Shadow Of Nixon, Watergate Looms Over Trump Controversies

May 19, 2017

Credit Flickr / Cody McComas

Monday, May 22, 2017

Since the firing of James Comey, the words “Watergate” and “Nixonian” have been bandied about. Do these comparisons hold up to history? Mike Collins talks with political experts and a Charlotte attorney who had a front-row seat to Watergate.

Late afternoons and early evenings have become a drop zone for bombshells and head-spinning news out of the Trump White House, from the firing of FBI director James Comey and Comey’s memo saying the president asked him to call off the Michael Flynn investigation, to the revelation that the president shared classified information with Russian officials. 

President Trump claimed he’s the target of an unprecedented “witch hunt” after the appointment of former FBI director Robert Mueller as special counsel to look into Russia and last year’s election.

Credit Maria David / The Charlotte Observer

Meanwhile, a cadre of House Democrats last week turned the volume up on impeachment murmur, but Democratic leadership signaled a reluctance to endorse Trump’s removal, at least for now.

But there’s another word that has been on a lot of lips: Watergate. Next month marks 45 years since the break-in that ultimately forced Richard Nixon out of office, and many are comparing Trump’s self-inflicted wounds to Nixon’s.

Do the comparisons hold up? Is impeachment even a possibility with a Republican Congress?

We get analysis from two political scientists, and a former Charlotte City Council member who served on the Senate Watergate committee, as well as the author of a new Nixon biography.

GUESTS

Eric Heberlig, professor of political science, University of North Carolina Charlotte

Scott Huffmon, professor of political science, Winthrop University (@HuffmonPolitics)

David Erdman, partner, Erdman and Hockfield; former Charlotte City Council member; Senate Watergate committee staffer (@DoubleLegal)

John A. Farrell, author, Richard Nixon: The Life (@jaloysius)

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