There are a lot of Americans who wear MAGA hats. Theoretically, if President Trump were impeached, I wonder if they would continue to wear them? Would Trump go down like Robert E. Lee, losing, but maintaining the faithful base of devotees due to a hero? Or would they stop supporting him, and conveniently forget their prior support, sort of like how everyone today hates Kevin Spacey? (That is a rhetorical question; please do not endeavor to answer it.)

Consistent with this line of inquiry, I would like to know the following: What happened after Nixon? When he resigned, did the voters forget him and spit on his memory and move on? Or was he remembered fondly, even immediately afterward?

Please do not answer by debating whether Trump deserves to be or will be impeached. This is not an appropriate forum for that debate. My question is about the Nixon-Ford era, and is best answered from historical record, or from an American citizen who is old enough to remember.

  • 8
    If your question is about Nixon-Ford era, why did you put "MAGA" and "Trump" in it?
    – user4012
    Feb 13, 2019 at 13:35
  • 4
    @user4012 to explain why this question came up in the op's mind.
    – David Rice
    Feb 13, 2019 at 15:22

1 Answer 1


I think the 1976 presidential election answers that one: they largely abandoned the Republican party.

Nixon was not fondly remembered. Gerald Ford, his Vice President, pardoned him, a move that was widely unpopular and likely lead to his narrow loss in 1976

But once he was gone, the Americans were not quick to forgive and forget. In September, a 58% majority said Nixon should be tried for possible criminal charges. And they took the view that he should not be let off the hook easily, if found guilty. By a margin of 53% to 38%, the public thought that President Ford should not pardon Nixon, if he was found guilty.

The latter sentiment of course, would carry on, and be crucial to the outcome of the next presidential election. Ford did pardon Nixon in September, an act that was followed by a plummet of his own poll numbers, and later was seen as a factor in his loss to Democrat Jimmy Carter in the 1976 presidential election.

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