Four decades ago, Richard Nixon resigned as President of the United States when audiotapes confirmed what many had long suspected: a crook was living in the White House.
Few publications covered Nixon’s dangerous career as diligently or as critically as The Nation. Washington Post reporters Woodward and Bernstein have been justly acknowledged, but equally important was a national conversation about what Watergate said about American democracy. For that, The Nation was indispensable.
For the first time, that coverage has been collected in Smoking Gun, The Nation on Watergate, 1952 – 2010, with an introduction by former US Representative Elizabeth Holtzman, who served on the House Judiciary Committee and voted to impeach.
As she argues in her introduction: “Neither Congress nor the courts have taken the Watergate example to heart and stood firmly against presidential crimes or serious misconduct.”
“Nixon’s successors have been expanding the powers of the presidency for four decades now," editor Richard Kreitner writes in the preface, “Smoking Gun is a thrilling history, but it is also a user’s manual for how a democratic society under threat can wake up and take those powers back.”