Department of Economics
University of Delaware
Working Paper #2006-04
How Richard Nixon Pressured Arthur Burns: Evidence from the Nixon Tapes
Burton A. Abrams
Evidence from the Nixon tapes, now available to researchers, shows that President Richard Nixon pressured the chairman of the Federal Reserve, Arthur Burns, to engage in expansionary monetary policies in the run up to the 1972 election. This paper quotes the relevant conversations from the Nixon tapes. Questions remain as to whether Burns followed an expansionary policy in an already-inflationary environment out of conviction or because of political pressure.
Published in the Journal of Economic Perspectives, Vol. 20, No. 4, Fall, 2006.