Robert Bork

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Robert Bork
Robert Bork.jpg
Occupation politician, lawyer, law professor
Known for obeyed President Nixon and fired Special Watergate Prosecutor Archibald Cox

Robert Bork was an American lawyer and professor of law, who served as Solicitor General under President Richard Nixon.[1]

Political career

When Nixon thought he might be facing impeachment he called on his Attorney General Elliot Richardson to fire Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox.[1] Richardson refused, and resigned on principle. Nixon then called on the next official in line, Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus to fire Cox. Ruckelshaus followed Richardson's example, and also refused, and resigned on principle.

As Solicitor General Bork was the next official in line to have the authority to fire Cox, and he agreed to do so.[1]

Nixon appointed Bork acting Attorney General.[1]

In November of 1973, DC Judge [[]] had ruled Bork's firing of Cox improper, and Bork appointed Leon Jaworski to replace him as SSpecial Prosecutor.[2] Nixon appointed William B. Saxbe as his next Attorney General.

In 1987 President Ronald Reagan appointed Bork to the Supreme Court.[3] However, news that the Reagan administration had illegally traded with Iran to provide arms to the Contras in Nicarauga had politically weakened Reagan. Although a motion in the House to impeach Reagan failed to pass, according to Michael J. Gerhardt, author of The Federal Impeachment Process the House motion encouraged Senators to not confirm Bork.

Bork's memoirs were publishe posthumously.[4] ABC News reported Bork wrote that Nixon had secretly promised he would be appointed to the Supreme Court, if he fired Cox.

Academic career

Bork was a professor at the Ave Maria School of Law in Ann Arbor, Michigan and the Tad and Diane Taube Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution; and a Distinguished Fellow at the Hudson Institute and the American Enterprise Institute.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Evan Andrews. What Was the Saturday Night Massacre?.
  2. John Herbers (1973-11-02). Nixon Names Saxbe Attorney General; Jaworski Appointed Special Prosecutor. The New York Times.
  3. Michael J. Gerhardt (2000). The Federal Impeachment Process: A Constitutional and Historical Analysis. University of Chicago Press. ISBN 9780226554839. Retrieved on 2022-12-19. “The grumblings among Democrats about possibly trying to impeach President Reagan after some of the early revelations about the Iran-Contra affair quickly turned into awareness of his weakened position and helped to fuel the partisanship that plays a part in the Senate's rejection of Robert Bork's nomination to replace Justice Lewis Powell on the Supreme Court and Judge Douglas Ginsburg's forced withdrawal from his nomination to take the same seat.” 
  4. Bork: Nixon Offered Next High Court Vacancy in '73, ABC News, 2013-02-25. mirror