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Nixon's centennial draws little attention

Jan. 9, 2013 at 4:26 PM
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WASHINGTON, Jan. 9 (UPI) -- Richard Nixon's 100th birthday Wednesday was marked by very little as a Gallup Poll noted two in three Americans still disapprove of his job as president.

Nixon resigned the presidency in disgrace in 1975. In his honor, a dinner for 400 was to be held at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington by the foundation bearing his name, and last weekend his family participated in a graveside ceremony. The foundation also was organizing a May trip to trace Nixon's historic visit to China, Politico reported.

Nixon will get more attention on the anniversary of the 1972 Watergate break-in.

Bob Woodward said he now believes the Watergate scandal was significantly worse than he thought as a young reporter chasing the story.

"Those tapes [secret tape-recordings Nixon made] are a tire iron wrapped around the Nixon legacy that no one's ever going to get off," Woodward said. "He literally is using the presidency as an instrument of personal revenge and reward."

"The Nixon tribe is a very, very small group of loyalists," said historian Tim Naftali in commenting on the lack of interest in a Nixon celebration. "Other people get remembered or associated with movements. There's a Reaganite movement, but there's no Nixonian movement."

The man known as "Tricky Dick" was a big sports fan and poker player, U.S. News & World Report noted in a "fascinating facts" profile of Nixon.

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