In the immediate fallout from President Donald Trump firing FBI Director James Comey, one three-word phrase has been regularly thrown around on Twitter: ‘Saturday Night Massacre’.
The ‘massacre’ Twitter pundits are referring to is what many considered to be the final blow to President Richard Nixon’s administration, when the former president fired Archibald Cox, the special prosecutor in the Watergate scandal that tanked his presidency. That night, the attorney general and deputy attorney general resigned in protest to Nixon firing Cox, and the rest is history.
Now, the comparisons between President Nixon firing the independent special prosecutor who was investigating a presidential scandal and President Trump firing the FBI director investigating alleged collusion between the president and Russia has many drawing parallels.
New Mexico Senator Martin Heinrich said on Twitter that the Comey firing “smacks of President Nixon’s Saturday Night Massacre.”
Connecticut Senator and former attorney general Richard Blumenthal told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer that this incident has a similar “feel” to the infamous night of firings and resignations.
Check out tweets comparing the controversial firings below.
The amount of politicians, analysts and historians talking openly about Nixon's Saturday Night Massacre and obstruction of justice is scary.
— Sofia Diogo Mateus (@sofiadmateus) May 9, 2017
President Trump’s dismissal of FBI Director Comey smacks of President Nixon's Saturday Night Massacre.
— Martin Heinrich (@MartinHeinrich) May 9, 2017
If it feels like Nixon's Saturday Night Massacre, there's key difference. Opposite party controlled Congress. Trump has his party all around
— Jayne Miller (@jemillerwbal) May 9, 2017
.@SenBlumenthal: "We face a looming Constitutional crisis" … Comey firing has "very much the feel" of Saturday night massacre (CNN)
— David Wright (@DavidWright_CNN) May 9, 2017
This will no more save Trump than Nixon's Saturday Night Massacre saved him. Firing Comey will hasten Trump's removal. God bless America.
— Claude Taylor (@TrueFactsStated) May 9, 2017
Here's the L.A. Times front page from Oct. 21, 1973, the morning after Richard Nixon's Saturday Night Massacre. pic.twitter.com/xx0OVlVi4m
— Matt Pearce (@mattdpearce) May 9, 2017