It’s just two months since the 50th anniversary of the Watergate break-in which eventually led to the only time that a President ever resigned. And while Donald Trump can’t resign, unless he’s elected in 2024 and then resigns, the parallels between what happened back then and what’s happening now are just too uncanny to be ignored, even if they are being completely ignored by the Fake News.
The seeds for Watergate were planted in 1971, when The New York Times published the ‘Pentagon Papers’ which had been swiped from a secure government archive by then-RAND military analyst Daniel Ellsberg. This resulted in the formation of a group within the White House known as the ‘plumbers,’ whose task was to find and plug such leaks.
Now recall that Trump, like Nixon, was also obsessed with leaks. As early as 2017, Trump instructed the then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions to initiate a broad investigation to find out how the Fake News was getting fed ‘illegal’ government information about confidential goings-on within the White House. Neither the work of the plumbers or the work by Jeff Sessions turned up anything at all.
Back to Watergate. In 1972, the head of the plumbers, an ex-CIA agent, Howard Hunt, was authorized by then-Attorney General John Mitchell, to shift his group’s focus away from White House leaks and begin to engage in secret, intelligence-gathering operations against the Democratic Party that could be used by Nixon’s re-election campaign.
In addition to engaging in covert, electronic surveillance of Democratic campaign operations, the group also conducted sabotage efforts against specific Democratic candidates, involving spreading false stories and gossip, faking political donations to Democratic campaigns from far-Left groups and disrupting campaign events. These activities were directed by members of the White House staff and were funded by money that came in anonymously to the RNC.
Ready? Several of these escapades were organized and managed by a young political operative named – Roger Stone! That’s right. The same Roger Stone who developed the ‘election fraud’ narrative that became the entire message of the Trump 2020 campaign, earned his political spurs doing exactly the same kind of dirty tricks for Nixon fifty years ago.
What made Watergate a scandal of such proportions that it resulted in the political demise of a President, along with jail sentences for 7 top Administration officials and indictments for scores more? It was the degree to which there was absolutely no barrier between the White House as a government agency and Nixon’s re-election campaign. The Committee to Re-elect the President (known as CREEP) was a separate legal entity, but its operations were totally organized and controlled by White House staff.
There was also no oversight. The Federal Election Commission, which requires financial reports from all federal candidates, didn’t exist until 1974. Many of the other rules and regulations which impose at least some degree of accountability on the political process were also created in the post-Watergate years.
Now hold on. It gets better.
Trump was the first President to use a national campaign to build and sell a personally-owned brand, in this case the brand known as MAGA, which he copyrighted in 2015 and resulted in revenues to Trump which sometimes ran more than $80,000 per day! Given that this information comes from Jared Kushner, whose new book reveals him to be as big a liar and conniver as his father-in-law, perhaps the MAGA sales numbers need to be taken with several grains of salt. But the bottom line is that the Trump White House could fund all kinds of election hi-jinks without worrying about government supervision or legal controls.
Which is exactly what the legal challenges to Joe Biden’s vote totals are all about, an issue which the January 6th House Select Committee has entirely missed, just as the Senate Watergate Committee, which held more than 300 hours of live testimony in 1973 also missed.
But the tip of the January 6th iceberg is beginning to get larger with yesterday’s publication of a long and detailed article in the Washington Post, which is only fitting since the WaPo was the media outlet that broke the Watergate story and tied the Watergate burglary team to Nixon’s re-election campaign within one day after the burglary occurred.
Evidently what happened is that several of the lawyers who were promoting the election ‘fraud’ nonsense, chief among them that moron Sydney Powell, hired a firm to conduct a ‘forensic’ analysis of data on voting machines in Georgia and Michigan, and then uploaded what they found onto a server which then was accessed by various election-fraud promoters to use in their continuing efforts to undo the 2020 election results.
The firm that did the work, a technology outfit – SullivanStrickler – out of Atlanta, was paid as much as $26,000 per day for doing this work. That’s twenty-six thousand dollars for one, single day.
Where did this money come from? Did it come from Sydney Powell’s pocketbook? Did it come from Giuliani who is evidently hoping that Trump will pay him some money for all the costs he has incurred as the President’s ‘unpaid’ legal adviser for the last six years?
We don’t know. What we do know is that leaking information from a voting machine to outside, non-government sources is a serious felony. Kind of like the same kind of felony that the Watergate burglars were convicted of committing after breaking into the Watergate offices of the DNC.
I can only wish and hope that the WaPo reporters who broke this story yesterday get an opportunity to ‘follow the money’ the way that Woodward and Bernstein followed the money the way that Deep Throat told them to do.
Hey – wait one goddamn minute! Deep Throat? Deep State? Is there any difference? We’ll see.