'Massacre in Slow Motion': Concerns Grow That Trump Executing Nixonian Purge

On October 20, 1973, former President Richard Nixon ordered the firing of special prosecutor Archibald Cox, sparking a series of high-profile resignations that came to be known as Nixon’s “Saturday Night Massacre.” Following the early departure of FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe on Monday, critics charged that President Donald Trump is carrying out a similar “slow motion” massacre of his own.

In an interview on CNN Monday night, legendary Watergate reporter Carl Bernstein said McCabe’s decision to step down—which came amid relentless attacks by the president and reports that Trump wanted him gone—as well as the vote of Trump’s GOP “enablers” to release a cherry-picked memo in an effort to undermine special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe, will soon be viewed by historians as Trump’s “Monday Night Slaughter.”


Bernstein was hardly the only analyst drawing the comparison between Nixon’s actions during the Watergate probe, which ultimately led to his demise, and Trump’s actions amid the ongoing Russia probe, which many have argued clearly constitute obstruction of justice.

Will Bunch, a columnist for Philly.com, argued that Trump’s firing of former FBI director James Comey and his attacks on McCabe are “working up” to future firings, with special counsel Robert Mueller being the final target.