Gerald Ford 1974-1976


Oval Office 1974
Peacekeeper ICBM
Ford & Brezhnev 11/23/74

Gerald Ford becomes 38th president Aug. 9; pardons Nixon Sept. 8; testifies Oct. 17

Congress delayed, then confirmed appointment of liberal Nelson Rockefeller as VP.

OPEC raised prices 400%; inflation rises to 10%

Election reform resulted in PAC legalization.

Energy Act decontrolled domestic oil prices.

NSC approved doctrine of "essential equivalence" and the MX, Trident, B-1 started.

Nov. 24 - Vladivostok Declaration to continue the process of detente and SALT I of 1972, and to negotiate SALT II & allow 2400 deliveries, 1320 MIRVs


Apollo-Soyuz linkup 7/18/75
Jackson & Solzhenitsyn 7/15/75, photo from IREX
White House 4/28/75
Ford in Austria 6/1/75, photo from CBS

Russian aid sent to Angola, Egypt; detente criticized by conservatives such as Sen. Henry Jackson.

Ford did not wish to offend Russia. He approved the joint Apollo-Soyuz flight July 15 (at right, Tom Stafford snaps photo of himself, Alexei A. Leonov, and Deke Slayton)

Ford avoided the dissident Alexander Solzhenitsyn who in 1970 had won a Nobel Prize for Literature. In 1974, the Russian had published The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956, and was expelled from the Soviet Union. In the spring of 1975, AFL-CIO's George Meany invited Solzhenitsyn to tour the U.S. Meany also invited President Ford to attend the banquet launching the tour, but Ford refused the invitation. At the AFL-CIO convention June 30 in New York City, Solzhenitsyn delievered his first major speech since his expulsion. Sen. Henry Jackson, a leading critic of detente, invited Solzhenitsyn to give a speech at the Senate Office Building, and the author delivered his speech July 15. Ford's chief of staff Dick Cheney advised Ford stop avoiding the Soviet author, but when invited to the White House, Solzhenitsyn refused.

WIN failed, Fed won, severe recession began.

Cambodia, Vietnam fell to communists. The final U.S. helicopter left Saigon on Apr. 30.

May 11 - Khmer Rouge seized Mayaguez, but during the rescue, 41 died to save 39 crew.

June 1 - Ford trip to Austria, falls from airplane ramp in rain in Salzburg.

Aug. 1 - Ford trip to Finland to sign Helsinki Accords with USSR, 33 others; fixed boundaries, human rights.

Andrei Sakharov won Nobel Peace Prize but was not allowed to leave Russia to accept it.

Ford trip to Peoples Republic of China in Dec., but kept diplomatic relations with Taiwan.

Sept. 4 - Lynette "Squeaky" Fromme wrestled to ground in Sacramento.

Sept. 22 - Sara Jane Moore missed at 4 feet with .38 in San Francisco.


severe recession continued; largest peacetime budget deficit of $66.4 billion.

New Jersey legalized casino gambling; bets rose to $126 billion in 10 years.

July 4 - Bicentennial celebration

Carter/Mondale nominated by Democrats in New York; Ford/ Dole by Republicans in Kansas City.

Ford says in debate that Eastern Europe was not under Soviet domination.

Carter said in Playboy that he has looked on women with lust his heart.

Carter won 50% to 47.9%; 297-241 electoral votes


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