Speed Reads

generational gap

Watch John Dean and GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz's boomer vs. millennial battle at this Mueller report hearing

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) tried to make a fool of former White House Counsel John Dean. He failed miserably.

Dean appeared for a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Monday, drawing parallels between the Mueller report and Watergate, which he had a firsthand view of when serving under former President Richard Nixon. Yet when Gaetz got his chance to question Dean, he turned that Nixonian history into a rant rather than a question-and-answer session.

Gaetz started his allotted time by noting that Dean wrote a 2005 essay comparing former President George W. Bush to Nixon, then asked Dean "how many American presidents have you accused of being Richard Nixon?" Dean calmly noted that he actually wrote a whole book about Bush titled "worse than Watergate." So Gaetz then decided that Dean has "made a cottage industry" out of his Nixon comparisons and demanded to hear how much money he made.

House Judiciary Chair Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) objected to the questioning, so Gaetz just pivoted to alleging that Dean was "playing out our own version of That '70s Show," and told Dean that he'd been brought in "as a prop." Dean, at one point, mentioned that Gaetz "not born at the time" Watergate went down, while Gaetz derided him as the "ghost of Christmas past." Watch the whole exchange below. Kathryn Krawczyk