Thursday, Jul. 29, 2010

Richard Nixon Goes on Laugh-In

The original comeback kid, Richard Nixon rose from the political graveyard in 1968 to become the Republican presidential candidate. Intent on creating the image of a "New Nixon," the one-time former vice president spent much of that election year telling the American electorate he really wasn't the downer he was made out to be. And so he appeared on the least likely of television shows — the variety show Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In, whose title was inspired by a decade of sit-ins and be-ins. The flower children were never a natural demographic for Nixon, and instead they gravitated to the Kennedys and anti-war candidates like Eugene McCarthy. But even the hippies had to give it to the future president for his self-effacing rendition of the show's signature line, "Sock it to me."