The Best Gerald Ford Quotes

Gerald Ford was the 38th president of the United States. He took over the presidency after Richard Nixon resigned from office and he stayed as president for 895 days. Gerald Ford has the distinction of being the first president without being elected as president or vice president.

Gerald served in Congress for 25 years. Because of his well-liked and flexible ideologies, he won the role of being the House minority leader in 1965. He held this position until he was named the vice president in 1973. When Gerald Ford was in Congress, he developed a reputation for openness and honesty.

In one of Gerald’s early acts as president, he announced a conditional amnesty program meant for individuals who had evaded the draft during the Vietnam War. Gerald Ford’s administration tried to cope with the extreme rate of inflation that was inherited from the Nixon administration thus slowing down the economy. Ford ran against Jimmy Carter for president in the 1976 US Election and Carter won.

We have gathered up the best collection of quotes from him below.

Gerald Ford Quotes

1. “Music education opens doors that help children pass from school into the world around them – a world of work, culture, intellectual activity, and human involvement. The future of our nation depends on providing our children with a complete education that includes music.”– Gerald Ford

2. “If I went back to college again, I’d concentrate on learning to write and to speak before an audience. Nothing is more important than the abillity to communicate effectively.”– Gerald Ford

3. “The political lesson of Watergate is this: Never again must America allow an arrogant, elite guard of political adolescents to by-pass the regular party organization and dictate the terms of a national election.”– Gerald Ford

4. “I had pro offers from the Detroit Lions and Green Bay Packers, who were pretty hard up for linemen in those days. If I had gone into professional football the name Jerry Ford might have been a household word today.”– Gerald Ford

5. “It’s the quality of the ordinary, the straight, the square, that accounts for the great stability and success of our nation. It’s a quality to be proud of. But it’s a quality that many people seem to have neglected.”– Gerald Ford

6. “I believe that truth is the glue that holds government together, not only our government, but civilization itself.”– Gerald Ford

7. “America now is stumbling through the darkness of hatred and divisiveness. Our values, our principles, and our determination to succeed as a free and democratic people will give us a torch to light the way. And we will survive and become the strongernot only because of a patriotism that stands for love of country, but a patriotism that stands for love of people.”– Gerald Ford

8. “Even though this is late in an election year, there is no way we can go forward except together and no way anybody can win except by serving the people’s urgent needs. We cannot stand still or slip backwards. We must go forward now together.”– Gerald Ford

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9. “History and experience tell us that moral progress comes not in comfortable and complacent times, but out of trial and confusion.”– Gerald Ford

10. “I am acutely aware that you have not elected me as your President by your ballots, so I ask you to confirm me with your prayers.”– Gerald Ford

11. “The Declaration [of Independence] was not a protest against government, but against the excess of government. It prescribed the proper role of government, to secure the rights of individuals and to effect their safety and happiness. In modern society, no individual can do this alone. So government is not a necessary evil but a necessary good.”– Gerald Ford

12. “I don’t know what the future may hold for me-or for any of us. But I want you to know that I am a man who likes having critics who are not enemies.”– Gerald Ford

13. “I do believe that the buck stops here, that I cannot rely upon public opinion polls to tell me what is right. I do believe that right makes might and that if I am wrong, 10 angels swearing I was right would make no difference. I do believe, with all my heart and mind and spirit, that I, not as President but as a humble servant of God, will receive justice without mercy if I fail to show mercy.”– Gerald Ford

14. “In the age-old contest between popularity and principle, only those willing to lose for their convictions are deserving of posterity’s approval.”– Gerald Ford

15. “I recognize the need for technology that enriches life while preserving our natural environment. My goal is to stimulate productivity, but use technology to redeem, not to destroy our environment.”– Gerald Ford

16. “I am acutely aware that you have not elected me as your President by your ballots, so I ask you to confirm me with your prayers.”– Gerald Ford

17. “The spirit of seeking understanding through personal contact with people of other nations and other cultures deserves the respect and support of all.”– Gerald Ford

18. “I believe that prayer in public schools should be voluntary. It is difficult for me to see how religious exercises can be a requirement in public schools, given our Constitutional requirement of separation of church and state. I feel that the highly desirable goal of religious education must be principally the responsibility of church and home. I do not believe that public education should show any hostility toward religion, and neither should it inhibit voluntary participation, if it does not interfere with the educational process.”– Gerald Ford

19. “The three-martini lunch is the epitome of American efficiency. Where else can you get an earful, a bellyful and a snootful at the same time?”– Gerald Ford

20. “The pat on the back, the arm around the shoulder, the praise for what was done right and the sympathetic nod for what wasn’t are as much a part of golf as life itself.”– Gerald Ford

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21. “All my children have spoken for themselves since they first learned to speak, and not always with my advance approval, and I expect that to continue in the future.”– Gerald Ford

22. “So much of what passes for public life consists of little more than candidates without ideas, hiring consultants without conviction, to stage campaigns without content. The result, increasingly, is elections without voters.”– Gerald Ford

23. “I feel it is my first duty to make an unprecedented compact with my countrymen. Not an inaugural address, not a fireside chat, not a campaign speech – just a little straight talk among friends.”– Gerald Ford

24. “A coalition of groups is waging a massive propaganda campaign against the president of the United States. an all-out attack. Their aim is total victory for themselves and total defeat for him.”– Gerald Ford

25. “I cannot imagine any other country in the world where the opposition would seek, and the chief executive would allow, the dissemination of his most private and personal conversations with his staff, which, to be honest, do not exactly confer sainthood on anyone concerned.”– Gerald Ford

26. “We are bound together by the most powerful of all ties, our fervent love for freedom and independence, which knows no homeland but the human heart.”– Gerald Ford

27. “The power and diversity of the Armed Forces, active Guard and Reserve, the resolve of our fellow citizens, the flexibility in our command to navigate international waters that remain troubled are all essential to our security.”– Gerald Ford

28. “I think that sports, particularly football, gave me an opportunity to be out front, to be a leader, which helped me later on, when I got into politics.”– Gerald Ford

29. “We must introduce a new balance in the relationship between the individual and the government – a balance that favors greater individual freedom and self-reliance”– Gerald Ford

30. “We must proceed with our own energy development. Exploitation of domestic petroleum and natural gas potentialities, along with nuclear, solar, geothermal, and non-fossil fuels is vital. We will never again permit any foreign nation to have Uncle Sam over a barrel of oil.”– Gerald Ford

31. “In the firm belief that the American public deserves a better explanation than that thus far given by the Air Force, I strongly recommend that there be a committee investigation of the UFO phenomena. I think we owe it to the people to establish credibility regarding UFOs, and to produce the greatest possible enlightenment of the subject.”– Gerald Ford

32. “Mr. President, putting it bluntly, wouldn’t we just be continuing a bloodbath that already exists in Cambodia if we voted the 222 million in aid?”– Gerald Ford

33. “I am a Ford, not a Lincoln. My addresses will never be as eloquent as Mr. Lincoln’s. But I will do my very best to equal his brevity and his plain speaking.”– Gerald Ford

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34.” For millions of men and women, the church has been the hospital for the soul, the school for the mind and the safe depository for moral ideas.”– Gerald Ford

35. “As I rejected amnesty, so I reject revenge. I ask all Americans who ever asked for goodness and mercy in their lives, who ever sought forgiveness for their trespasses, to join in rehabilitating all the casualties of the tragic conflict of the past.”– Gerald Ford

36. “The old question still remains: Can a free people restrain crime without sacrificing fundamental liberties and a heritage of compassion?”– Gerald Ford

37. “There are no adequate substitutes for father, mother, and children bound together in a loving commitment to nurture and protect. No government, no matter how well-intentioned, can take the place of the family in the scheme of things.”– Gerald Ford

38. “It’s discouraging how hard it is for a President to slice away large chunks of a $305 billion budget.”– Gerald Ford

39. “All my children have spoken for themselves since they first learned to speak, and not always with my advance approval, and I expect that to continue in the future.”– Gerald Ford

40. “During the day on Monday, Washington time, the airport at Saigon came under persistent rocket as well as artillery fire and was effectively closed. The military situation in the area deteriorated rapidly. I therefore ordered the evacuation of all American personnel remaining in South Vietnam.”– Gerald Ford

Related: Barbara Bush Quotes, and Ronald Reagan Quotes.

Video: Short Biography of Gerald Ford

This is an awesome short video about Gerald Ford from the Biography Channel. If you want to learn a lot more about Ford in a few minutes, it’s worth a watch!


To wrap it up, Gerald Ford was the 38th president of the United States and became president when Nixon resigned during the Watergate scandal.

Ford had a challenging time in office as it was during a time of tremendous political conflict over Watergate. He is widely regarded by most presidents as a below average president.

If you want to read more about Ford’s legacy, this is the best book to read about his legacy.

Image Credit: “38 Gerald Ford” by US Department of State is marked withCC PDM 1.0

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