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don't and then they name somebody who I think is terrible, I'll be
kicking myself for the next four or five years.” So I did.
When you were thinking about their motivation what were some of
the things that occured to you? Their motivation for this council?
The people who put together this council?
Well, it came to me very slowly that, whereas the avowed
purpose was to promote private funding of the Arts and Humanities,
probably the most important item was the hidden agenda: namely to act
as defenders of the two endowments because they had very cleverly
made Mrs. Reagan honorary chairman of the committee. And if the
committee had enough friends of the President, not that I qualified
on that score, and the honorary chairman was Mrs. R., and the two
chairmen of the N.E.H., and N.E.A. were on the committee and indeed
became part of the executive committee, this would act as a good
defense. So I took the job and I think I'm right about it because
-- One of my first encounters was with Representative [Sidney] Yates
from Illinois, Democrat who was very much against this committee, and
very much for the N.E.A. and N.E.H.. And he quite clearly thought
that this was going to be used as a method of attacking expenditures
in these fields. At our first encounter he was very antagonistic.
He assumed that I was one hundred percent behind the administration
and he was rather astounded when I said, “Congressmen I have to admit
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