August 6, 1974 – if you were around at the time, and you were like most everyone, you were glued to your TV or radio. Because the news from Washington was changing just about every hour. The Watergate scandal and subsequent move to impeach President Nixon made for riveting, if not completely upsetting listening and viewing. As of this morning, news broke of a hastily called meeting of Nixon’s Cabinet to discuss the situation at hand. Reports came in quickly, saying the President was going to stay in office, that he had no intention of resigning and that he was eager to get back to the “business of running the country” – and it was reiterated several times that Nixon had no intention of resigning and that none of the cabinet members brought up the subject of resigning. But as was evidenced only an hour later, the story was changing. GOP members of Congress were defecting at an alarming rate calling for Nixon to resign, and it was increasing throughout the day. The latest; agreement among House Republicans that Nixon should resign. It was the first organized defection among the GOP members of the House and it represented a serious blow to the President’s hopes for surviving the impeachment.
This was the predominant news of the day, even though there was other news that warranted headlines and extended coverage; a bomb went off in the PanAm terminal at LAX, killing four as of news time. And also almost lost in the flow of Impeachment news was the outcome of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee findings on Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and 17 government officials as well as newsmen between 1969 and 1971 gave Kissinger a fresh vote of Confidence. A report from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee cleared Kissinger of any wrongdoing.
And that’s just a small slice of what went on, during this pretty historic day on our planet and as witnessed by CBS Radio and NBC Radio News on August 6, 1974.