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RICHARD M NIXON The first president of the United States to resign from office was Richard M Nixon Before his mid-term retirement in 1974 he had been only the second president to face impeachment In 1968 in a political comeback unprecedented in American history Nixon was elected the 37th president of the United States This victory followed two major political defeats In his first bid for the presidency in 1960 the Democratic candidate John F Kennedy defeated him Two years later he suffered a crushing loss in his campaign for the governorship of his home state of California He then temporarily retired from politics to practice law Before the election of 1960 Nixons political career had been a series of unbroken successes He was elected to the United States Congress in 1946 entered the United States Senate as its youngest member in 1951 and two years later at 39 became the nations second youngest vice-president The youngest was John C Breckinridge Nixon served two terms under Republican Dwight D Eisenhower In 1969 Nixon was the first president since the start of the two-party system to assume office handicapped by an opposition Congress His slim margin of the 73 million votes cast made him the 15th minority president Nixon with 301 electoral votes defeated Vice-President Hubert H Humphrey Renominated in 1972 Nixon polled a record 46 million popular votes and won 49 states Although George McGovern the Democratic candidate received only 17 electoral votes the Democrats held control of Congress It was a landslide victory for Nixon Yet by 1974 his impeachment seemed inevitable as a result of political scandals involving his staff See also Political Parties Impeachment Richard Milhous Nixon was born in Yorba Linda a farming village in Orange County Calif on Jan 9 1913 He was the second of five sons of Francis Frank Anthony Nixon and Hannah Milhous Nixon Frank Nixon came from a Scotch-Irish farming family
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