Meanwhile, Murray’s lawsuit goes on. It is believed to be the first case to test the corporate whistleblower protections of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, the corporate reform bill passed by Congress after the Enron scandal. Murray’s case is scheduled for trial in federal district court in Dallas later this spring. ALL OF THE JOURNALISTS’ NOTES The opening of the Woodward and Bernstein archives at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas earlier this month was one of those rare occasions when one could witness journalists posing for pictures with other journalists. There they were, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein together again, the dynamic duo from The Washington Post who, in 1972, broke the story of the Watergate scandal, setting off the eventual demise of the malfeasant Nixon administration. A full accompaniment of press from across Texas attended the event, which marked the opening of an exhibition of paraphernalia related to the Watergate investigation-74 boxes worth of interview notes, story drafts, and clippings, among other items. UT paid some $5 million for the collection, and the duo has committed $500,000 to maintain the archive in perpetuity. Woodward said that he thought the collection, which will be open to the public, would “serve as a kind of case study” in investigative journalism. Would-be journalists should take heart from the fact that Woodward had been working as a journalist for less than two years at the time of the Watergate break-in, and had been at the Post for less than nine months. Youth and inexperience were not obstacles. “Be persistent, ask questions, make lists, and talk to as many people as you can,” he said. If only an older Woodward had stayed as critical while writing the relatively toothless Bush at War \(see “Comandante W,” JanWhile the names of more than 100 sources for Woodward and Bernstein’s Watergate investigation are included in the materials, it is the name of the infamous “Deep Throat” that has intrigued Washington insiders and the public in general all these years. Woodward has vowed to keep Deep Throat’s identity secret until the source dies. DEEP BUSH? Now that Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein’s Watergate papers are safely ensconced in Austin at the University of Texas, questions about the identity of Deep Throat are rising again. And the name of George H.W. Bush has surfaced. Although Dear Leader 41 has been ignored by many in the Deep Throat Sweepstakes, a number of facts suggest that he had the knowledge and the motive to betray Nixon. Bush knew Nixon’s fundraising operation from the inside. His pals and former business partners, the Liedtke brothers, Hugh and Bill, ran the Houston oil company, Pennzoil. Bush convinced Bill Liedtke to be the regional finance chairman for Nixon’s presidential campaigns in both 1968 and 1972. In 1972, Liedtke, acting on instructions from Nixon’s chief fundraiser, Maurice Stans, began soliciting contributionsmostly in cash from Texas oil men, for the Committee Liedtke raised $700,000 in cash and securitieswhich was then flown to Washington on the Pennzoil plane in order to beat a new federal law requiring the disclosure of political contributions of $100 or more, as well as the identities of the contributors. Some of that $700,000 was later found in the pocket of Bernard Barker, one of the burglars arrested at the Watergate. Throughout Nixon’s career, one of his main uses for G.H.W. Bush was making sure that Bush continued tapping Texas oil barons for money. Some of that money made its way back to Bush. During his 1970 race for the Senate, Bush got at least $112,000 from Nixon’s secret slush fund. At least $6,000 of that money was in cash and was never declared by the Bush campaign. Although Nixon pretended to be Bush’s ally, he liked to disparage Bush in front of others. And after he helped convinced Bush to give up a safe seat in Congress in order to run for the Senate in 1970, which Bush then lost, Nixon allegedly reneged on his promise to give Bush a cushy job in his administration. Bush ended up at the U.N. Then, in 1972, instead of making Bush his running mate, Nixon decided to stay with Spiro Agnew. Furthermore, Nixon was much more enamored of another Texan, John Connally, than he ever was of G.H.W. Bush. Nixon’s love for Connally was particularly galling for Bush. Connally and Bush despised each other. Connally was always making fun of Bush’s eastern heritage”all hat and no cattle” Connally saidand he’d played a key role in Bush’s defeat in his 1970 race. Connally backed Bush’s opponent, Lloyd Bentsen. After Agnew was forced to resign in 1973, Connally was on the short list to replace him as vice president. Bush, who was then serving as chairman of the Republican National Committee, was not. By betraying Nixon, Bush could also get even with Connally. Furthermore, getting rid of Nixon was a perfect way for Bush to create his own power base. And that is exactly what happened. With Nixon and Connally out of the way, Bush began building his own credentials within the party. Gerald Ford made him ambassador to China, then CIA director. By 1977, three years after Bush wrote a letter telling Nixon that he should resign, Bush and his political hitman, Karl Rove, were in Houston, readying Bush for his first run for the White House. Revenge is an ancient motive. And that makes Bush a prime candidate for the role of Deep Throat. write dialogue The Texas Observer 307 W. 7th St. Austin, TX 78701 [email protected] FEBRUARY 18, 2005 THE TEXAS OBSERVER 5
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