Ronald Ziegler reads a statement outlining events surrounding Nixon's 'Saturday Night Massacre'
Washington DC Date:1973, October 20 Duration:6 min 55 sec Sound:Yes
White House Press Secretary Ronald Ziegler in a press room at the White House in Washington DC, United States reads a statement outlining dismissals of officials (known as Saturday Night Massacre) made by U.S. President Richard Nixon on October 20th , 1973. He says that President Nixon has taken action in which he has fired special prosecutor Archibald Cox in the Watergate Case. It was because of his refusal to comply with instructions given to him through U.S. Attorney General Elliot Richardson. He was not to seek to invoke the judicial process any further to compel production of recordings, notes, or memorandum regarding private Presidential conversations. He says that office of the Watergate Special Prosecution Forces has been abolished and its function will be transferred back to the Department of Justice. Ziegler says that President Nixon sought to avoid a constitutional confrontation by the action he announced on Friday October 19th, 1973 to give the courts the information from the tapes which the President had considered privileged. Further he says that President Nixon's action was accepted by responsible leaders in the Congress and in the country. But special prosecutor Cox's refusal to follow the President's instructions at a time of serious world crisis made it necessary for the President to discharge him. Ziegler says that before taking any action the President met with Richardson to instruct him to dismiss Cox, but Richardson refused to do so. After Richardson submitted his resignation, the President directed Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus to dismiss Cox. When Ruckelshaus refused to carry out President's directive, he also was discharged. President Nixon then directed acting Attorney General Robert Bork to carry out the instructions and Bork fired Cox.
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