107. Editorial Note

On December 1, 1972, in Key Biscayne, Florida, Press Secretary Ron Ziegler announced on the President’s behalf that George Shultz would remain as Secretary of the Treasury in the second term. The President also named Shultz an Assistant to the President to be “the focal point and the overall coordinator of the entire economic policy decisionmaking process, both domestically and internationally.” Shultz’ duties as Assistant to the President would include chairing a new Cabinet-level Council on Economic Policy. (Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents, Volume 8, No. 49, December 4, 1972, page 1711)

In remarks following Ziegler’s announcement, Shultz noted that the primary membership of the Council on Economic Policy would be the Departments of Labor, Commerce, Agriculture, and Transportation and in the field of international economic policy the Department of State. Within the Executive Office of the President, the OMB Director, the CEA Chairman, the CIEP Director, and the Cost of Living Council Director would be key members. Shultz noted that the Council on International Economic Policy and the Cost of Living Council were examples of “continuing working groups that worry about essential aspects of policy.” (Ibid., page 1712)

On December 22 Clay T. Whitehead, Director of the White House Office of Telecommunications Policy, sent a memorandum to Shultz proposing that OTP be a member of the new Council. Melvin Laird, in a letter to Shultz and a January 5 memorandum to the President, also proposed the Secretary of Defense as a member of the new Council. (Washington National Records Center, Department of the Treasury, Records of Secretary Shultz: FRC 56 80 1, GPS, Dam, Kenneth 1971-1974)