Nixon’s Enemies List


“‘Nixon’s Enemies List’ is the informal name of what started as a list of President of the United States Richard Nixon‘s major political opponents compiled by Charles Colson, written by George T. Bell (assistant to Colson, special counsel to the White House), and sent in memorandum form to John Dean on September 9, 1971. The list was part of a campaign officially known as ‘Opponents List’ and ‘Political Enemies Project’. The list became public knowledge on June 27, 1973, when Dean mentioned during hearings with the Senate Watergate Committee that a list existed containing those whom the president did not like. Journalist Daniel Schorr, who happened to be on the list, managed to obtain a copy of it later that day. A longer second list was made public by Dean on December 20, 1973, during a hearing with the Congressional Joint Committee on Internal Revenue Taxation. The official purpose, as described by the White House Counsel‘s Office, was to ‘screw’ Nixon’s political enemies, by means of tax audits from the Internal Revenue Service, and by manipulating ‘grant availability, federal contracts, litigation, prosecution, etc.’ … According to Dean, Colson later compiled hundreds of names on a “master list” which changed constantly. On December 20, 1973, the Congressional Joint Committee on Internal Revenue Taxation concluded that people on the ‘Enemies’ list had not been subjected to an unusual number of tax audits. The report revealed a second list of about 576 (with some duplicates) supporters and staffers of George McGovern‘s 1972 presidential campaign given to Internal Revenue Commissioner Johnnie Walters by John Dean on September 11, 1972. The Washington Post printed the entire list the next day, but The New York Times reported just a few paragraphs on page 21. Newsman Daniel Schorr and actor Paul Newman stated, separately, that inclusion on the list was their greatest accomplishment. When this list was released, Schorr read it live on television, not realizing that he was on the list until he came to his own name. Author Hunter S. Thompson remarked he was disappointed he was not on it. … For example, satirist P. J. O’Rourke‘s 1989 ‘A Call for a New McCarthyism’ in The American Spectator has a hybrid blacklist and enemies list, suggesting that, contrary to the spirits of these lists, the subjects there should be overexposed, not suppressed, ‘so that a surfeited public rebels in disgust.’ In Philip Roth’s Our Gang, which was published in 1971, two years before the list was first mentioned in public, the Nixon parody character Trick E. Dixon begins to compile a rudimentary list of five political enemies. It includes Jane Fonda and the Black Panthers who were on the real-life expanded master list, The Berrigans (who were not) and Curt Flood. …”
Wikipedia
The Atlantic: The New Enemies List
Voice: The Shame of Being Left Off Nixon’s Enemies List (July 1973)
YouTube: Nixon’s Enemies List

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