"The highest unfavorable rating for any President is earned by Richard Nixon. Sixty percent (60%) of Americans have an unfavorable opinion of the only President to resign from office. Close on Nixon’s heels for most unpopular is the current President, George W. Bush. Fifty-nine percent (59%) have an unfavorable opinion of him."
Nixon is really a fascinating character and today would be considered among the more liberal of Republicans - which shows how far to the right the GOP has moved.
There's a great Oliver Stone movie about Nixon (cleverly called "Nixon") - with Anthony Hopkins no less! - as the president, and it really shows his internal demons. It plays on the movie stations occasionally, so check it out the next time it comes on. Also, "Nixon Agonistes," by Garry Wills is one of my favorite contemporary history books and worth a read.
And, staying with Nixon, there's an interesting story about one of the current crop of likely Republican candidates that has just come out from The Boston Globe.
Former Sen. Fred Thompson, (cheesy actor and The Ladies Man) who was a lawyer for House Republicans on the committee considering impeaching Nixon, apparently was a mole, reporting details on the investigation to the Nixon White House and trying to derail it.
The day before Senate Watergate Committee minority counsel Fred Thompson made the inquiry that launched him into the national spotlight -- asking an aide to President Nixon whether there was a White House taping system -- he telephoned Nixon's lawyer.
Thompson tipped off the White House that the committee knew about the taping system and would be making the information public.
It was one of many Thompson leaks to the Nixon team, according to a former investigator for Democrats on the committee, Scott Armstrong , who remains upset at Thompson's actions.
"Thompson was a mole for the White House," Armstrong said in an interview. "Fred was working hammer and tong to defeat the investigation of finding out what happened to authorize Watergate and find out what the role of the president was."
So much for Freddy's idea of Law and Order.