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Witness to Power: The Nixon Years Hardcover – February 26, 1982


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; First Edition edition (February 26, 1982)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671242962
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671242961
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.1 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #298,779 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Robert A. Byrne on July 16, 2012
Format: Hardcover
In Witness to Power, John Ehrlichman writes a very interesting biography that gives an inside look at the Nixon White House. In fact, Watergate is just a relatively minor portion of this book. And some of it is undoubtedly accurate. But, in light of what we know from the tapes, transcripts and other books on the subject, most of this tome should be taken with a grain of salt. Subtitled The Nixon Years, he breaks out several chapters based on his experiences with different areas, such as the Nixon Cabinet, the Congress, the President's two brothers (oh, that Donald!) and such. The first three plus quarters of the book are not about Watergate. As such, it gives an awful lot of insights on the Richard Nixon Presidency. With so many books solely about Watergate and related matters, this makes the book stand out. Much of what he has to say is quite interesting, such as the Cabinet chapter.

George Romney was a popular Michigan governor and 1968 Presidential hopeful. He also fathered the Mormon 2012 Presidential candidate, Mitt. In 1970, he was Nixon's Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, announced a cut in his own salary to help balance the budget. Nixon disparaged it as "an ineffective grandstand play," and said he wanted Romney fired. While Nixon juggled cabinet members, he played it like a fantasy baseball game, talking endlessly about various moves before actually doing it: Romney didn't leave until 1973. But two days after blasting Romney, he asked Ehrlichman how they could reduce the President's salary by $25,000; while increasing his pension by the same amount. That's a pretty good snapshot of the type of man Richard Nixon was.

Nixon's dealings with his cabinet member make one think of a bully.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Who, What, Where? VINE VOICE on November 2, 2011
Format: Paperback
Ehrlichman was one of Nixon's palace guards. With Haldeman and others, he worked to create an administration in which the President was shielded from much that was occurring in and out of government. He was dedicated to the president he served, and it was this dedication that caused him to cross an ethical boundary. The difference between this man and others working in the Nixon White House is that he sees this as a justification for his actions, one which removes any burden for wrong doing. By being dedicated, in his eyes, he gets to set aside his ethics and behave in any way needed by his boss. Nixon did not pardon him, and this caused a life long bitterness by Ehrlichman, one that comes through clearly in this book. Get it, and enjoy!!!!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By L. Wang on April 4, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Ehrlichman indeed had a refreshing acerbic sense of humor, as Nixon described him in Nixon's memoir. Some passages made me laugh out loud.
For example:
"Romney (Mitt Romney's father, served in Nixon Cabinet) could not always control his temper, and he had a tendency to get more and more worked up as he listened to what he was saying and increasingly believed what he heard."
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