Defeating the Democratic nominee, Vice President Hubert Humphrey, Richard Nixon becomes the 37th President of the United States.
Leaked by former Rand Corporation analyst Daniel Ellsberg, the Pentagon Papers are published by The New York Times. They're secret Department of Defense documents relating to the U.S role in Southeast Asia.
In response to the leaking of classified information during the Nixon Administration, the secret intelligence gathering group, nicknamed "the plumbers," is formed.
Burglars hired by Nixon's re-election committee plant listening devices and rummage through files of the Democratic National Committee at the Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C.
Some of the listening devices weren't working, so the burglars broke in a second time. At 2:30 AM, five men wearing blue surgical gloves are caught trying to break into the DNC headquarters. One of them happens to have on him the White House phone number of E. Howard Hunt, a close Nixon aide.
The Washington Post publishes that a $25,000 cashier's check, meant for Nixon's Committee to re-elect the president (CREEP), ends up in the bank account of E. Howard Hunt. Nixon denies involvement in the Watergate break-in.
The public believes Nixon's disavowal of involvement in Watergate and is re-elected in one of the largest landslides in American political history.
The Senate committee, led by Sam Ervin and Howard Baker, is formed to "investigate the break-in and any subsequent cover-up of criminal activity, as well as "all other illegal, improper, or unethical conduct occurring during the presidential campaign of 1972, including political espionage and campaign finance practices" (source).
Nixon's top aides, H.R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman resign after they're implicated in the Ellsberg and Watergate break-ins. Attorney General Richard Kleindienst also resigns over the scandal. Special Counsel to the President John Dean is fired.
The Senate Watergate committee begins its televised hearings.
Attorney General Nominee Elliott Richardson chooses Cox for the job, promising him complete independence in his investigation. Nixon was furious.
The Washington Post reveals that John Dean admitted to discussing the Watergate scandal with President Nixon over 35 times.
Alexander Butterfield, former deputy to H.R. Haldeman, reveals President Nixon's Oval Office taping system.
Pretty self-explanatory. It's the first of several refusals.
President Nixon fires Archibald Cox, the Watergate special prosecutor, ostensibly for doing such an effective job. Attorney General Richardson and Deputy A.G. William D. Ruckelshaus resign over Cox's firing. It's called "integrity."
President Nixon maintains his innocence in his televised "I am Not a Crook" speech.
In one of the released tapes to the Watergate Committee, there's an 18 ½ minute gap. On this tape President Nixon and H.R. Haldeman were discussing the Watergate break-in. The White House claims that Nixon's long time secretary Rose Mary Woods erased the portion of the tape by accident. The Watergate Committee is skeptical and thinks the tape was purposely erased. Alexander Haig, Nixon's chief of staff, thinks "sinister forces" were responsible.
District Court of D.C. issues a subpoena to Nixon to produce his tapes.
President Nixon releases 12,000 transcripts of edited and redacted transcripts to the House Judiciary Committee. Unsatisfied, the Committee says that Nixon must release the tapes themselves.
Both Nixon and the special Watergate prosecutor petition the Supreme Court to decide this thing once and for all.
Oral arguments begin in the case.
The Supreme Court rules unanimously that President Nixon must release tapes with 64 different conversations that are related to the Watergate scandal.
The House Judiciary Committee passes the first in three articles of impeachment against President Nixon.
President Nixon becomes the first president in U.S history to resign from the White House.
Survivor debuts on CBS.
Every political, pop-culture, and sports-scandal gets "-gate" tacked onto its name.