A new book by Anthony Summers, The Arrogance of Power, alleges that Richard Nixon medicated himself with a mind-altering prescription drug whilst he was President.
The book claims that Nixon took Dilantin, given to him in 1968 by Jack Dreyfus, the founder of the Dreyfus Fund. Dreyfus claims he gave Nixon 1000 capsules and quotes Nixon as saying “to heck with the doctor” when advised that they should be prescribed.
Nixon was treated by the therapist, Dr. Arnold A. Hutschnecker, prior to 1968, but it has never before been claimed that he was treated during his time in the White House.
Dr. Hutschnecker, now 102, is quoted as saying of Nixon: “He didn’t have a serious psychiatric diagnosis. He wasn’t psychotic. He had no pathology, but he had a good portion of neurotic symptoms: anxiety and sleeplessness.”
The book also claims that Nixon beat his wife, Pat. It refers to a claim by John Sears, a Nixon aide during the 1968 campaign, that Nixon hit his wife in 1962, following his defeat in the gubernatorial race in California.
The book revisits a claim that during the 1968 election campaign the Nixon campaign pressured South Vietnamese President Nguyen Van Thieu not to agree to participating in peace talks in Paris.
The allegations are vehemently denied by Nixon associates and supporters.