The Watergate scandal is the most famous case of political deviance in Americanhistory. But take away the burglary and the cover-up that eventually took down Richard Nixon, and the 1972 campaign still stands as one of the dirtiest inmodern times. The smears began well before the general election when Nixon’s operatives, including Donald Segretti, attacked various participants in theDemocratic primaries. They printed fliers attacking Maine Senator Ed Muskie’s stance on Israel and put them under the windshield wipers of cars outside Miami Bear synagogues. The fliers looked like they came from the campaign of Democrat John Lindsay. Segretti and company stole Citizens for Muskie stationary andsent out a letter accusing Senator Henry “Scoop” Jackson of fathering an illegitimate child with a teenager and claiming that he had been arrested for homosexuality in the 1950s. The letters would land Segretti in jail. In 1974, he pleaded guilty to three misdemeanor counts of distributing false campaign literature and served a little more than 4 months in prison. Nixon, of course, resigned the Presidency in 1974.
Top 10 Dirty Political Tricks