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From the May 20, 2013, edition of “Viewpoint.”

John Fugelsang:

In the waning wake of Benghazi-gate, the GOP wants us to be inflamed over IRS-gate. And it’s become pretty clear the only real legislative scandal is the scandalous need for legislators to invent scandals so they don’t have to legislate, which I’m calling Gate-gate.

The people who once told us Obama was a Muslim with a bad Christian pastor, are now telling us Obama has masterminded all these scandals while being completely out of the loop. And now references to Watergate and Nixon are flying through the air like that guy Miguel’s crotch into America’s collective face.

Sen. Orrin Hatch says, “I’ve never seen anything quite like this, except in the past during the Nixon years.”

Congressman Steve King summed up the controversy by saying, “Add Watergate and Iran-Contra together and multiply by 10.” Which is confusing math because Iran-Contra already is Watergate times 10.

But the IRS scandal and Watergate are similar, in that Watergate led all the way to the top reaches of government, and the IRS scandal leads all the way up to people who’ve never met anyone in the top reaches of government.

So of course, both Watergate and IRS-gate are the same, if you believe that criminal behavior which results in a constitutional crisis is exactly the same as a bureaucratic IRS cock-up that results in extra paperwork for a few people.

But it may surprise you to learn there are a few subtle differences between Barack Obama and Richard Nixon.

When Nixon learned that the IRS had audited conservatives, he responded by ordering Haldeman to make the IRS audit liberals on his enemies list. He used the IRS to intimidate and investigate his enemies, because he was a drug-addled, delusional sociopath.

Obama’s IRS didn’t audit conservatives. They were questioning whether tea party groups with anonymous donors were really social welfare orgs. Obama’s Treasury Department investigators stopped the scrutinizing, which began under former IRS head Douglas Shulman, a Bush appointee. And Obama fired the acting head of the IRS even though it wasn’t his fault. Which would be like if “Two and a Half Men” fired Ashton Kutcher because that one time Charlie Sheen was all coked up and terrorized a call girl at the Plaza.

Nixon was forced to say, “I am not a crook.” Obama was forced to say, “I am not a Kenyan.”

Nixon used bribery, blackmail, spying, forgery, burglary and bugging by his plumbers squad to spy on the press for purely political purposes. And Barack Obama can’t even get background checks at gun shows when 90 percent of Americans support it.

Nixon had to deal with the journalism of Bob Woodward. Obama has to deal with the fact that Bob Woodward is no longer a journalist.

Nixon was also engaged in an unpopular, bloody and pointless war and Obama … oh, wait.

Now these men did have some real things in common. Both were pro-environment — Nixon started the EPA. And both were pro-health care — Nixon actually fought for universal health care. Both were corporate centrists, both liked the drug war a bit too much, both weren’t really shy about raising taxes.

But you see Nixon was a conservative who’s way more liberal than his party can admit, and Obama’s a liberal who’s way more conservative than his party can admit.

But the biggest difference? Nixon thought his opponents were out to get him, and Obama’s opponents really are out to get him.



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