ATLANTA (AP) — Former President Jimmy Carter and his wife Rosalynn have praised the late former first lady Betty Ford as "a remarkable political spouse" who improved mental health and substance abuse care and spoke her mind.
In a statement Friday after Ford died at age 93, the Carters said: "Rosalynn and I are saddened by the passing of Betty Ford, a close personal friend and our frequent partner in bipartisan efforts to improve mental health and substance abuse care in our nation."
The statement went on to say that Betty Ford's "courageous candor helped forge a new era of openness after the divisiveness of the Vietnam War and Watergate." They also called Ford a "tireless advocate for women's rights and social justice."
Carter defeated then-President Gerald Ford in 1976, but the Carters and Fords later became friends. Gerald Ford, the nation's 38th president, died in 2006 at age 93.
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