Skip to main content

Ford, Gerald R. (1913–)

FORD, GERALD R. (1913–)

Gerald Rudolph Ford, Jr., a graduate of the University of Michigan and Yale University Law School, served in the house of representatives from 1949 to 1973. A moderately conservative Republican who opposed most social welfare legislation but supported all of the civil rights acts, Ford was his party's floor leader in the House from 1965 to 1973. Among his more controversial undertakings in that capacity was his attempt to secure the impeachment of Supreme Court Justice william o. douglas in 1970.

President richard m. nixon appointed Ford vice-president of the United States when the office fell vacant in 1973; this was the first application of procedures set forth in the Twenty-Fifth Amendment. When Nixon resigned the presidency in August 1974, Ford succeeded him, thereby becoming the first President to serve without winning a national election. In September 1974 Ford granted Nixon a full pardon for any offense against the United States that he might have committed while in office. (See watergate and the constitution.)

As President, Ford used the veto power extensively, disapproving some forty-eight bills. In 1974, after Congress failed to act, Ford granted conditional amnesty to vietnam war deserters and draft evaders, exercising the presidential pardoning power. His dispatch of Marines to free the freighter Mayaguez from Cambodia in May 1975 demonstrated that the "consultation" provisions of the war powers resolution of 1973 did not prevent the commander-in-chief from taking decisive action in an emergency. Ford sought election in his own right in 1976 but was narrowly defeated by jimmy carter.

Dennis J. Mahoney

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Ford, Gerald R. (1913–)." Encyclopedia of the American Constitution. . 25 Apr. 2019 <>.

"Ford, Gerald R. (1913–)." Encyclopedia of the American Constitution. . (April 25, 2019).

"Ford, Gerald R. (1913–)." Encyclopedia of the American Constitution. . Retrieved April 25, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.