Many have equated President Donald Trump’s decision to fire FBI Director James Comey to former President Richard Nixon’s actions during the Watergate scandal. Several Democrats in the U.S. Senate labeled Trump’s actions “Nixonian.”
But the Nixon Presidential Library’s Twitter account tried to set the record straight Tuesday night, sending a tweet to remind followers that Nixon never fired an FBI director.
In what is referred to as the “Saturday Night Massacre,” Nixon dismissed special prosecutor Archibald Cox on Oct. 20, 1973, which led the resignations of Attorney General Elliot Richardson and Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus. The dismissal of Cox was later ruled illegal by a federal district judge. Nixon resigned on Aug. 9, 1974.
While many considered the tweet a troll of the Trump administration, the Nixon Library account responded throughout the night, saying that its tweet was not partisan and pointing out that Nixon did, in fact, fire a special prosecutor. The library repeatedly said it was just trying to correct the record and included the hashtag #NotNixonian on many of its tweets.
The only FBI director to be fired was William Sessions, who was fired in 1993 by President Bill Clinton. Sessions was involved in an ethics scandal and refused to resign.