WASHINGTON — On Jan. 23, 1973, when the Supreme Court struck down state criminal abortion laws in Roe v. Wade, President Richard M. Nixon made no public statement. But privately, newly released tapes reveal, he expressed ambivalence.
Nixon worried that greater access to abortions would foster “permissiveness,” and said that “it breaks the family.” But he also saw a need for abortion in some cases, such as interracial pregnancies. “There are times when an abortion is necessary. I know that. When you have a black and a white,” he told an aide, before adding: “Or a rape.”
Just as interesting is the revelation that then California Governor, Ronald Reagan approved of the now infamous Saturday Night Massacre, cheer leading all the way. No wonder the GOP of today love him so much:
Nine months later, after Nixon precipitated the resignations of two top Justice Department officials and forced the firing of the special prosecutor looking into the Watergate affair, Ronald Reagan, who was then the governor of California and would later be president, told the White House that he heartily approved.
Reagan told the White House that the action — which would become known as the “Saturday Night Massacre” — was “probably the best thing that ever happened — none of them belong where they were,” according to a Nixon aide’s notes of the private conversation. Read on...