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Gerald R. Ford, 38th President of the United States (1974-1977), became President of the United States on August 9, 1974, under extraordinary circumstances. Owing to the Watergate scandal, Ford's predecessor, Richard Nixon, had resigned under the threat of congressional impeachment. Ford assumed leadership of a nation whose domestic economy and international prestige—both seemingly sound in the decades after World War II—had deteriorated considerably. Just as important, Watergate, as well as the debacle of the Vietnam War, had profoundly shaken the American public's confidence in its leaders. Gerald Ford stepped into the breach opened up by these converging dynamics and achieved mixed results in addressing the twin problems of economic and geopolitical decline....
 
 
Gerald R. Ford, 38th President of the United States (1974-1977), became President of the United States on August 9, 1974, under extraordinary circumstances. Owing to the Watergate scandal, Ford's predecessor, Richard Nixon, had resigned under the threat of congressional impeachment. Ford assumed leadership of a nation whose domestic economy and international prestige—both seemingly sound in the decades after World War II—had deteriorated considerably. Just as important, Watergate, as well as the debacle of the Vietnam War, had profoundly shaken the American public's confidence in its leaders. Gerald Ford stepped into the breach opened up by these converging dynamics and achieved mixed results in addressing the twin problems of economic and geopolitical decline....

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