That’s the question I was asked to discuss at the Guardian. Here’s a snippet:
When the Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activities held its first Watergate hearing 40 years ago today, it was, by most accounts, a dull affair. Describing five hours of “mostly colorless and snail’s-pace testimony,” the Washington Post observed that Senate investigators did not seem inclined “to sacrifice thoroughness – or, when necessary, even boredom – for sensationalism, just to hold the TV audience”. The New York Times characterized the first day as “low-key,” noting that the committee “took pains today to assert dedication to a careful, undramatic search for facts”.
You can read the whole thing here.