On June 17, 1972 5 burglars broke into the Democratic headquarters. The burglars were linked to Nixon. Later tapes were found that held information that could link the president to the burglars. Nixon pleaded guilty claiming that this shouldn't be subject to judicial resolution since the matter was a dispute within the executive branch. Also, he argued that the tapes should be protected under the president's executive privilege.
What are the questons before the court?
The question is: Can the Presidents power of "executive privilege" apply to the case? which means the President is excused from turning in evidence needed in a criminal proceeding
The President claim of having "executive power" is not absolute. The President can not use "executive power" to withhold evidence in this case. This argument can be property heard in the federal courts.
Separation of powers grant the president the privilege of withholding information from the other branches of government. Therefore "executive power" is absolute. This case should be resolved in the executive branch, and not by the courts.
In the court case U.S. V. Nixon the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the United States. So President Nixon was forced to hand over the tapes.