The G-Man Signs Off
Posted at 4:27 p.m. on Sept. 25, 2012
(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)
Love him or hate him, there was a time when you could not ignore the indomitable G. Gordon Liddy. These days, supporters are bummed he might actually be going away for good.
The one-time “fixer” for President Richard Nixon became a household name following his part in the infamous Watergate break-in. He spent almost five years in federal prison for the bungled robbery and later reinvented himself as a bombastic radio show host, practicing free speech by stoking the right with a running commentary of everything that’s wrong with America while needling the left with novelties such as his annual “Stacked and Packed” calendars.
His 20-year radio program, “The G. Gordon Liddy Show” officially went off the air over the summer.
At his retirement party at the Capitol Hill Club last week, about 50 people, including two of Liddy’s adult children, colleagues from the broadcasting industry and wonks from all over town (we chatted up folks from the Cato Institute, Heritage Foundation and the Competitive Enterprise Institute) gathered to pay their respects and hear the “G-Man” rail against the administration one last time.
The 82-year-old firebrand did not disappoint.
(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)
Liddy warmed up the crowd with his thoughts on the current political landscape, stressing that he a has deep connection with the outcome of the presidential race due to an impending meeting with one of President Barack Obama’s “death panels.”
Rather than run from his checkered past, Liddy wholeheartedly embraced it, regaling well-wishers with colorful anecdotes about his time behind bars. He recalled telling the associate warden that their being thrown together had been predicated by an ”occupational hazard.” He spun yarns about upending prison policies with bogus memos, befriending purported mob dons and emasculating dim-witted security personnel.
“The first thing I found out was how enormously valuable a really good education is,” he shared, suggesting “among functional illiterates, the ability to type is an awe-inspiring power.”
Liddy’s daughter chimed in that mom would often send unsuspecting guests home with “Free Liddy” bumper stickers affixed to their rides during dad’s extended absence.
Fellow Nixon aide Patrick Buchanan couldn’t make the farewell shindig but sent along a similarly irreverent adieu. “There are many stories I would loved to have shared with all our friends, Gordo, but, regrettably, the statute of limitations has not yet run on all of your endeavors for the Nixon-Agnew ticket in 1972,” a Buchanan proxy informed the group.
Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), who originally met Liddy in the 1990s and later invited him on the short-lived sitcom “LateLine” and the premiere of his parody “O’Franken Factor” radio show, told HOH that although they haven’t kept in as close contact as he would like, he wishes Liddy all the best.
“While I didn’t agree with G. Gordon Liddy on much politically, he and I became friends when appearing on each others’ shows, such good friends, in fact, that I get to call him ‘G,’” Franken shared.
Nixon White House counsel John Dean didn’t seem too broken up about the official close of Liddy’s latest act.
“I will have a lot to say about him in the book I’m writing,” the author assured HOH.