Gerald R. Ford photo

Remarks on Intention To Nominate Nelson A. Rockefeller To Be Vice President of the United States

August 20, 1974

Mr. Speaker, members of the leadership of the House and Senate, members of the Cabinet:

After a great deal of soul searching, after considering the advice of Members of the Congress, Republicans as well as the Democratic leadership, after consulting with many, many people within the Republican Party and without, I have made a decision which I would now like to announce to the American people.

This was a difficult decision, but the man that I am selecting as nominee for Vice President is a person whose long record of accomplishment in the Government and outside is well known. He comes from a family that has long been associated with the building of a better America. It is a family that has contributed significantly to many accomplishments, both at home and abroad, for the American people.

His achievements in Government are well, well known. He served in the Department of State under former President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. He served under the Presidency of Harry Truman. He served in the Department of HEW under President Eisenhower.

He has served as Governor of the great Empire State, the State of New York, for 15 years, the longest period of time in the history of the State of New York. He is known across the land as a person dedicated to the free enterprise system, a person who is recognized abroad for his talents, for his dedication to making this a peaceful world.

It was a tough call for a tough job. The number of people who were considered by me in the process were all men and women of great quality. They came from those suggested to me who serve in the Congress, the Senate and the House of Representatives.

The names included individuals who had served their respective States with great credit. The names included individuals who were in government, but not in Washington. The names included individuals who were not connected with government.

But after a long and very thoughtful process, I have made the choice, and that choice is Nelson Rockefeller of New York State. It is my honor and privilege to introduce to you a good partner for me and, I think, a good partner for our country and the world.

So, I now announce officially that I will send the name of Nelson Rockefeller to the Congress of the United States for confirmation.

Note: The President spoke at 10:04 a.m. in the Oval Office at the White House. His remarks were broadcast live on radio and television.

Vice President-designate Rockefeller responded as follows:

Mr. President, Mr. Speaker and leaders of the Congress, Mr. Secretary of State and members of the Cabinet, and friends:

Mr. President, your nomination of me to be Vice President of the United States under the 25th amendment of the Constitution makes me very humble. If I am confirmed, it will be my great honor to serve you and through you to serve all of the people of this great country.

As you pointed out in your moving message to the Congress, these are very serious times. They are times, as you pointed out, that require the closest cooperation between the Congress of the United States and the executive branch of Government. They also require the dedication of every American to our common national interest.

You, Mr. President, through your dedication and your openness have already reawakened faith and hope, and under your leadership, we as a people and we as a nation have the will, the determination, and the capability to overcome the hard realities of our times. I am optimistic about the long-term future.

Thank you, sir.

Gerald R. Ford, Remarks on Intention To Nominate Nelson A. Rockefeller To Be Vice President of the United States Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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