Nixon - Press Conference

Nixon: "People have to know if their President is a crook!"

Nixon - Press Conference
Nixon: “People have to know if their President is a crook!”

– President Nixon Press Conference – November 17, 1973 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –

Probably one of the most famous and often-quoted lines associated with a President of the United States in history. The infamous “I Am Not A Crook” quote, given during a press conference, this November 17th in 1973.

President Nixon:“Now, I have no complaints. In the next 8 years, I made a lot of money. I made $250,000 from a book and the serial rights which many of you were good enough to purchase, also. In the practice of law–and I am not claiming I was worth it, but apparently former Vice Presidents or Presidents are worth a great deal to law firms–and I did work pretty hard.

But also in that period, I earned between $100,000 and $250,000 every year.

So that when I, in 1968, decided to become a candidate for President, I decided to clean the decks and to put everything in real estate. I sold all my stock for $300,000–that is all I owned. I sold my apartment in New York for $300,000–I am using rough figures here. And I had $100,000 coming to me from the law firm.

And so, that is where the money came from. Let me just say this, and I want to say this to the television audience: I made my mistakes, but in all of my years of public life, I have never profited, never profited from public service–I have earned every cent. And in all of my years of public life, I have never obstructed justice. And I think, too, that I could say that in my years of public life, that I welcome this kind of examination, because people have got to know whether or not their President is a crook. Well, I am not a crook. I have earned everything I have got.”

In case you’ve heard about it, but haven’t actually heard the quote – or the quotes around it, leading up to it or the quotes after it – here is that press conference, as it was delivered nationally on Radio and TV on November 17, 1973.

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