His jutting jaw, broad shoulders and close-cropped hair conveying an unmistakable aura of power, John Connally strode into the White House briefing room last week to hold a press conference. But appearances were somewhat deceiving. The tall Texan was there to confess to a loss of power at the White House. After a mere six weeks as President Nixon's adviser, he announced he was planning to resign some time in the summer and go off on a long-deferred trip around the world.

Entertaining the White House press corps with humor and relative candor, he admitted that his usefulness had ended....

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