not ...

D: Well, I was with Kirk. But I didn't ... I didn't get involved

with anamosities which were ...

K: Do you have any idea the kind of ... any specific issues?

D: I didn't know Carswell at the time. Well, I had known


Carswell slightly excuse me.

K: Were there any specific issues that created this

D: No. No. I just don't know that. I think it was more on a

personal level and ... I just don't know.

K: What about on a local level? As far as local Republicans?

D: It got pretty ... it was mixed. Cramer had, you'd be surprised

but Cramer had some Democratic support around the state/,#

_'____t __My___. Cramer was on that House Trans-

portation committee and had done pretty well for Florida. And

he had some contractor support around the state. And of course,

he, you know, he was at the Goldwater convention in '64. He's

been knocking around. He had, he had some basic support es-

pecially with some of the older, old-time Republicans. Carswell

was somewhat of a folk hero, I guess you might call him. But

it just sort of split everybody up. I never was g ZZ .

It was sort of interesting though.

K: Has it hurt the party?

D: Oh, yes, it seill hurts the party. It still, you know, people

still think Bill Cramer might run again, maybe even governor

or something, Gurney's sort of tried to outlive it and done

fairly well, I think. Essentially there's no party split anymore

in I think the state Republican headquarters. The Cramer

faction pretty well put Tommy Thomas in but I think with the

agreement of Gurney. Bill Murphin who o in New


Orleans now. He's out of the picture. Kirk and Thomas though

had-a falling out. But Kirk's out, still out of the ... some-

what out of the picture. And so you know it's the ones that

call the shots are the 0 ones that are in. You've got Gurney

in. You've got Skip Befalis. You've got Bill Young. And who

else? ... one or two. And Lou Frey. And isn't there another

one down there in Lauderdale? I don't know. But the one ...

you know the j ones in power, now Cramer still has a f great deal

of influence in Florida.

K: Well, he was an early, an early, early successful J&AA,

D: Well, he's in Washington. He's sort of like Claude Pepper.

They say Claude Pepper's got as much influence as a U. S.

Senator even though hes in the House. He's got old cronies

and friends who were around and who entrenched themselves

since FDR. And he can do favors and pull strings and everything


K: As a Kirk supporter yourself, are you in or are you out as a


D: Oh, I'm ,in.

K: As far as,then as far as the factions of 1970 and,the splitting

hasn't affected you?

D: Not by design or avoidance or anything I'm in. And I'm, I'm

up, you know, I'll tell you, I'm up for nomination to the na-

tional Bicentennial Administration as Sam Proctor knows and I,


I called on ... kind of let it out of the basket now. ... A

letter from Tommy Thomas to Anne Armstrong in the White House

you know, a real tremendous recommendation. And I called on

Reed Clark who's chairman of the Republican Executive Committee

S~ ""_ last Tuesday. And you know he's he

has a mall and I gotta get a hold of Paul. I guess I'm going

to have to 9 go up and see Paul at the White House to get

this thing. But I don't have any problem. Bill, I did ...

when I got in D. 0. T. I got hold of Bill Cramer, I wrote him

a letter and said, you know, you're a congressman. And anything

I can do to help you, I will. I did the same thing. Bill

Young was in the Senate, in the state Senate then his aide was

calling. I always tried to...

K: So you only see this thing as a sort of limited personality


D: Yeah, oh yes.

K: It really didn't effect perhaps as many people around ...

D: The average rank and file didn't like it. And even though,

and ...

K: It's, it's kind of strange. the reason I'm trying to clarify

that is because some of the things that I have rather suggested

that it's really quite a bit deeper in some respects.

D: Well, like philosophically?

K: I don't know. That's what I'm asking.

D: I can't imagine. Hell, Gurney's as conservative as Cramer.


Geographically? I think not. I think it was a personal

thing. I think it was a ... I think it was somewhat a growing

pain. And it taught us a lesson, taught the party a lesson. I

think great extremes will be made to avoid it. I think now

they're trying like the devil to avoid a race between Jerry

Thomas and Lou Frey, although I'm not so sure that a good clean

race couldn't be beneficial. The only thing about it is

... Frey's not ready to be governor and Reubin's going to be

hard to beat. I think it's very complicated.

K: Sure.

D: I think if it got bloody it would be bad.

K: Let me ask you just a couple of more questions.

D: Yeah, I thought 'we ought to do a couple more and then let's

get together tomorrow sometime.

K: OK. Let me just ask you just one last question. About this

whole issue, and really it's a kind of futuristic question.

Do you think Repulbicanismr as a party sturcture is growing ..

people, qualified people seem to be more and more coming

in? This thing happening in 1970-- and Askew being elected,
Chiles being elected, the Democrats/retaking a little bit of


D: Yeah.

K: And ... or maybe a whole lot of ground.


D: Alot of ground.

K: Yeah. From an emerging Republican Party. What ...

(ut4d/ purview of the dates of this of Y I think

it's germane for those who will come after and listen to the

tape. What about the Republican Party in Florida in the future?

What do you see?

D: I think it's going to grow, it's going to prosper. We're

wiser. We've had experience in government now. After all we've

had congressmen in. We've had a governor. There are

going to be alot of people in the next ten, twenty years who

served in minor capacities in the Kirk administration, who've

been involved in the Gurney campaign, the Carswell campaign,

in Congressional campaigns. We've started to build a base.

You know it's just like, "Where did the generals come from?"

They ... they come from the lieutenants or even the sergeants

in a prior war. That's what we've got here. There's some in-

teresting things. Like this Miami turn possibly towards con-

servatism. I know the Cubans are anti-Kennedy. I hear this.

I hope that's not just wishful thinking. Alot of it becuase

of the Bay of Pigs sellout. And there are alot of older, retired

people in Florida. And I think alot of them tend to get con-

servative. Usually a man, if he's liberal, he's liberal when

hes young. And he mellows during the years. 'West Florida

is essentially Republican anyway. They're just not registered--




K : Are they going to? In years to come?

D: Yea, slowly, slowly. They will. But the big job is identifying

and persuading competent people to run for office. And after

they get elected to the office they need to be counselled and

directed and ... I'm serious ... a young fellow gets on the

county commission and he's say he's a four-one minority

Theres a way to play that role. He can play the vocal minority

role which is a hell of a good role for someone, you know.

He-can, he can play the press. Or he can decide that he can

be the swing man on a two-two split. Sometime that happens.

And he can gain power that way. There are all kinds of com-

binations. He can decide that maybe he wants to I / the

Democrats. And we have a member of the school board like that

now. It turns out that he's decided to work with the Demo-

crats and he's really the most powerful man on the school

board. When we had those racial problems at Escambia HIgh

School he was the only one that could QLi 4 d^ /with
$Yback to
any grace at all. Because he was a good man. You get/good people

in spite of party. And I repeat, I don't want to sound like

a Boy Scout, but the party is simply a convey -**.44/- // I c
yw ^I^ 2


S72^P& C.

I: What's your relationship with him?

A: Well, it's...it's been rather close ever since he...ever since he

went into office. HegetAe down here...to4e &on- time. Pro-

bably, more than any...any other U.S. Senator comes to Pensacola,

for one reason or another ah...and ah, he...I've been to Washington

several times. He...had the family up once and to...saw sights,

ate and sat at the table...in the dining room, he took the whole

family and we got a perfect table, first style treatment. But ah,

ah, I've maintained the telephone ah, relationship with him and/or a~

his office ever since he got into office, up til the present time.

And he became very...always kind of man. Gurney, ah, Senator Ed was

ah, greatly responsible for my...my ah, pre.-~-maee to the D.O.T.

I: How did that happen?
A: Well... Kt had in mind probably somebody else, a Democrat probably,

,and they were...they were flying a plane back to Tallahasseee for that

meeting I described and...and I had ah, seen Gurney that...I guess the

previous summer in Washington, anyway, he brought my name up, he said

why not pickD6)SO/V, and ah, e~e--he said fine, and that's when

they called me from Tallahassee. They called me back in March the

tLn% of last year would that be 1970 or?

I: Hum, um.

A: And ah...in one week I got my affairs fairly straight and went to

Tallahassee. And, of course, in route to the Governor at his mansion,

he was sick at the time. And ah, I sent him a silly card, ~f~ryka

saying LaFayett am here. What is it...what is it that ah...

'- !



I: That t-P s said.

A: ia yea it's l (laugh). That was kind of a fine thing

to do, anyway. But ah...ah...Gurney, of course, had been in Washington,

I think three terms, I believe it's three, in the House and so he

was quite accustomed ah, to the area and ah, he wasn't up there to

long before there was a number of Federal Judgeships available...

in this day, and, of course, he would make the recommendations to

President Nixon. Well, finally he made the Ca~Vel recommendation and

ah...and ah...this....this here,-av~e l..Cv was Federal Judge.

See I thought he meant, in this Judicial, Judicial, Federal Judicial

district, ah, Tallahassee and Pensacola. Any way I'm, I'm not sure

Gurney had something...eveel- was ah, Eisenhower appointee and ah, I

think he had been recommended by G. Harold Alexander, you know, we've

talked about him. But, at any rate ah, the-Gavell-thing broke into a

- h7// 6 Urov 4P .-t ...non confirm'ah,...confirmation and... But

any way Gurney had a number of Federal Judgeships to recommend and

ah, I recommended ah, D.L. Middlebrooks. And...and this is the kind

of thing that went on for several months. This particular position

would be in Tallahassee and they would move Judge & e out of

Gainesville over here,i-A Pensacola and...and ah, of course,

was out. I guess...I guess...I guess ah, I forgot who replaced whom,

but ah,... At any rate I took ah, I con...so, I convinced -the D.L.

he ought to be a Federal Judge. He was perfect material for it. He

was really from the Grass Roots. fe was not from ah, aristocracy by

any means, and a good...good plain family and ah, he ahd gone to FSU


Law School and...and ah, he's an outstanding young lawyer, and ah...

so...ah, we went to Washington together, I sort of took him up to

Gurney's office, and I remember that he had asked him just why do

you want to be a Federal Judge? And ah, he asked him some good

questions. And ah, D.L. ah,...you know, he didn't see4 the job...

with a great deal of ah...fer or, I think, you know, he said I'm

available. I'd like it if you think I'm able, but it wasn't a school

boy fanaticism or anything like that, to get it. Although he did have

a great deal of support around the state. He had the support of all his

Law School, anybody that ever knew D.L. would recommend him. I just

happened to be the vehicle that took him up there c And

ah, he got...and he got the appointment and the...and his rival in

the appointment was a Tallahassee Lawyer who had been sort of ah,

well, an old-time Republican, and he had long party credentials, but

ah,...he wasn't as strong a man as D.L. Anyway, ah, President Nixon

appointed D.L. and he served in Tallahassee at least two or three

years and ah,...I guess it has been longer than that hasn't it. Any

way ah, he...I know that ah...I know that ah, Senator Gurney had been

extremely pleased over his appointment. I think we had five or six...

I: Hum, um. Did you provide influence on...on any other appointments

besides getting \ ?

A: No, ah...ah...oh, well, there's...there's...there's a little getting...


I: As far as Senator Gurney is concerned.


A: No...no more judges. I...I just remember another one named Pete?

in Miami, I think he was a friend of D.L. I understand he is

an outstanding person also. I think there were a couple of them that

ah...I don't know where that Gurney hasn't been all that pleased

with. I know he has been extremely pleased with D.L. D.L. had some

pretty...tough cases and he's always handled himself well, and ah...

I see him from time to time, but not a great deal. Ah, but any time

that you make a recommendation to some one in an office, on some-

body, and that recommend...that person works out well obviously that

enhances ah, your esteem in that person's eyes because it shows that

you apparently have good judgement or, even if you're luckly as I

was, but ah, ah...I, I think, certainly recommending D.L. Middlebrooks

ah...ah, well, not that I have any problem or anything like that, but

you know, it...it certainly added to the record. Oh, we had some small

local appointments, I don't know. Ah, well no we had a th r one we

had US Attorney Bill Stafford and that wa anoW.er Ah, and

the US Marshall over here we left alone, f or several reasons.

We sent to we had the carrier send confirmation whose

appointment r aee-and you have to deal a little bit with Democrates,

ah. But ah, Bill Stafford has been an outstanding State Attorney. I

suspect that Stafford will be going to US Judgeship one of these

days. Many of them, ah, come duec during Nixon Administration, and ah,

and D.L. is definitely up for 9aJudgeship. Ah, it wouldn't...it would-

n't surprise me at all if D.L. was...was some day appointed


o US Judgeship, maybe ah...I mean US ah, Supreme Court.

I: Supreme Court.

A: Ah, perhaps not by Nixon, but by some Republican in future years.

He has a clean record. There's no racial ah, marks on the record

or anything like that,you know, he's a very southern judge.

I: Hum, um. How did you feel about...about CLswelli, Judge Caswell's

ah, background being brought out in the way that it did ?

A: Well, I...I know...I know...I know the man who did the hatchet job,

apparently Don Pride, who's on Governor Askew's Staff as a hatchet

man. He found ah...at least two of those little racial things. Ah,

one of them was a racial clause in the deeds... Thire. in at least

three quarters of the deeds in...in Tallahassee, so that was negi-

(ible, nothing. The other thing was ah, that country club thing, well

it's not...if you're a member of any white group of any sort in

the south there could easily be a racial clause, ah, in some of

theABI-Laws. So I...I think it was fabricated and I just a soon

forget it, ah...I, not that I have any great ah, feeling about Judge

Chaswell's ability. I...I really don't know. I...I haven't been in

the position to judge ah...certainly ah, I don't think he had a great

deal of trouble as a...as ah, Federal Judge, ah.

I: Well, there was some question about the number or reversals of his

decisions that as well...come out of this.

A: Well, I've heard that...I've heard thalI...I just don't know. I...

I know Judge C swell personally and I found him a gentleman. He's

overly frank in the way he talks, and I would have thought he would


have been fine, you know, knowing ah, some of the people that have

been with...ah, the Supreme Court, I certainly feel he wasn't no

better. I don't think he ah, lowered the...the quality in him, ah,

he might be ready to say something, but...I think he was as anti-

Nixon -f r--iftstLac.

I: Anti-Nixon rather than say anti...anti-Chaswell in anyway.
at *
A: Oh, yea, anti-Nixon not anti-Clhswell.

I: He had nothing to do within the state.

A: No.

I: You...you said Don Pride a hile ago.

A: Oh, well, well, Don Pride was a reporter for the ah,...St. Petersburg

Times. The St. Petersburg Times is a liberal, Democratic paper. Some

people say it's for left and-paty f
aa S Sbt a41 0 e1ots u eCla e Zf -rca- C
of course is pri.nt-edt-o-t-i4 politics. But ah,...that's the kind of
11ka- Ya k
thing that they would do and ah, they...they chopped .t._Kur;t the

entire time. There's no reason why they-wouldn't chop at any Republican

that Gurney...

I: Well, this is what I'm getting at now, was this ah...ah, thing ...ah,

reaction against Nixon or a reaction against Gurney or a combination

of...of these?

A: Ah, it's a nature...it's the nature of a newspaper ah, which...ah,

which is against an administration.

I: I see.

A: It's simply that. You ride them the entire time there in and you

don't report anything good about them. Ah, and that's the way it is

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