1971 August 19

Nixon White House Requests Bogus FBI Investigation of Daniel Schorr


The Richard Nixon White House ordered an FBI investigation of reporter Daniel Schorr on this day and, when this was revealed, it claimed that Schorr was being considered for an administration job. No one believed the explanation. Schorr was placed on the famous Nixon administration’s “enemies list” (August 16, 1971). Famously, Schorr obtained the list and read it on the evening news on the night of June 27, 1973. In the midst of reading the list, he discovered his own name on it.

Journalist Daniel Schorr was one of the most courageous and controversial journalists of the 1960s and 1970s. He acquired the wrath of the Nixon administration through his years of investigative reporting.

Schorr created a sensation on April 28, 1975, when he revealed CIA assassination plots on the CBS Evening News. The revelation — and subsequent investigations by the Senate Church Committee — led President Gerald Ford to ban assassinations of foreign leaders by the CIA, on February 18, 1976. Schorr also became famous for obtaining a summary of the House of Representatives Pike Committee (created on February 19, 1975) report of its investigations of abuses by the intelligence agencies, and leaking it to the Village Voice, which published it on February 16, 1976. For leaking the report, he was fired by CBS and almost cited for contempt to Congress in January 1976.

Read Schorr’s account: Daniel Schorr, Staying Tuned: A Life in Journalism (2001)

Watch Schorr discuss the Enemies List: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tu5fmobwywE

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