Well, fancy meeting you here! The Nixon Library in Yorba Linda, Calif., was the setting for an unexpected Watergate reunion on Saturday.
John Dean was in Southern California for a legal symposium when he and a friend decided to check out the library’s exhibits. The plan for the former White House counsel-turned-witness for the prosecution was to keep a low profile — signing in under a fake name and pulling a ballcap over his face, his colleague Jim Robenalt, a Cleveland lawyer, told us: “He’s very controversial there, if you can imagine.”
Well, soon as they walked in, who should they see in the lobby but Carl Bernstein. It was too crazy of a coincidence, so Robenalt blew his pal’s cover and approached the former Washington Post journalist. “I said, ‘You don’t know me, but I’m here with John Dean.” Bernstein grabbed Dean and walked him around the corner to. . . Bob Woodward. The reporting duo who broke the Watergate story 40 years ago this spring (which, ultimately, sent Dean to prison for a couple months), were in the neighborhood for a speaking gig and also happened to drop by. The guys sat down and talking about the old days, consulting a timeline display nearby — and it sounds like their fellow tourists felt like it was worth the price of admission: There was practically a flash mob around us,” Robenalt said, “everyone taking photos.”
Read earlier: Bob Woodward, no longer banned, on making his first visit to the Nixon Library, 4/17/11