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hyperbolic
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12 Jan 2007, 10:06 pm

Included in more interview material released after President Gerald Ford's death (as per his request) are his assessments of several of his predecessors and successors. I think the assessments are important because of their obvious lack of partisanship and because of their source, an actual former President:

Quote:
• Ford: Carter, a fine person but a poor president
• Ford: Reagan, a bad manager and the least well-informed on running gov't
• Ford: Truman, Nixon were good on foreign policy
• Ford: Eisenhower best president of his lifetime


Further information available at this link: http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/01/12/ford.p ... index.html



Tim_Tex
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12 Jan 2007, 10:08 pm

xon wrote:
Included in more interview material recently released after President Gerald Ford's death (as per his request) are his assessments of several of his predecessors and successors. I think the assessments are important because of their obvious lack of partisanship and because of their source, an actual former President:

Quote:
• Ford: Carter, a fine person but a poor president
• Ford: Reagan, a bad manager and the least well-informed on running gov't
• Ford: Truman, Nixon were good on foreign policy
• Ford: Eisenhower best president of his lifetime


Further information available at this link: http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/01/12/ford.p ... index.html


Then again, Reagan did sleep through press conferences.

Tim


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TheMachine1
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12 Jan 2007, 10:50 pm

How did he rate himself? Boring?



hyperbolic
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12 Jan 2007, 10:58 pm

TheMachine1 wrote:
How did he rate himself? Boring?


Three years as President on the basis of a technicality, in the aftermath of one of the greatest political scandals in American history, and you can't help but look boring, I suppose.



Tim_Tex
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12 Jan 2007, 10:59 pm

xon wrote:
TheMachine1 wrote:
How did he rate himself? Boring?


Three unelected years as President in the aftermath of one of the greatest political scandals in American history and you can't help but look boring, I suppose.


Don't forget, he became vice-president as a result of his predecessor's own scandal.

Tim


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headphase
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13 Jan 2007, 12:42 am

I'm not surprised that Ford has bad feelings for Reagan. Reagan was the only the guy in modern times that ran against an incumbent President of his own party.



CockneyRebel
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17 Jan 2007, 4:37 pm

The Regan thing doesn't suprize me, either.



jimservo
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18 Jan 2007, 12:00 am

xon wrote:
Ford: Reagan, a bad manager and the least well-informed on running gov't


BEFORE saying all of this, let me say that I still thing President Ford was, by all evidence a nice guy. Being annoyed at one guy, or not liking their policies, or thinking they are unfit for office is not the same as not being a nice guy. I wanted to say that first.

It is correct to say that Gerald Ford was angered by Ronald Reagan's run against him in the GOP primary of 1976. Reagan had reason to expect to be the Republican front runner in '76 (although previous to Agnew's fall he was a possible candidate as well), but the Nixon resignation changed all of that. As President Ford immediately took over the most of reigns of the party finances itself and became the presumptive nominee. However, Reagan was unhappy with the way Ford performed on the job. Ford, while considered conservative at the time, was a conservative of the much more liberal party of that had been "taken over" by Richard Nixon on the one hand, and Nelson Rockefeller on the other. The Reagan conservatives were very much in the minority.

Reagan announced his candidacy soon after Ford made the selection for the more conservative Senator Robert Dole (he was to replace domestically liberal former New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller, whose appointment had enraged conservatives). Most predicted he would do poorly, and initially he did. However starting in the North Carolina primary he began a run of success. Ford managed to bounce back, and in the end it was a tight Ford lead in delegates going into the convention where Ford won the nomination. However, to gain the victory the '76 platform was written essentially in Reagan's terms. Ford gave an opportunity for Reagan to speak, and although Reagan had no prepared remarks he electrified the convention. He was well set up for another run in 1980 should Ford lose (and he did).

Ford did not really agree with much of Reagan's foreign policy. This is not to say Ford rooted, or plotted against Reagan. He was too good a man (unlike a certain former President and Nobel Peace Prize winner) to speak openly against a sitting President. He was too good a man for that. But Reagan had a different way of dealing with the Cold War then Ford did. Ford was a "realist" who promoted Henry Kissinger to National Security Advisory and seemed to share his general goals and a dialogue, and treaties with the Soviets in an effort to promote stability. This included arms control treaties that doubtlessly were intended to lead to future agreements. Governor Reagan was harshly critical due to the fact the treaties gave permanent advantage to the Soviet Union in such areas as nuclear missiles and ICBMs. Reagan and Ford appeared to differ on the long term viability of the Soviet economy and therefor had different strategies for dealing with the Soviet issue.

The Soviet Union is not the only area of disagreement with Ronald Reagan for Gerald Ford in regards to foreign policy. Reagan famously opposed the Panama Canal treaty that gave up U.S. sovereignty and control over the Panama Canal Zone, while Ford supported it (So did conservative William F. Buckley, who engaged in a televised debate with Reagan). Reagan and Ford differed on how to treat Taiwan. Ford continued Nixon's policies of closeness to China at the possible expense of Taiwan.

Reagan and Ford disagreed in certain domestic areas. Ford was more liberal on social issues. Reagan was staunchly pro-life, while Ford seemed agnostic on the issue. Ford's handling of the economy carried some remnants of Nixon's "We are all Keynesian's" approach, while Reagan economic ideas were heavily influenced by Milton Friedman.

Of course, Reagan and Ford shared many ideas and they were both probably right of center overall. One key example of this was both of them protesting strongly to the abandonment of South Vietnam.

Basically the reasons for Ford might be annoyed at Reagan is as follows:
1. He feels Reagan betrayed him by running for President against him, a member of his own political party.
2. He feels he stole the party from under him and rewrote the party platform.
3. He feels that Governor Reagan, by emphasizing his conservatism compared to the Ford, drove voters to Jimmy Carter, who essentially ran as a conservative, and thereby cost him the 1976.
4. He was elected and re-elected in landslides, is credited for winning the cold war, and is considered by some in the Republican party (as well as some independents) as among the greatest American Presidents while using a policy that he, Gerald Ford, utterly rejected and appears to have rejected to the end of his life.