The Nation: The President's Quiet Creditor

He likes to call himself "Big Al." He is a beefy, publicity-shy, self-made millionaire. He is also a personal financier to President Nixon. This man, Robert H. Abplanalp, 51, has found himself increasingly in the public eye—a position he ordinarily avoids—since it was learned that he lent $625,000 toward Nixon's purchase of property in San Clemente. How did Abplanalp become the President's silent business partner, and what holds their relationship together?

Abplanalp (the name is pronounced Abplanalp and means in Swiss-German "from flat mountain") has long had a taste for conservative...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!