It was a moment in American history that no one will ever forget. The president of the United States leaving the White House in disgrace, raising his hands in the double V before being taken away on a chopper. The Watergate scandal that ended Richard Nixon’s presidency is often used as the barometer by which all other political scandals are compared. We’ve adopted the -gate suffix for every controversy that comes down the pike. But if you ask G. Gordon Liddy, the mastermind behind the Watergate break-in, the scandals facing Hillary Clinton are much worse than those that sunk Nixon.
Appearing on Aaron Klein’s AM radio show this weekend, Liddy said, “Bear in mind that nobody even caught a cold at the Watergate office building. But four devoted American citizens, including an ambassador, were left to die in Benghazi.”
Liddy worked with E. Howard Hunt to devise the break-in that ultimately led to Nixon’s impeachment and resignation. Under his orders, operatives broke into the Democratic National Committee headquarters in 1972, just as the election season was swinging into high gear. Liddy served nearly five years in prison for his part in the burglary. Following his release, he became an outspoken political commentator and author.
Today, Liddy believes that conservative talk radio and Fox News are the only things standing between the American people and a dictatorship. His own talk show ended in 2012, but his interview Sunday showed that he has plenty to say about the current state of American politics.
“It’s obvious what she has done,” Liddy said of Clinton’s release of private emails. “She has cherry picked information to go public. Destroyed and or concealed the rest. The woman is a flat out liar.”
There’s no question that this scandal could grow to dwarf Watergate. The safe bet is that no one has even scratched the surface on the depths of the coverup. Does it begin and end with Benghazi? Or does it go deeper, implicating Clinton for selling State Department favor to the highest bidder? We don’t know. And very few reporters seem interested in finding out.
What’s interesting is that Watergate itself was of little interest to the mainstream press early on. Following the initial media blitz, coverage of the break-in was relegated to the back pages in most national newspapers. Only the Washington Post continued to dig into the story, ultimately exposing a conspiracy that went all the way to the Oval Office. Where are today’s Woodwards? Where are today’s Bernsteins? Who has the guts to blow this scandal wide open?
Unfortunately, it may be up to the American people to decide this one for themselves. Is there enough smoke to suggest a fire? Do voters trust this woman? These questions may determine how Clinton fares next November. We blew it when it came to electing the first black president. Wouldn’t it be nice if the first female president could live up to that lofty honor?