Rep Steve Vaillancourt


To End The "Spice" Crisis, Legalize Marijuana

  1. Several Overdoses Reported In Manchester -
    21 hours ago - Police in Manchester are warning about a legally sold product that ...Several overdoses of 'Spice' reported in Manchester, New Hampshire.


I was more than a little alarmed when I heard on Channel 9 News tonight how Ted Gatsas, the mayor of Manchester, without any legal authority, had decided to send his police out to close down tax paying Manchester businesses doing nothing more than selling the legal substance known as Spice.

How alarmed was I, you might ask.

Glad you asked.  

I was so alarmed that I headed downtown to the MCAM studios where I knew Alderman At Large Joe Kelly Levasseur was on live with his Wednesday night show.  (He happened to have Andrew Hemingway, my choice for Governor, as a guest).

It seems that Alderman Levasseur was as surprised as I was by this sudden action by our mayor, a former Senate President who certainly should know the difference between what a Legislature and executive is empowered to do. Apparently, the Manchester mayor had decided, without even approval of the Board of Alderman (in fact, it should  be the Legislature in Concord to act) to send the police out like we'd expect in some third world or totalitarian country.

As a long-time supporter of the mayor, I simply cannot stand by while he flaunts the democratic process.

In fact--and no one in the media seems to have picked up on this--we had a bill to ban Spice this past year.  I know because I sit on the Criminal Justice Committee; we got the bill and after a very lengthy hearing (I recall the snow was piling up outside as the hearing went on) decided that as much as we might want to ban this dangerous substance, we could not without a great deal more work.

The head of the state labs came in and told us that if we passed such a bill, with the specific chemicals spelled out, we might be making things worse because as quickly as laws are passed banning this substance, the makers of Spice simply change the formula to remain legal and in the process often make the product even more dangerous.

I remember all this because I was in charge of writing a rather lengthy explanation for the House Calendar, and the bill was defeated, either unanimously or close to unanimously as I recall.

My explanation is still floating in the ether somewhere.  Mayor Gatsas could certainly have had his staff look into it before sending Manchester police out to raid unsuspecting  businesses.

From news reports, we are led to believe that a bad batch of spice has hit the streets of Manchester, but those of us who sat through the Criminal Justice hearing (Larry Gagne of Ward 6 Manchester is also on the committee) learned that even "good" batches of this substance can be extremely dangerous.  It is incorrectly referred to as synthetic marijuana, but in fact it has nothing to do with marijuana.  It is simply plant matter treated with chemicals.

One woman testifying before the committee related how she had nearly died after using the substance, not once, but twice.

Responding to my question of why she used this spice (also called K2 at times), she acknowledged, as I reported at the time (the main stream media seems to have missed it), that she does it because it's legal and also because it's much cheaper than marijuana.

Bingo!  Marijuana, a substance which, unlike cigarettes, alcohol, and Spice, (all legal; and  very expensive in the case of Spice)  is illegal and is expensive only because it's illegal.

This deadly thing called Spice is not merely legal but also deadly and cheap and almost impossible to  ban since its producers simply change the formula every time we attempt to outlaw it.

To any sentient human being (and I assume Mayor Gatsas, Governor Maggie Hassan, Speaker Terie Norelli, and Senate President Chuck Morse are all sentient human beings), the answer to the Spice crisis is ever so simple.

If we legalize, regulate (and tax) marijuana, a totally benign substance, in fact a substance with medicinal values, people who want to get high would no longer have to resort to the expensive and dangerous chemicals in spice.

Throughout our history, some people (10 or even 20 percent) have wanted to get high.  Alcohol, a very dangerous substance, has often been used as the triggering devise, but it's by no means the only intoxicant.  When I was a kid, we heard of youth (and others) sniffing airplane glue to get high, another dangerous substance.

Ted Gatsas apparently has never sent his police out to shut down stores that sell airplane glue; nor has he led a crusade to shut down the state liquor stores (imagine the loss of revenue the success of such a crusade would result in).  Yet without any legislative approval whatsoever (in fact as I've noted, the legislature, after careful deliberation, decided it could not ban spice), the mayor sent his police out to close down businesses.  We're told he did so at the request of his police chief.  If so, I suggest he seek the opinion of the city solicitor regarding the legality of his action.  As I said earlier this summer when  a Windham policeman decided to require a permit for someone going door to door campaigning, the Legislature makes laws, not the police.  Police cannot simply make things up out of thin air, even if a mayor serves as their accomplice.

If they are so concerned with public safetey, rather than crusade against spice, perhaps Gatsas, Hassan, Norelli, and Morse should get on board the effort to legalize, regulate and tax the harmless substance known as marijuana. Right now, Andy Hemingway seems to be the only major leader in the state willing to explore this logical solution.

The one sure way to end the spice crisis in Manchester, throughout New Hampshire, and indeed throughout the country is to give the people what they want (by as much as two to one margins in some polls)--legalization of marijuana.


NH Senate Projection--+2R For 15-9 Republican Advantage

Eddie Edwards NH Senate District 4

  • Cities In Nh Senate District 4
  • Republican District 4 State Senate candidate Eddie Edwards (with former Manchester Mayor and Executive Council Raymond Wieczorek).  With no pun intended, Eddie Edwards would have to be considered a dark horse...but...   

     Current New Hampshire Senate--13 R, 11 D

    2014 Projection--15 R, 9D

                     In the wake of posting my projections for the New Hampshire House last week for this November’s election, someone asked me if I’d looked at the New Hampshire Senate yet.

                    Of course I have; I'm always looking, but I’m not quite ready to go firmly out on a limb yet.  After all, in 2012, not only did I predict the 13-11 Republican majority, I actually got all 24 individual races right.

                    As of now, I’m prepared to up my projection of a gain of one seat for Republicans to a gain of two seats, thus giving the GOP a somewhat comfortable margin of 15-9 come January.

                    However, Senate races, unlike House races, require more individual attention and with ten primaries on the Republican side (only one for Democrats), discretion dictates waiting until mid-September prior to finalizing predictions.

                    For example, I currently have Republicans rather easily holding all 13 seats they currently hold.

                    District 8--With the retirement of long-term and very popular Republican Bob Odell (he won by 6500 votes in 2012), Democrats think they have a shot at picking up this seat.  I don’t share that view; maybe in the old district 8 and in a good year for Democrats, but the 2012 redistricting leaves this district slightly Republican (Claremont is out; Weare is in), and since this should be a fairly strong Republican year, I have no problem seeing Republicans holding on here, no matter who wins the primary; Jerry Little is the more establishment choice while J.P. Marzullo could be termed the tea party favorite.  Throw in the fact that Democrat Linda Tanner lost her home town in the race for State Rep in 2012, and color this one red.

                    District 16--However, that may not be the case in District 16 (Manchester Wards 1, 2, 12, Hooksett, Bow, etc.) where incumbent David Boutin is facing a challenge on the extrene right from former Alton State Rep. Jane Cormier.  Democrats don’t even have a candidate as of now, but rumors are that Maureen Raiche Manning is ready to enter, and should Boutin be upset by Cormier (I don’t see it happening; she just moved into the district; Boutin's ties to Manchester run deep), Democrats just might pull off a win here.  If I had to make a projection now, I’d go with Boutin; he won by only 1.4 percent (396 votes) last time, but that was in a Democratic year.  This will either be a good, very good, or very very very good year (aka Democratic bloodbath) for Republicans.

                         District 9--It's a rematch between Republican Andy Sanborn and Demcorat Lee Nyquist.  For sure, Sanborn won by only 0.7 percent (213 votes) in 2012, but if Nyquist couldn't win in 2012, how could he this year?  The district includes extremely Republican Bedford and more Democratic towns to the west, but expect Bedford turnout to carry Sanborn to a rather easy win this time around.  In fact, I suspect Nyquist is just putting his name forward so he'll be better known for a 2016 attempt (who knows--Sanborn may be running for governor then).

                    That brings us to the seats I see Democrats losing.

                    District 12--I’ve said all along that Democrat Peg Gilmour is likely to lose in this district which in about half Nashua.  However, the three Nashua wards are the most Republican of the nine Nashua ward, and that means the and highly Republican towns like Hollis, Brookline, and New Ipswich should provide the victory margin.  In fact, although it has only 5000 people, New Ipswich is the most Republican town in the state.  Prior to the 2012 redistricting, four Nashua wards were part of this district, providing it with a strong  Democratic tilt; the loss of one Nashua ward (about 9500 people—a Senate district has about 54,000)

                    Gilmour won here in 2008, a strong Democratic year.  She then lost in the Republican sweep of 2010 and took the seat back in 2012 (by a margin of only 3.9 percent, 1144).  As  with House races, my calculation is that any Democrat who won by less than five percent in 2012 should be in trouble this year.  I’ll stick with a Gilmour loss no matter which Republican wins the primary—current House member Michael McCarthy is less conservative than former House member Kevin Avard, so he could well be the stronger candidate come November.

                    That would give Republicans a one seat gain and a margin of 14-10, but lately I’ve been thinking that Republicans should be favored in District 7 and just might spring an upset in District 4.  That would make it a two seat gain.

                    District 7—Although Democrat Andrew Hosmer won here by 17.0 percent (4805 votes) in 2012, it was because Republicans fielded a deeply flawed  candidate (Joshua Youssef), not because the district favors a Democrat.  In fact, in a normal year with two decent candidates this district should favor Republicans.  It basically includes Laconia (the most Republican of all New Hampshire cities), the Republicans towns of Belmont and Gilford, and the slightly Democratic (and smaller) city of Franklin and some small Democratic towns. 

                    Republicans have come up with a female candidate (don’t discount that), a popular former State Rep from Franklin (another plus).  She’s Kathleen Lauer-Rago, and since I’m picking Republicans to win  17 of 18 State Reps in Belknap County, it should be obvious that I see this as a Republican stronghold.  Unless Hosmer has done more than we might imagine to ingratiate himself with his constituents in two short years, I’d give a slight edge to Rago (more and effort being equal, of course).

                    District 4—This one is exactly the opposite of District 7.  It’s in Democratic Strafford County--Dover, Somersworth, Barrington, and Rollinsford, and it should be an easy win for just about any Democrat.  However, in the strong Democratic year of 2012, UNH Professor David Watters won by only 9.5 percent (2456 votes), and he’s being challenged by a conservative African American Republican, a former police chief and chief enforcement office of the State Liquor Commission.  Yes, that would be Eddie Edwards.  There’s already been an eruption as the local NAACP chair came out for Watters over Edwards.

                    Were anybody but Edward the Republican candidate and were anyone but Watters the Democratic candidate (even the popular Somersworth Rep Roger Berube), I’d write this off as a sure Democratic seat, but as it currently stands, I’m not so sure.

                    So I’ll split the difference now, make it a pick-up of two seats for the GOP and wait till after the primary to take a closer look.

                    Fair enough?   I trust so; after all, I have a 24 for 24 streak to follow upon.

                    Speaking of 24 for 24, here’s a great trivia question.  Who actually won a Channel 9 competition by getting all 24 right in 2012 (I never entered)? 



    U.S. Senate--Democrats Incur Four More Hits

                    It’s not a done deal yet, but a week after Real Clear Politics moved Republicans up to a 52-48 advantage in the race to control the United States Senate and Nate Silver at gave Republicans a 60 percent chance to take control, as Yogi Berra once famously said, “It’s getting late early.”

                    Four developments this past week just might mean the end of Democratic chances to maintain control of the Senate.

                    Let’s take them in order of importance.

    North Carolina--  Some pundits believe this is the race that could decide it all, and even when incumbent Democrat Kay Hagan had moved ahead a month or so ago, I continued to tout Thom Tillis as the favorite.  Now, he’s ahead in the three most recent polls, including beyond the margin of error (five points,  45-40) in the latest Rasmussen poll.  For Democrats who love to bad mouth Rasmussen, consider this—at a time when Obama’s favorability average is negative 13 (including minus 20 in one poll), Rasmussen has Obama down by “only” five today.  It’s tough to say Rasmussen is right nationwide for Obama, but wrong for Hagan in North Carolina.  See polling data below.


    Kentucky—Based on all recent polling (see below), virtually no pundit worth his or her salt is picking Mitch McConnell to lose in Kentucky any more.  I felt so strongly about this one, that I made it one of my 14 for 14 predications at the start of the year.  With Kentucky out of play, Democrats can afford to lose only five seats they currently hold or we’ll see Majority Leader McConnell come January.


    Alaska—I picked Democrat Mark Begich to lose at the start of the year, but he’s been ahead in some polls as he’s resorted to attacking his own Democratic president.  Bad news for Republicans is that the primary isn’t until next week, and it appears to be hard fought.  Bad news for Begich is that in every other state this year, the Republican survivors, far from being hurt by tough fights, have experienced an upward surge following the primaries.  Worse news for Begich is that he’s been reprimanded by popular Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski for using her image in his ads.  In other words, the Democratic senator is trying to tie himself to the skirt tails of the Republican incumbent.  That sounds like a losing strategy to me.  Look for Begich, no matter how much he bashes Obama, to be trailing in the post-primary polling no matter which Republican (except Miller of course) prevails.  It's a tough state to figure out, but I'll stick with a Republican pick-up.


    Montana—I’ve placed this fourth on the list because there never was any doubt that Republicans are going to pick up this seat.  However, it just gets worse and worse for Democrats.  How bad is it?  Frankly, it’s getting Kafkaesque (there I’ve fulfilled my requirement to use that word for this month). When incumbent senator John Walsh was forced to drop out of the race last Friday in the wake of his plagiarizing scandal, speculation centered around Democrats drafting actor Jeff Bridges to run.  (He declined).  As Julie Mason pointed out in the Press Pool (POTUS 124 on XM Radio—love that Julie!), Walsh was jumping through hoops in his withdrawal, claiming he would continue to fight for Montana at the same time he was giving up the fight.

    I’ve copied the RCP polling for North Carolina and Kentucky and also provide links for the Alaska and Montana stories.

    It may not be “game, set, match” yet for Republicans, but it sure is getting late early.  







    METillis (R)Hagan (D)Spread
    RCP Average 7/5 - 8/6 -- -- 44.3 43.0 Tillis +1.3
    Rasmussen Reports 8/5 - 8/6 750 LV 4.0 45 40 Tillis +5
    Civitas (R) 7/28 - 7/29 600 RV 4.0 45 43 Tillis +2
    CBS News/NYT/YouGov 7/5 - 7/24 LV 3.5 48 47 Tillis +1
    PPP (D) 7/17 - 7/20 1062 RV 3.0 39 42 Hagan +3

    All North Carolina Senate - Tillis vs. Hagan Polling Data

    RCP Poll Average
    North Carolina Senate - Tillis vs. Hagan
    44.3 Tillis (R)+1.3
    43.0 Hagan (D)
    montana senate
    1. Politico ‎- 2 hours ago
      Don't expect to see actor Jeff Bridges launching a bid for the Senate any ... the ring for the Montana Senate seat, which have grown since Sen.


    PollDateSampleMoEMcConnell (R)Grimes (D)Spread
    RCP Average 5/28 - 8/10 -- -- 47.6 44.6 McConnell +3.0
    PPP (D) 8/7 - 8/10 991 LV 3.1 47 42 McConnell +5
    Courier-Journal/SurveyUSA 7/18 - 7/23 604 LV 4.1 47 45 McConnell +2
    CBS News/NYT/YouGov 7/5 - 7/24 LV 4.2 50 46 McConnell +4
    Magellan Strategies (R) 6/4 - 6/5 808 LV 3.5 46 49 Grimes +3
    Rasmussen Reports 5/28 - 5/29 750 LV 4.0 48 41 McConnell +7

    All Kentucky Senate - McConnell vs. Grimes Polling Data


    Murkowski Demands Begich Stop Using Her Image in ...
    5 days ago - Murkowski says she doesn't support Begich's re-election because she wants a Republican to win. ... The letter accuses the Begich campaign of misusing Senate ... Warning: ...

    "I'd Rather Feel Bad Than Not Feel Anything At All"

    The apparent suicide of Robin Williams yesterday got me to thinking a lot today about one of my all-time favorite singer/songwriters.  Warren Zeovn, who died of mesothelioma at age 56 in 2002, was probably most famous for "Werewolves of London" which featured one of the most clever lines ever devised, "Little old lady got mutilated late last night, werewolves of London again."

    However, two lines from other songs seem most appropriate today.  Both are from the great Zevon who often focused his lyrics on the dark side with allusions to suicide.

    "Poor, Poor, Pitiful Me", considered one of his greatest songs, begins with the lines, "I'd lay my head on the railroad tracks and wait for the Double E, but the railroad don't run no more, poor, poor pitiful me."

    A sense of hopelessness pervades many Zevon lyrics, and anyone who's suffered from depression can certainly relate to them. 

    In "Ain't That Pretty At All", not one of his major hits, Zevon gives us the best line of all.

    "I'd rather feel bad than not feel anything at all,"  he tells us.  Those with depression understand that feeling, and I'm guessing that's the way Robin Williams felt Sunday night when he chose to end it all.

    My mother, who died a terrible death of cancer, was no song writer, but she perhaps summed it up better than anyone.  "I can't live and I can't die," she told me.

    "I'd rather feel bad than not feel anything at all, so I'm gonna get a big running start and hurl myself against the wall," Zevon sang.

    Robin Williams found the wall yesterday; we are the wose for it, but as a long-time advocate of Death with Dignity, I trust we can say that Robin Williams (and there was certainly no dignity about the way he died) could no longer deal with the vast nothingness of the universe.  He hurled himself against the wall because for some (sadly) it's better to feel bad than to feel nothing at all.

    Depression is the ultimate in the inability to feel anything at all, and feeling bad trumps feeling nothing at all.

    I plan to spend the rest of the day listening to the dark lyrics of Warren Zevon, "poor poor pitiful me".

    By the way, Warren Zevon and I (and my mother) share one thing in common, an aversion to doctors.  That's undoubtedly why, by the time Zevon and my mother learend of their cancer, it was not treatable.  Zevon hadn't seen a doctor in 20 years prior to the diagnosis.

    As for me, ironically, while I try to avoid going to doctors, there comes a time I order to get a prescription refilled (and drugs indeed work wonders for most people).  That time was last Friday, $118 for a five minute visit for the doc to simply phone in a wonder health care costs have gone through the roof.

    RIP, Robin.

    RIP, the great Warren Zevon.


    Play Music  

    "Ain't That Pretty At All"

    Well, I've seen all there is to see
    And I've heard all they have to say
    I've done everything I wanted to do . . .
    I've done that too
    And it ain't that pretty at all
    Ain't that pretty at all
    So I'm going to hurl myself against the wall
    'Cause I'd rather feel bad than not feel anything at all

    You know, I just had a short vacation, Roy
    Spent it getting a root canal
    "Oh, how'd you like it?"
    Well, it ain't that pretty at all
    So I'm going to hurl myself against the wall
    'Cause I'd rather feel bad than not feel anything at all

    Gonna get a good running start and throw myself at the wall as hard as I can man

    I've been to Paris
    And it ain't that pretty at all
    I've been to Rome
    Guess what?
    I'd like to go back to Paris someday and visit the Louvre Museum
    Get a good running start and hurl myself at the wall
    Going to hurl myself against the wall
    'Cause I'd rather feel bad than feel nothing at all
    And it ain't that pretty at all
    Ain't that pretty at all


    Warren Zevon Warren Zevon

    ‘Poor Poor Pitiful Me’

    From: 'Warren Zevon' (1976)

    At times, Zevon’s 1976 album plays like a demo collection intended for more well-known artists to find some great new songs to sing. Linda Ronstadt (no stranger to covering Zevon – see No. 9 on our list of the Top 10 Warren Zevon Songs) had a Top 40 hit with ‘Poor Poor Pitiful Me’ in 1978. But she toned down some of the song’s darker shades, like the S&M part.


    This Week's Trivia--"The SOB Pardoned the SOB"; AKA My Life With "The First Crook"

    1. Los Angeles Times ‎- 2 days ago
      Amid the 40th anniversary of President Nixon's resignation, 'DickCavett's Watergate' manages to add a new take on familiar story.

    He's back.

    On this weekend marking the 40th anniversary of his resignation in disgrace, Richard Nixon is ubiquitous...those dulcet tones..."I am not a crook"...those arms outstretched in victory...or to wave good-bye.

    Ubiquitous, I say, ubiquitous, and I couldn't be happier. You see, I admit to a lifelong fascination with Richard Millhouse Nixon.

    I can't get enough of him.

    Julie Mason on the Press Pool on POTUS (XM 124) had an excellent interview Friday with a reporter who covered the resignation back in 1974.

    If you're as old as I am (62), Nixon's departure is undoubtedly like Kennedy's assassination, a landmark for your life. I can certainly remember what I was doing when the First Crook announced that he would "resign the Presidency effective as of noon tomorrow".

    I had graduated from Plymouth State College in May of 1974, and I landed a job with Mountain Media, a newspaper company in Plymouth which was actually owned by Olympic skier and Waterville Valley major domo Tom Corcoran at the time. My first responsibility was to sell advertising and act as editor/publisher for a tourist publication the company was trying to keep alive. It was the second year of "93 Summer Week" and I did just about everything, including distribute it at tourist spots in the Lakes and Mountains region.

    That's what I was doing when I heard the First Crook was leaving...driving around distributing "93 Summer Week" (I don't think it exists any more; I ran it until 1982 with advertising revenues skyrocketing each year).

    But I digress.

    Actually, my relationship with Nixon is long and complicated. As an eight year old kid in Shoreham, Vermont, I remember talking my mother into letting me stay up to watch the 1960 returns come in.

    1968 was the most important year in my life. In the spring, I was chosen as the Model United Nations delegate from my high school (Vergennes, Vermont) to the mock assembly at Plymouth State College. I drew Malaysia and the Middle East problem (ah yes, things haven't changed much). I'll never forget, Martin Luther King was killed the night before we left for Plymouth.

    In July of 1968, I spent July at Lyndon State College as one of the white Vermont students involved in an inter-racial project with black students from New York City.

    In August, I was back home watching on black and white TV as Nixon was nominated in Miami and Humphrey prevailed in the war-ravaged streets of Chicago. I was actually reading Nixon's first book Six Crises at the time; yes, I was a big fan of Nixon, cheering him on in the days before he was a crook.

    In the fall of 1968, I was chosen to spend a weekend in New York City as phase two of the inter-racial program. By then, I was a senior, doing a lengthy term paper on Eugene McCarthy's children's campaign. I was reading Allen Drury's series of bestselling political books (Advise and Consent).

    Talk about ironies, in his excellent new book on the 1968 campaign (The Greatest Comeback) Nixon aide Patrick Buchanan mentions that Nixon had advised him to read Drury. The very day I read that, I was going through some old high school notebooks and yearbooks from my basement and lo and behold, the first thing I came upon was book report on Advise and Consent. Of course it was hand-written, all six pages of it. Apparently, I discovered verbosity at an early age.

    Some day soon I'll review the Buchanan book here (both excellent and somewhat disappointing) and maybe just for kicks, I'll type in word for word what I wrote about Advise and Consent way back in 1968.

    To be sure, Nixon was (and is) a great part of my life.

    Back in high school and college days, I was a big fan of talk show host Dick Cavett, and at last we're getting closer to this week's trivia question.

    In the middle of the night Friday, PBS ran an outstanding special "Dick Cavett's Watergate". (it's re-airing on Channel 44 at 2:30 a.m. this morning; that's why I rushed out to write this). Cavett was one of the few TV personalities who interviewed almost all the Watergate figures at the time, and this special evokes great memories.

    Of course, a few weeks after Tricky Dick resigned, (yes, he was a crook, albeit not as big a crook as his Veep Spiro T., a fact Buchanan refuses to acknowledge in the new book), he was pardoned by President Gerald Ford. The special goes into quite a bit of detail as to whether or not Ford was ever offered the Vice Presidency in exchange for a promised pardon (I think not).

    But here's the question, a point I'd never heard until I watched this Cavett special, and believe me, I've spent more time on Nixon than most people on the planet...for better and for worse. No matter what you think of the crook, he is probably the most fascinating figure in our political history. We can thank him for ending the draft and giving the vote to 18 year olds. But I digress and we're desperately awaiting a question here.

    Be forewarned; there's a bit of raw language...maybe.

    After Ford pardoned Nixon, who said (and to whom was he speaking), "The son of a bitch pardoned the son of a bitch."

    All you Watergate fans, put your thinking caps on. You should be able to come up with this answer.

    If you don't have it, here are some choices.

    A) Nixon attorney John Dean said that to his lovely wife Mo;

    B) Novelist and raconteur Gore Vidal said that to Cavett;

    C) Novelist and raconteur Norman Mailer said that to Cavett;

    D) Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee said that to Post publisher Katherine Graham (whose tit Nixon had talked about running through a wringer back in the day...remember).

    E) Washington Post reporter Carl Bernstein said that to his colleague Bob "Robert Redford" Woodburn;

    F) Woodburn actually said that to Bernstein.

    The envelope please.

    As told by Bernstein on the Cavett special, he (Carl Bernstein) awakened Woodward, who hadn't heard about the pardon, and uttered those immortal words, "The son of a bitch pardoned the son of a bitch."

    Whew! Talk about a long journey to get to a simple question...oh well, Nixon does that to me.

    Oh yes, it seems that not only Cavett, and Woodward and Bernstein but just about everyone else was furious at Ford at the time (as was I) but now believes the pardon was good for the nation (I'm not sure I do).

    TV host tackled the nightly national crisis in the '70s, interviewing Howard Baker, Edward Kennedy, John Mitchell, John Dean and more



    Thursday, August 7, 2014, 2:00 AM
    NYC PAPERS OUT. Social media use restricted to low res file max 184 x 128 pixels and 72 dpiDAPHNE PRODUCTIONSCavett with Watergate Committee vice chairman Sen. Howard Baker, l.

    Johnny Carson dipped his toe into Watergate. Dick Cavett did a cannonball into the pool.

    “Looking back,” Cavett admits now, “I’m amazed myself at how much I did.”

    From 1972 to 1974, as Richard Nixon’s presidency crumbled, Cavett became the go-to guy on late-night TV not just for jokes, but for interviews with key players and observers in the scandal.

    Some Cavett jokes and many Cavett interviews form the heart of “Dick Cavett’s Watergate,” airing at 9 p.m. Friday on PBS.

    That’s the 40th anniversary of Nixon announcing he would bail.

    “I didn’t sit down every day and insist we had to do more Watergate,” Cavett says, reflecting on a show that was better known for interviews with the likes of Marlon Brando, John Lennon, Groucho Marx, Jimi Hendrix and Katharine Hepburn.

    “But the story, and Nixon himself, were just too irresistible. This was, as Carl Bernstein says in the show, a criminal presidency.”

    NYC PAPERS OUT. Social media use restricted to low res file max 184 x 128 pixels and 72 dpiDAPHNE PRODUCTIONSDick Cavett (center, head turned) in August 1973 on location from the Senate Watergate Committee hearing room.

    Cavett himself had made Nixon’s enemies list in 1971, though he didn’t know it until Nixon’s White House tapes were released. The fact an enemies list existed said it all about Nixon, Cavett suggests now, but he has no regrets about having been on it.

    “Paul Newman told me he would have given all his Oscars to make that list,” Cavett says.

    On his show, however, Cavett talked not just with critics and skeptics like Gore Vidal and Sen. Edward Kennedy, but Nixon team members and Republicans like Sens. Howard Baker and Barry Goldwater, Attorney General John Mitchell and White House counsel John Dean.

    Not everything his guests said turned out to be true, which Cavett says he knew at the time.

    “Some nights there was no need for me to tell any other jokes,” he says. “But when you’d see what came out every day, you had to turn it into humor. That made it bearable.”


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