Former President Gerald Ford agreed to be interviewed for a biography, “Write It When I’m Gone”, on the condition it not be published until after his death. Among the things he didn't want disclosed at the time was an admission in 2004 that he thought Dick Cheney should be dumped from the Republican ticket. I felt that way too, and if Ford had backed me up, maybe my opinion would have been taken more seriously. What was he afraid of? My openness led to no leaking about my husband or me to Bob Novak, not even a tax audit.
Another item Ford didn’t want revealed while he was alive is his belief that Bill Clinton is a sex addict. Did Ford think if he remained silent, Clinton's trysts would go unnoticed? Better they should have pushed Bill to come to the Betty Ford Center, perhaps with the lure of a professional discount for presidential sex addicts.
In another embargoed 2004 interview reported shortly after Ford's death, Ford told Bob Woodward that Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld, "made a big mistake" with their justifications for the Iraq war. The rest of us came to these conclusions and didn’t wait to stop breathing to share them.
What was Ford thinking? Did he construe his silence as a show of loyalty to the administrations that followed his? Was a show of "support" for the presidents more important than speaking up on behalf of the people? I'm not sure I applaud his choices even though I know there are many things my husband wishes I'd have waited to say until after one of us is dead.