Former President Ford, 93, died Tuesday
Former President Ford died Tuesday. He was 93 years old.
Ford was the accidental president. He was appointed by President Nixon to replace Vice President Agnew, and then succeeded President Nixon when he resigned as a result of the Watergate scandal. Ford pardoned Nixon, dooming his chance for popular election as president in 1976.
During Ford’s two years, he continued the detente policies of his predecessor and presided over the final withdrawal from Vietnam and the fall of Saigon. Ford’s administration was a period of managed decline before the calamitous single term of President Jimmy Carter.
In 1976, President Ford was opposed by Ronald Reagan for the Republican nomination. That campaign for Reagan was the base for the 1980 campaign in which Reagan defeated President Carter.
It will be hard for historians to accurately judge so brief a time in office. Ford will probably be remembered as the president who ended the Watergate scandal with the pardon of Nixon, saving the country from witnessing the trial of a former president. That should be enough for him to be remembered fondly.
Rest in peace.