Another memorable event that occurred in the 1970’s was the Watergate Scandal. On June 17th 1972 five men were arrested for breaking and entering into the Democratic National Committee National head quarters located in the Watergate Complex. Eventually the FBI ascertained that the break in was not the only illegal activities but this crime consisted of illegal wiretapping, break-ins, hush money, slush money, tax audits and numerous other corruptions. The breaching was specifically aimed towards getting information and using it to benefit Nixon’s re-election. The felony organization consisted of five men. Virgilio González, Bernard Barker, James W. McCord, Jr., Eugenio Martínez, and Frank Sturgis, were all tried with attempted burglary and interception of phones and other communication devices. The grand jury not only convicted them, but they also found two other men, E. Howard Hunt, Jr. and G. Gordon Liddy guilty of conspiracy, burglary, and illegal federal wiretapping laws in January 1973. All 7 men were forced to resign from their positions and faced prison time for their unlawful acts. Subsequently, President Nixon was accused of being a factor of this conspiracy. It was discovered that he had put a tape recorder in the Oval Office; therefore he had recordings of himself as well as other figures of his cabinet. When the Supreme Court requested the tape Nixon refused to give it up saying that it was his executive privilege to keep them in his possession. President Nixon ultimately gave the tape away but it had been edited and many scenes were disregarded. After the tapes were released it was apparent that President Nixon had a position in the scandal and resigned from the presidency on Friday, August 9, 1974, thus securing the presidential seat to Gerald Ford. President Ford issued ex President Nixon a pardon and Nixon escaped any trials in regards to the national tragedy at Watergate.
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