Friday, January 4, 2008


During the early days of President Nixon's Watergate scandal, soon to be disgraced Attorney General John Mitchell was Nixon's close advisor and front man. One of the first press conferences that I attended for KLIF/KNUS was held by John Mitchell during a short layover at Dallas Love Field.

His wife, Martha Mitchell, apparently knew of her husband's involvement in the break in of the Democrat's national headquarters by G. Gordon Liddy and his friends and the ensuing Presidential attempted coverup. She made cryptic late night phone calls to the national media about the case.

While not directly implicating her husband, she named names of those who she believed should be investigated and doings that she believed should be looked into by the FBI. Her frequent calls became the brunt of late night talk show hosts. She was not taken seriously. After all, would Nixon and his Attorney General really be involved in any criminal activity?

The media assembled at the press conference seemed to be making a concerted effort not to ask Mitchell about Martha's late night calls. I didn't feel the same way. I finally was called on and asked Mitchell to comment about Martha's calls. He blew me and the question off completely with a smirk and a grin.

Not being one to take no for an answer, or worse, no answer at all, I asked the question three more times. The other members of the press finally began to take an interest in his not answering.

I never got to personally see how he responded to the Dallas media's line of the same question to him because I was escorted from the press conference room by Mitchell's staff. I never found out if I made the White House Enemies List because of my having the audacity to ask him the question. It turned out that Martha was right.

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