Watergate Timeline: From the Crime to the Consequences

WASHINGTON (AP) — A timeline of the Watergate scandal, from the crime to the fall of a president:

June 17, 1972: Five men are arrested in a break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate hotel and office complex in Washington.

June 20, 1972: President Richard Nixon and Assistant HR Haldeman discuss Watergate. Later, prosecutors find an 18-minute interruption in the tape of that conversation.

September 15, 1972: Seven men, including two former White House employees, are charged with the burglary at Watergate.

January 11-30, 1973: Five of the men plead guilty to conspiracy, burglary and wiretap. Two are on trial and convicted.

April 30, 1973: Haldeman and Nixon aide John D. Ehrlichman resign. White House aide John Dean has been fired.

July 16, 1973: Testimony before the Senate Watergate Committee reveals that all of Nixon’s conversations at the White House were recorded.

July 24, 1973: Supreme Court orders Nixon to produce tapes and documents subpoenaed by Watergate special counsel Archibald Cox.

October 20, 1973: Cox refuses to compromise the ties and Nixon orders Attorney General Elliot Richardson to fire Cox. Richardson refuses and resigns in protest. Acting Attorney General Robert Bork fires Cox. This is known as the Saturday Night Massacre.

July 24, 1974: Supreme Court orders Nixon to hand over the tapes.

July 27–30, 1974: The House Judiciary Committee passes three articles of impeachment: obstruction of justice, abuse of powers and breach of oath of office, and failure to comply with house subpoenas.

Aug 5, 1974: The “Smoking Gun” tape goes public. In the recording of a June 23, 1972 conversation, Nixon is heard to approve a proposal from his chief of staff to pressure the FBI to close the investigation into the Watergate break-in six days earlier. Republicans who planned to support Nixon in an impeachment process abandoned him.

August 9, 1974: Nixon resigns.

September 8, 1974: President Gerald Ford pardons Nixon.


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