Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Johnnie Walters on the Nixon Tapes and Related Materials (5/14/13; 5/26/13)

Johnnie Walters, former AAG Tax and then Commissioner of Internal Revenue, was in the mix during the turbulent years when Richard Nixon was abusing the powers of the office of President.  His background is at this site, here, for the dedication of his papers to the University of South Carolina.  Those of us who remember those times, remember that Johnnie was a good and decent man and disappointed President Nixon because he would not do his political bidding as Commissioner of Internal Revenue.

I just came across some transcripts on the Miller Center website.  The Miller Center, here, is transcribing and putting on the web presidential voice recordings.  Us old timers will remember that President Nixon secretly recorded a number of Oval Office meetings and telephone calls, which ultimately contributed to his downfall.  Among those transcribed are some referring to Johnnie Walters.  Here is a link to a search on that site for Johnnie Walters, which picks up the material related to Johnnie.

I cut and paste below one of the offerings from these materials; the web page is here.  The discussion appears to revolve around getting a more compliant Commissioner of Internal Revenue to replace Johnnie Walters who resisted the White House's political overtures:
President Nixon: The IRS thing is important but, God, we ought to be able to get some loyal son of a bitch. 
H.R. "Bob" Haldeman: I think we can. 
John Ehrlichman: We will, we will. 
President Nixon: There ought to be some guy that will do our bidding. That’s what we want, isn’t it? I don’t want that to drop between the stools. I don’t want another Johnnie Walters. We’ll get some—OK. [Unclear] a guy on your own staff. How about [Egil "Bud"] Krogh? Is he a tax lawyer?

Monday, May 13, 2013

Frank Blanchfield Death (5/13/13)

Obituary from the Augusta Chronicle,.here:
 CHARLOTTE - Francis Joseph Frank Blanchfield, Jr. passed away at his home on Sunday, May 12, 2013, after a long struggle with Diabetes. Born in Chicago, Illinois on September 19, 1945, Frank was the oldest son of the late Francis J. Blanchfield, Sr. and the late Margaret H. Blanchfield. He is survived by his wife, Sandra G. Blanchfield of Charlotte, NC, and his son, Brian A. Blanchfield of Tucson, Arizona. Other survivors include his sister, Melissa A. Gurnari of Bloomingdale, NJ, and her husband Joey; his brother, James S. Blanchfield of Huntersville, NC, and his wife Diane; and six nieces. Frank graduated with top honors in political science from the College of Holy Cross in 1967, and then attended New York University Law School on a prestigious Root-Tilden Scholarship. At NYU he was President of the Student Bar Association and recipient of the Vanderbilt Medal. After law school Frank served in active duty as First Lieutenant and Instructor in Criminal and Military Law at the US Army Military Police School in Fort Gordon, Georgia. Upon fulfillment of his military service, Frank returned to NYU to receive an LLM in Taxation in 1974. After four years of private practice as an associate and partner with the Augusta, Georgia law firm of Hull, Towill, Norman, Bennett & Johnson, Frank worked for the Tax Division of the U.S. Department of Justice as Special Assistant to the Assistant Attorney General (1977 to 1979) and then Deputy Assistant Attorney General (1979 to 1980), where he served with distinction and received the U.S. Attorney General's Medal. In 1980 Frank returned to private practice in Charlotte, NC, where he worked for more than thirty years with several regional, national and international law firms which he either founded, co-founded or served in leadership roles in office and practice management. He retired from Mayer Brown LLP in September 2010. Throughout his career, Frank's business judgment and tax expertise were highly regarded by CEO's and senior management of public and privately held companies, tax managers, accountants, individual clients and attorneys who had the privilege of working with him. Frank was recognized as a Fellow of the American College of Tax Counsel. He had a keen interest in tax policy and often assisted in guiding tax policy on both state and national levels, including working as an advisor to the US Treasury Department in co-drafting the Puerto Rican Income Tax Act of 1975. In 1990, Frank was selected by Justice Harry Blackmun for participation in the Aspen Institute Justice and Society Seminar, a testament to his capacious and searching intellect. Frank enjoyed being a mentor, enthusiastically offering his insight, judgment, tax expertise, superb writing skills and ever present humor to the partners, associates and staff of the law firms in which he served. Frank's role as counselor included his commitment to serving the community. Among the many service opportunities he embraced, Frank served on the Arts and Science Counsel Board (as Chairman and Board Member) and the North Carolina Dance Theatre Board, and gave generously to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. In each instance Frank was fully engaged and his service was backed by his personal commitment to contribute his time, talents and financial resources for the betterment of the organizations and the community they served. Frank's commitment to community also included providing legal services without charge to individuals with little means who faced difficult legal challenges. Throughout his life and legal career, Frank's actions and work were epitomized by professionalism, dedication to excellence, commitment to community, generosity, and by his tireless devotion to his family and the many friends and associates whose lives he touched. In addition to his numerous work and community contributions, Frank will be missed for his inclusive personality, quick Irish wit, and laughter which were present throughout his life. The Heritage Funeral Home is serving the Blanchfield family. Visitation will be held at Heritage Funeral Home located at 3700 Forest Lawn Drive, Matthews, NC on Wednesday, May 15th from 5:00PM to 8:00PM. The funeral service will be held at St. Gabriel Catholic Church located at 3016 Providence Road, Charlotte, NC at 11:00AM on Thursday, May 16th. Interment will follow in Forest Lawn Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation: 205 Regency Executive Park Drive, Suite 102, Charlotte, NC, 28217. 
Published in The Augusta Chronicle from May 14 to May 15, 2013
Although I have not compared it word for word, the Charlotte Observer obituary, here, appears the same.


Thanks to Justin Thornton for the above information.  Justin also advises that Tax Division alumni serving as pallbearers were Patrick J. Sheedy, Thomas D. Blondin, Steven L. ("Jake") Snyder, Wilmer ("Buddy") Parker III, and Justin.

In the meantime, alumni or friends of the family wanting the home address to contact the family can either email me (jack@tjtaxlaw.com) or call me (713-521-9977).  If you email, please put some information as to your relationship with the family.