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Nixon Blasts ‘False Charges’

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Image shows an August 1973 New York Daily News front page, with the headline "Nixon Blasts 'False Charges,'" "Asks Public to End 'Obsession,' Get On With Nation's Business."

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On August 19 2022, an Imgur account shared what appeared to be an August 1973 New York Daily News front page, and a headline stating “Nixon Blasts ‘False Charges'”:

The submission, which was titled “The past isn’t over, it isn’t even the past,” alluded to political news in August 2022 (and the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s search of former U.S. President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home). The front page bore a date in small print — August 16 1973 — and in its entirety, it said:

Nixon Blasts ‘False Charges’

Asks Public to End ‘Obsession,’ Get On With Nation’s Business

‘Time to Let Watergate Go to Courts’

President Nixon speaks to the nation from the Oval office of the White House last night [August 15 1973]. He had held off response to the charges of his involvement in the Watergate scandal until congressional hearings recessed … Stories begin on page 3

Elements of the page aligned with the historical events it referenced. Information provided by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) included video and a transcript of Nixon’s August 15 1973 address, and a summary explained:

August 15, 1973: [President Richard Nixon’s] Address to the Nation About the Watergate Investigations

Nixon Blasts ‘False Charges’
Nixon Blasts ‘False Charges’

About this speech
Richard M. Nixon

August 15, 1973

Source: National Archives

President Nixon sets out to address the charges made against those in his administration and provide the American public with a perspective on the situation from the President’s viewpoint. He states his assumption of responsibility for the incident, but stresses his lack of knowledge of the situation. The President recounts his requests for the facts and denounces the actions of the criminals. Nixon stresses the importance of moving forward with other pressing issues facing the country.

An August 19 2022 search for “Nixon Blasts False Charges” returned 21 total results; Google Trends data indicated that people had searched for information about the purported New York Daily News headline during the preceding week. At least one variation was quite credible, shared to Twitter by presidential historian Michael Beschloss in March 2018:

Another authoritative iteration was hosted in the Getty Images archives. A description explained:

Daily News front page

August 16, 1973. Headline: NIXON BLASTS ‘FALSE CHARGES’ Asks Public to End ‘Obsession,’ Get On With Nation’s Business.’Time to Let Watergate Go to Courts’ President Richard Nixon speaks to the nation from the Oval office of the White House last night. He had held off response to charges of his involvement in Watergate scandal until congressional hearings recessed.to charges of his involvement in Watergate scandal until congressional hearings recessed. (Photo By: NY Daily News via Getty Images)

An August 19 2022 Imgur post showed a real August 16 1973 New York Daily News front page, with the headline “Nixon Blasts ‘False Charges.'” Initial search suggested the page had not been in widespread circulation, but presidential historian Michael Beschloss tweeted it in March 2018. The cover also existed in Getty Images’ archives, and aligned with the events of August 15 and 16 1973. Nixon formally resigned on August 8 1973, as a consequence of his involvement in the Watergate scandal.