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Gerald Rudolph Ford, Jr. (born Leslie Lynch King, Jr.; July 14, 1913 – December 26, 2006) was the 38th President of the United States, serving from 1974 to 1977, and the 40th Vice President of the United States serving from 1973 to 1974. As the first person appointed to the vice-presidency under the terms of the 25th Amendment, when he became President upon Richard Nixon's resignation on August 9, 1974, he also became the only President of the United States who was elected neither President nor Vice-President.

Before ascending to the vice-presidency, Ford served nearly 25 years as Representative from Michigan's 5th congressional district, eight of them as the Republican Minority Leader.

As President, Ford signed the Helsinki Accords, marking a move toward détente in the Cold War. With the conquest of South Vietnam by North Vietnam nine months into his presidency, US involvement in Vietnammarker essentially ended. Domestically, Ford presided over what was then the worst economy since the Great Depression, with growing inflation and a recession during his tenure. One of his more controversial acts was to grant a presidential pardon to President Richard Nixon for his role in the Watergate scandal. During Ford’s incumbency, foreign policy was characterized in procedural terms by the increased role Congress began to play, and by the corresponding curb on the powers of the President. In 1976, Ford narrowly defeated Ronald Reagan for the Republican nomination, but ultimately lost the presidential election to Democrat Jimmy Carter.

Following his years as president, Ford remained active in the Republican Party. After experiencing health problems and being admitted to the hospital four times in 2006, Ford died in his home on December 26, 2006. He lived to an older age than any other U.S. president, dying at the age of 93 years and 165 days.

Early life

Childhood

Ford was born as Leslie Lynch King, Jr. on July 14, 1913, at 3202 Woolworth Avenuemarker in Omahamarker, Nebraskamarker, where his parents lived with his paternal grandparents. His father was Leslie Lynch King, Sr., a wool trader and son of prominent banker Charles Henry and Martha King.His mother was the former Dorothy Ayer Gardner. Dorothy separated from King Sr. just sixteen days after her son's birth. She took her son with her to the Oak Parkmarker, Illinoismarker home of her sister Tannisse and her husband, Clarence Haskins James. From there she moved to the home of her parents, Levi Addison Gardner and his wife, the former Adele Augusta Ayer, in Grand Rapidsmarker, Michiganmarker. Dorothy and Leslie King divorced in December 1913; she gained full custody of their son. Ford's paternal grandfather Charles Henry King paid child support until shortly before his death in 1930.

Leslie Lynch King, Jr. (later known as Gerald R.
Ford) at one year of age in 1914
Gerald Ford later said his biological father had a history of hitting his mother. James M. Cannon, a member of the Ford administration, wrote in a Ford biography that the Kings' separation and divorce were sparked when, a few days after Ford's birth, Leslie King threatened Dorothy with a butcher knife and threatened to kill her, Ford, and Ford's nursemaid. Ford later told confidantes that his father had first hit his mother on their honeymoon for smiling at another man.

After two and a half years with her parents, on February 1, 1916 Dorothy King married Gerald Rudolff Ford, a salesman in a family owned paint and varnish company. They then called her son Gerald Rudolff Ford, Jr. The future president was never formally adopted, however, and he did not legally change his name until December 3, 1935; he also used a more conventional spelling of his middle name. He was raised in Grand Rapidsmarker with his three half-brothers by his mother's second marriage: Thomas Gardner Ford (1918–1995), Richard Addison Ford (born 1924), and James Francis Ford (1927–2001).

Ford also had three half-siblings from his father's second marriage: Marjorie King (1921–1993), Leslie Henry King (1923–1976), and Patricia Jane King (born 1925). They never saw each other as children and he did not know them at all. Ford was not aware of his biological father until he was 17, when his parents told him about the circumstances of his birth. That year his father Leslie King, whom Ford described as a "carefree, well-to-do man," approached Ford while he was waiting tables in a Grand Rapids restaurant. The two "maintained a sporadic contact" until Leslie King, Sr.'s death.

Ford maintained his distance emotionally, saying, "My stepfather was a magnificent person and my mother equally wonderful. So I couldn't have written a better prescription for a superb family upbringing."

Scouting and athletics

Ford was involved in The Boy Scouts of America, and attained that program's highest rank, Eagle Scout. In subsequent years, Ford received the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award in May 1970 and Silver Buffalo Award from the Boy Scouts of America. He is the only US president who was an Eagle Scout. Scouting was so important to Ford that his family asked that Scouts participate in his funeral. About 400 Eagle Scouts were part of the funeral procession, where they formed an honor guard as the casket went by in front of the museum. A few selected scouts served as ushers inside the National Cathedral.

Ford attended Grand Rapids South High School and was a star athlete and captain of his football team. In 1930, he was selected to the All-City team of the Grand Rapids City League. He also attracted the attention of college recruiters.



Attending the University of Michiganmarker as an undergraduate, Ford played center and linebacker for the school’s football team and helped the Wolverines to undefeated seasons and national titles in 1932 and 1933. The team suffered a steep decline in his 1934 senior year, however, winning only one game. Ford was the team’s star nonetheless, and after a game during which Michigan held heavily favored Minnesota (the eventual national champion) to a scoreless tie in the first half, assistant coach Bennie Oosterbaan later said, “When I walked into the dressing room at half time, I had tears in my eyes I was so proud of them. Ford and [Cedric] Sweet played their hearts out. They were everywhere on defense.” Ford himself later recalled, “During 25 years in the rough-and-tumble world of politics, I often thought of the experiences before, during, and after that game in 1934. Remembering them has helped me many times to face a tough situation, take action, and make every effort possible despite adverse odds.” His teammates later voted Ford their most valuable player, with one assistant coach noting, “They felt Jerry was one guy who would stay and fight in a losing cause.”

During the same season, in a game against the University of Chicagomarker, Ford “became the only future U.S. president to tackle a future Heisman Trophy winner when he brought down running back Jay Berwanger, who would win the first Heisman the following year.” In 1934 Gerald Ford was selected for the Eastern Team on the Shriner’s East West Crippled Children game at San Francisco (a benefit for crippled children), played on January 1, 1935. As part of the 1935 Collegiate All-Star football team, Ford played against the Chicago Bears in an exhibition game at Soldier Fieldmarker. The University of Michigan retired Ford's #48 jersey in 1994.

Ford retained his interest in football and his alma mater throughout life, occasionally attending games. Ford also visited with players and coaches during practices, at one point asking to join the players in the huddle. Ford often had the Naval band play the University of Michigan fight song, The Victors, prior to state events instead of Hail to the Chief. He also selected the song to be played during his funeral procession at the U.S. Capitol. On his death in December 2006, the University of Michigan Marching Band played the fight song for him one final time, for his last ride from the Gerald R.marker Ford Airportmarker in Grand Rapids, Michigan.


Ford was also an avid golfer. In 1977, he shot a hole in one during a Pro-am held in conjunction with the Danny Thomas Memphis Classic at Colonial Country Club in Memphis, Tennesseemarker. He received the 1985 Old Tom Morris Award from the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, GCSAA's highest honor.

Education

At University of Michiganmarker, Ford became a member of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity (Omicron chapter) and washed dishes at his fraternity house to earn money for college expenses. Following his graduation in 1935 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics, he turned down contract offers from the Detroit Lions and Green Bay Packers of the National Football League to take a coaching position at Yalemarker and apply to its law school. Ford continued to contribute to football and boxing, accepting an assistant coaching job for both at Yale in September 1935.

Ford hoped to attend Yale's law school beginning in 1935 while serving as boxing coach, assistant varsity football coach, and teacher of JV cheerleading, at which he was very good because he knew how to do several tucks and back handsprings. Yale officials initially denied his admission to the law school, because of his full-time coaching responsibilities. He spent the summer of 1937 as a student at the University of Michigan Law Schoolmarker and was eventually admitted in the spring of 1938 to Yale Law School. Ford earned his LL.B. degree in 1941 (later amended to Juris Doctor), graduating in the top 25 percent of his class. His introduction to politics came in the summer of 1940 when he worked in Wendell Willkie's presidential campaign.While attending Yale Law School, he joined a group of students led by R. Douglas Stuart, Jr., and signed a petition to enforce the 1939 Neutrality Act. The petition was circulated nationally and was the inspiration for the America First Committee, a group determined to keep the U.S. out of World War II.

Ford graduated from law school in 1941, and was admitted to the Michigan bar shortly there after. In May 1941, he opened a Grand Rapids law practice with a friend, Philip Buchen, who would later serve as Ford's White House counsel. But overseas developments caused a change in plans, and Ford responded to the attack on Pearl Harbormarker by enlisting in the Navy.

Naval service in World War II

Ford received a commission as ensign in the U.S. Naval Reserve on April 13, 1942. On April 20, he reported for active duty to the V-5 instructor school at Annapolismarker, Marylandmarker. After one month of training, he went to Navy Preflight School in Chapel Hillmarker, North Carolinamarker, where he was one of 83 instructors and taught elementary seamanship, ordnance, gunnery, first aid and military drill. In addition, he coached in all nine sports that were offered, but mostly in swimming, boxing and football. During the one year he was at the Preflight School, he was promoted to Lieutenant Junior Grade on June 2, 1942, and to Lieutenant in March 1943.

Applying for sea duty, Ford was sent in May 1943 to the pre-commissioning detachment for the new aircraft carrier USS Montereymarker, at New York Shipbuilding Corporation, Camdenmarker, New Jerseymarker. From the ship's commissioning on June 17, 1943 until the end of December 1944, Ford served as the assistant navigator, Athletic Officer, and antiaircraft battery officer on board the Monterey. While he was on board, the carrier participated in many actions in the Pacific Theater with the Third and Fifth Fleets during the fall of 1943 and in 1944. In 1943, the carrier helped secure Makin Island in the Gilberts, and participated in carrier strikes against Kaviengmarker, New Ireland in 1943. During the spring of 1944, the Monterey supported landings at Kwajalein and Eniwetok and participated in carrier strikes in the Marianasmarker, Western Carolinesmarker, and northern New Guineamarker, as well as in the Battle of the Philippine Sea. After overhaul, from September to November 1944, aircraft from the Monterey launched strikes against Wake Islandmarker, participated in strikes in the Philippines and Ryukyusmarker, and supported the landings at Leytemarker and Mindoromarker.

Although the ship was not damaged by Japanesemarker forces, the Monterey was one of several ships damaged by the typhoon that hit Admiral William Halsey's Third Fleet on December 18–19, 1944. The Third Fleet lost three destroyers and over 800 men during the typhoon. The Monterey was damaged by a fire, which was started by several of the ship's aircraft tearing loose from their cables and colliding on the hangar deck. During the storm, Ford narrowly avoided becoming a casualty himself. As he was going to his battle station on the bridge of the ship in the early morning of December 18, the ship rolled twenty-five degrees, which caused Ford to lose his footing and slide toward the edge of the deck. The two-inch steel ridge around the edge of the carrier slowed him enough so he could roll, and he twisted into the catwalk below the deck. As he later stated, "I was lucky; I could have easily gone overboard."

Because of the extent of the fires, Admiral Halsey ordered Captain Ingersoll to abandon ship. Instead Captain Ingersoll ordered Ford to lead a fire brigade below. After five hours he and his team had put out the fire.

After the fire the Monterey was declared unfit for service, and the crippled carrier reached Ulithimarker on December 21 before continuing across the Pacific to Bremertonmarker, Washingtonmarker where it underwent repairs. On December 24, 1944 at Ulithi, Ford was detached from the ship and sent to the Athletic Department of the Navy Pre-Flight School at Saint Mary's College of California, where he was assigned to the Athletic Department until April 1945. One of his duties was to coach football. From the end of April 1945 to January 1946, he was on the staff of the Naval Reserve Training Command, Naval Air Station, Glenview, Illinoismarker as the Staff Physical and Military Training Officer. On October 3, 1945 he was promoted to Lieutenant Commander. In January 1946, he was sent to the Separation Center, Great Lakesmarker to be processed out. He was released from active duty under honorable conditions on February 23, 1946. On June 28, 1946, the Secretary of the Navy accepted Ford's resignation from the Naval Reserve.

For his naval service, Gerald Ford earned the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with nine engagement stars for operations in the Gilbert Islands, Bismarck Archipelagomarker, Marshall Islandsmarker, Asiatic and Pacific carrier raids, Hollandia, Marianas, Western Carolines, Western New Guinea, and the Leyte Operation. He also received the Philippine Liberation Medal with two bronze stars for Leyte and Mindoro, as well as the American Campaign and World War II Victory Medals.

Ford was a member of several civic organizations, including the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and AMVETS. Gerald R. Ford was initiated into Freemasonry on September 30, 1949. He later said in 1975, "When I took my obligation as a master mason — incidentally, with my three younger brothers — I recalled the value my own father attached to that order. But I had no idea that I would ever be added to the company of the Father of our Country and 12 other members of the order who also served as Presidents of the United States."

Marriage and children

The Fords on their wedding day, October 15, 1948
On October 15, 1948, at Grace Episcopal Church in Grand Rapids, Ford married Elizabeth Bloomer Warren, a department store fashion consultant. Warren had been a John Robert Powers fashion model and a dancer in the auxiliary troupe of the Martha Graham Dance Company. She had previously been married to and divorced from William G. Warren.

At the time of his engagement, Ford was campaigning for what would be his first of thirteen terms as a member of the United States House of Representatives. The wedding was delayed until shortly before the elections because, as The New York Times reported in a 1974 profile of Betty Ford, "Jerry was running for Congress and wasn't sure how voters might feel about his marrying a divorced ex-dancer."

The Fords had four children:

House of Representatives



After returning to Grand Rapidsmarker, Ford became active in local Republican politics, and supporters urged him to take on Bartel J. Jonkman, the incumbent Republican congressman. Military service had changed his view of the world; "I came back a converted internationalist", Ford wrote, "and of course our congressman at that time was an avowed, dedicated isolationist. And I thought he ought to be replaced. Nobody thought I could win. I ended up winning two to one."During his first campaign in 1948, Ford visited voters at their doorsteps and as they left the factories where they worked. Ford also visited local farms where, in one instance, a wager resulted in Ford spending two weeks milking cows following his election victory. Ford was known to his colleagues in the House as a "Congressman's Congressman".

Ford was a member of the House of Representatives for twenty-five years, holding the Grand Rapids congressional district seat from 1949 to 1973. It was a tenure largely notable for its modesty. As an editorial in The New York Times described him, Ford "saw himself as a negotiator and a reconciler, and the record shows it: he did not write a single piece of major legislation in his entire career."Appointed to the House Appropriations Committee two years after being elected, he was a prominent member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee. Ford described his philosophy as "a moderate in domestic affairs, an internationalist in foreign affairs, and a conservative in fiscal policy."

In the early 1950s, Ford declined offers to run for both the Senate and the Michigan governorship. Rather, his ambition was to become Speaker of the House.

Warren Commission

In November 1963, President Lyndon B. Johnson appointed Ford to the Warren Commission, a special task force set up to investigate the assassinationmarker of President John F. Kennedy. Ford was assigned to prepare a biography of Lee Harvey Oswald, the accused assassin.In 1997 the Assassination Records Review Board (ARRB) released a document that revealed that Ford had altered the first draft of the report to read: "A bullet had entered the base of the back of [Kennedy's] neck slightly to the right of the spine." Some believed that Ford had elevated the location of the wound from its true location in the back to the neck to support the single bullet theory. ( ) The original first draft of the Warren Commission Report stated that a bullet had entered Kennedy's "back at a point slightly above the shoulder and to the right of the spine." Ford replied in an introduction to a new edition of the Warren Commission Report in 2004:
I have been accused of changing some wording on the Warren Commission Report to favor the lone-assassin conclusion.
That is absurd.
Here is what the draft said: "A bullet had entered his back at a point slightly above the shoulder and to the right of the spine.” To any reasonable person, “above the shoulder and to the right” sounds very high and way off the side — and that’s what it sounded like to me.
That would have given the totally wrong impression.
Technically, from a medical perspective, the bullet entered just to the right at the base of the neck, so my recommendation to the other members was to change it to say, “A bullet had entered the back of his neck, slightly to the right of the spine.” After further investigation, we then unanimously agreed that it should read, “A bullet had entered the base of his neck slightly to the right of the spine.” As with any report, there were many clarifications and language changes suggested by several of us.
Ford's description matched a drawing prepared for the Commission under the direction of Dr. James J. Humes, supervisor of Kennedy's autopsy, who in his testimony to the Commission said three times that the entrance wound was in the "low neck." The Commission was not shown the autopsy photographs. The Commission's work continues to be debated in the public arena.

In the foreword to his book, A Presidential Legacy and The Warren Commission, Ford said the CIA destroyed or kept from investigators critical secrets connected to the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy. He said the commission's probe put "certain classified and potentially damaging operations in danger of being exposed." The CIA's reaction, he added, "was to hide or destroy some information, which can easily be misinterpreted as collusion in JFK's assassination."

According to a 1963 FBImarker memo released in 2008, Ford secretly provided the FBI with information regarding two of his fellow commission members, both of whom were dubious about the FBI's conclusions regarding the assassination. The FBI position was that President Kennedy was shot by a single gunman firing from the Texas Book Depository. Another 1963 memo released in 1978 stated that Representative Ford volunteered to advise the FBI regarding the content of the commission's deliberations, provided that his involvement with the bureau was kept confidential, a condition which the bureau approved. Ford generally believed in the single assassin theory. According to the same reports, Ford generally had strong ties to the FBI and J. Edgar Hoover.

House Minority Leader

In 1964, Democratic President Lyndon Johnson led a landslide victory for his party, securing another term as president and taking 36 seats from Republicans in the House of Representatives. Following the election, members of the Republican delegation looked to select a new Minority Leader. Three members approached Ford to see if he would be willing to serve; after consulting with his family, he agreed. After a closely contested election, Ford was chosen to replace Charles Halleck of Indianamarker as Minority Leader.

Ford had 140 votes compared to the 295 seats held by the Democrats. As a result, the Johnson Administration was able to propose and pass a series of programs termed by President Johnson as the "Great Society". During the first session of the of the Eighty-ninth Congress alone, the Johnson Administration submitted eighty-seven bills to Congress, and Johnson signed eighty-four, or 96%, arguably the most successful legislative agenda in U.S. Congressional history.

Criticism over the Johnson Administration's handling of the Vietnam War began to grow in 1966, with Ford and Congressional Republicans expressing concern that the United States was not doing what was necessary to win the war. Public sentiment also began to move against Johnson, and the 1966 midterm elections saw a 47-seat swing in favor of the Republicans. This was not sufficient to give Republicans a majority in the House, but the victory did give Ford the opportunity to prevent the passage of further Great Society programs.

Ford's private criticism of the Vietnam war became public following a speech from the floor of the House, in which he questioned whether the White House had a clear plan to bring the conflict to a successful conclusion. The speech angered President Johnson, who accused Ford of playing "too much football without a helmet."

As Minority Leader in the House, Ford appeared in a popular series of televised press conferences with famed Illinoismarker Senator Everett Dirksen, in which they proposed Republican alternatives to Johnson's policies. Many in the press jokingly called this "The Ev and Jerry Show". Johnson said of Ford at the time, "That Gerald Ford. He can't fart and chew gum at the same time." The press, used to sanitizing LBJ's salty language, reported this as "Gerald Ford can't walk and chew gum at the same time."

Ford's role shifted under President Nixon to being an advocate for the White House agenda. Congress passed several of Nixon's proposals, including the National Environmental Policy Act and the Tax Reform Act of 1969. Another high-profile victory for the Republican minority was the State and Local Fiscal Assistance act. Passed in 1972, the act established a Revenue Sharing program for state and local governments. Ford's leadership was instrumental in shepherding revenue sharing through congress, and culminated in a bipartisan coalition that supported the bill with 223 votes in favor (compared to 185 against).

During the eight years (1965–1973) he served as Minority Leader, Ford won many friends in the House because of his fair leadership and inoffensive personality. An office building in the U.S. Capitol Complex, House Annex 2, was renamed for Gerald Ford as the Ford House Office Buildingmarker.

Vice Presidency, 1973–74

On October 10, 1973, Vice President Spiro Agnew resigned and then pleaded no contest to criminal charges of tax evasion and money laundering, part of a negotiated resolution to a scheme wherein he accepted $29,500 in bribes while governor of Maryland. According to The New York Times, "Nixon sought advice from senior Congressional leaders about a replacement. The advice was unanimous. 'We gave Nixon no choice but Ford,' House Speaker Carl Albert recalled later".

Following President Nixon's resignation, newly-sworn President and Mrs. Ford walk the Nixons to their helicopter.
Ford was nominated to take Agnew's position on October 12, the first time the vice-presidential vacancy provision of the 25th Amendment had been implemented. The United States Senate voted 92 to 3 to confirm Ford on November 27. Only three Senators, all Democrats, had voted against Ford's confirmation: Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsinmarker, Thomas Eagleton of Missourimarker and William Hathaway of Mainemarker. On December 6, the House confirmed Ford by a vote of 387 to 35. One hour after the confirmation vote in the House, Ford took the oath of office as Vice President of the United States.

Ford's brief tenure as Vice-President was little noted by the media. Instead, reporters were preoccupied by the continuing revelations about criminal acts during the 1972 presidential election and allegations of cover-ups within the White Housemarker.

Following Ford's appointment, the Watergate investigation continued until Chief of Staff Alexander Haig contacted Ford on August 1, 1974, and told him that "smoking gun" evidence had been found. The evidence left little doubt that President Nixon had been a part of the Watergate cover-up. At the time, Ford and his wife, Betty, were living in suburban Virginia, waiting for their expected move into the newly designated vice president's residencemarker in Washington, D.C.marker However, "Al Haig [asked] to come over and see me," Ford later related, "to tell me that there would be a new tape released on a Monday, and he said the evidence in there was devastating and there would probably be either an impeachment or a resignation. And he said, 'I'm just warning you that you've got to be prepared, that things might change dramatically and you could become President.' And I said, 'Betty, I don't think we're ever going to live in the vice president's house.'"

Presidency, 1974–77

Accession

When Nixon resigned in the wake of the Watergate scandal on August 9, 1974, Ford assumed the presidency, making him the only person to assume the vice-presidency and the presidency without having been voted into either office. Immediately after taking the oath of office in the East Room of the White Housemarker, he spoke to the assembled audience in a speech broadcast live to the nation. Ford noted the peculiarity of his position: "I am acutely aware that you have not elected me as your president by your ballots, and so I ask you to confirm me as your president with your prayers." He went on to state:

I have not sought this enormous responsibility, but I will not shirk it. Those who nominated and confirmed me as Vice President were my friends and are my friends. They were of both parties, elected by all the people and acting under the Constitution in their name. It is only fitting then that I should pledge to them and to you that I will be the President of all the people.

A portion of the speech would later be memorialized with a plaque at the entrance to his presidential museum.

On August 20, Ford nominated former New Yorkmarker Governor Nelson Rockefeller to fill the vice presidency he had vacated. Rockefeller's top competitor had been George H. W. Bush. Rockefeller underwent extended hearings before Congress, which caused embarrassment when it was revealed he made massive gifts to senior aides, such as Henry Kissinger. Although conservative Republicans were not pleased that Rockefeller was picked, most of them did vote for his confirmation, and his nomination passed both the House and Senate. However, some, including Barry Goldwater, voted against him.

Pardon of Nixon

On September 8, 1974, Ford issued Proclamation 4311, which gave Nixon a full and unconditional pardon for any crimes he may have committed against the United States while President. In a televised broadcast to the nation, Ford explained that he felt the pardon was in the best interests of the country, and that the Nixon family's situation "is a tragedy in which we all have played a part. It could go on and on and on, or someone must write the end to it. I have concluded that only I can do that, and if I can, I must." At the same time as he announced the Nixon pardon, Ford introduced a conditional amnesty program for Vietnam War draft dodgers who had fled to countries such as Canada. Unconditional amnesty, however, did not come about until the Jimmy Carter Presidency.

The Nixon pardon was highly controversial. Critics derided the move and claimed, a "corrupt bargain" had been struck between the men. They claimed Ford's pardon was quid pro quo, in exchange for Nixon's resignation that elevated Ford to the Presidency. According to Bob Woodward, Nixon Chief of Staff Alexander Haig proposed a pardon deal to Ford. In his book Shadow, Woodward states that Haig entered Ford's office on August 1, 1974 while Ford was still Vice President and Nixon had yet to resign. Haig told Ford that there were three pardon options: (1) Nixon could pardon himself and resign; (2) Nixon could pardon his aides involved in Watergate and then resign; or (3) Nixon could agree to leave in return for an agreement that the new president would pardon him. After listing these options, Haig handed Ford various papers; one of these papers included a discussion of the president's legal authority to pardon, and another sheet was a draft pardon form that only needed Ford's signature and Nixon's name to make it legal. Woodward summarizes the setting between Haig and Ford as follows: "Even if Haig offered no direct words on his views, the message was almost certainly sent. An emotional man, Haig was incapable of concealing his feelings; those who worked closely with him rarely found him ambiguous."

Despite the situation, Ford never accepted any offer from Haig. He later decided to pardon Nixon for other reasons, primarily the friendship he and Nixon shared. Regardless, historians believe the controversy was one of the major reasons Ford lost the election in 1976, an observation with which Ford concurred. In an editorial at the time, The New York Times stated that the Nixon pardon was "a profoundly unwise, divisive and unjust act" that in a stroke had destroyed the new president's "credibility as a man of judgment, candor and competence."

Ford's first press secretary and close friend Jerald Franklin terHorst resigned his post in protest after the announcement of President Nixon's full pardon. Ford also voluntarily appeared before Congress on October 17, 1974 to give sworn testimony—the only time a sitting president has done so—about the pardon.

After Ford left the White House in 1977, intimates said that the former President privately justified his pardon of Nixon by carrying in his wallet a portion of the text of Burdick v. United States, a 1915 U.S.marker Supreme Courtmarker decision which stated that a pardon indicated a presumption of guilt, and that acceptance of a pardon was tantamount to a confession of that guilt. In 2001, the John F. Kennedy Library Foundationmarker awarded the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award to Ford for his pardon of Nixon. In presenting the award to Ford, Senator Ted Kennedy said that he had initially been opposed to the pardon of Nixon, but admitted that history had proved Ford to have made the correct decision.

Administration and cabinet

Upon assuming office, Ford inherited Nixon's cabinet. Over the course of Ford's relatively brief administration, only Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and Secretary of the Treasury William E. Simon remained. Ford appointed William Coleman as Secretary of Transportation, the second African American to serve in a presidential cabinet (after Robert Clifton Weaver) and the first appointed in a Republican administration.

The Ford Cabinet
OFFICE NAME TERM

President Gerald Ford 1974–1977
Vice President Nelson Rockefeller 1974–1977

State Henry Kissinger 1974–1977
Treasury William E. Simon 1974–1977
Defense James R. Schlesinger 1974–1975
  Donald Rumsfeld 1975–1977
Justice William B. Saxbe 1974–1975
  Edward Levi 1975–1977
Interior Rogers Morton 1974–1975
  Stanley K. Hathaway 1975
  Thomas S. Kleppe 1975–1977
Agriculture Earl Butz 1974–1976
  John Albert Knebel 1976–1977
Commerce Frederick B. Dent 1974–1975
  Rogers Morton 1975
  Elliot Richardson 1975–1977
Labor Peter J. Brennan 1974–1975
  John Thomas Dunlop 1975–1976
  William Usery, Jr. 1976–1977
HEW Caspar Weinberger 1974–1975
  F. David Mathews 1975–1977
HUD James Thomas Lynn 1974–1975
  Carla Anderson Hills 1975–1977
Transportation Claude Brinegar 1974–1975
  William Thaddeus Coleman, Jr. 1975–1977


Other cabinet-level posts:

Other important posts:

Ford selected George H.W. Bush to be his liaison to the People's Republic of China in 1974 and then Director of the Central Intelligence Agency in late 1975.

Ford's transition chairman and first Chief of Staff was former congressman and ambassador Donald Rumsfeld. In 1975, Rumsfeld was named by Ford as the youngest-ever Secretary of Defense. Ford chose a young Wyomingmarker politician, Richard Cheney, to replace Rumsfeld as his new Chief of Staff and later campaign manager for Ford's 1976 presidential campaign. Ford's dramatic reorganization of his Cabinet in the fall of 1975 has been referred to by political commentators as the "Halloween Massacre."

Midterm elections

The 1974 Congressional midterm elections took place less than three months after Ford assumed office and in the wake of the Watergate scandal. The Democratic Party was able to turn voter dissatisfaction into large gains in the House elections, taking 49 seats from the Republican Party, and increasing their majority to 291 of the 435 seats. This was one more than the number needed (290) for a two-thirds majority, necessary to override a Presidential veto (or to submit a Constitutional Amendment). Perhaps due in part to this fact, the 94th Congress overrode the highest percentage of vetoes since Andrew Johnson was President of the United States (1865–1869). Even Ford's old, reliably Republican seat was taken by Democrat Richard VanderVeen, defeating Republican Robert VanderLaan. In the Senate elections, the Democratic majority became 61 in the 100-seat body.

Domestic policy

The economy was a great concern during the Ford administration. In response to rising inflation, Ford went before the American public in October 1974 and asked them to "Whip Inflation Now." As part of this program, he urged people to wear "WIN" buttons. In hindsight, this was viewed as simply a public relations gimmick without offering any effective means of solving the underlying problems. At the time, inflation was approximately seven percent.

Ford was confronted with a potential swine flu pandemic. Sometime in the early 1970s, an influenza strain H1N1 shifted from a form of flu that affected primarily pigs and crossed over to humans. On February 5, 1976, an Army recruit at Fort Dixmarker mysteriously died and four fellow soldiers were hospitalized; health officials announced that "swine flu" was the cause. Soon after, public health officials in the Ford administration urged that every person in the United States be vaccinated. Although the vaccination program was plagued by delays and public relations problems, some 25% of the population was vaccinated by the time the program was canceled in December of that year. The vaccine was blamed for twenty-five deaths; more people died from the shots than from the swine flu.

Ford was an outspoken supporter of the Equal Rights Amendment, issuing Presidential Proclamation 4383.
In this Land of the Free, it is right, and by nature it ought to be, that all men and all women are equal before the law.


Now, THEREFORE, I, GERALD R. FORD, President of the United States of America, to remind all Americans that it is fitting and just to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment adopted by the Congress of the United States of America, in order to secure legal equality for all women and men, do hereby designate and proclaim August 26, 1975, as Women's Equality Day.


As president, Ford's position on abortion was that he supported "a federal constitutional amendment that would permit each one of the 50 States to make the choice." This had also been his position as House Minority Leader in response to the 1973 Supreme Court case of Roe v. Wade, which he opposed. Ford came under criticism for a 60 Minutes interview his wife Betty gave in 1975, in which she stated that Roe v. Wade was a "great, great decision." During his later life, Ford would identify as pro-choice.

Budget

Ford ran a budget deficit (which he had inherited from his predecessors) every year he was President. Despite his reservations about how this program ultimately would be funded in an era of tight public budgeting, Ford still signed the Education for All Handicapped Children Act of 1975, which established special education throughout the United States. Ford expressed "strong support for full educational opportunities for our handicapped children" according to the official White House press release for the bill signing.

The economic focus began to change as the country sank into a mild recession, and in March 1975, Congress passed and Ford signed into law income tax rebates as part of the Tax Reduction Act of 1975 to boost the economy. When New York Citymarker faced bankruptcy in 1975, Mayor Abraham Beame was unsuccessful in obtaining Ford's support for a federal bailout. The incident prompted the New York Daily News' notorious headline: "Ford to City: Drop Dead."

Foreign policy



Ford continued the détente policy with both the Soviet Unionmarker and China, easing the tensions of the Cold War.In his meeting with Indonesianmarker president Suharto, Ford gave the green light through arms and aid to invade the former Portuguese colony East Timormarker.

Still in place from the Nixon Administration was the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT). The thawing relationship brought about by Nixon's visit to China was reinforced by Ford's December 1975 visit to the communist country. In 1975, the Administration entered into the Helsinki Accords with the Soviet Union, creating the framework of the Helsinki Watch, an independent non-governmental organization created to monitor compliance that later evolved into Human Rights Watch.

Ford attended the inaugural meeting of the Group of Seven (G7) industrialized nations (initially the G5) in 1975 and secured membership for Canada. Ford supported international solutions to issues. "We live in an interdependent world and, therefore, must work together to resolve common economic problems," he said in a 1974 speech.

Middle East

In his Presidential memoir, Ford writes, “No foreign-policy challenges occupied more of my time in the early months of 1975 than the deteriorating situations in both the Middle East and Indochina.” In Indochina, Ford faced a foreign policy crisis with the Mayaguez Incidentmarker. In May 1975, shortly after the Khmer Rouge took power in Cambodiamarker, Cambodians seized the American merchant ship Mayaguez in international waters. Ford dispatched Marines to rescue the crew, but the Marines landed on the wrong island and met unexpectedly stiff resistance just as, unknown to the U.S., the Mayaguez sailors were being released. In the operation, two Military transport helocopters carrying the Marines for the assault operation were shot down, 41 U.S. servicemen were killed and 50 wounded while approximately 60 Khmer Rouge soldiers were killed.

In the Middle East and eastern Mediterranean, two on-going international disputes developed into crises. The ongoing Cyprus dispute turned into a crisis with the Turkish invasion of Cyprus, causing extreme strain within the NATOmarker alliance. In mid-August, the government withdrew Greece from the NATO military structure; in mid-September 1974 the Senate and House of Representatives overwhelmingly voted to halt military aid to Turkey. Ford, concerned with both the effect of this on Turkish-American relations and the deterioration of security on NATO’s eastern front, vetoed the bill. A second bill was passed by the house, and vetoed, although a compromise was accepted to continue aid until the end of the year. As Ford expected, Turkish relations were considerably disrupted until 1978.

In the continuing Arab-Israeli conflict, although the initial cease fire had been implemented to end active conflict in the Yom Kippur War, Kissinger’s continuing shuttle diplomacy was showing little progress. Ford considered it “stalling” and wrote, “Their [Israeli] tactics frustrated the Egyptians and made me mad as hell.’ During Kissinger’s shuttle to Israel in early March 1975, a last minute reversal to consider further withdrawal, prompted a cable from Ford to Prime Minister Yitzak Rabin, which included;
I wish to express my profound disappointment over Israel’s attitude in the course of the negotiations… Failure of the negotiation will have a far reaching impact on the region and on our relations.
I have given instructions for a reassessment of United States policy in the region, including our relations with Israel, with the aim of ensuring that overall American interests… are protected.
You will be notified of our decision
On March 24, Ford received congressional leaders of both parties and informed them of the reassessment of the administration policies in the Middle East. There was only one way a “reassessment” could have a practical meaning: to cancel or suspend further aid to Israel. And this indeed was what happened. For six months between March and September 1975 the United States refused to conclude any new arms agreements with Israel. Rabin notes it was ”an innocent-sounding term that heralded one of the worst periods in American-Israeli relations.” As could be expected, the announced reassessments upset the American Jewish community and Israel’s well-wishers in Congress. On May 21, Ford “experienced a real shock,” seventy-six senators wrote him a letter urging him to be “responsive” to Israel’s request for $2.59 billion in military and economic aid. Ford felt truly annoyed and thought the chance for peace was jeopardized. It was, since the September 1974 ban on arms to Turkey, the second major congressional intrusion upon the President’s [foreign policy] prerogatives. The following summer months were described by Ford as an American-Israeli “war of nerves” or ”test of wills,” and after much bargaining, the Sinai Interim Agreement (Sinai II), was formally signed on September 1 and aid resumed.

Vietnam

One of Ford's greatest challenges was dealing with the continued Conflict in Vietnam. American offensive operations against North Vietnam had ended with the Paris Peace Accords, signed on 27 January 1973. The accords declared a cease fire across both North and South Vietnam, and required the release of American prisoners of war. A cease-fire was declared across North and South Vietnam. U.S. POWs were released. The agreement guaranteed the territorial integrity of Vietnammarker and, like the Geneva Conference of 1954, called for national elections in the North and South. The Paris Peace Accords stipulated a sixty-day period for the total withdrawal of U.S. forces.

The accords had been negotiated by United States National Security Advisor Dr. Henry Kissinger and North Vietnamese politburo member Le Duc Tho. South Vietnamese President Nguyen Van Thieu was not involved in the final negotiations, and publicly criticized the proposed agreement. However, anti-war pressures within the United States forced Nixon and Kissinger to pressure Thieu to sign the agreement and enable the withdrawal of American forces. In multiple letters to the South Vietnamese president, Nixon had promised that the United States would defend his government, should the North Vietnamese violate the accords.

In December 1974, just months after Ford took office, North Vietnamese forces invaded the province of Phuoc Long. General Trần Văn Trà sought to gauge any South Vietnamese or American response to the invasion, as well as to solve logistical issues before proceeding with the invasion.

As North Vietnamese forces advanced, Ford requested aid for South Vietnam in a $522 million aid package. The funds had been promised by the Nixon administration, but Congress voted against the proposal by a wide margin. Senator Jacob Javits offered "...large sums for evacuation, but not one nickel for military aid." President Thieu resigned on April 21, 1975, publicly blaming the lack of support from the United States for the fall of his country. Two days later, on April 23, Ford gave a speech at Tulane Universitymarker. In that speech, he announced that the Vietnam War was over "...as far as America is concerned." The announcement was met with thunderous applause.

1,373 U.S.marker citizens and 5,595 Vietnamese and third country nationals were evacuated from the South Vietnamese capitol of Saigonmarker during Operation Frequent Wind. Military and Air America helicopters took evacuees to U.S. Navy ships off-shore during an approximately 24-hour period on April 29 to 30, 1975, immediately preceding the fall of Saigon. During the operation, so many South Vietnamese helicopters landed on the vessels taking the evacuees that some were pushed overboard to make room for more people. Other helicopters, having nowhere to land, were deliberately crash landed into the sea, close to the ships, their pilots bailing out at the last moment to be picked up by rescue boats. Many of the Vietnamese evacuees were allowed to enter the United States under the Indochina Migration and Refugee Assistance Act.

Assassination attempts

Ford faced two assassination attempts during his presidency, occurring within three weeks of each other: while in Sacramentomarker, Californiamarker on September 5, 1975, Lynette "Squeaky" Fromme, a follower of Charles Manson, pointed a Colt 45-caliber handgun at Ford. As Fromme pulled the trigger, Larry Buendorf, a Secret Service agent, grabbed the gun and managed to insert the webbing of his thumb under the hammer, preventing the gun from firing. It was later found that, although the gun was loaded with four cartridges, it was a semi-automatic pistol and the slide had not been pulled to place a round in the firing chamber, making it impossible for the gun to fire. Fromme was taken into custody; she was later convicted of attempted assassination of the President and was sentenced to life in prison, but was paroled on August 14, 2009.

Reaction immediately after the second assassination attempt.
In reaction to this attempt, the Secret Service began keeping Ford at a more secure distance from anonymous crowds, a strategy that may have saved his life seventeen days later: as he left a hotel in downtown San Franciscomarker, Sara Jane Moore, standing in a crowd of onlookers across the street, pointed her pistol at him. Just before she fired, former Marine Oliver Sipple grabbed at the gun and deflected her shot; one person was injured. Moore was later sentenced to life in prison. She was paroled from prison on December 31, 2007, having served 32 years.

Judicial appointments

In 1975, Ford appointed John Paul Stevens as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States to replace retiring Justice William O. Douglas. Stevens had been a judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, appointed by President Nixon. During his tenure as House Republican leader, Ford had led efforts to have Douglas impeached. After being confirmed, Stevens eventually disappointed some conservatives by siding with the Court's liberal wing regarding the outcome of many key issues. Nevertheless, President Ford paid tribute to Stevens. "He has served his nation well," Ford said of Stevens, "with dignity, intellect and without partisan political concerns."

In addition to the Stevens appointment, Ford appointed 11 judges to the United States Courts of Appeals, and 50 judges to the United States district courts.

Post-presidential years, 1977–2006

Activity

The Nixon pardon controversy eventually subsided. Ford's successor, Jimmy Carter, opened his 1977 inaugural address by praising the outgoing President, saying, "For myself and for our Nation, I want to thank my predecessor for all he has done to heal our land."

Ford remained relatively active in the years after his presidency and continued to make appearances at events of historical and ceremonial significance to the nation, such as presidential inaugurals and memorial services. In 1977, he reluctantly agreed to be interviewed by James M. Naughton, a New York Times journalist who was given the assignment to write the former President's advance obituary, an article that would be updated prior to its eventual publication. In 1979, Ford published his autobiography, A Time to Heal (Harper/Reader's Digest, 454 pages). A review in Foreign Affairs described it as, "Serene, unruffled, unpretentious, like the author. This is the shortest and most honest of recent presidential memoirs, but there are no surprises, no deep probings of motives or events. No more here than meets the eye."

During the term of office of his successor, Jimmy Carter, Ford received monthly briefs by President Carter’s senior staff on international and domestic issues, and was always invited to lunch at the White House whenever he was in Washington, D.C. Their close friendship developed after Carter had left office, with the catalyst being their trip together to the funeral of Anwar el-Sadat in 1981. Until Ford's death, Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, visited the Fords' home frequently. In 2001, Ford and Carter served as honorary co-chairs of the National Commission on Federal Election Reform.

Like Presidents Carter, H. W. Bush and Clinton, Ford was an honorary co-chair of the Council for Excellence in Government, a group dedicated to excellence in government performance and which provides leadership training to top federal employees.

After securing the Republican nomination in 1980, Ronald Reagan considered his former rival Ford as a potential vice-presidential running mate, but negotiations between the Reagan and Ford camps at the Republican National Convention were unsuccessful. Ford conditioned his acceptance on Reagan's agreement to an unprecedented "co-presidency", giving Ford the power to control key executive branch appointments (such as Henry Kissinger as Secretary of State and Alan Greenspan as Treasury Secretary). After rejecting these terms, Reagan offered the vice-presidential nomination instead to George H. W. Bush.

After his presidency, Ford joined the American Enterprise Institute as a distinguished fellow. He founded the annual AEI World Forum in 1982. Ford was awarded an honorary doctorate at Central Connecticut State University, on March 23, 1988.

In 1977, he established the Gerald R. Ford Institute of Public Policy at Albion College in Albionmarker, Michiganmarker, to give undergraduates training in public policy. In April 1981, he opened the Gerald R.marker Ford Librarymarker in Ann Arbormarker, Michiganmarker, on the north campus of his alma mater, the University of Michiganmarker, followed in September by the Gerald R.marker Ford Museummarker in Grand Rapids. In 1999, Ford was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by Bill Clinton. In 2001, he was presented with the John F. Kennedy Profiles in Courage Award for his decision to pardon Richard Nixon to stop the agony America was experiencing over Watergate. In retirement Ford also devoted much time to his love of golf, often playing both privately and in public events with comedian Bob Hope, a longtime friend.

In October 2001, Ford broke with conservative members of the Republican party by stating that gay and lesbian couples "ought to be treated equally. Period." He became the highest ranking Republican to embrace full equality for gays and lesbians, stating his belief that there should be a federal amendment outlawing anti-gay job discrimination and expressing his hope that the Republican Party would reach out to gay and lesbian voters. He also was a member of the Republican Unity Coalition, which The New York Times described as "a group of prominent Republicans, including former President Gerald R. Ford, dedicated to making sexual orientation a non-issue in the Republican Party".

On November 22, 2004, New York Republican Governor George Pataki named Ford and the other living former Presidents (Carter, George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton) as honorary members of the board rebuilding the World Trade Centermarker.

In a pre-recorded embargoed interview with Bob Woodward of The Washington Post in July 2004, Ford stated that he disagreed "very strongly" with the Bush administration's choice of Iraq's alleged weapons of mass destruction as justification for its decision to invade Iraq, calling it a "big mistake" unrelated to the national security of the United States and indicating that he would not have gone to war had he been President. The details of the interview were not released until after Ford's death, as he requested.

Health problems

As Ford approached his 90th year, he began to experience health problems associated with old age. He suffered two minor strokes at the 2000 Republican National Convention, but made a quick recovery after being admitted to Hahnemann University Hospitalmarker. In January 2006, he spent 11 days at the Eisenhower Medical Centermarker near his residence at Rancho Miragemarker, Californiamarker, for treatment of pneumonia. On April 23, President George W. Bush visited Ford at his home in Rancho Mirage for a little over an hour. This was Ford's last public appearance and produced the last known public photos, video footage and voice recording. While vacationing in Vailmarker, Coloradomarker, he was hospitalized for two days in July, 2006 for shortness of breath. On August 15 Ford was admitted to St. Mary's Hospital of the Mayo Clinicmarker in Rochestermarker, Minnesotamarker for testing and evaluation. On August 21, it was reported that he had been fitted with a pacemaker. On August 25, he underwent an angioplasty procedure at the Mayo Clinic, according to a statement from an assistant to Ford. On August 28, Ford was released from the hospital and returned with his wife Betty to their California home. On October 13, he was scheduled to attend the dedication of a building of his namesake, the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, but due to poor health and on the advice of his doctors he did not attend. The previous day, Ford entered the Eisenhower Medical Center for undisclosed tests; he was released on October 16. By November 2006 he was confined to a bed in his study.

Death

President Ford's tomb at his Presidential Museum in Grand Rapids, Michigan
Ford died on December 26, 2006 at his home in Rancho Miragemarker, Californiamarker of arteriosclerotic cerebrovascular disease and diffuse arteriosclerosis. His age at the time of his death was 93 years and 165 days, making Ford the Longest-lived US President. On December 30, 2006, Ford became the 11th U.S. President to lie in state. The burial was preceded by a state funeral and memorial services held at the National Cathedralmarker in Washington, D.C. on January 2, 2007. After the service, Ford was interred at his Presidential Museummarker in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Ford died on the 34th anniversary of President Harry Truman's death, thus becoming the second U.S. President to die on Boxing Day. It was also St. Stephen's Day. He was the last surviving member of the Warren Commission.

Longevity

President George W.
Bush with Ford and his wife Betty on April 23, 2006.
This is the last known public photo of Gerald Ford.
Ford was the longest-lived U.S. President, his lifespan being 45 days longer than Ronald Reagan's. He was the third-longest-lived Vice President, falling short only of John Nance Garner, 98, and Levi P. Morton, 96. Ford had the second-longest post-presidency (29 years and 11 months) after Herbert Hoover (31 years and 7 months).

On November 12, 2006 upon surpassing Ronald Reagan's lifespan, Ford released his last public statement:
The length of one’s days matters less than the love of one’s family and friends.
I thank God for the gift of every sunrise and, even more, for all the years He has blessed me with Betty and the children; with our extended family and the friends of a lifetime.
That includes countless Americans who, in recent months, have remembered me in their prayers.
Your kindness touches me deeply.
May God bless you all and may God bless America.


Named after Gerald Ford



See also



Notes

  1. Anne E. Kornblut, "Ford Arranged His Funeral to Reflect Himself and Drew in a Former Adversary," The New York Times, December 29, 2006.
  2. p. 7
  3. The Supreme Council, Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction, USA.
  4. Celebrating the life of President Gerald R. Ford on what would have been his 96th birthday, H.R. 409, 111st Congress, 1st Session (2009).
  5. Unger, Irwin, 1996: 'The Best of Intentions: the triumphs and failures of the Great Society under Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon': Doubleday, p. 104.
  6. Secretary of Transportation: William T. Coleman Jr. (1975–1977) - AmericanPresident.org (2005-01-15). Retrieved on 2006-12-31.
  7. Richard B. Cheney. United States Department of Defense. Retrieved on 2006-12-31.
  8. Bush vetoes less than most presidents, CNN, May 1, 2007. Retrieved on 2007-10-19.
  9. Renka, Russell D. Nixon's Fall and the Ford and Carter Interregnum. Southeast Missouri State University, (April 10, 2003). Retrieved on 2006-12-31.
  10. Gerald Ford Speeches: Whip Inflation Now (October 8, 1974), Miller Center of Public Affairs. Retrieved on 2006-12-31
  11. Consumer Price Index, 1913-. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved on 2006-12-31
  12. Pandemic Pointers. Living on Earth, March 3, 2006. Retrieved on 2006-12-31.
  13. Mickle, Paul. 1976: Fear of a great plague. The Trentonian. Retrieved on 2006-12-31.
  14. CRS Report RL33305, The Crude Oil Windfall Profit Tax of the 1980s: Implications for Current Energy Policy, by Salvatore Lazzari, p. 5.
  15. President Gerald R. Ford's Statement on Signing the Education for All Handicapped Children Act of 1975. Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library, December 2, 1975. Retrieved on 2006-12-31.
  16. Lemann, Nick. Rhetorical Bankruptcy. The Harvard Crimson, November 8, 1975. Retrieved on 2006-12-31.
  17. Gerald Ford, A Time to Heal, 1979, p.238
  18. Gerald Ford, A Time to Heal, 1979, p.240
  19. Yitzak Rabin, The Rabin Memoirs, ISBN 0-520-20766-1 , p256
  20. Yitzak Rabin, The Rabin Memoirs, ISBN 0-520-20766-1 , p261
  21. George Lenczowsk, American Presidents, and the Middle East, 1990, p.150
  22. Gerald Ford, A Time to Heal, 1979, p.298
  23. Election Is Crunch Time for U.S. Secret Service. National Geographic News. Retrieved on 2008-03-02.
  24. Letter from Gerald Ford to Michael Treanor (PDF). Fordham University, 2005-09-21 Retrieved on 2008-03-02.
  25. Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public-domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
  26. Updegrove, Mark K. "Flying Coach to Cairo". AmericanHeritage.com (August/September 2006). Retrieved on December 31, 2006. "Certainly few observers in January 1977 would have predicted that Jimmy and I would become the closest of friends," Ford said in 2000.
  27. Allen, Richard V. How the Bush Dynasty Almost Wasn't. Hoover Institution, reprinted from the New York Times Magazine, July 30, 2000. Retrieved on December 31, 2006.
  28. Price, Deb. Gerald Ford: Treat gay couples equally. The Detroit News, October 29, 2001. Retrieved on December 28, 2006
  29. Stolberg, Sheryl Gay. "Vocal Gay Republicans Upsetting Conservatives," The New York Times, June 1, 2003, p. N26.
  30. Woodward, Bob. "Ford Disagreed With Bush About Invading Iraq". The Washington Post, December 28, 2006. Retrieved on December 28, 2006
  31. Embargoed Interview Reveals Ford Opposed Iraq War. Democracy Now Headlines for December 28, 2006. Retrieved on December 28, 2006
  32. Gerald Ford recovering after strokes. BBC, August 2, 2000. Retrieved on 2006-12-31.
  33. Hospitalized After Suffering a Stroke, Former President Ford Is Expected to Fully Recover NYTimes, August 3, 2000. Retrieved on 2008-07-05.
  34. Former President Ford, 92, hospitalized with pneumonia. Associated Press, January 17, 2006. Retrieved on 2007-10-19.
  35. Gerald Ford released from hospital. Associated Press, July 26, 2006. Retrieved on 2006-12-31.
  36. Gerald Ford Dies At Age 93. CNN Transcript December 26, 2006. Retrieved on 2008-03-02.
  37. Gerald R. Ford Council, Boy Scouts of America


References

Primary sources

  • , by speechwriter
  • , by chief of staff
  • by Secretary of State


Secondary sources

  • full-scale biography
  • full-scale biography
  • Conley, Richard S. "Presidential Influence and Minority Party Liaison on Veto Overrides: New Evidence from the Ford Presidency." American Politics Research 2002 30(1): 34–65. Issn: 1532-673x Fulltext: in Swetswise
  • , the major scholarly study
  • Hersey, John Richard. The President: A Minute-By-Minute Account of a Week in the Life of Gerald Ford. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. 1975.
  • Hult, Karen M. and Walcott, Charles E. Empowering the White House: Governance under Nixon, Ford, and Carter. U. Press of Kansas, 2004.
  • Jespersen, T. Christopher. "Kissinger, Ford, and Congress: the Very Bitter End in Vietnam." Pacific Historical Review 2002 71(3): 439–473. Issn: 0030-8684 Fulltext: in University of California; Swetswise; Jstor and Ebsco
  • Jespersen, T. Christopher. "The Bitter End and the Lost Chance in Vietnam: Congress, the Ford Administration, and the Battle over Vietnam, 1975–76." Diplomatic History 2000 24(2): 265–293. Issn: 0145-2096 Fulltext: in Swetswise, Ingenta, Ebsco
  • Maynard, Christopher A. "Manufacturing Voter Confidence: a Video Analysis of the American 1976 Presidential and Vice-presidential Debates." Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television 1997 17(4): 523–562. Issn: 0143-9685 Fulltext: in Ingenta


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