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The Resignation Of President Richard Nixon

1412 words - 6 pages

Legal Brief/Background
During the year of 1972, a case submerged that shook the United State Supreme Court, as well as the world. Five intruders were caught breaking and entering into the Democratic National Headquarters in the Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C. The Democratic National Headquarters were responsible for various things, but one key aspect of their job was to raise money and organize campaigns for Democratic candidates, including the presidential candidate, George McGovern. Soon, word came out that those five intruders were tied to the White House; which at the time, occupied by Richard Nixon, who was a part of the Republican Party. Not long after being caught, Investigators discovered that Nixon and the intruders were possibly involved in the burglary. They discovered that Nixon and his team hired the five intruders to break into the Democratic offices to capture information that would assist in Nixon getting re-elected. Congress held several hearings to investigate the president and the intruders. During the investigation, the public revealed that President Nixon had a tape recorder in the Oval Office. Those tape recordings had conversations between the president and the intruders that could support some of the accusations against the crime. The prosecutor, Leon Jaworski, was in charge of the case and wanted to hear the tapes, but President Nixon didn’t feel he should have to give them up. After a fight and many people being fired, the federal court judge ruled that the president had to give up the recordings. Nixon then released forty three revised versions of the recordings. Unfortunately for Nixon, the tapes weren’t enough and the prosecutor defied the president in the United States District Court. The District Court ordered Nixon to give up the unedited versions of the recordings. Nixon once again, disagreed and the Supreme Court stepped in to settle the dispute. Nixon’s attorneys argued that Nixon had the right to not give up the recordings due the executive privilege right. They argued that the tapes were confidential and no one had a right to view them. The court disagreed with Nixon and decided that the executive privilege power wasn’t enough to keep the tapes out the supreme courts hands. This meant that Nixon had to comply with the subpoena and release the recordings. Not even three weeks later, the Supreme Court reached a unanimous vote. The court discovered that Jaworski had found enough information that the recordings were indeed relevant to the break in. The Court then decided to reject Nixon’s claim of executive privilege. Soon after the decision, Nixon resigned. This landmark supreme court case is known as the Watergate Scandal. This case is such a landmark in Supreme Court case studies because it showed that the president doesn’t receive special privilege because of his title. He is not insusceptible from judicial process, and must obey the court and give up any evidence subpoenaed by the courts....

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