Watergate The Scandal That Brought Down A President includes pictures, profiles the important participants in the Watergate scandal and their recollection of what happened, including foot-notes and quotes about Watergate, as well as quotes from some Nixon tapes, including Nixon’s resignation address, includes a bibliography for further reading, and it includes a table of contents.
Five Facts Explaining About Watergate
Forty years ago, five men broke into the headquarters of the Democratic National Committee at the Watergate complex in Washington D.C. in a botched operation that would spark a chain of events that two years later would see Richard Nixon resign as the 37th president of The United States.
First Fact-Richard Nixon
To understand Watergate, you must understand the mind of Richard Nixon. Being a former commander in the U.S. Navy during World War II before he became a California Congressman and then Senator. He was Vice President to Dwight D. Eisenhower for eight years until 1960, soon after he ran for President in 1960 against John F. Kennedy, which he lost in a very close race, being one of the closest elections in U.S History.
Richard Nixon was deeply hurt by this, he blamed the media for his loss by favoring Kennedy, Nixon resented the success of the Kennedy family, which lasted all the way to The White House, when he was elected to in 1968. The unpopular Vietnam War in his administration’s early years was just one of the many Nixon internal ‘wars’.
Second Fact-Nixon’s White House Plumbers
The two journalists that helped uncover the scandal, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein-wrote that Nixon had five-overlapping wars. 1) The anti-war movement 2) the media 3) Democrats 4) The U.S. Justice system 5) and history itself.
Nixon sought to undermine anyone who he considered an enemy. Like the man who leaked The Pentagon Papers, Daniel Ellsberg, whose Psychiatrist’s office was broke into by members of the so-called “White House Plumbers.” These men set up with the White House and tasked with stopping the leaks of classified information to the media.
The ‘plumbers’ branched out into other covert illegal activities, working for the appropriately named CREEP (Committee to Re-elect The President-Nixon) where opposition groups would be infiltrated at campaign events. These schemes undermined Democratic presidential candidates by forging the infamous Canuck Letter-which torpedoed Muskies presidential hopes, they had also stolen campaign workers shoes. Two of the White House Plumbers were Ex-FBI officer G. Gordon Liddy and Ex-CIA officer E. Howard Hunt.
Third Fact-The Break-In At Watergate
In the early hours of June 17,1972, five men (The Plumbers) attempted to break in to the headquarters of the Democraric National Committee at the Watergate Complex, about a mile from the White House. A security guard on his rounds, discovered tape on a door latch outside the DNC HQ and he called the police. The five men were arrested and the FBI made a connection that E. Howard Hunt was one of Nixon’s ‘plumbers’ tasked with fixing leaks and who in turn was connected to Charles Colson, special counsel to the president. Once this link was established and leaked to the media, the truth about the scandal began.
Fourth Fact-The White House Cover-Up Begins
It is important to note that Nixon never ordered the break-in at the Watergate complex-the approval for that came from Nixon’s former Attorney General and chair of CREEP, John Mitchell-but Nixon colluded in its aftermath to distance his administration from it.
Nixon states: “I can say categorically that no one in the White House staff, no one in the Administration presently employed, was involved in this very bizarre incident,” as he laid it out to the White House press corps in the immediate aftermath of the break-in.
In private, he was telling his lawyer John W Dean to cover-up the White House connection to the Watergate break-in. Six weeks after the break-in, he told his chief of staff Bob Halderman of the burglars and their leaders, “They have to be paid. That’s all there is to that.” the cover-up begins.
Fifth Fact-Nixon Wins Re-Election
After denying his administration’s involvement in the Watergate break-in, Nixon was able to weather the growing concerns surrounding the break-in to win re-election in 1972, with one of the biggest margins in history, beating his Democratic opponent George McGovern in almost every state in the country.
Increasingly and mistakenly viewed as a single scandal within The United States government, what is commonly referred to as the Watergate scandal serves as an overarching term for a series of scandals beginning in 1971 and extending through 1974. But more than any other, it refers to the specific break-in at the Watergate Hotel and office complex in Washington, D.C. The crisis, originating in a secretive battle between the two major political parties, the Nixon White House’s paranoia, and the ensuing conflict concerning the release of confidential information to the public, including senior government officials into committing crimes (most notoriously petty burglary) and cover-ups for the purposes of character assassination and inter-political espionage, and it ultimately resulted in the first and only resignation of a sitting American president, Richard Milhouse Nixon.
Over the following years until it began to culminate with, Congressional impeachment proceedings and a momentous showdown between the president and the Supreme Court over the release of the presidential tapes in the White House, (which Nixon had put in), a moment in which Nixon seriously considered defying the court and initiating a constitutional crisis. When Nixon surrendered the tapes, excerpts were blatantly missing.
Americas public view of government in a general took a decidedly negative turn in recent years, resulting in social and political disillusionment and distrust of the government that still resonates today.
My feelings on how we as a nation can bounce back and learn from others in the government, is to truly investigate every public official, from the state levels to the White House. Ask the hard questions, get the history of any person who is running for elections in your city or town, from mayors, governors to the Congressmen and Women to the Senators and up to the most important one of all, The Presidency. Vote with your conscience and mind.
If you have any questions or just want to leave a comment, please do below and I will get back with you as soon as I can.
If you would like to purchase this book, Watergate-The Scandal That Brought Down A President, please do here.
All The Best,