US v. Nixon

692 Words3 Pages
In 1972, Nixon and his aides hired people to break into the Watergate, a hotel where Democratic election plans and budgets were stored. Nixon’s plan was to steal the campaign plans and counter them, getting the winning results. When all of this information came out, a special prosecutor working on the case asked for the tapes recording calls in the Oval Office as a part of the investigation. Nixon didn’t want to hear it, so he fired the first special prosecutor. The next one assigned to the case also wanted the tapes. Nixon finally gave up edited versions of the tapes, but the D.C. Appellate Court of Appeals wanted the full tapes, but Nixon wouldn’t let it happen. It finally was taken to the Supreme Court where Chief Justice Warren E. Burger had the task of proving Nixon guilty. But Nixon claimed he had Executive Privilege, which states that he does not have to give up confidential information involving his branch as it could be sensitive to his branch only, due to checks and balances. Nixon was eventually convicted, because of his two operations. Operation Sandwedge, and Operation Gemstone. Operation Sandwedge was essentially collecting sensitive information on the other presidential candidate that would harm his chances of being elected, and taint him in the eyes of the public. Operation Gemstone was actually the action of breaking into the hotel and stealing the information. One precedent of this case is having to do with Executive Privilege. Nixon claimed Executive Privilege when he didn’t want to turn over the tapes. In 1833 President Andrew Jackson used Executive Privilege when he refused to turn over papers to the Senate. Senator Henry Clay wanted papers about money being removed from the Second Bank of the United States. ... ... middle of paper ... ... have the final voice in determining constitutional questions; no person, not even the president of the United States, is completely above the law; and the president cannot use executive privilege as an excuse to withhold evidence that is "demonstrably relevant in a criminal trial." Just over two weeks later, President Nixon resigned, and United States V. Nixon became one of the most important landmark cases of all time. In the long run, the U.S. V. Nixon case puts a restraint on the Presidentials abilities to declare Executive Privilege. Yes, President Obama can declare Executive Privilege to protect his branches ideas, from campaigning, to withholding documents that aren’t for the eyes of the general public. But next time a President wants to pull a fast one on the court system, and withholding incriminating evidence, well, they have another thing coming.

More about US v. Nixon

Open Document