Well, it started out as a lark and ended as a lark.
Did he have presidential ambitions, do you think?
He would have liked to been President. Oh, yeah. Which politician wouldn't? And also which
Senator doesn't think he's smarter than the President,...
No? So, okay. So she just became more accepting?
She just accepted.
And I think she ultimately really has accepted - this is who Bill is and she really admired him
and really loved him and that part, that other side of him, he just...
exercise - this running and swimming - and he was very competitive. He told a story one time
about he was walking and he heard footsteps behind him. And as he speeded up, the footsteps
speeded up. He didn't want to be overtaken. And that's the way...
I can't remember the year.
Well, it would have been the '72 election, I believe.
I was there from '70 to '76, and the election was in '60, '64, '70, '74 - so it had to be '74. It may
have been in '73, getting ready for '74.
What did you think about...
Now, you had your own Presidential run in '84?
Yeah. What year did Proxmire run for the President?
He sort of had a pre-run exploratory thing in '71.
I don't think he went at it very long, did he?
Yeah. I'd forgotten about that. I'm...
Doyou remember anything about that?
BP's Presidential Run, DP's Elementary Education
I remember buttons: "Prox for Prez" buttons. And I remember thinking they were pretty cool.
And I remember being concerned about having to move...
I'm interested in your fantasy about him becoming President, because at one point, he actually
Look into it.
It was in 1970 . . . was it. . . yeah, it was 1970. After the '70 election, he won pretty handily, and
there was a very brief - for...
hundred grand for your campaign," or whatever kind of a thing, where then you may be
compromising your view.
He always felt that the lobbyists' views should be heard, but no more so than anybody else's
Anything else that you remember...
I think it was.
Did you become involved in any of that?
Oh yes, yeah.
Oh, just scheduling and, you know, making his appointments up there. And I still have friends in
New Hampshire from that first try.
How did you feel about his aspirations?...
Reasons for Failure of Presidential Run, BP's Hair Transplants, SST, BP as Father
At the time — we 're talking about the early '70s — there was a lot happening in the world. I mean,
the US was embroiled in Vietnam. Did you or the...
Early on, Proxmire was not against the Vietnam War and then like many, he flipped.
Were you there when that happened?
You know, I don't remember that. I don't remember that.
So you were part of the 1971 Presidential bid. What happened to...
No. Well, even for any kind of a run or Senate, he wouldn't; anything over -1 think it was thirty-
five dollars, I think. He wouldn't take any campaign contribution more than that from any one
And to run for President, even back then, you...
Well, yeah. I think he would have been a good President. But, you know, running for President
means cutting a lot of deals on the way, and he wasn't into that.
And it means raising money; a lot of money.
Oh yeah, of course.
Which it seems like he...
I understand. So that was also an interesting time in his career, because in 1970, he was up
again for re-election. Were you involved in any of that? There was also a sort of interest in a
Presidential run at the time in his career.
there. I'm quoting him, paraphrasing him. Then he mused there, a little bit, about what he wanted
to appear, or what he wanted people to think. You know, "Some hits, some misses, some errors,"
something like that. He put it in a baseball context....
And did you get involved?
What happened with that effort?
After he won but that huge margin, it was just sort of a mini-movement - buttons were made.
77e, in fact, went out to New Hampshire, I think
See, that part I don't know if he did test...
typical response, I think, from most Senators, "Oh, I'm so delighted that you even thought of me
as being President. I have never given that any thought whatsoever, but I'm honored and
pleased." This is what I think most Senators would say, you...
Okay. Tell me a little bit about your law career and how that interfaced, if at all, with some of
his work on the Banking Committee and the Securities and Exchange Commissions.
No. There was no interface at all. I was only starting out back in '76...
And he adored the kids and the kids were - they were wonderful, and still are.
It speaks a lot to both of you that you really adopted the other's children as your own. I mean,
when I hear you talk about them and when I've heard the kids talk about...
more effective where he was. And as he gained seniority, by the time he retired, he was the most
senior member of the Senate. And you have positions with Committee chairmanships and
national recognition to be very - but I think people like Dick...