Three scandals at once equal a bad week to be President Obama

Posted at 6:35 PM, May 18, 2013
and last updated 2013-05-18 18:35:19-04

(CNN)– The IRS, Benghazi, the AP phone records.

You know it’s been a bad week when you get this question.

Reporter: How do you feel about comparisons by some of your critics of this week’s scandals to those that happened under the Nixon administration?

But in historic terms, how bad a week was it?

Was it as bad as Watergate? How about Monica Lewinsky?

Ok, obviously there have been plenty of presidential scandals.

And it’s rare, but President Obama is not the only president to face three or more scandals at once.

Within just a few months in 1951 and 1952: the Korean War went south, Harry Truman’s top aide was caught trying to buy influence, the president fired popular General MacArthur, and a massive bribery scandal engulfed the IRS – yes the IRS.

His approval numbers plummeted, but none of that is remembered today.

What does make a scandal permanent?

Political historians say two things – when a there’s proof a president is directly involved and when his own party starts speaking against him.