Nevada Appeal at 150: July 31, 1974: Impeachment hearings complete

WASHINGTON (UPI) — The House Judiciary Committee has finished judging Richard Nixon and has called for his impeachment, trial, and removal from office for three alleged high crimes against the government he heads.

Almost glad at the end to find something to exonerate Nixon about, the committee decided by majority vote at its closing session against recommending impeachment on two other proposed grounds — secretly bombing Cambodia, and underpaying his taxes by $432,787.

Last week, lilting prayerful songs from flag-carrying supporters of the President greeted the congressmen on the Rayburn building lawn when they finished their first night’s work.

But Tuesday night, they were replaced by about 100 men, women and children who stood in a cluster and applauded the congressmen who voted to recommend impeachment. They hissed Rep. Charles W. Sandman Jr., R-N.J., Nixon’s vocal defender.

In other areas, Nixon through his attorney turned over to Judge John J. Sirica the first 20 of the 64 tapes the Supreme Court ordered him to surrender. Presidential lawyer James D. St. Clair promised more on Friday.

The Judiciary Committee, led by Peter W. Rodino Jr., who came to Congress with Nixon in 1949, held more than 35 hours of debate in six sessions and recommended impeachment on these grounds:

— By a vote of 27-11, with seven Republicans in support, for obstruction of justice in the Watergate cover-up.

— By 28-10, with eight Republicans joining, for abusing power and violating the rights of citizens through break-ins, wiretaps and tax harassment.

— By 21-17, with two Democrats dissenting and only two Republicans joining the majority, for defying the committee’s subpoenas for 147 tapes.

This continues the Appeal’s review of news stories and headlines during its Sesquicentennial year.


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