Over the past few months, it has become almost a cliché to compare the ongoing probe into potential Russia/Trump collusion during the 2016 election to Watergate. Former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has said the Russian story is “probably bigger than Watergate.” Late-night comics have made Watergate jokes on their shows. MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell has straight up said: “This is Watergate!”
But you haven’t heard many conservatives make those comparisons. So it was a bit eye-opening today when MSNBC host Hugh Hewitt noted that former Trump campaign advisor George Papadopoulos’ guilty plea in the Muller investigation could have far-reaching implications for President Trump.
After anchor Craig Melvin brought up how the White House is portraying Papadopoulos as a low-level volunteer during the campaign, Hewitt explained that, in the end, it doesn’t matter what Papadopoulos’ official role was.
“Well, I can tell you, I’ve never heard of the guy until yesterday, but that doesn’t matter Craig,” the talk radio host said. “All that matters is what did he do and with whom did he do it and certainly the people who broke into the Watergate weren’t very high level in the campaign of Nixon ’72 and they ended up bringing down a presidency, so it doesn’t really matter what his job title is, what matters is what he did.”
Hewitt going down this route took Melvin a bit by surprise.
“I was a little surprised there, Hugh, to hear you compare the investigation so far to Watergate,” the anchor noted.
Hewitt said later that we will eventually get to the bottom of whether or not there was “illegal criminal activity” during the campaign because the special counsel has ex-Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort and former campaign staffer Rick Gates “in a headlock” with the recent indictments.
Watch the clip above, via MSNBC.
[image via screengrab]
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