04/17/2013 01:27 pm ET

John Dean: Mitch McConnell Taping Not 'Nixonian,' May Not Be Illegal

It could be said that John Dean, former White House Counsel to President Richard Nixon, knows a thing or two about Watergate.

According to Dean, the recording of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is not only far from "Nixonian," it may not have been illegal, Politico reported on Wednesday.

On April 9, McConnell said the leaking of the tape -- reportedly recorded during a Feb. 2 meeting and later published by Mother Jones -- was "quite a Nixonian move" and resembled "Watergate."

Dean, who was disbarred after pleading guilty to obstruction of justice charges in the Watergate scandal, offered his analysis of McConnell's claims.

"McConnell and his staff’s claim that this activity was a Watergate-like event is long on hyperbole, and short on historical accuracy," Dean wrote in a post published by legal website Justia on Tuesday.

Dean clarified that Nixon's presidency ended after he covered up of activities of the Watergate burglary team, "not by illegally recording anyone." He also noted that the recording allegedly made by Progress Kentucky's executive director Shawn Reilly and volunteer Curtis Morrison my not have been illegal.

"To call the activities at McConnell’s campaign Nixonian, or Hitler-like behavior, is so far over the top as to make the senator and his aides appear stupid," Dean wrote. "Unlike in Watergate, there was no reported breaking and entering by Reilly and Morrison."

“It appears that a conversation that was overheard and recorded in a public hallway of the building where McConnell has his reelection headquarters is not covered by the federal statute,” Dean added.


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