Robert Bork, the former federal judge whose Reagan-era nomination to the Supreme Court touched off one of the roughest confirmation battles in modern U.S. history, has died.

Family members said Bork, 85, died early Wednesday morning. He had a history of heart problems and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, a lung condition.

His funeral is scheduled for Saturday, and family members said there would be a memorial but did not say whether it would be open to the public.

Bork was among the most polarizing figures in American law and conservative politics for more than four decades. When Bork was solicitor general in 1973, he fired Archibald Cox as a special prosecutor on the order of President Richard Nixon to help in the Watergate cover-up.

President Ronald Reagan nominated Bork to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1987. In a 58-to-42 vote, the Senate rejected his nomination — it was by one of the widest margins in U.S. history.

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