With the House finally beginning an impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump, I decided to read Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein’s All the President’s Men. The book is about the Watergate scandal and coverup that resulted in Richard Nixon resigning and several members of his administration serving time.
Reading about Watergate while following efforts to impeach Trump was an interesting experience. Sadly, the similarities are more than they ever should have become.
One of the things that really stood out in the context of today was the Nixon administration’s war on the press, especially the Washington Post. Today, Trump and his laces scream fake news when someone of them know the reporting is largely true. During Watergate, Nixon’s cronies also lied about the accuracy of the press’s reporting.
Bob Dole’s consistent lies about the media were really surprising to me. As someone who wasn’t alive during Watergate, I accepted the idea that Dole is an honorable statesman. The reality that he was the nominee of the Republican Party more than 20 years after he launched disgraceful, inaccurate attacks against the Washington Post shows how short a period of time history is to often remembered.
Reading about the coverup of the Nixon administration’s dirty deeds while thinking about the Trump administration’s coverup of his calls with foreign leaders was a reminder of how history is too often forgotten and easily repeated.
The way Nixon and Trump attack so-called elites while pretending they champion “forgotten America” demonstrates how successful the GOP has been at getting many to vote against their interest for decades.
Anyone who likes political history and wants to learn something about the scandal most like what we are living through today should read All the President’s Men.