Ford and Nixon: BFFs
Ford pardoning Nixon was worse than a deal; it was a favor for a friend. Another emmbargoed scoop from
court biographer "staff writer" Bob Woodward:
Months before Richard M. Nixon set a relatively unknown Michigan congressman named Gerald R. Ford on the path to the White House, Nixon turned to Ford, who called himself the embattled president's "only real friend," to get him out of trouble.
"Anytime you want me to do anything, under any circumstances, you give me a call, Mr. President," [Ford] told Nixon during that May 1, 1973, conversation.
World-class teabagging! So, why did Ford pardon Nixon?
"I think that Nixon felt I was about the only person he could really trust on the Hill," Ford said during the 2005 interview.
"I looked upon him as my personal friend. And I always treasured our relationship. And I had no hesitancy about granting the pardon, because I felt that we had this relationship and that I didn't want to see my real friend have the stigma," Ford said in the interview.
That acknowledgment represents a significant shift from Ford's previous portrayals of the pardon that absolved Nixon of any Watergate-related crimes. In earlier statements, Ford had emphasized the decision as an effort to move the country beyond the partisan divisions of the Watergate era, playing down the personal dimension.
Oh my goodness! You mean this "healing the wounds of a divided nation" meme Our Betters have been pushing is just a great big steaming pile of bullshit?
What a surprise!
Ford granted Nixon impunity for his crimes from friendship? So much for the rule of law and the Constitution, eh?
NOTE 1 It's a forlorn hope, I know, but realistic coverage of the Ford administration would focus on continuities, not differences: The continuities between Ford, Reagan, Bush I, and Bush II. I mean, under Ford's rule we got Cheny, Rummy, Poppy, Scalia, Bork. Some track record for a Moderate ...
NOTE 2 If any members of the criminal Bush regime are held accountable for their war crimes and felonies, and are then pardoned, whether by President McCain or President Hillirack, we can look back at this story and call Bullshit.
NOTE 3 The Times coverage just repeats the cover story. I love surprises. Don't you?
NOTE 4 Woodward's coverage also blows Broderella out of the water. Here's The Dean on the Nixon pardon:
OCALA, FL If you could speculate, what would the consequences of President Ford NOT pardoning President Nixon have been?
BRODERELLA: What an interesting question. My guess is that there would have been strong public pressure for prosecution of Richard Nixon, since several of his White House associates were already facing criminal charges. A lengthy trial would have been a difficult ordeal for the country, something President Ford wanted to spare Americans.
Bullshit! As Woodward shows, Broderella's just reinforcing the cover story.
I cannot, of course, guess what the verdict might have been.