Donald Trump has been the first in many things as president or ex-president, and a few of them not very exemplary.
Now he has broken a record again: he is the first former White House tenant to be charged.
But he is not the only US head of state who has had problems with the law throughout history: a handful of presidents or vice presidents have been involved in political trials or have been linked to crimes.
A grand jury in New York has voted to indict the former president and current presidential candidate in connection with the case being followed by the Manhattan District Attorney's Office over the $130,000 payment that then-Trump attorney Michael Cohen disbursed to buy the silence of the porn actress Stormy Daniels shortly before the elections that in 2016 would make the real estate magnate president of the United States.
The first American president to be impeached was Andrew Johnson (1865-1869).
In his case, not because there were any doubts about his record as a good citizen, but for purely political reasons: His tenure was dominated by a constant confrontation with Congress over his post-Civil War (1861) reconstruction efforts. -1865).
Johnson, a Southern Democrat from Tennessee, had allowed the seceding states to quickly rejoin the Union.
He had pardoned Confederate soldiers.
And he vetoed bills that Congress had adopted to protect the rights of newly freed slaves.
He fired his secretary for war, Edwin Stanton, who was opposed to his benevolence toward the former Confederate states.
The confrontations reached their peak in 1868: the House of Representatives opened the
The blood did not reach the river.
Although the lower house concluded that he should be removed, the Senate acquitted him.
But Johnson did not want to run for a second term.
His successor, Ulysses Grant (1869-1877), had problems of a different kind: when he was riding in his horse-drawn carriage he liked to run.
He was once pulled over for going too fast, but the police let him go after giving him a single fine.
It would take almost a century to reach what, up to now, has been the biggest and most famous scandal in American politics: the Watergate that cost Richard Nixon his job (1969-1974).
The Republican president who claimed "I'm not a criminal" resigned in 1974 before an impeachment trial began against him.
Although a grand jury had named him as one of the participants in the case, no charges were ever brought against him and his successor in the White House, his former Vice President Gerald Ford, pardoned him.
The case, made into a film in the film
All the President's Men
, starring Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman, had broken out after members of Nixon's re-election committee raided the Democratic party headquarters in the offices of the Watergate complex, on the Potomac River, to install wiretaps and steal documents.
The microphones didn't work, so five of them went back to change them.
At that time they were discovered.
Initially, Nixon wanted to cover up his involvement, to the point that he fired the independent special prosecutor investigating the case.
The scandal rose to the Supreme Court, which ruled that the president should make public the recordings he kept of all his conversations.
Those tapes implicated him.
Nixon's tenure was also peppered with other political scandals.
His vice president Spiro Agnew had resigned in 1973 after accepting a charge of tax evasion.
The charge was part of a larger investigation related to alleged bribes he had received during his tenure in local politics in the state of Maryland, where he rose to become governor.
But if the case of the Republican president who restored diplomatic relations with Mao Zedong's China marked a before and after in contemporary US politics, that of Democrat Bill Clinton (1993-2001), the biggest sex scandal in the history of American politics, was no less mediatic.
In 1998, the House of Representatives impeached Clinton for perjury and obstruction of justice after the president tried to cover up his relationship with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky, then 24.
As had happened 130 years before, the case did not prosper and the president was acquitted by the Senate.
But the impeachment
and the wear and tear that it entailed on the president's popularity meant that his second term was that of a discredited leader, with no capacity to carry out ambitious projects.
Clinton's problems had begun in the state of which he was governor, Arkansas, where he had raised suspicions about his involvement in the Whitewater real-estate hit.
A state official, Paula Jones, had sued him for sexual harassment.
The Democrat became the first president to testify in self-defense before a jury.
As part of the case, the investigators called the ex-grantee to testify about her relationship with the president.
On January 26, 1998, Clinton uttered one of the phrases that would mark his presidency: "I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky."
The key to the impeachment
was precisely to determine if the president, who had had oral sex with the young woman, had committed perjury by denying the affair and if he obstructed justice by encouraging the girl to deny the relationship.
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