Watergate doesn’t predict what will happen to Trump

trump-debateAs Special Counsel Robert Mueller continues to investigate possible Russian collusion in the 2016 presidential race, there are distinct echoes of the Watergate scandal that cost Richard Nixon his presidency.

Last Monday’s indictments of former Donald Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and protege Rick Gates – along with disclosure that Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos confessed to lying to the FBI – come after the president fired the FBI director and three key Trump associates failed to initially disclose interactions with Russians.

That’s led many to compare today’s investigation with Watergate.

However, there are no signs so far of two landmark aspects of Watergate that proved to be tipping points: White House attorney John Dean breaking ranks to deliver incriminating testimony and “Deep Throat” source Mark Felt leaking otherwise secret FBI developments.

“Any time you have an issue, you look for a model or precedent — and with the current investigation, there aren’t very many,” said Nixon biographer Luke Nichter, explaining the frequent comparisons to Watergate. “But we don’t even know if Trump is being investigated. Nixon was clearly being investigated.”

Raphael Sonenshein, who runs CSU Los Angeles’ Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs, also warns against drawing too many comparisons at this stage. At the same time, he’s among those who see the Mueller’s investigation picking up steam. …

Click here to read the full story from the Orange County Register