Richard Nixon is the only United States president ever to have resigned the office mid-term.
Having secured a landslide re-election in November 1972, his resignation on August 9, 1974 came just eighteen months into his second term.
One consequence of Nixon’s resignation was that Gerald Ford became the first president never to have been elected by the people or the Electoral College. Ford was also the first vice-president to have been nominated by a sitting president and confirmed by the Senate.
The Washington Post on August 7, 1974:
The Washington Post on August 9, 1974:
Nixon’s Resignation – Archived Posts
- Aug 08, 1974: Nixon’s Resignation SpeechFull text, audio and video of President Richard Nixon’s resignation speech, incluing video footage of the minutes before his official televised speech.
- Aug 09, 1974: Memorandum To Jaworski On Prosecuting NixonText and image of a memorandum for Watergate Special Prosecutor Leon Jaworski on the pros and cons of prosecuting Richard Nixon. The memorandum was sent by Carl Feldbaum and Peter Kreindler on the day Nixon resigned the presidency.
- Aug 09, 1974: Nixon’s Final Remarks To The White House StaffText, audio and video of President Richard Nixon’s final remarks to the White House staff, on the morning of his resignation.
- Aug 09, 1974: Nixon’s Resignation LetterPhotograph of President Richard Nixon’s resignation letter, delivered to Secretary of State Dr Henry Kissinger and initialled at 11.35am.
- Dec 22, 1996: The Speech That Might Have Been: Nixon Refuses To ResignIn 1996, Nixon’s speechwriter, Ray Price, revealed a draft speech he wrote for Nixon in the event that Nixon chose to fight on rather than resign. He said the speech was never shown to Nixon.