Statement on the Resignation of Donald T. Regan and the Appointment of Howard H. Baker, Jr., as Chief of Staff

February 27, 1987

Donald T. Regan came to me many months ago to say he would like to return to private life in the near future. However, after the revelations about Iran, he indicated he would like to stay and help me and the administration through the investigations. Last week he indicated that with the release of the Tower board report he felt he would like to go through with his original plans to return to private life. I am therefore accepting with regret his resignation as Chief of Staff, effective today. Don Regan has served the administration and the Nation with distinction for 6 years -- first as Secretary of the Treasury, and as my Chief of Staff for the last 2 years. I have known him as a friend and associate who has always put the Nation's interest first.

I am also pleased to announce that Howard H. Baker, Jr., has agreed to serve as Chief of Staff to the President of the United States. Howard Baker is a distinguished American who has served as majority and minority leader of the United States Senate, a leader of the Republican Party, and a man of unquestioned integrity and ability.

I am enormously pleased that he is willing to take on this responsibility and to help me organize the White House staff for an aggressive 2 years of work. Howard and I have been friends for a number of years. I have the utmost respect and admiration for him. Howard expects to assume his new responsibilities early next week. I look forward to having him work with me in the months ahead.