Sunday, September 10, 2023

the last book I ever read (Gerald R. Ford: The American Presidents Series: The 38th President, 1974-1977, excerpt six)

from Gerald R. Ford: The American Presidents Series: The 38th President, 1974-1977 by Douglas Brinkley:

On Friday morning, Auigust 9, the president’s formal resignation was submitted to the secretary of state as Nixon flew off to his exile in San Clemente, California. At three minutes after noon, Chief Justice Warren E. Burger swore in Gerald R. Ford as the thirty-eighth president of the United States. With a notable lack of ceremony in the White House East Room, Ford delivered a short but pitch-perfect inaugural address, telling his scandal-weary nation, in part: “I assume the presidency under extraordinary circumstances never before experienced by Americans. . . . I am acutely aware that you have not elected me as your president by your ballots and so I ask you to confirm me as your president in your prayers. . . . I have not sought this enormous responsibility, but I will not shirk it. I believe that truth is the glue that holds government together, not only our government but civilization itself. That bond, though strained, is unbroken at home and abroad. In all my public and private acts as your president, I expect to follow my instincts of openness and candor with full confidence that honesty is the best policy in the end.

“My fellow Americans, our long national nightmare is over.”

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