Trump firing FBI Director Comey does not compare to Nixon’s Watergate


An internet search of the words “Trump” and “Watergate” will yield a countless number of results comparing alleged crimes by the current administration to the crimes of the Nixon Administration back in the 1970s. The Watergate Scandal was a long, dragging event where every day new pieces of evidence (a revolutionary idea, I know) was made public through an almost constant broadcast of hearings. To compare the firing of FBI Director James Comey to the actions taken by Nixon during Watergate is a mistake, as the two are nothing alike and the comparison does nothing more than eliminate what is left of the public’s trust in the government.Why is this comparison being made? During the Watergate investigation, Archibald Cox, the special prosecutor, subpoenaed taped conversations from the Oval Office, in which Nixon himself had put microphones to record his conversations. Upon this subpoena, Nixon demanded the firing of Cox who was later replaced. The firing of Cox is being compared to the firing of Comey by Trump. Of course, this action does raise some questions as the FBI is investigating alleged Russian involvement in the 2016 election, but the reasons for the two parties’ firings were extremely different. During the Watergate hearings, Cox was clearly fired for subpoenaing the tapes. Today, it is less clear why the President fired Comey. The reasons the administration gave included that the now-former director was causing distrust of the FBI by the public. This could be in part due to Comey’s poor handling of the Clinton e-mail investigation, holding a press conference in July of 2016 stating that there would be no charges to Clinton but announcing in October that he was reopening the investigation. This action taken by Trump could be a signal that there is something else going on, but what is missing is evidence. The Watergate Scandal only ended in Nixon’s impeachment because of an overwhelming amount of evidence, as well as basically the entire government working against him. For those that want Trump’s impeachment, this is incredibly far off. So far there has been no evidence implicating Trump in his alleged crimes. Should evidence be discovered, there is absolutely no reason that Trump should not be held accountable. However, the American justice system is founded on the idea of innocence until proven guilty. It was this concept that the Democrats argued again and again amidst the Clinton e-mail investigation, and it is now a concept that the Democrats have seemingly forgot. Trying to prosecute anyone without proper evidence is dangerous to the sanctity of freedom in America, but doing so to the President is dangerous to the survival of our nation as a whole. What will come out of this investigation riddled baseless allegations is the widespread distrust of our government as a whole, which, if Russia actually had any involvement in the election, would have been exactly their goal. As I have discussed in previous articles, we live in a post-truth society, at the fault of both sides of the political spectrum. Regardless of the cause of this lack of truth, it is important now more than ever that we tread lightly when handling situations such as the possible impeachment of the President of the United States. It would be dangerous to allow someone who does not have the best interest of the citizens of the nation in mind to hold power, but it would be even more worse to cannibalize our democracy policy arguments.


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