Book: Nixon Offered To Illegally Wiretap New York Mayor John Lindsay
Richard Nixon made the offer to help New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller, according to a new book by historian Richard Norton Smith.
“Well, you tell Nelson he’s got all the help in the world,” Nixon is quoted in “On His Own Terms,” the first comprehensive biography of Nelson Rockefeller, who was governor from 1959 to 1973 and served as vice president under Gerald Ford.
The book by respected historian Richard Norton Smith relies on much previously undisclosed source material in charting Rockefeller’s life. Many analysts consider Rockefeller’s loss to Barry Goldwater in the 1964 GOP presidential primaries as signaling the national decline of moderate, so-called “Rockefeller Republicans.”
Rockefeller battled often with Lindsay, the Republican mayor who won re-election in 1969 as the Liberal Party candidate after losing the GOP primary. In August 1971 he became a Democrat and failed ignominiously in his own 1972 Presidential bid.
The Rockefeller-Lindsay animus included Lindsay’s push for direct state aid or greater taxing authority in 1971, when the city was wracked labor unrest and a huge NYPD corruption scandal.
The disclosure that Nixon offered to wiretap Lindsay comes via the detailed diaries of Dr. W. Kenneth Riland, who was Rockefeller’s osteopath and confidante. He also treated Nixon and gained his confidence, too.[su_csky_ad]