Nixon, Richard Milhous

(1913-1994)
   36th vice president and 37th president of the United States. Richard M. Nixon was born in Yorba Linda, California. He attended Whittier College and then Duke Law School, where he graduated in 1937. He practiced law in Whittier, California, from 1937 until 1942, when he moved to Washington, D.C., to work in the Office of Price Administration. From 1942 to 1946, he served in the navy in the Pacific and rose to the rank of lieutenant commander.
   A Republican, in 1946 Nixon defeated the five-term Democratic congressman, Jerry Voorhis. He came to public prominence as the member of the House Un-American Activities Committee, which helped expose Alger Hiss and secure his subsequent conviction for perjury. In 1950, Nixon won election to the U.S. Senate when he beat Helen Gahagan Douglas, whom he identified as a communist sympathizer. She in turn labeled him “Tricky Dicky,” a nickname often used by his opponents in later years. In 1952, he secured the nomination as Dwight D. Eisenhower’s vice presidential candidate. However, he was accused of receiving illegal campaign contributions but answered the charges in a now famous television speech in which he claimed he had only accepted one gift—a dog named Checkers—whom he would keep.
   As vice president Nixon campaigned actively for other Republican candidates and was used to attack Adlai Stevenson. He also attracted publicity when he was attacked by an anti-American crowd while touring Latin America in 1958 and again in 1959 when he publicly engaged in a “kitchen debate” with the Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev at the U.S. exhibition in Moscow. Chosen as the Republican presidential candidate in 1960, Nixon was only narrowly defeated by Democrat John F. Kennedy but chose not to contest the election results. Defeated again in the gubernatorial contest in California in 1962, it appeared that his political career was over when he announced to the press that they would not have him “to kick around anymore.”
   Taking up a law practice in New York City, Nixon restored his position in the Republican Party by working hard behind the scenes. Having reestablished himself once more, he won the presidential nomination in 1968 and easily defeated Hubert Humphrey. As president, Nixon promised to “bring the nation together.” However, his presidency saw the escalation of the war in Vietnam with further bombing of the North and invasions into Cambodia and Laos that brought massive demonstrations at home. Although he secured the peaceful withdrawal of U.S. troops in 1973, South Vietnam was overrun by northern forces in 1975. Elsewhere in foreign affairs, Nixon began the process of détente with communist China and the Soviet Union, visiting both countries in 1972 and initiating arms limitation agreements.
   At home, Nixon was successful in extending social security and introducing environmental reform. His attempts at welfare and healthcare reform were less successful. He reluctantly accepted busing to bring about school desegregation and called for a period of “benign neglect” in civil rights. This approach helped further strengthen Republican support in the traditionally Democratic South. In 1972, Nixon won reelection with a massive majority. However, when it was revealed that individuals associated with the Republican Party and linked to the White House had been involved in the break-in at the Democratic Party office in the Watergate Complex in Washington, the Nixon administration became involved in a cover-up. Congressional investigations revealed a history of “dirty tricks” that led back to the Oval Office. Faced with the possibility of impeachment, on 9 August 1974 Nixon became the only president to resign from office. He retired to California and subsequently received a full pardon for any possible wrongdoing from his successor, Gerald Ford.

Historical Dictionary of the Roosevelt–Truman Era . . 2015.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Nixon,Richard Milhous — Nix·on (nĭkʹsən), Richard Milhous. 1913 1994. The 37th President of the United States (1969 1974). Vice President (1953 1961) under Dwight D. Eisenhower, he lost the 1960 presidential election to John F. Kennedy. Elected President in 1968, he… …   Universalium

  • Nixon, Richard Milhous — ▪ 1995       37th president (1969 74) of the United States (b. Jan. 9, 1913, Yorba Linda, Calif. d. April 22, 1994, New York, N.Y.), as leader of the nation, displayed formidable expertise in foreign policy by establishing détente with the Soviet …   Universalium

  • Nixon, Richard Milhous — ► (1913 94)Político y abogado republicano estadounidense. Fue vicepresidente con Eisenhower en 1953 61 y presidente (el 37º) de su país en dos ocasiones (1968 72 y 1972 74). Su gestión en el exterior condujo a un acercamiento al bloque comunista …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Nixon, Richard Milhous —  (1913–1994) Not house. U.S. president (1969–1974) …   Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors

  • Richard Milhous Nixon — Richard Nixon Richard Milhous Nixon (* 9. Januar 1913 in Yorba Linda, Kalifornien; † 22. April 1994 in New York) war ein US amerikanischer Politiker der Republikaner und 37 …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Richard Milhous Nixon — Richard Nixon Richard Nixon 37e président des États Unis d Amérique …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Nixon, Richard M. — ▪ president of United States Introduction in full  Richard Milhous Nixon   born January 9, 1913, Yorba Linda, California, U.S. died April 22, 1994, New York, New York  37th president of the United States (1969–74), who, faced with almost certain… …   Universalium

  • Richard Milhous Nixon — noun vice president under Eisenhower and 37th President of the United States; resigned after the Watergate scandal in 1974 (1913 1994) • Syn: ↑Nixon, ↑Richard Nixon, ↑Richard M. Nixon, ↑President Nixon • Instance Hypernyms: ↑President of the… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Richard Milhous Nixon: First Inaugural Address — ▪ Primary Source       Monday, January 20, 1969       Senator Dirksen, Mr. Chief Justice, Mr. Vice President, President Johnson, Vice President Humphrey, my fellow Americans and my fellow citizens of the world community:       I ask you to share… …   Universalium

  • Richard Milhous Nixon: Second Inaugural Address — ▪ Primary Source       Saturday, January 20, 1973       Mr. Vice President, Mr. Speaker, Mr. Chief Justice, Senator Cook, Mrs. Eisenhower, and my fellow citizens of this great and good country we share together:       When we met here four years… …   Universalium

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