HOW STUFF WORKS
QUIZZES

FOLLOW US
I Am Not a Crook: The Richard Nixon Quiz
by Staff
For better or worse, Richard M. Nixon left his mark on American politics. There were plenty of high and low points in between the family ranch and the helicopter ride away from the White House. How much do you know about the 37th U.S. president?

In what state was Nixon born?

  • Utah
  • California
  • Wyoming

What does the "M" in Richard M. Nixon stand for?

  • Murray
  • Milhous
  • Montebank

At what university did Nixon attend law school?

  • New York University
  • Yale University
  • Duke University

In what branch of the military did Nixon serve during World War II?

  • Army
  • Navy
  • Marines

What was the first major political office that Nixon held?

  • congressman for California's 12th District
  • vice president
  • mayor of Rancho Cucamonga, California

What communist-hunting congressional committee was Nixon part of in the late 1940s?

  • McCarthy Commission on Defending Against Communists
  • Committee to Re-elect the President
  • House Un-American Activities Committee

In 1950, what political office did Nixon run for?

  • chief judge, 9th Circuit Court of Appeals
  • governor of California
  • U.S. Senate

Did he win or lose when he ran for U.S. Senate in 1950?

  • He won.
  • He lost.

Nixon's campaign tactics against Douglas included comparing her to another politician with rumored communist sympathies. This campaign earned him what nickname, which stuck to him through his political career?

  • King Richard
  • Fixin' Nixon
  • Tricky Dick

What president did Nixon serve as vice president under?

  • Dwight D. Eisenhower
  • Harry S. Truman
  • John F. Kennedy

During the 1952 campaign, Nixon was accused of using money from political supporters to reimburse himself for expenses, a legal but ethically questionable tactic. How did he defuse the scandal?

  • He cut off several high-profile reporters from covering the campaign.
  • He gave a televised speech transparently explaining the situation and discussing his family's modest standard of living.
  • He lobbied to have campaign finance laws changed.

Why was it called the "Checkers Speech"?

  • He gave the speech from a diner in Palo Alto, California, called Checkers.
  • He compared the political maneuvering of campaign season to a game of checkers.
  • One of the gifts he'd been given was a puppy his daughter named Checkers.

How was the office of vice president different with Nixon on the job than it had been in the past?

  • Nixon resided in Bakersfield, California, instead of Washington, acting as a sort of "west coast president."
  • Nixon was a much more involved and active vice president under Eisenhower.
  • Nixon gave many press conferences and acted as a spokesman for Eisenhower.

What happened in 1955 that led to a turning point in Nixon's career?

  • Nixon visited Cambodia and spoke to communist leaders there.
  • North Korea declared war on the U.S.
  • Eisenhower suffered a heart attack, leaving Nixon in charge of the executive branch for more than a month.

How many terms did Nixon serve as vice president?

  • one
  • two
  • three

What was considered the deciding factor in Nixon "losing" the first televised debate to John F. Kennedy?

  • Nixon growing angry and snapping at Kennedy several times
  • Nixon's poor grasp of foreign policy
  • Nixon's sweaty appearance and 5 o'clock shadow compared to Kennedy's composed appearance

What was the electoral vote tally in the 1960 presidential election?

  • 430-92 for Kennedy
  • 303-219 for Kennedy
  • 313-209 for Nixon

What did Nixon run for after losing the 1960 presidential election?

  • the U.S. Senate
  • governor of California
  • Nothing, he was semiretired until 1968.

What did Nixon infamously say when he conceded the gubernatorial election?

  • "You won't have Nixon to kick around anymore."
  • "I am not a crook."
  • "Mistakes were made."

What is the title of Nixon's first book?

  • "The True Test"
  • "California Politics"
  • "Six Crises"

Who was Nixon competing against in the 1968 Republican presidential primaries?

  • Henry Cabot Lodge Jr.
  • Spiro Agnew
  • George Romney

With what nation did Nixon greatly expand diplomatic relations, partly through an exchange of table tennis teams?

  • China
  • Russia
  • Germany

In what year were the Paris Peace Accords signed, ending the Vietnam War, which Nixon had pledged to end during his campaign?

  • 1969
  • 1973
  • 1976

What was the name of Nixon's 1972 re-election fundraising organization?

  • Nixon '72
  • Committee for the Re-election of the President
  • the Dirty Tricksters

What crime initially exposed the Watergate scandal?

  • CREEP bribing Washington Post reporters to quash stories unfavorable to Nixon
  • CREEP violating campaign finance laws
  • CREEP operatives breaking into the Democratic National Committee in the Watergate office building

Former White House lawyer John Dean told the Senate Watergate Committee something huge that suggested there was direct evidence of the sitting president being involved in illegal schemes. What did he tell them?

  • that conversations in the Oval Office were recorded on tape
  • that Nixon kept detailed records of CREEP's financial transactions, including illegal ones
  • that Nixon's wife was willing to testify against him

What was the Saturday Night Massacre?

  • the night Nixon demanded the attorney general fire Archibald Cox, head of the Watergate investigation; both the attorney general and his deputy resigned instead
  • the night five witnesses to various aspects of the scandal were found dead in seemingly unrelated incidents
  • the night Nixon left office

Why did Nixon feel he should NOT have to release the White House tapes to investigators?

  • He claimed the tapes contained personal conversations not subject to the investigation.
  • He claimed he didn't have the tapes.
  • He claimed executive privilege — that simply by virtue of being president he didn’t have to comply with the investigation.

Would Nixon have been impeached if he hadn’t resigned?

  • yes
  • no
  • It's uncertain how the vote would have gone.

True or false: Richard Nixon is the only president to have resigned from office.

  • true
  • false