The One Party State: the True History of Watergate
Posted by Charles II on May 22, 2012
Bob Parry has a good, if somewhat long read on what really happened at Watergate up at Consortium News.
The gist of it was that the Watergate break-in of 1972 had as its main goal ensuring that McGovern was nominated despite the efforts of the Democratic regulars to prevent that from happening. After McGovern was in fact nominated, the regulars disloyally refused to support him, guaranteeing the re-election of Richard Nixon. When Watergate broke, the regulars did everything they could to sabotage the civil suit filed by the DNC against Nixon’s Re-elect Committee and ultimately installed uber-fixer Robert Strauss as party leader, from which position Strauss led the Democratic Party into decline. It is difficult to read Parry’s narration of the story without concluding that the Democratic Party was destroyed from within.
As an aside, the Democratic regulars believed–wrongly–that somehow the RFK/McGovern insurgent wing of the party had foiled Hubert Humphrey’s election. In reality, Hubert Humphrey was his own worst enemy. Even Nixon’s treason–and I use the word in its strict constitutional sense–in conducting unauthorized negotiations with the Vietnamese to block a settlement of the war did not have as much impact on the election as the clubbing of anti-war protesters on the streets of Chicago. Yes, many RFK supporters sat out the election, but they did not do so at the request of the Kennedy family or George McGovern. They were just exercising their right to vote or not vote for the person of their choice.
So was the fall of the Democratic Party a tragedy, the result of a misunderstanding by the regulars that they had to win the loyalty of their voters? Or did it represent the rise of the one-party state, in which neither conservatives nor liberals have any real representation in government?
Whatever one believes the goal of Watergate was, its effect was to greatly narrow the differences between the parties as they sought corporate money instead of people power to win elections.
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