Donald Trump’s behavior these last few days, including feelings of isolation and persecution, are not unlike those of Richard Nixon in the waning days of his own administration, says former Watergate prosecutor Nick Akerman.
As Business Insider reports, Akerman stopped by MSNBC to talk about his memories of Nixon in his final days, and he said that he sees a lot of similarities between the disgraced 37th president and Trump. Specifically, Akerman pointed out two ways in which he sees similarities between Trump and Nixon.
Feelings Of Isolation and Persecution
You may recall that on Christmas Eve, Trump tweeted that he was “all alone” in the White House, waiting for Democrats to come to the table with a budget that included what he sees as enough money for his border wall (“poor me”). That sense of loneliness and friendlessness mirrors that of Nixon in his own waning presidency.
“Nixon really kept to himself. He wound up sitting in front of the fire, and just kind of ruminating.”
In fact, there’s another parallel to Trump within this sense of isolation: both men’s reported tendencies to act out, with other White Officials acting as a sort of bulwark to mitigate the damage the POTUS could do. Trump, for example, has been known to issue policy pronouncements that come seemingly out of nowhere, such as banning transgender individuals from serving in the military or withdrawing troops from Syria. Nixon’s staffers feared that he makes similar, off-the-cuff decisions, but with much more serious consequences.
“There was an alert to go out to not take any of Nixon’s orders if he were to ask them to basically release any ICBMs, or missiles, against Russia.”
President Richard Nixon's resignation letter in the wake of the Watergate scandal, 1974. pic.twitter.com/f2OSkXqcPX— History Lovers Club (@historylvrsclub) December 27, 2018
Walls Closing In
Just as in Nixon’s waning days of his presidency, Donald Trump is also dogged by a federal investigation that appears to be getting closer to him by the day, says Akerman.
“[Trump] has got the entire wall falling in on him at this point.”
In fact, Trump has a problem that Nixon didn’t have: people formerly close to him are testifying. Specifically, three men who had formerly been in Trump’s inner circle – former security adviser Michael Flynn, former campaign manager Rick Gates, and former attorney Michael Cohen – have all agreed to cooperate with the Robert Mueller investigation. Nixon, by comparison, didn’t have anyone particularly close to him known to be cooperating with the Watergate investigation.
“None of this is good news for the White House.”