Watergate reporter Carl Bernstein: Trump's 'authoritarian' behavior in public is 'much more egregious' than Nixon
Carl Bernstein (Photo: Screen capture)

On Monday evening, veteran journalist Carl Bernstein told CNN's Anderson Cooper that although special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into President Donald Trump's alleged collusion with the Russians is just beginning, we've already learned a lot of damning evidence about the commander-in-chief.

"Richard Nixon is a criminal president who abused his authority in secret throughout his presidency and had to leave office because of it," Bernstein said. "Donald Trump, by contrast, is a president of the United States who has claimed authoritarian powers for himself and exercised them not in secret but openly, and now because of that it looks like he may well have obstructed justice, among other possibility illegal acts."

Bernstein and Cooper agreed that it's unwise to draw too many parallels between Trump's presidency and Nixon's, which ended in resignation after Bernstein and his writing partner Bob Woodward revealed his corruption. Nevertheless, Bernstein asserted that in the short amount of time Mueller has been investigating Trump, the public has already gleaned ample evidence of his dangerous corruption.

"The conduct of Donald Trump in office as we've seen it publicly is much more egregious than we publicly saw Nixon's conduct certainly up to the time that he fired the special prosecutor in the Saturday Night Massacre," Bernstein concluded.

Watch Bernstein diagnose Mueller's investigation and Trump's behavior in office so far below, via CNN.