Frameshop | Nixon All Over Again
by Jeffrey Feldman, Thu Jul 14, 2005 at 10:14:50 AM EDT
[Cross posted from Frameshop --JF]
Quick question: What would Americans do if they learned that a close adviser to President Bush--the guy at the center of the Leakgate scandal--also worked in the 1972 "Watergate" campaign to re-elect President Nixon?
What would happen, for example, if a paper like USA Today ran a headline, tomorrow that said:
WATERGATE MEET LEAKGATE: BUSH ADVISER BROKE LAW FOR NIXON, TOO
I bet Americans would be pretty upset if they read that. They would buy lots of copies of USA Today and they would be very, very upset to learn that the person at the center of the White House Leakgate scandal was also involved in the Watergate scandal.
But it is true.
Here is a quote from a 2003 essay by Robert Reich (the entire article is here):
It's no accident that Karl Rove was one of Richard Nixon's moles. Using techniques developed by his first mentor, dirty-tricks strategist Donald Segretti, Rove infiltrated Democratic organizations on behalf of Nixon's infamous 1972 campaign. Rove's formidable talents came to the attention of George Bush Senior, then incoming Republican National Committee chairman, and the rest is history.
What? A man involved in the dirty campaign to re-elect Richard Nixon is now President Bush's right-hand man and was responsible for electing and re-electing him over and over again? Now that would be a great cover story for Time or Newsweek. I'd buy a copy, that's for sure.
But the story gets better. Here's a 2001 article from the Texas Observer written by Louis Dubose (the whole article can be read here):
Rove's first foray into politics involved gaining entry to the office of Alan Dixon-a candidate for state treasurer in Illinois in 1970-stealing some campaign stationery and printing and distributing a fake invitation to Dixon's campaign headquarters, promising "free beer, free food, girls, and a good time." "I was nineteen and I got involved in a political prank," Rove told the Dallas Morning News in 1999.
Breaking into a campaign office is the kind of "prank" that most Americans call a felony. But no matter, this particular crime did not make this guy more of a liability to the Republican Party. It was a crime that got him a new job! And the story gets worse after that:
When, in the wake of the Watergate break-in, Rove was accused of teaching dirty tricks to college Republicans, he attributed the accusations to rumors started by Dolan. After the FBI interviewed Rove, the Republican National Committee-then chaired by Bush the Elder-looked into the charges, decided they were baseless, and offered Rove work.
There it is again! This guy commits a crime and gets offered a job!! What a great system they have over there in the Nixon branch of the GOP.
Check out that Texas Observer article because it's a real eye opener. And I'm sure if the New York Times or the San Francisco Chronicle wanted to quote from it, that Louis Dubose would oblige.
Imagine if someone in the newly-bold White House Press corp asked this question, "Why did the President hire a man to run his campaign who was involved in Richard Nixon's infamous Watergate re-election scandal?"
I bet that question would make the nightly news on MSNBC or even FOX.
And I bet that if Americans knew that President Bush's closest adviser was famous for his involvement in the Watergate scandal--I bet Americans would be outraged. "Is it really Nixon all over again?"
They wouldn't care much about the name of this guy who works for President Bush. They would just want to know why the President is more concerned about getting himself elected than he is about protecting the nation.
© 2005 Jeffrey Feldman
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