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The President and the Senator Austin A swim at the White House pool cannot be witnessed by the public, and the sudden, unexpected reversal of a major candidate’s planned announcement for office can be explained away, by those determined, to explain it away, but President Johnson last Sunday afternoon took a step whose implications one could not mistake, although no one could define them definitely, either. President and Mrs. Johnson paid a social call at the West Austin home of Sen. and Mrs. Ralph Yarborough as the Johnsons were leaving the city to return to Washington. With the filing deadline for the spring primaries less than a month away, the Johnsons’ call on the Yarboroughs in the course of a coffee attended by about 100 liberal Democrats seemed obviously to constitute an indication of presidential support for Sen. Yarborough’s renomination this spring. Helicoptering into Austin from his ranch on hiS way to Bergstrom A.F.B. and Washington, Johnson first stopped at the Governor’s Mansion to see his old friend, John Connally, still recuperating from his wounds of Nov. 22, his arm in a sling, his wrist in a cast. Connally, too, comes up for re-election this year. However, the Observer can report that the assumption in political circles that liberal Houston attorney Don Yarborough will not oppose Connally again this spring is not necessarily correct. No doubt the President would like to avert any bruising liberal-conservative contests in the Texas Democratic primaries this spring. One factor in his friendliness toward Sen. Yarborough is thought to be his desire to alter a situation that has caused many liberals to conclude he had been hostile toward the liberal movement within his own state. As the President left Central Texas, he was accompanied by Mr. and Mrs. James Reston and Mr. and Mrs. Jack Valenti. According to Valenti, the President’s aide, the Connallys and their guests sat around and drank coffee, chatting on various subjects, but not on politics, for about 20 minutes. “Connally didn’t ask him about any politics, and he didn’t ask Connally anything,” Valenti said. When the Johnsons arrived at the Yarboroughs’, the senator and his wife were at the curb to greet them, and the President bussed Mrs. Yarborough. Many of the Yarboroughs’ neighbors, having heard about the forthcoming visit, had foregathered, and as the Johnsons and Yarboroughs 2 The Texas Observer walked up the winding sidewalk toward the house, the neighbors, including many children, clustered around the President for handshakes and autographs. Inside, where the coffee had, of course, come to a halt upon the President’s arrival, the Johnsons, the Yarboroughs, and Charles Johnston, an advisor of the senator’s, improvised a reception line, and the President shook hands with all the guests and the Yarboroughs’ cook, as well. Among those passing through the line were Sherman Miles and Lyman Jones, state labor officials; Larry Goodwyn, staff chief of the Democratic Coalition; and Austin councilwoman Emma Long, after whom Johnson called out, in the hearing of reporters: “I’m happy Austin’s got you. Stay in there, don’t you go runnin’ off any more, stay in there, stay in there!” \(Mrs. As the reception line broke up, Sen. Yarborough was overheard wishing the President a good New Year and adding, “I hope we have the best year that this nation has ever had and that it will be a forward thrust for a whole generation.” After a further exchange, the President said to Sen. Yarborough, “We’ll have a visit.” As the Yarboroughs bade the President goodbye at their curb, Johnson said to Mrs. Yarborough, within this reporter’s hearing, Incorporating the State Observer and the East Texas Democrat, which in turn incorporated the State Week and Austin ForumAdvocate. We will serve no group or party but will hew hard to the truth as we find it and the right as we see it. We are dedicated to the whole truth, to human values above all interests, to the rights of man as the foundation of democracy; we will take orders from none but our own conscience, and never will we overlook or misrepresent the truth to serve the interests of the powerful or cater to the ignoble in the human spirit. Editor and General Manager, Ronnie Dugger. Partner, Mrs. R. D. Randolph. Business Manager, Sarah Payne. Contributing Editors, J. Frank Dobie, Larry Goodwyn, Franklin Jones, Lyman Janes, Willie Morris, Charles Ramsdell, Roger Shattuck, Dan Strawn, Tom Sutherland, Charles Alan Wright. Staff Artist, Charles Erickson. Contributing Photographer, Russell Lee. Subscription Representatives: Austin, Mrs. Helen C. Spear, 2615 Pecos, HO 5-1805; Dallas, Mrs. Cordye Hall, 5835 Ellsworth, TA 1-1205; Fort Worth, Mrs. Jesse Baker, 3212 Greene St.. WA 7-2959; Houston, Mrs. Shirley Jay, 10306 Cliffwood Dr., PA 3-8682; Lubbock, Doris Blaisdell, 2515 24th St.; Midland, Eva Dennis, 4306 Douglas, OX 4-2825; Rio Grande Valley, Mrs. Jack Butler, 601 Houston, McAllen, MU 6-5675; “Lady Bird says you’ve got to come and help us with some furniture. She says you’re an expert.” Mrs. Yarborough said she would be glad to help any way she could. These events took on added significance because on the Friday before, Lloyd Bentsen of Houston, the former congressman from McAllen, now a rich insurance man, suddenly reversed his apparent course and announced that he would not run against Sen. Yarborough. He had been seeking staff and quarters for his campaign and reportedly had engaged the services of an Austin public relations man; these circumstances, combined with the facts that Johnson saw Allan Shivers in Austin over the’ holidays and Shivers and Bentsen are close friends, caused widespread specuation whether Bentsen decided . not to run because of the President’s wishes. In his announcement, Bentsen said a change in his business situation was the reason. In Austin, credibility was given to an account that the President had mentioned to a group of conservatives, including Shivers, that Bentsen’s campaign would cost a million and a quarter dollars that might otherwise find its way into the campaign for President Johnson. The Observer does not know whether this occurred or not. San Antonio, Mrs. Mae B. Tuggle, 531 Elmhurst, TA 2-7154; Tyler, Mrs. Erik Thomsen, 1209 So. Broadway, LY 4-4862. The editor has exclusive control over the editorial policies and contents of the Observer. None of the other people who are associated with the enterprise shares this responsibility with him. Writers are responsible for their own work, but not for anything they have not themselves written, and in publishing them the editor does not necessarily imply that he agrees with them, because this is a journal of free voices. The Observer solicits articles, essays, and creative work of the shorter forms having to do in various ways with this area. The pay depends; at present it is token. Please enclose return postage. Unsigned articles are the editor ‘s h The Observer is published by Texas Observer Co., Ltd., biweekly from Austin, Texas. Entered as second-class matter April 26. 1937, at the Post Office at Austin, Texas, under the Act of March 3, 1879. Second class postage paid at Austin, Texas. Delivered postage prepaid $5.00, a year. Foreign rates on request. Single copies 25c; prices for ten or more for students, or bulk orders, on request. Editorial and Business Offices: The Texas Observer, 504 West 24th St., Austin 5, Texas. Telephone GR 7-0746. Change of Address: Please give old and new addresses ttnd allow three weeks. THE TEXAS OBSERVER A Journal of Free Voices A Window to the South 58th YEAR ESTABLISHED 1906 Vol. 56, No. 1 7cOMPFrUSt January 10, 1964