Carl Albert

June 25th, 1976

Only two years after Watergate a second White House occupant was forced to make a shabby exit when the 38th President of the United States Carl B. Albert turned over to the General Services Administration gifts he had accepted from a lobbyist (who was also a member of South Korean intelligence) before resigning due to his involvement in the Tongsun Park scandal.

Under the provisions of the Twenty-fifth Amendment, his successor Richard Nixon had nominated Republican House Minority Leader Gerald R. Ford to succeed Agnew as Vice President in October 1973. But as the Watergate crisis began to unfold during the fall, Nixon was forced to resign from office before both Houses of Congress could confirm a Vice President.

Albert became Acting President under the Presidential Succession Act of 1947 which also forced him to resign from the office of Speaker as well as the House. And so bizarrely, the man who would have presided over Nixon's impeachment benefited from his resignation, yet was forced to sacrifice his own political career in so doing.

By inclination, believing that it was wrong for a Democrat to serve out a term of office that the electorate had gifted to a Republican, Albert had fully intended to resign after the election of a Republican Vice President. But the country was in a terrible downward spiral, and with his own fortune now inextricably locked into the crisis he decided to serve out the remainder of the term in an attempt to heal the nation. But incredibly, he too became engulfed in a personal scandal and was forced to quit the White House.

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