Watergate and the Use of Executive Privilege

Thesis Statement

    In 1972 the American people were shocked by the events of the Watergate scandal. President Nixon was ordered to turn in secretly recorded tapes of conversations in the white house, but at first he did not do so and used executive privilege as his reasoning. People and politicians have debated over Nixon’s right of executive privilege in the release of the tapes and it is still an issue today with current President’s privacy and privilege.
  “Today, we resume public consideration of an aspect of secrecy in Government which, in my opinion, raises a number of vexing constitutional problems- the asserted power of the President and his subordinates, under the Constitution, to withhold information from the Congress and the public. Among the many difficult questions raised by the exercise of this alleged power or “privilege” are: To what extent does such constitutional power or “privilege” actually exist? Who may exercise it and under what circumstances? To whom may it be delegated, and how? And, finally, to what extent may it properly be invoked by officials in the so-called independent regulatory agencies?”

       - Subcommittee on Constitutional Rights of the Committee on the Judiciary, 1959