The Presidency: A Bit of Limbo

Day after day, planes dropped down on the runway of the L.B.J. Ranch.

Each aircraft brought in its coterie of Washington officials for long intensive talks with Lyndon Johnson — about the budget, the State of the Union message, the war, the Great Society. The President's appointment schedule was so full that he sometimes had difficulty keeping up with his high-priority desk work.

Yet beneath the hubbub of business and busyness, an aura of secrecy and uncertainty lay over the Johnson presidency. The President himself had be come so remote and uncommunicative that reporters began calling his stay at the ranch "the...

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