I wrote a column the other day about Watergate, which messed up the
country pretty badly for a while before the bad guy, Richard Nixon,
became the first US president ever to resign. Do we now need another
one called "Here We Go Again-gate?"
I ask because of a story in the Washington Post today about how the
House Oversight and Government Reform Committee (the House is
Republican, remember, and this was a party-line vote) voted that
Attorney General Eric Holder be held in contempt after the Obama
administration, citing executive privilege for the first time, refused
to turn over documents inked to a failed gun-running operation.
My first thought when I saw the story was "Good grief, not again!"
Reading the story, I thought yes, legal quibbles, ambiguities, grey
areas, just like the old model. This time we do lack burglars caught
in an office but who knows what lies ahead?
Then I thought: we survived Watergate. Life went on then. It will
probably go on this time too, no matter how many invesigatons and
hearings and grand juries it takes. I seem to remember a cartoon from
back when Watergate ended--could it have been the late Herblock of the
Post. A couple of Americans were looking at a copy of the
Constitution, one saying to the other, "It works!" Indeed, it did.