POLITICS

Watergate Figure John Dean: New Donald Trump Scandal Is ‘Nixon On Stilts And Steroids’

“It is beyond Nixon," the former White House counsel said of the Trump Justice Department collecting private information about members of Congress.

The Justice Department secretly seizing smartphone data of Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee is “Nixon on stilts and steroids,” a former White House counsel said Friday. 

John Dean, who served as counsel to Richard Nixon before flipping on the then-president over the Watergate scandal, told CNN’s Erin Burnett that the actions of former President Donald Trump’s DOJ went far beyond what his former boss ever did.

“Nixon didn’t have that kind of Department of Justice,” Dean said.

He then recalled how the Nixon administration responded to the Pentagon Papers — classified documents detailing U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War — being leaked. 

“I got a call from the Oval Office the day after he learned that, and could the Department of Justice bring a criminal action for this? Called over, found out the short answer was they could, but they won’t,” Dean said. “So Nixon couldn’t use the department as he wanted to.”

Burnett asked Dean if the Trump DOJ’s actions went “beyond what Nixon did.”

“It is beyond Nixon, yes,” Dean responded. “It’s Nixon on stilts and steroids.”

Watch the interview here:

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