Richard Nixon

37th President

Election of 1968

Republican: Richard Nixon
  • Vice President: Spiro Agnew(Governor of Marlyand)

Democratic: Huberty Humphrey

  • Vice President: Edmund Muskie(Senator of Massachusetts

American Independent: George Wallace

  • Vice President: Curtis LeMay(General in the US Air Force)
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Election of 1972

Republican: Richard Nixon

  • Vice President: Spiro Agnew(Governor of Maryland)

Democratic: George McGovern

  • Sargen Shriver(Formor Ambassador to France)

Richard Nixon won the election by a landslide

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Vietnam War


Policy to withdraw 540,000 U.S. troops in South Vietnam over an extended period
  • South should be able to support themselves with American money, weapons, and training

Nixon Doctrine

  • In the future, Asian countries would have fight their own wars without U.S troops

Although Nixon decreased amount of support of Vietnam, people wanted complete removal

  • November 3, 1969: Nixon launched a counter offensive and appealed in the "silent majority" who supported the war

War Front

  • American soldiers were struggling through jungles,swamps, drug abuse, and mutiny
  • Morale was plummeting
  • Started killing innocent women and children in My Lai


Nixon ordered an attack on Cambodia in 1970
  • North Vietnam used Cambodia as a spring board to attack the South

Domestic violence broke out

  • Kent State University: National Guard fired into a noisy crowd
  • Jackson State College: Highway patrol discharged volleys at student dormitories

Nixon withdrew American troops form Cambodia on June 29, 1970

  • Domestic problems did not calm down
  • Right-wing groups attacked leftists

Pentagon Papers were leaked to the Times by former Daniel Ellsberg; it brought the blunders and deceptions of Kennedy and Johnson to light.

The Senate repealed the Gulf of Tonkin blank check and sought to restrain Nixon

War Powers Act

Created to limit the President's war-making powers
  • Because of Johnson and Nixon

War Powers Act was passed in November 1973

  • Required president to report to Congress within 48 hours after committing troops to a foreign conflict or "substantially" enlarging American combat units in a foreign nation.

Nixon's Détente

Détente: relaxing of tensions

Nixon believed that he could put China and the USSR against each other and ask for both in aid to pressure North Vietnam into peace

  • His national security adviser, Dr. Henry A. Kissinger supported him
  • Nixon travelled to Beijing and established the way of peace between them in February 1972
  • May 1972; Nixon travelled to USSR and offered at least #75 million worth of wheat, corn, and other cereal grains

Anti-ballistic Missile Treaty was signed

  • Limited each nation to two clusters of defensive missiles
  • Was by passed by the MIRVs which overcame any defense by "saturating" it with large numbers of warheads

Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT)

  • freeze the numbers of long-range nuclear missiles for five years
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Watergate Scandals

June 17 1972

Burglary occurred in the Democratic head quarters

  • 5 men were arrested in the building with electronic bugging equipment
  • Working for Republican Committee for the Re-election of the President (CREEP)
  • Known for unethical ways and unlawful means

1974: 29 people had been indicted, pleaded guilty, or been convicted of Watergate-related crimes

Nixon illegally used the FBI, CIA, and IRS to harass political opponents

  • The White House "enemies list"
  • Destroy the man who leaked the Pentagon Papers

Impeachment and Resignation

Judiciary Committee pushed for impeachment in July 1974

  • Nixon was charged with obstruction of the administration of justice, including Water-gate related crimes
  • Nixon abused powers of his office and showing contempt of Congress by ignoring subpoenas for relevant tapes

Republicans made it clear that his best choice was to resign with dignity

Nixon announced his resignation on TV on August 8, 1974

  • He was able to retain his benefits of retiring
  • Would have lost everything if Senate convicted him