Richard Nixon

Richard Nixon

37th President of the United States (1969-74)
Date of Birth: 09.01.1913
Country: USA

  1. Biography of Richard Nixon
  2. Early Life and Education
  3. Legal Career and Political Beginnings
  4. Congressional Career and Political Rise
  5. Vice Presidency and Presidency

Biography of Richard Nixon

Early Life and Education

Richard Nixon, the 37th President of the United States (1969-1974), was born on January 9, 1913 in Yorba Linda, California. When he was 9 years old, his family moved to Whittier, California, where he worked at his father's grocery store next to a gas station. Nixon graduated as the second-highest achiever in his class at Whittier College in 1934 and went on to attend Duke University Law School in Durham, North Carolina.

Legal Career and Political Beginnings

After completing law school, Nixon became a partner at the oldest law firm in Whittier, "Wingert and Bewley." At the age of 26, he became the youngest trustee of Whittier College. At the start of World War II, Nixon served in the Office of Price Administration in Washington, D.C., and later became a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy. He served as an officer in the aviation ground service in the Pacific Theater. After leaving the military in 1946, Nixon returned to Whittier, where a group of California Republicans convinced him to run for Congress against Democratic Congressman Jerry Voorhis in the 1946 elections. Nixon accused Voorhis of sympathizing with communism and being too friendly with labor unions, and he won the election by a margin of 15,592 votes.

Congressional Career and Political Rise

As a member of the House Committee on Education and Labor, Nixon played a role in the development of the Taft-Hartley Act. He also served on the House Committee on Un-American Activities and was instrumental in investigating the activities of former State Department employee Alger Hiss, who was accused of passing secret documents to Communist Party member Whittaker Chambers. Nixon also played an active role in the committee that developed the Marshall Plan. He was re-elected to the House of Representatives in 1948 and won a second term in 1950 by a margin of 141,500 votes. In 1950, Nixon ran for the U.S. Senate against Democratic Congressman Helen Gahagan Douglas and accused her of sympathizing with communism. He won the election with the support of 2,183,454 voters, compared to Douglas' 1,502,507 votes. Nixon's aggressive campaign attracted attention from party leaders across the country. In 1952, Republican presidential candidate General Dwight D. Eisenhower named Nixon as his running mate for vice president.

Vice Presidency and Presidency

Upon assuming office, Nixon was given more responsibilities than any previous vice president. He attended most meetings between President Eisenhower and his Cabinet and played a significant role in the Presidential Commission on Government Contracts, where he worked to eliminate discriminatory hiring practices. As chairman of the Committee on Economic Development under the Cabinet, he played an important role in ending a steel industry strike in 1959. In 1960, Nixon was nominated as the Republican candidate for president but lost to Democrat John F. Kennedy by a narrow margin. After his defeat, Nixon returned to private law practice in California but remained active in public speaking and writing. In 1968, he ran for president again and won the election with 31,770,237 popular votes, defeating Vice President Hubert Humphrey and Alabama Governor George Wallace. Nixon took office in January 1969.

During his presidency, Nixon faced challenges such as inflation and the Vietnam War. He implemented budgetary restrictions and a monetary policy to combat inflation and initiated a policy of "Vietnamization" to gradually transfer the burden of fighting the war to the South Vietnamese. In 1972, Nixon made historic visits to China and the Soviet Union, where he signed important trade agreements and arms limitation treaties. However, his presidency became overshadowed by the Watergate scandal, which involved the illegal activities of his administration, including the break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters in the Watergate complex. The cover-up of these activities led to calls for Nixon's impeachment.

In 1974, facing almost certain impeachment by the House of Representatives, Nixon became the first U.S. president to resign from office. He was succeeded by Vice President Gerald Ford. Nixon's presidency left a lasting impact on American politics and foreign relations. Despite his accomplishments in foreign policy, his legacy will always be marred by the Watergate scandal. Richard Nixon passed away on April 22, 1994.