May 28, 1972
Operatives working for the Committee to Re-elect the President (CRP) burglarize the Democratic National Committee headquarters in the Washington, DC Watergate office complex.
June 17, 1972
The burglars return to the Watergate, and five are arrested at 2:30 a.m. inside the DNC headquarters.
June 19, 1972
The Washington Post reports one of the burglars is the security director for the Committee to Re-elect the President (CRP). John Mitchell, former Attorney General and head of CRP, denies any knowledge.
August 1, 1972
The Washington Post reports a check for $25,000 was deposited in the account of one of the burglars. This check was linked to the CRP. In the White House, Nixon tells Haldeman, “…whoever made the decision (to break in) was about as stupid as I ever heard."
August 30, 1972
Nixon announces that White House counsel John Dean has investigated the matter and found no one in the White House was involved.
August 31, 1972
According to a survey, 57% of the respondents have heard about the Watergate break-in. Forty-three percent have not. The majority believe it is “just more politics” rather than “something serious.”
September 15, 1972
The five Watergate burglars are indicted, along with E. Howard Hunt and G. Gordon Liddy. Dean sums up the indictment for the president and Haldeman. “The two former White House people, low level, indicted, one consultant and one member of the Domestic Council staff. That’s not very much of a tie.”
September 29, 1972
The Post reports that, while Attorney General, John Mitchell controlled a covert slush fund used to underwrite activities against Democrats.
October 10, 1972
The Post reports that the FBI has linked the Watergate break-in to the CRP and its broad activities of political spying and sabotage.
November 11, 1972
Nixon is re-elected in a historic landslide, defeating McGovern by more than 20 percentage points and taking every electoral vote except those of Massachusetts and the District of Columbia.
January 8, 1973
Judge Sirica begins the trial of the Watergate burglars.
January 11, 1973
E. Howard Hunt pleads guilty to six counts, stating no “higher-ups” are involved in any conspiracy.
January 15, 1973
The four Cubans, Barker, Gonzalez, Martinez and Sturgis plead guilty.
January 30, 1973
James McCord and G. Gordon Liddy are convicted on eight counts, both having pled innocent. Echoing the sentiments of a shocked, disbelieving president, aide Charles Colson tells Nixon that Judge Sirica is “a hot-headed Italian… [who] has handled himself terribly.”