‘Like Richard Nixon in 1973’: Presidential historian explains Trump’s ‘pathological’ witness tampering
A historian who has published nine books on the American presidency explained the parallels between President Donald Trump’s witness tampering and similar actions by President Richard Nixon during a Wednesday night appearance on MSNBC.
“I want to turn to NBC News presidential historian Michael Beschloss, a close student of not only this story, but of its antecedents,” Ari Melber introduced. “Your view of what this conjures.”
“It conjures a couple of things, Ari, one is Richard Nixon in 1973 and 1974,” Beschloss replied. “He was accused by the House impeachment inquiry of witness tampering as part of obstruction of justice, which was one of the counts against him.”
“His aide, John Ehrlichman said it was pathological,” the historian explained. “Nixon was a lawyer, he knew to get involved in this was against his own self-interest, but he couldn’t help himself, he always had to get involved in this.”
Beschloss also noted another fascinating parallel.
“Vice President George Bush was in danger of being dragged into Iran-Contra,” Beschloss reminded. “He was advised deftly by his great friend and close aide and counsel, a guy named Boyden Gray, who kept Bush out of that scandal.”
“By the hand of fate Ari, do you know where Donald Trump is eating dinner tonight,” Beschloss asked.
“No, I don’t,” Melber replied.
“He is eating dinner at the home of Boyden Gray, the same guy, in Georgetown, who just by chance happened to be having a dinner for Republican donors,” Beschloss revealed. “It’s said to be about the first time Donald Trump has gone to a private home in Washington for dinner.”