The Road to Bork's Last Stand

How, under pressure, he changed his mind at the last minute

Robert Bork was ready to give up. After a punishing confirmation ordeal, his appointment to the U.S. Supreme Court faced near certain defeat as a majority of Senators joined the tide against him. After wearily advising Ronald Reagan and Attorney General Edwin Meese that he had little fight left in him, the judge retreated last Thursday afternoon to his judicial chambers, where he began writing an angry statement withdrawing his nomination for the job he had wanted most of his career.

Making the decision had been wrenching. Last Wednesday, the day after the Senate Judiciary Committee advised against his confirmation, Bork...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!