Four Years at a Time
August 8, 2004 11:25 AM Subscribe
"The President wants me to argue that he is as powerful a monarch as Louis XIV, only four years at a time, and is not subject to the processes of any court in the land except the court of impeachment." - James D. St. Clair, arguing before the Supreme Court in 1974.
The court didn't agree
, returning an 8-0 decision and as a result, thirty years ago today Richard Nixon announced his resignation
. The next day at 11:35AM
it became official and Gerald Ford
, the first unelected Vice-President in history was sworn in under the provisions of the 25th Amendment
to the Constitution as the 38th President of the United States.
But what if Nixon had chosen to respond differently? What if he had vowed not to resign
? Article II
of the Constitution makes the President the Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy. Could the Supreme Court really have forced Nixon to comply with their order? What if the President had viewed the Court's order as an attempted coup d'etat
posted by snarfodox (17 comments total)