44. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant (Haldeman) to the President’s Assistant for National Security Affairs (Kissinger)1

It has come to the President’s attention that some members of your staff or the National Security Council staff have been asked to meet [Page 102] with members of the press for the purpose of background interviews, etc.

The President wants it clearly understood that no one on your staff and no one on the National Security Council staff is ever to hold any meeting with an individual or group of press people either for background or attribution. He wants you to be the only spokesman for the White House and the NSC in the field of national security and foreign policy, and any time a briefing is required you are to conduct it.

Obviously, there may be specific, highly unusual situations where it will be desirable to violate this rule. If this should become the case, it should not be done without the President’s specific authorization for each individual case, and you should discuss this directly with the President.

Will you please be sure that the members of your staff understand this. By carbon of this memo, I am also advising Ron Ziegler of the same situation and will ask that he make sure his staff is aware of it too.

  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Name Files, Box 817, Haldeman, H.R. Confidential. A copy was sent to Ziegler.