The Corpus Callosum

Gerald Ford: Some Thoughts

I have a confession to make.  I once voted for a Republican
Presidential candidate.  That candidate was Gerald Ford.
  Why?  Several reasons.  For one, it was my
first time voting, so I was not very good at it yet.  Two,
even though I was upset about the pardon of Nixon, and unimpressed by
his handling of the economy, I thought he was sincere and honest.
 Three, I thought he had been chosen deliberately to be a
noncontroversial “placeholder” president; not someone who was
interested in a power grab.  


One of the areas where some liberals and some conservatives agree is
this: concentration of too much power is potentially a bad thing.
 When Nixon resigned, the office of the President became less
of a center of power.  That is how I wanted it, and I thought
Ford would keep it that way.

Fourth, I did not trust Jimmy Carter.  He presented himself as
humble, almost to a fault, and I did not buy it.  Of course,
time has shown that he was genuine, so he proved me

Fifth, I must also confess, I was influenced by the fact that Ford was
from Michigan.  Not a big influence, but I couldn’t ignore it.

Now he returns, for interment in Grand Rapids.


  1. #1 Scott Simmons
    December 27, 2006

    Hee. Sorry, just seeing the opening sentences reminds me of the That 70’s Show episode where Ford came through campaigning for the 76 election. After hearing that he’d be giving a speech, Red was complaining endlessly about what a terrible President he was. Kitty tried to calm him down: “Red, you voted for Ford.” Red was just incredulous. “Kitty, nobody voted for Ford!” I don’t know why, it just killed me at the time …

  2. #2 Joe Shelby
    December 27, 2006

    In hindsight, do you think the Pardon was a good thing? Or at least better than the alternative, now that you’ve seen the Democratic vindictiveness that came out in Iran-Contra or the Republican madness that was the Whitewater + Lewinsky scandal, and how both slowed government action down to a standstill?

  3. #3 Joseph j7uy5
    December 27, 2006

    At the time, the Pardon gave the impression that we had a class-system society, with some people being above the law. Furthermore, I don’t think partisan politics was as vicious back then. (I know that would be difficult to prove, but it is the impression that I have.)

    There is no easy answer, as there would have been problems either way.

    Plus, if there had not been a pardon, and Nixon had been impeached AND convicted, perhaps it would have made subsequent scandals less likely. Again, impossible to prove.

    So on the whole I think it was a bad thing, but I don’t discount the counterarguments.

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