in Houston, Texas
Texas A&M professor prompts release of Watergate records that had been sealed for four decades
Monday, Jun 04, 2012, 06:22PM CST
By Mike Cronin

U.S. government officials say they will release some Watergate documents sealed for four decades in response to a request from a Texas A&M history professor.

"Forty years after the break-in at the Democratic National Committee that began the chapter of U.S. history known as Watergate, no good reason exists to keep sealed many of the judicial records created during the trial of the Watergate burglars," wrote U.S. Justice Department attorney Elizabeth Shapiro wrote in a court document filed, the Associated Press reported.

"I’m obviously going to get something, but I don’t know what that something is," Luke Nichter told the AP. He teaches at Texas A&M University-Central Texas in Killeen and catalogs secret recordings made by President Richard M. Nixon at

Shapiro argued in her filing, however, that three categories of documents should remain out of public view: those containing personal information and grand jury information,  and those containing information through illegally obtained wiretaps.

Law-enforcement officers arrested burglars who broke into the Democratic National Committee headquarters on June 17, 1972,  at the Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C.

You can see a full timeline of the Watergate story here.

Contact Mike Cronin at or 713-228-2850. Follow him on Twitter at@michaelccronin or @texaswatchdog.

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Photo of Richard Nixon.

Ron Henzel
Wednesday, 06/06/2012 - 06:53AM

I believe that the Watergate scandal left an indelible mark on my generation — the one that was passing through junior high and high school at the time, and had its youthful idealism and naïveté about government exploded earlier than I think the previous generation had. As a sometime middle school history teacher, I've endeavored to explain to my students just how disillusioning that entire period was. I put together a video summarizing the events. You can watch it at

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