Monday, June 26, 2017

"A world of little men using large powers incompetently from a combination of suspicion and panic."

That's how Garry Wills described the Nixon White House in 1973 as it began to sink. Some might say things have not changed much.

But if you think that Nixon's exit from the White House was brought about by the defection of principled conservatives, think again.  As Frank Rich explains in New York magazine:

A few Republican senators did ask tough questions during the Watergate hearings — Howard Baker and Lowell Weicker, famously — but it took even them a year after the Watergate break-in to find their voices, and they were not in the leadership. Then, as now, so-called Establishment Republicans were more likely to gripe about Nixon in private or in not-for-attribution conversations with reporters. In public, they usually cowered, sparing the president their harshest criticism and cordoning him off from impeachable offenses out of fear of him and his base.

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