Court Finds Executive Privilege Not Absolute

1974

In United States v. Nixon, President Richard Nixon argues on the grounds of executive privilege that he does not have to turn over Oval Office tapes and other records subpoenaed by the special prosecutor investigating the Watergate scandal. While acknowledging the need to keep some Oval Office communication private, the U.S. Supreme Court finds that in the Watergate case, Nixon asserted only a general need for confidentiality. That need, the Court says, must yield to the interests of the government and the prosecution. The Court orders Nixon to turn over the information. He does so and resigns shortly after.