Clare Crawford
October 20, 1975 12:00 PM

The three-page job resumé reads like a National Lampoon spoof. The applicant’s experience includes “traveling to 33 states during the presidential campaign of 1968” and “making over 250 public appearances” in the last two years of the Nixon administration. And under Miscellaneous: “In 1973 and again in 1974 selected one of Good Housekeeping‘s Ten Most-Admired Women in America.”

But Julie Nixon Eisenhower, who recently resigned after two years as an editor of the Saturday Evening Post (where she remains a consultant), is decidedly serious about getting a new job and starting a new life outside Washington. Husband David will be graduating from George Washington University law school next summer and, Julie says, “our life will be more our own.” Adds David, pushing aside his lawbooks in the couple’s four-room apartment: “The apprenticeship is ending.”

Fourteen months after Richard Nixon resigned the Presidency, the young Eisenhowers, both 27 and married now for seven years, are finally emerging from the shadow of the White House. “Our experience over there was exciting,” concedes David, nodding in the general direction of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. “But it’s hard for us to feel as if we’ve had our day in the sun.”

Once saddled with a Howdy Doody image of guileless innocence, Eisenhower now exudes an easy air of confidence and is contemplating his own political future. It is obvious that he understands Watergate was a crime, and that as an Eisenhower he was in no way involved. Yet he gracefully supports Julie, who is still defensive with interviewers. (It is a difficult position, which David handles well.)

Of the two, Julie seems the most anxious to get on with the business of establishing her own identity. “We feel expectant,” says David, laughing as he instantly realizes the double entendre. “I mean anticipatory. It’s as though we’re in suspended animation. We’re enjoying life now, but better days lie ahead.”

Julie has been a dervish of activity in recent months. She compiled the recently published Julie Eisenhower’s Cookbook for Children, edited a series of Post anthologies (love stories, Westerns and mysteries) due out next year and designed 16 needlework kits for mass production. After substituting for Barbara Walters on the nationally syndicated Not for Women Only show last year, Julie is even considering a career in television—either behind the cameras or in front of them. “I don’t like a lot of things that go with a very public career,” she concedes. “I don’t want to be a TV star, yet I’m already known publicly. I’m torn. I think there’s a happy medium.” It could be as a television producer.

What most people want to talk about, of course, is not Julie’s future but the past—Watergate—and she is less than eager to rehash the events that led to her father’s resignation. (Not that she is reluctant to rush to Nixon’s defense; Julie recently branded retired Senate Watergate Committee chairman Sam Ervin a “hypocrite” and repeated the charge that the press was biased against her father in the closing days of Watergate.)

How are her parents doing? “I think they’re feeling good,” smiles Julie, who visits San Clemente whenever she can and talks with the Nixons on the telephone frequently. “I think people are going to be surprised with the content and tone of his book. I’ve seen parts of it, and it won’t be just another dry, run-of-the-mill presidential memoir. I think it will be very candid.” David concurs: “I contrast my father-in-law’s style with my grandfather’s. Compared to President Eisenhower, Mr. Nixon is much more reflective, introspective, historical.” The former President has asked the couple to put their memories of the White House years on tape and send them to him. “If they jog his memory,” Julie says, “it makes us feel we’re helping a little bit.”

They may have inherited two of the most formidable names in recent political history, but Julie and David live much like any other young couple. The once-omnipresent Secret Service detail is gone, and Julie can indulge her passion for bicycling and on weekends pedals to Mount Vernon, 13½ miles away. She also is newly interested in health foods, which figure in her children’s recipes. “I really don’t care much about food,” shrugs David, the willing guinea pig for many of the recipes in Julie’s cookbook. “If it’s healthy it’s fine. If it’s unhealthy it’s fine.”

The young Eisenhowers do little entertaining in their duplex apartment, preferring instead to go to the movies or dine with friends at local restaurants. “Watergate is nearby,” David notes without a trace of irony, “and Trader Vic’s.”

About every two weeks Julie drops in on older sister, Tricia, and her husband, Eddie Cox, while on her business commutes to Manhattan. The Coxes have a four-room apartment on the Upper East Side and, says Julie, “they always pull out beds when we visit. It’s fun to stay with them.” Cox works for the Wall Street law firm of Cravath, Swaine & Moore and seems to thrive on the intense competition. Observes his sister-in-law: “Eddie loves the law, and they like having a private life in New York. New York is a great place for a private life.”

With a few exceptions. One day recently Julie went to Saks Fifth Avenue to buy maternity clothes for a Washington friend, and Tricia went along. Recalls Julie, “As we left the shop, I turned to Tricia and she turned to me and we took bets—’It’s either you or me—in a week they’ll say one of us is pregnant.’ So it was Tricia. [Among other publications, PEOPLE so reported.] We got the biggest kick out of it. And, as a joke, my pregnant friend sent Tricia a baby gift!”

Although New York obviously appeals to Julie, David stresses that he is still a legal resident of Pennsylvania. “Now is the time to leave Washington,” declares Eisenhower, who makes it perfectly clear that he has not given up the idea of some day running for office. “I think Pennsylvania is a place where I could establish myself in a hurry. I know people back there. It would be a kind of ideal place to start.”

But his articulate young wife, still considered by many—including her father—to have vote-getting potential, rules out a political career of her own. Nor is she enthusiastic about David’s political ambitions—a reluctance he seems to understand. “We Eisenhowers never went through what the Nixons went through,” he points out. “Politics for us was sunshine and roses and adulation.” For Julie, the lesson has been a bitter one: “I don’t think the excitement is worth the pain.”

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