One of the fascinating stories that surfaced during the Ford memorials this week was one about the foiled coup d'etat to topple the Executive Branch by Congerscritters of the Hard Left. Here's the story: Bella Abzug (Lennist-NY) working in cahoots with another half dozen of the Hard Left in the House of Representatives, approached then Speaker of the House Carl Albert with a plan to stall the confirmation of Gerald Ford as Vice-President (the Vice-Presidency was vacant at the time because of the resignation of Spiro Agnew). Abzug then proposed that the House Judiciary Committee immediately draw up articles of impeachment against Nixon, who would be forced to resign before Ford could be confirmed. The Presidency would fall upon Speaker Albert, and the Democrats could capture the White House without the trouble and inconvenience of an election. Speaker Albert refused to subvert the Constitution and the plot quietly died.
It's a fascinating story that offers a glimpse to a another side of the Watergate affair, namely that some opposing Nixon were not so much interested in preserving the rule of law than in seizing complete power. Alas, the names of the other conspirators have not surfaced by dragging the Web, but we have a hunch that one or two may be still alive. One possible suspect would not surprise us in the least.