On July 27, 1974, the House Judiciary Committee recommended that president Richard Nixon be impeached and removed from office. It was the first such impeachment recommendation in more than a century. The vote was 27 to 11, with 6 of the committee’s 17 Republicans joining all 21 Democrats in voting to send the article to the House. Nixon resigned before he was impeached by the full House.
On this day in 1974, the House Judiciary Committee recommends that America’s 37th president, Richard M. Nixon, be impeached and removed from office. The impeachment proceedings resulted from a series of political scandals involving the Nixon administration that came to be collectively known as Watergate.
In May 1974, the House Judiciary Committee began formal impeachment hearings against Nixon. On July 27 of that year, the first article of impeachment against the president was passed. Two more articles, for abuse of power and contempt of Congress, were approved on July 29 and 30. On August 5, Nixon complied with a U.S. Supreme Court ruling requiring that he provide transcripts of the missing tapes, and the new evidence clearly implicated him in a cover up of the Watergate break-in. On August 8, Nixon announced his resignation, becoming the first president in U.S. history to voluntarily leave office. After departing the White House on August 9, Nixon was succeeded by Vice President Gerald Ford, who, in a controversial move, pardoned Nixon on September 8, 1974, making it impossible for the former president to be prosecuted for any crimes he might have committed while in office. Only two other presidents in U.S. history have been impeached: Andrew Johnson in 1868 and Bill Clinton in 1998.
1054 – Siward, Earl of Northumbria invades Scotland to support Malcolm Canmore against Macbeth of Scotland, who usurped the Scottish throne from Malcolm’s father, King Duncan. Macbeth is defeated at Dunsinane.
1214 – Battle of Bouvines: In France, Philip II of France defeats John of England.
1302 – Battle of Bapheus: Decisive Ottoman victory over the Byzantines, opens up Bithynia for Turkish conquest.
1549 – Jesuit priest Francis Xavier’s ship reaches Japan.
1663 – The English Parliament passes the second Navigation Act requiring that all goods bound for the American colonies have to be sent in English ships from English ports.
1689 – Glorious Revolution: Battle of Killiecrankie ends.
1694 – A Royal Charter is granted to the Bank of England.
1778 – American Revolution: First Battle of Ushant – British and French fleets fight to a standoff.
1789 – The first U.S. federal government agency, the Department of Foreign Affairs, is established (later renamed Department of State).
1794 – French Revolution: Maximilien Robespierre is arrested after encouraging the execution of more than 17,000 “enemies of the Revolution”.
1862 – Sailing from San Francisco to Panama, the SS Golden Gate catches fire and sinks off Manzanillo, Mexico, killing 231.
1866 – The Atlantic Cable is successfully completed, allowing transatlantic telegraph communication for the first time.
1880 – Second Anglo-Afghan War: Battle of Maiwand – In a pyrrhic victory, Afghan forces led by Ayub Khan defeat the British Army in battle near Maiwand, Afghanistan.
1919 – The Chicago Race Riot erupt after a racial incident occurred on a South Side beach, leading to 38 fatalities and 537 injuries over a five-day period.
1917 – The Allies reach the Yser Canal at the Battle of Passchendaele.
1921 – Researchers at the University of Toronto led by biochemist Frederick Banting announce the discovery of the hormone insulin.
1940 – The animated short A Wild Hare is released, introducing the character of Bugs Bunny.
1941 – Japanese troops occupy French Indo-China.
1949 – Initial flight of the de Havilland Comet, the first jet-powered airliner.
1953 – Korean War ends: The United States, People’s Republic of China, and North Korea, sign an armistice agreement. Syngman Rhee, president of South Korea, refuses to sign but pledges to observe the armistice.
1955 – The Allied occupation of Austria stemming from World War II, ends.
1964 – Vietnam War: 5,000 more American military advisers are sent to South Vietnam bringing the total number of United States forces in Vietnam to 21,000.
1974 – Watergate Scandal: The House of Representatives Judiciary Committee votes 27 to 11 to recommend the first article of impeachment (for obstruction of justice) against President Richard Nixon.
1976 – Former Japanese prime minister Kakuei Tanaka is arrested on suspicion of violating foreign exchange and foreign trade laws in connection with the Lockheed bribery scandals.
1987 – RMS Titanic, Inc. begins the first expedited salvaging of wreckage of the RMS Titanic.
1990 – The Supreme Soviet of the Belarusian Soviet Republic declares independence of Belarus from the Soviet Union. Until 1996 the day is celebrated as the Independence Day of Belarus; after a referendum held that year the celebration of independence is transferred to June 3.
1995 – The Korean War Veterans Memorial is dedicated in Washington, D.C..
1996 – Centennial Olympic Park bombing: In Atlanta, Georgia, a pipe bomb explodes at Centennial Olympic Park during the 1996 Summer Olympics. Alice Hawthorne is killed, and a cameraman suffers a heart attack fleeing the scene. 111 are injured.
2005 – STS-114: NASA grounds the Space shuttle, pending an investigation of the external tank’s continued foam-shedding problem. During ascent, the external tank of the Space Shuttle Discovery sheds a piece of foam slightly smaller than the piece that caused the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster; this foam does not strike the spacecraft.
2006 – The Federal Republic of Germany is deemed guilty in the loss of Bashkirian 2937 and DHL Flight 611, because it is illegal to outsource flight surveillance.