Ratfucking tricks plus money raised by ITT for a payoff

Segretti and Jeb Stuart dispatched their ratfucker legions into the next battles: Wisconsin, on April 4; Pennsylvania, April 25; Indiana, May 2; Oregon, May 23; California, June 6. In Minnesota, Muskie arrived late or not at all. Deliverymen and limousines kept on arriving at the senator’s hotel claiming to have been summoned by “George Mitchell”—one of Muskie’s close advisers. The staff would then waste precious time arguing with some poor schlub that they hadn’t ordered several dozen flowers, fifty pizzas, or two limousines at the last minute. Then they’d waste more time arguing over which campaign was working to sabotage them. By then, the whole day would be shot. (The Humphrey campaign had been able to undo a ratfuck at the last minute by getting a notice into the Saturday Milwaukee Sentinel saying there would be no free lunch that afternoon with the candidate and Lorne Greene of Bonanza, as advertised in a flyer circulated in the ghetto.) Ratfucking took money—and drained money away from throwing a proper national party convention. The 1972 Republican meeting was to take place in San Diego: a nice, quiet, conservative Southern California city, nearby to the president’s San Clemente retreat. But the city fathers had not cooperated, and the business community wasn’t ponying up. So the White House approached an angel. The multinational conglomerate International Telephone & Telegraph had acquired three companies in 1969 in a deal bureaucrats in the Justice Department worried fell afoul of antitrust laws. Thus it was that in the middle of 1971 an ITT lobbyist named Dita Beard convened a lollapalooza negotiating session whose principals included John Mitchell, Maurice Stans, John Ehrlichman, Chuck Colson, Bud Krogh, and Vice President Agnew. The upshot: ITT promised $400,000 in donations to help stage the San Diego convention. Mitchell would protect the merger.