United States V. Nixon
Electoral On Sunday, June 18, 1972 the Washington Post reported that a group of people had been arrested for burglarizing at the Watergate Hotel and Office Complex In Washington, D. C. The violated office suite was occupied by the Democratic National Committee. The allegation was made that the burglars’ intention was to steal important files that were relevant to the upcoming election.
It was then learned that a high ranking GOP security lade was one of those arrested, and on the payroll of Onion’s reelection committee.President Nixon acted as if he had no knowledge of what had happened and Immediately promised the Senate Committee that this crime would be Investigated Immediately. Nixon then appointed a Special Investigator, Archibald Cox, as an independent Counselor to personally conduct investigations into the break in at the Watergate Hotel and Office Complex It was soon after found that a check for twenty-five thousand dollars was deposited into a bank account of one of the men arrested and that the check that was written off Onion’s reelection campaign fund account.
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This was the Initial point in time that Nixon became linked to the burglary. The investigation, and ensuing drama that took over two years to conduct would hence forth be referred to as “The Watergate Scandal” In the Congressional hearings that would follow the Investigations Into the attempted beery, It was established that President Nixon had Installed several tape recording devices in the Oval Office. President Nixon himself had recorded evidence 1 OFF the Constitution.Cox felt that these tapes contained important conversations and were proof of Onion’s involvement and knowledge of the many crimes against the nation.
Cox, the Special Prosecutor, in his investigations found out there were eight tapes that contained relevant conversations that were recorded in the Oval Office, and subpoenaed Nixon for copies. Nixon refused, he stated that he was the President of he United States and immune to demand of releasing sensitive information claiming it was Executive Privilege.Executive privilege was a belief that a President and his aides had to be able to have open and free communication with one another and free from scrutiny from other branches of government. Only in this way could Presidential Advisor’s feel comfortable and be as honest as possible with the President on the issues that face the nation. The capability to keep discussions private and would the President’s was fully informed and able to make educated decisions without impairment. Nixon did not comply with the subpoena and made a counter-offer to Cox.The President said that he would allow an esteemed member of Congress (Senator John Steins), whom of course he (Nixon chose) to evaluate the tapes and recapitulate their contents because he didn’t want the tapes or transcripts to be put on public record; due to his use of vulgarity and racial slurs.
This counter-offer was repudiated and resulted in Nixon ordering the Attorney General and the Deputy Attorney General in Office at the time to fire Cox. Both Attorneys’ refused to comply. The result of this refusal to comply with an ExecutiveOrder ended up with all three of the men being forced to resign from their position. A new Special Prosecutor Leon Gasworks was appointed by Nixon. This new special prosecutor, decided that these tapes actually were relevant, he went to the U. S. District Court of Columbia and asked Judge John Corsica to order Nixon hand over copies of all identified tapes and documents connected with the Watergate investigation.
He was granted his request for subpoena and Nixon was ordered to comply. Nixon decided to respond to the subpoena by releasing edited incomplete transcripts of the tapes.The President’s open and purposeful non-compliance was challenged again in Federal District Court, and the Court demanded that President Nixon respond immediately to all request of the special prosecutor. In response to this, Nixon petitioned his appeal in the U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals, and Gasworks, the special prosecutor, asked the Supreme Court to hear the case and evidence instead. Attorney James D.
SST. Claim who argued for President Nixon in front of the Supreme Court of the United States held the position that the case couldn’t be heard in the Supreme Courts because it involved a dispute within the same executive branch.His position and defense was that Supreme Court did not have Jurisdiction to put him on trial. SST. Claim further argued that the President’s executive immunity and privilege that the special prosecutor did not have the right to tell the President what, if any of his conversations would be made available. Attorney SST. Claim also disputed the Prosecution with the argument that the Supreme Court must recognize that Nixon had “absolute executive privilege” because he was President and that his privilege is absolute and based merely on his Judgment.
Since the U. S.Constitution does not explicitly state what falls under immunity under he concept of executive privilege, it is upheld and solely founded of constitutional separation of powers. That this was an Executive Branch matter. Gasworks, the special prosecutor and the Department of Justice for the United States returned argument that Just because he was President, ‘executive privilege’ is not always an absolute. Due to the circumstances of this case, the normal discretion given President’s and their aides have to be surrendered to the demands of the legal system in criminal cases.If one man had the right do decide what communications the people should e privy, then he would be able to undermine cover-up illegal activities.
To allow Nixon to have absolute executive privilege would destabilize the Federal System in place and set a dangerous precedent. It would weaken the nations by having such a powerful UN-checkable power. The Supreme Court had four Justices who were appointed by Nixon, and in an 8-0 opinion-(Chief Justice Rehnquist who disqualified himself) voted unanimously to confirm the Court’s decision.The Courts Conclusion: Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren Burger called the court to session and announced their decision. The Judiciary did indeed have Jurisdiction over the subject matter. He announced that the Supreme Court determined that the prosecutor, Gasworks, did prove a “sufficient likelihood that each of the tapes contains conversations relevant to the offenses charged in the indictment. ” The Court rejected the claim that Nixon was afforded absolute executive privilege, and implied that Nixon was in contempt of court by his refusal to produce evidence asked for.
It was determined that as President, Nixon was no greater under the law then any other person. The Supreme Court further declared that only the Attorney General had the authority o revoke a Special Prosecutor’s commission, and that since they refused to do so, the Executive branch was bound by the prosecutor’s request and other two branches of government were bound to enforce it. On Gag. 8, 1974, under threat of prosecution in the Senate, and imminent impeachment as President; Richard Nixon, chose to resign from his office.