The Papers


Committees Series: 1961-1984
Linear Feet:
 5.8 (14 document cases)
Status: Some Senate Republican Policy Committee materials, including minutes, are closed for 15 years from the date of creation.
Boxes: 975-979, 1352-1360

Committees Committee materials remain in Washington as part of the permanent record of Congress. Consequently, there are relatively few files associated with committees and commissions on which Senator Tower served, and the papers in the files are generally copies. Materials concerning the Senate Armed Services Committee are located in the preceding series. Most files dealing with Senator Tower’s work on legislation and matters related to the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee are found among the Legislation Series and in the J. Frank Hill Papers.

The small General subseries contains six miscellaneous files from the Budget Committee and one file each for the Joint Committee on Defense Production, the National Transportation Policy Study Commission, and the Rules and Administration Committee. The files include staff memoranda regarding the nature and focus of the committees, speeches, and some items related to staffing. Ethics Committee materials concern the late 1977 and early 1978 investigation of influence buying by a South Korean businessman and rice broker, Tongsun Park. During 1975 and 1976, Senator Tower was vice chairman of the Church Committee that investigated the C.I.A. and the F.B.I. for alleged abuses of power, including charges of domestic spying on citizens for political reasons, illegal covert operations, assassinations of foreign leaders and the imposition of secrecy in order to hide questionable government actions. Materials include memoranda, rules, agenda, correspondence, personnel files, numerous clippings comprising a background reading file, and a few statements, transcripts and reports. Senator Tower, along with Senators Baker and Goldwater, disagreed with the committee’s final recommendations and consequently wrote separate views. The papers contain the introduction to their separate views and a complete copy of Tower’s dissenting statement.

Committees 2 Senator Tower was chair of the Senate Republican Policy Committee (SRPC), which formulates the party’s overall legislative policy, from 1972 until his retirement. The papers are arranged in three subseries: General Files, Minutes (1973-1984) and Weekly/Legislative Notices. Materials in the General Files include background information about the SRPC, correspondence, memoranda, reports, speeches, statements, resumes, personnel information, committee publications, notes and clippings. The papers reflect the inner workings of the committee, especially from 1972, when Senator Tower became chair. There are also files related to staff organization, numerous committee reports, and speeches on such issues as energy, economy, taxes, welfare, health care and other topics. Several folders concern a 1978 committee report, “U.S. Senate Republican Declaration on National Security and Foreign Policy,” which Senator Tower authored. These files include numerous drafts with extensive revisions and additions in the senator’s handwriting.

Other papers concern Senator Tower’s 1972 bid for the chair, nominations and impeachment procedures. The committee minutes found here are the copies Senator Tower kept as chair (the first set remains in Washington as part of the permanent record of the Senate). Preliminary information for each set of minutes notes the date, duration and place of meeting, senators absent and present, and others in attendance. The text of the minutes includes a review of the Senate schedule for the upcoming week, the status of current legislation, a report of the House schedule, and reports, comments and announcements from members. Senators frequently exhort colleagues to vote for or against particular legislation. Other matters relate to elections and campaigns, nominations and appointments, budget, Senate ethics, dealings with the administration, and other issues of the day.

The detail to which speakers’ comments are related varies from fairly detailed accounts to quite abbreviated reports. Occasionally the minutes are supplemented with staff reports, figures, charts and graphs. “Weekly Notice,” retitled “Legislative Notice” in mid-1975, was distributed by the committee to provide Republican senators brief descriptions of legislation and additional information such as the committee’s stance, administration’s position, and regulatory impact. 

General (1974-1983)
Senate Ethics Committee: Korean Inquiry (1961-1979)
Select Committee to Study Government Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities (Church Committee) (1975-1976)
Senate Republican Policy Committee (1962-1984, bulk 1972-1984)