Former President Ford’s Decisions Contrast Current Impeachment Decisions
In many ways, the short presidency of former president Gerald Ford mirrors the issues facing our country right now and the way he attacked them can be contrasted to politicians now.
President Ford is known as the only president from Michigan and he’s the only one that wasn’t elected by the Electoral College as either a vice president or a president but serving just over two years, many historians either say he was a below average president or that he was very much underrated. It all stems around his decision to pardon former President Richard Nixon.
“In many ways, it was the primary cause of the reason for which he was not re-elected two years later,” said Devin Schindler, constitutional law professor at the WMU-Cooley Law School.
Ford was said to have made the decision to pardon Nixon using his conscience because it was not a politically smart move.
Republican senators this past weekend had a similar decision when it came to convicting former President Donald Trump. Most of them voted to acquit.
“The last poll I saw was President Trump’s favorability rating among Republicans was 80%,” said Schindler, “So let’s be candid, for many Republicans it would be almost political suicide for them to vote for impeachment.”
Whether it be Nixon or Trump, this President’s Day highlights the complications and factors that go into these historical decisions. Any further punishment for Trump now would have to be criminal, not political. This time nobody is expecting a potential pardon.
“Not only do I think it would be extraordinarily contentious,” sad Schindler, “I think the situations are not very comparable. Different time, different alleged crimes and not done while he was president.”