President Gerald Ford (1913-2006)

by Mike on December 27, 2006

in Politics

Gerald Ford, the 38th President of the United States, passed away last night at the age of 93. He was the longest living President in American history.

America has lost a great statesman. Both as President and as an ordinary citizen, Gerald Ford always did what he thought was right. As President, Ford’s most noteworthy act was his decision to pardon his disgraced predecessor, Richard Nixon. This decision was unpopular at the time; however, members of both political parties later recognized that Ford’s decision helped the nation’s healing process after Watergate.

Although he served honorably as Commander in Chief, Gerald Ford will mainly be remembered for his character. He was the model ex-president. He never descended into the political gutter. He never attempted to undermine a successor in an attempt to bolster his own legacy. He always did whatever he could to serve his country. He always carried himself with the dignity expected of a former president. Most importantly, he was simply a good man.

Gerald Ford will be missed. Rest in peace Mr. President.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Ryan December 27, 2006 at 10:44 am

Ford’s tenure was only just under 2 1/2 years, but it was consequential. He was viewed as both a national healer and a political crony during his term in office (he barely lost to Jimmah in 1976). He also pushed the detente-laden Helsinki Accords, which recognized Soviet domination of Eastern Europe, leading to his flap in the 1976 Presidential debates about their being no communist problem in Eastern Europe. However, the Mayaguez Incident off the coast of Cambodia was viewed as a positive moment after Vietnam when our military could feel proud again about successfully rescuing some hostages on the high seas.

Yet, his hand was steady, his politics were grounded, and he had to deal with an angry and vindictive Democratic Congress that refused to fund his plan to bomb the NVA after breaking the Paris Peace Accords in 1975, that kept our energy policy and budgets way out of the realm of fiscal responsibility, and threatened to override every single veto that came their way. He could have been a real jerk given their behavior, but he composed himself like a statesman.

At the 1976 Republican National Convention he let his primary foe, Ronald Reagan, speak. After the 1976 loss, this memory gave hope to millions of Republicans and conservatives for 1980 and the future– the fog was beginning to lift from the Shining City. It may not have happened without Ford’s gracious demeanor towards a tough, but defeated foe, giving life to an obscure political future for Ronald Reagan. Ford’s character and, as Mike insists, his classy ex-Presidency should serve as a model for other ex-Presidents (read Jimmah and Billy) who have not comported themselves with the revere that those whom the Office has graced should have. He will be missed.


Leave a Comment

You can use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Previous post:

Next post: