|Archibald Cox |
The first special prosecutor named in the Watergate investigation was the focus of the "Saturday Night Massacre" on Oct. 20, 1973. Attorney General Elliot L. Richardson and Deputy Attorney General William D. Ruckelshaus resigned their posts rather than obey President Nixon's order to fire Cox, who had subpoenaed tapes of key White House conversations. Solicitor General Robert H. Bork ultimately carried out Nixon's order.
Richardson had appointed Cox, his former law professor at Harvard, special prosecutor in May 1973. Cox is now Carl M. Loeb University Professor Emeritus at Harvard University and was a visiting professor of law at Boston University until 1996. Since Watergate he has worked with Common Cause, an advocacy group that lobbies for campaign finance reform and ethics laws. There, he joined the legal team that defended the constitutionality of the 1974 campaign finance laws and currently is chairman emeritus of the organization. In September 2000, Cox was part of a suit brought against the Federal Election Commission by Common Cause in an effort to reform campaign finance regulations. Former president Bill Clinton in 2001 awarded the Presidential Citizens Medal for exemplary service to Cox, an award established, ironically, by Nixon, in 1969. Cox died May 29, 2004, at his home in Brooksville, Maine. He was 92.
Watergate Prosecutor Faced Down the President (May 30, 2004)
E. Howard Hunt
G. Gordon Liddy