William B. Saxbe
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|William B. Saxbe|
|70th United States Attorney General|
January 4, 1974 – February 2, 1975
|Preceded by||Elliot L. Richardson
Robert Bork (acting)
|Succeeded by||Edward H. Levi|
|United States Senator
January 3, 1969 – January 3, 1974
|Preceded by||Frank J. Lausche|
|Succeeded by||Howard Metzenbaum|
|11th United States Ambassador to India|
February 3, 1975 – November 20, 1976
|Preceded by||Daniel P. Moynihan|
|Succeeded by||Robert F. Goheen|
|Ohio Attorney General|
|Preceded by||Mark McElroy|
|Succeeded by||Paul W. Brown|
|Governor||C. William O'Neill|
|Preceded by||C. William O'Neill|
|Succeeded by||Mark McElroy|
|Born||William Bart Saxbe
June 24, 1916
|Died||August 24, 2010
|Alma mater||Ohio State University|
William Bart "Bill" Saxbe (//; June 24, 1916 – August 24, 2010) was an American politician affiliated with the Republican Party, who served as a U.S. Senator from Ohio, as U.S. Attorney General under Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald R. Ford, and as United States Ambassador to India.
Early life and career
He received a bachelor's degree from the Ohio State University, Class of 1940, where he was a member of the Chi Phi Fraternity. He served in the Army Air Corps during World War II, from 1940 to 1945.
When he returned from World War II, he entered Ohio State University law school. However, while still in law school, he ran for a seat in the Ohio House of Representatives in 1947 and won. In 1948, near the end of second term, he received a law degree.
He remained in the Ohio National Guard and was on active duty during the Korean War, from 1951 to 1952. He was discharged from the reserve with the rank of colonel in 1963. He served as the Ohio House majority leader in 1951 and 1952, and as speaker of the House in 1953 and 1954.
Higher political office
In 1957, Saxbe was elected Ohio Attorney General, defeating Democrat Stephen M. Young. He was re-elected three times and held that office until 1968. In this capacity, Saxbe argued the murder case of Doctor Sam Sheppard before the United States Supreme Court in 1966. He went up against Sheppard's attorney F. Lee Bailey.
He was a member of the Ohio Crime Commission from 1967 to 1968. In 1968, Saxbe was elected to the U.S. Senate, defeating the Democratic candidate, former Ohio Rep. (1965–67) John J. Gilligan. He served in the Senate until January 4, 1974, when he was appointed U.S. Attorney General by President Nixon. Saxbe was the permanent replacement for Elliot Richardson, who had been fired by Nixon during the "Saturday Night Massacre" at the height of the Watergate scandal. Saxbe took over for Robert Bork, who had served as acting Attorney General following the "Massacre".
There was some minor controversy regarding Saxbe's appointment and the Ineligibility Clause of the Constitution. That provision states that a legislator cannot be appointed to an executive position during the same term that the legislature had voted to increase the salary of said position. Nixon addressed the problem by having Congress reduce the salary of the Attorney General to the level it assumed before Saxbe's term in the Senate had begun. This maneuver had only occurred once before, when Senator Philander C. Knox had been appointed Secretary of State in 1909, and has since become known as the "Saxbe fix". Because there was no perception that anything intentional had been done to benefit Saxbe, the matter was largely ignored.
Gilligan, who had been elected Governor of Ohio in 1970, appointed Howard Metzenbaum to fill out Saxbe's term. Later that year, former astronaut John Glenn, another Democrat, was elected to replace Saxbe.
Saxbe served as Attorney General for the first few months of the Ford Administration before stepping down in early 1975, when he was appointed United States Ambassador to India. He served in that capacity until 1977. After that, Saxbe returned to Mechanicsburg and resumed the practice of law.
In 1940, he married the former Ardath Louise "Dolly" Kleinhans. They had three children: William Bart Jr., Juliet Louise, and Charles Rockwell. Charles served four terms in the Ohio House of Representatives, and was later an attorney in private practice.
He died at the age of 94 in 2010.
- William B. Saxbe, Peter D. Franklin, Diana Britt Franklin I've seen the elephant page 7 (Accessed February 14, 2010)
- West's Encyclopedia of American Law (accessed February 14, 2010)
- "William Bart Saxbe". The United States Department of Justice.
- "Way Clear For Knox to Enter Cabinet" (PDF). The New York Times. 1909-02-16. Retrieved 2011-06-15.
- "First Out of the Chute: Bob Dole". The New York Times. June 19, 1994. p. 16. Retrieved June 28, 2013.
- "Former U.S. Sen. William B. Saxbe dies at age 94". Cleveland Plain Dealer. 2010.
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