Forty years on one might think that there would not be any juicy revelations left about the big events of Watergate history. And one might be wrong. According to the Associated Press, Robert Bork's posthumous memoir, Saving Justice, to be released March 12, says that President Richard Nixon promised then-Solicitor General Bork the next available Supreme Court seat the night Bork executed the President's order to fire Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox. Previously that day, October 20, 1973, Attorney General Eliot Richardson and deputy William Ruckelshaus had resigned rather than carry out the order. The value of the Presidential promise was questionable:
Bork writes that he didn't know if Nixon actually, though mistakenly, believed he still had the political clout to get someone confirmed to the Supreme Court or was just trying to secure Bork's continued loyalty as his administration crumbled in the Watergate scandal.
Bork's failed Supreme Court nomination by Ronald Reagan in 1987 has come to define Bork's place in history, but his role in the so-called Saturday Night Massacre comes in a strong second. Bork writes that the sequence of resignations and firings that Saturday would more appropriately have been called the "Saturday Night Involuntary Manslaughter," because Nixon blundered through the day's events.