Betty Ford’s Daughter Fires Back At Melania Trump For Dismissing Her Mother As a ‘Very Traditional’ First Lady
The daughter of former First Lady Betty Ford took offense to Melania Trump diminishing her mother as just another “traditional” first lady, and she issued a strong response in an interview with People Magazine.
During the interview, Susan Ford told People that her mother did not settle for being a tea-serving White House hostess, and was quite active in using her position as first lady as a bully pulpit.
“I don’t think of my mother as a traditional first lady to begin with,” explained Susan Ford. “Yes, she did do teas and things of that nature but I just don’t think of her as a traditional first lady because she was so outspoken about the issues that were important to her.”
The publication notes that Ford did more than create the illusion of having a cause such as Melania Trump’s “Be Best” anti-bullying campaign.
“She was a trailblazer,” said Ford about her mother’s outspokenness of previously taboo issues for first ladies such as abortion, pre-marital sex and her own addiction to pain medication.
Lisa McCubbin, the author of the recently released biography “Betty” concurs, saying when the first lady was diagnosed with breast cancer and had a mastectomy she immediately went public with her story.
“Literally overnight, Betty Ford removed the stigma from cancer,” McCubbin wrote. “No longer was it a source of shame, but a disease like any other that needed to be addressed and treated.”
Ford was also notable for her openness for talking about her battles with addiction.
According to Ford, her mother actively campaigned for subjects near and dear to her heart by calling up lawmakers and putting pressure on them.
She put a phone line in, so she could call congressmen and senators on the Hill to talk about the Equal Rights Amendment. Donald Rumsfeld, who was then chief of staff, said to my father, ‘Mrs. Ford is making calls up on Capitol Hill about the Equal Rights Amendment and she really shouldn’t be using the White House line.’ So he said to my dad, ‘Would you speak to her?’ And my dad said, ‘No, but you can, ‘” Ford recalled.
You can read the entire interview here.