State offices will be open today but all federal offices will be closed to mark a day of mourning for former President Ford, who died a week ago at age 93. There will be no mail delivery today and commodities markets will also be closed.
Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley is in Washington D-C but says he won’t be able to attend Ford’s funeral. Grassley says he’ll watch it on T-V instead. He says he would have attended the service in the Capitol Rotunda but couldn’t change his plans. He says he has a special allegiance to Ford, who was president when Grassley was first elected to the U-S House in 1975. “He healed the nation at a time when it was being torn apart by Vietnam and by the Watergate scandal. He accomplished some good things in foreign policy. He stuck to his principles as a fiscal conservative by vetoing a lot of big spending bills by the Congress. And I think he did bring about healing.”
Grassley says Ford, who was born in Nebraska and raised in Michigan, was a very approachable man. He says “I remember him as a common, ordinary, everyday person, very Midwestern person who had humility who probably never planned on being president but was a very good president for somebody who never intended to be one.”
Speakers at this morning’s funeral at Washington National Cathedral will include President Bush, former President Bush, former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and former N-B-C news anchor Tom Brokaw.