The Watergate Scandal

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The Watergate scandal during Richard Nixon's presidency was arguably the high point of journalism's role in American politics. What had been considered a rather inept burglary attempt upon Democratic party offices in the Watergate Hotel in Washington D.C. and was therefore ignored by most journalists when it happened was investigated by Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, until it was proven to be a criminal conspiracy whose organization and subsequent cover-up reached as high as the Oval Office. In terms of media coverage of the scandal, however, it is worth noting that while Woodward and Bernstein had access to a privileged source of information, whom they named only as "Deep Throat" (but much later revealed to be high-ranking FBI official W. Mark Felt), they were not the only reporters covering the scandal as it unfolded. By looking at other journalistic sources, it may be possible to get a larger view of how President Nixon dealt with the scandal, how public opinion and responded, and ultimately how Nixon was led to resign. The Watergate burglary occurred in June of 1972, since it was conducted as part of a strategic effort to undermine the Democratic Party's campaign to run against Nixon in the presidential election later that year. Nixon won the 1972 election in a landslide: any coverage of the scandal that occurred before November of 1972 was sufficiently unincriminating that it did not hamper his re-election campaign. Although hints that the

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