I’ve seen also the warmth with which you greeted Nancy and you also filled my heart with joy when you did that.UPDATE 2: Reagan historian Craig Shirley says the Reagan ad for Ford was "support" not "endorsement":
As Ford lagged in the polls, Reagan reluctantly agreed to go out on the trail, but he went out for the conservative movement, not the man. He gave a 30-minute taped speech on the Republican and Democratic platforms, but not directly on Ford. Of the four commercials he made for the campaign, three promoted the platform and one did support Ford, but no endorsement. Only at the end did he say something about keeping Ford in his job. He campaigned with Bob Dole, but again, said little to nothing about Ford.
As Ford continued to sink, his team reached out to Reagan again and again. Reagan, in total, campaigned in 25 states, but for down ticket candidates, rarely mentioning Ford, and was even asked to become Honorary Chairman of the Ford Campaign, but he politely declined. When he spoke at a joint fundraiser in Los Angeles, he talked of the platform and of the party, but barely Ford. When even he did mention the candidate, his body language and voice were so visibly tortured that Washington Post reporter Lou Cannon, remarked dryly, “This is not much of an endorsement.”_______
There's a funny thing about the outrage by some over Senator Ted Cruz not endorsing Donald Trump in his convention speech last night. They love Ronald Reagan who did the same thing (did not endorse Ford) in 1976.
President Gerald Ford was a decent man, who was more of a centrist Republican. In 1976 Ronald Reagan challenged Ford for the Republican presidential nomination. Reagan lost. Still, Ford called for Reagan to speak at the convention, but Reagan did not endorse Ford then or later.
In the primaries Reagan campaigned against Ford on Ford's lack of seriousness about the nation's debt as well as his soft policy on the Soviet Union.
In 1976, Reagan decided to challenge President Gerald Ford for the Republican presidential nomination. Although Ford was the incumbent Republican President, he had been appointed rather than elected to office, and Reagan felt Ford had not fought sufficiently against growing budget deficits and that his foreign policy of détente was too accommodating to the Soviet Union. (emphasis added)Sound a little like the current positions of Donald Trump? Trump says he would get along well with Putin and wants a better relationship with Russia.
Trump not only has said nothing about cutting government and its spending, he's for massive federal infrastructure spending (like Obama's $787 billion 2009 stimulus package which only three Republicans voted for).
Trump's major ideas on cutting the national debt have gone from disastrous to lame. First, pay back less than you owe. The pay back less than you owe comes from a business bankruptcy model where you stiff people for money you owe them by paying cents on the dollar. When the disastrous effects were pointed out to him, he went to his second plan. Print more money. Well, that wasn't such a good idea either. Trump's third idea was do a bond switch. Buy back older bonds with slightly higher rate bonds which would "result in only a minuscule reduction in our total debt, and it would do so by increasing the interest rate the U.S. is paying on that debt".
Currently, Trump doesn't even address the issue with specific proposals. The Trump site doesn't include the national debt in his position papers. However, he does have a 26 second "issues" statement where he says he is going to get rid of the national debt but gives no plans.
Amazing how much this election is like 1976--except Jimmy Carter was an unknown and neither he nor Ford were as unpopular as Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.