315. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for Congressional Relations (Timmons) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)1

I sat in on a Presidential meeting Tuesday2 with House Foreign Affairs Chairman “Doc” Morgan and Representatives Wayne Hays and Ross Adair. Congressman Hays had requested the meeting and is opposed to the creation of the new post of Under Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs.

His arguments are that our friends in Europe would be insulted by the new Latin American status position; that there are only three “honest” heads of state in all Latin America, and that a new State Department bureaucracy would be created.

Hays is the subcommittee chairman handling the proposal. He is strongly pro-Europe and, in fact, is current President of the European-American Inter-parliamentarian Union. Hays inferred he would go along with the measure if there would also be an Under Secretary for Europe.

The President outlined the reasons for his recommendation, but Hays was unmoved. Morgan and Adair were not as vocal but are cool [Page 704] to the Under Secretary concept. The President said the Administration would take another look at the measure with the possibility of finding an appropriate title other than Under Secretary might be acceptable.

We now have three courses to follow: (1) move the bill through the Senate first and apply pressures on the House committee later; (2) propose an Under Secretary for European Affairs and make our deal with Hays; or (3) think up a new title with less status than Under Secretary. Deputy Under Secretary? Associate Under Secretary? Director of Western Hemisphere Affairs?3

Our office will be happy to move in the direction you think best.

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, White House Central Files, Subject Files, EX FG 11. No classification marking. Printed from an unsigned copy. A copy was sent to Harlow.
  2. The meeting on February 17 lasted from 4:15 to 5 p.m. (Ibid., White House Central Files, President’s Daily Diary) See Document 314 for a briefing memorandum for the meeting.
  3. In a March 13 briefing memorandum to Kissinger for his upcoming meeting with Richardson, Vaky stated “you might tell him that the President did OK a Congressional strategy concentrating on the bill in the Senate now, and then focussing on the House where Wayne Hays will be the big problem.” (Ibid., NSC Files, Subject Files, Box 338, HAK/Richardson Meetings, Jan 1970–March 1970) Richardson testified in favor of the bill on March 18, the first day of hearings held by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere Affairs. For text of Richardson’s statement to the subcommittee, see Department of State Bulletin, April 13, 1970, pp. 498–499. S. 3347 was not enacted.