Trump went on to reference the Iran–Contra affair which rocked Ronald Reagan’s presidency, remarking that Reagan “went through that for years” and “never really got over the spell” of the arms-sale scandal.
“It was dark, but not — nothing like Nixon,” Trump said, before offering an unvarnished glimpse into his frame of mind post-impeachment.
“I would always think, well, every time in the White House, I pass this beautiful portrait of various presidents, right?” he said. “But the portrait of Richard Nixon, I sort of — I don’t know. It’s a little bit of a different feeling than I get from looking at the other portraits of presidents.”
Trump was impeached by the House of Representatives in December after the chamber approved two articles accusing him of abusing his power and obstructing Congress.
The Senate earlier this month acquitted him of those charges, which stemmed from his efforts to pressure Ukraine’s government to open foreign probes into his domestic political rivals.
Trump also allegedly withheld hundreds of millions of dollars in vital military aid to the Eastern European nation until its leadership agreed to assist in his favored investigations.
The House proceedings made Trump the third president in U.S. history to be impeached, following Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton. Nixon resigned before lawmakers could formally rebuke him.
Trump, who closely guards his public image and is notoriously brand-obsessed, has sought to claim total vindication following the Senate trial. But House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has repeatedly needled the president in recent weeks by arguing that he is “impeached for life.”