A famous conservative, Robert Bork was Nixon's solicitor general and became acting attorney general during the "Saturday Night Massacre." Nixon, fearing that Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox was close to uncovering the truth about his involvement in Watergate (Cox was requesting tapes of Oval Office conversations), ordered then-Attorney General Elliot Richardson to fire Cox. The unwilling Richardson resigned, and Nixon passed his order on to Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus, who also refused, and resigned.
Nixon then turned to Bork, who carried out his wishes. Still, the firing would turn out only to be a stopgap. The Supreme Court eventually ruled that Nixon had to present the infamous tapes.
Bork went on to become embroiled in further political controversy. In 1987, when he was a U.S. Appeals Court judge, then-President Ronald Reagan nominated him for the Supreme Court. Senate Democrats, wary of his conservative philosophy and positions on abortion, affirmative action and First Amendment rights, rejected his nomination.
Bork is now a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, a prominent Washington think-tank. He has written several books, including the 1996 "Slouching Towards Gomorrah: Modern Liberalism and American Decline," and, in 1989, "The Tempting of America: the Political Seduction of the Law."
He's Conservative - Get Over It! (May 22, 2001)
Bork Wasn't Borked (May 20, 2001)