164. Memorandum From the President’s Assistant for Legislative Affairs (Timmons) to Secretary of the Treasury Shultz and the President’s Assistant for International Economic Affairs (Flanigan)1

SUBJECT

  • Taxes and Trade Legislation

The President called Chairman Mills today regarding the need to consider the trade legislation promptly.2

Mills said if Secretary Shultz would testify before the Committee on taxes on Monday, April 30, he would then set aside tax reform legislation and move to consider trade on May 1. The Chairman also suggested a Presidential bipartisan meeting on trade for the afternoon of April 30.

The President agreed to this arrangement.3

My personal view is that Secretary Shultz may be able to testify on taxes in a general nature at that time, reserving specific proposals for when the committee resumes consideration of taxes after the trade [Page 627]bill. Also, I much prefer a bipartisan meeting on trade be held the week of April 9 with the trade message transmitted to Congress at the same time.4 Because of the Easter recess, the legislation would not be hanging loose too long.

At any rate, perhaps we should get together soon and plot a strategy.

  1. Source: National Archives, RG 56, Records of Secretary of the Treasury George P. Shultz, 1971–1974, Entry 166, Box 6, GPS Trade—Volumes I & II 1973/74. No classification marking. Copies were sent to Ehrlichman, Cole, and Cook.
  2. President Nixon spoke to Mills by telephone from 1:42 to 1:52 p.m. (Ibid., Nixon Presidential Materials, White House Central Files, President’s Daily Diary)
  3. According to an attached March 19 memorandum from Dam to Shultz, President Nixon agreed to this arrangement in order "to give Mills an ’out’ with Congressional liberals for going back on his commitment to them to hear taxes prior to taking up trade." Flanigan wrote the President on March 19 that Mills had agreed to the revised schedule because "he viewed trade as part of an overall international problem for the solution of which there was urgent need." (Ibid., RG 56, Records of Secretary of the Treasury George P. Shultz, 1971–1974, Entry 166, Box 6, GPS Trade—Volumes I & II 1973/74)
  4. A handwritten note at this point reads: "OK with Mills re Dick Cook."