Monday, May 11, 1998

Week of 05/11/1998

Clinton: "I’m not a crook.. Nixon! I meant Nixon! I’m not Nixon!"
No kidding!
- by David Matthews 2

In 1974, the White House tried to use executive privilege to block members of the Nixon Administration from testifying in the Watergate hearings. That tactic failed in the US Supreme Court, and weeks later, President Richard Nixon resigned from office.

I remember seeing Nixon’s resignation on TV. At the time, I was only eight, but even then, I knew that for whatever reason, it was a serious occasion. At that age, presidents were icons, symbols of leadership, people to be respected. I didn’t know why Nixon had to resign back then, only that for whatever reason, it was serious. Years later, I found out what Watergate was all about, and it made the seriousness of his resignation that much more significant to me.

Fast forward almost twenty-five years later. In 1998, the White House tried to use executive privilege to block members of the Clinton Administration from testifying in the Monica Lewinsky grand jury. That tactic has currently failed in a federal court, but it has yet to run its course through the appeals process.

Clinton is still in office, in case you didn’t notice, and has no intention of leaving until 2001. But that hasn’t stopped the comparisons to Nixon

So while the issue is fresh, allow me to provide some brutally honest comparisons between President Bill Clinton and the late President Richard Nixon.



Full name Richard Millhouse Nixon William Jefferson Clinton
Term in office elected President 1968, re-elected 1972, resigned 1974 elected President 1992, re-elected 1996 (as of published date, still in office)
Nickname "Tricky Dick" "Slick Willie"
Most known for the "blank" scandal Checkers, Watergate Whitewater-gate, Filegate, Travelgate, Troopergate, Zippergate, Campaigngate
Biggest enemies Vietnam war protesters, Democrats, Woodward & Bernstein, the truth Republicans, doctors, Internet providers, Microsoft, tobacco companies, militias, free speech organizations, the media, Matt Drudge, anti-abortion groups, Paula Jones, conservative & libertarian talk show hosts, the truth
Worst place to be found Dallas, Texas, on the same day John Kennedy was assassinated McDonald’s (anyone remember his one visit the first week of his administration?)
Biggest supporters Republicans, his family His family, and anyone who will contribute $100,000 or more to his campaigns
Often found In the White House On the campaign trail, even when he’s not up for election
Concerning sex, he.. .. formed an investigation of pornography in 1970, which failed to find any link between sexually explicit materials and crime. This report was subsequently rejected by Congress and the White House. .. denied allegations of adulterous affairs, defamed anyone who supported such allegations, and signed some of the most restrictive anti-sex laws in the history of the nation.
His wife.. .. Pat, silently endured the President’s slow decline .. Hillary Rodham, became the breadwinner for the family in the 80’s, turned a $1000 cattle investment into a $100,000 windfall overnight, is under suspicion for her possible role in the Whitewater scandal, became the first First Lady to testify before a grand jury, is the first First Lady to have an official White House position (unpaid), and is actively supportive of her husband in every cause she deems the country needs.
Best known for saying.. "I’m not a crook." "No comment" in a million different ways.
"Deep Throat" was.. .. the pseudonym to an informant with knowledge of what happened in the Watergate break-in. .. what Monica Lewinsky was rumored to have done with him.
What does/did him in.. .. tapes recording every conversation, and a portion of the tapes which were erased .. missing files that were found in the White House, stonewalling investigations, tape recordings from Linda Tripp, defaming too many accusers.
Age wasn’t kind to.. .. Nixon, as he developed definitive jowls as he got older. .. Hillary, as she developed definitive jowls as she got older.
As president, he’s accused of bombing… .. Cambodia .. the general public with constant denials of alleged improprieties to the point where they just don’t believe him anymore.
The most dangerous person in his administration was.. .. J. Edgar Hoover, head of the Federal Bureau of Investigations, for all the dirty little secrets he had. .. Dr. Jocelyn Elders, former Surgeon General, for talking about solo alternatives to sex that didn’t involve impeachment hearings or being really nice to Hillary.
The investigations into White House involvement .. .. hurt the President to where he was unable to do his job as President. .. allowed the President to complain about not being able to do his job, without actually defining what his job is and why he has been unable to do it.
Members of his administration were asked to keep with them.. .. their updated letter of resignation, to be approved at any time. .. an attorney, in case special prosecutor Kenneth Starr serves them with a subpoena at any time.

Of course, this list is far from complete, so if by any chance you could come up with some more comparisons, please feel free to let me know about them.

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