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The Reagan Legacy

Some thoughts on our recently departed 40th President from today's New Dem Daily e-mail newsletter:

Since today's Republicans invariably cite Ronald Reagan as their guiding inspiration, they should pay special attention to three aspects of his political career that his conservative heirs have too often forgotten:
  • Despite his fervent anti-communism and unshakable belief in the unique mission of the United States, he remained faithful to the Cold War bipartisan tradition in foreign policy, and never abandoned America's traditional alliances or the multilateral institutions created to advance them.
  • Despite his longstanding championship of a conservative domestic agenda, he was willing to compromise and adjust his policies to reflect real-life conditions, as shown by his decision to sign a liberal abortion law as governor of California, and to support tax hikes both as governor and as president.
  • Despite his many years of service to the GOP, he never sought to demonize his political opponents, and never questioned their patriotism or sincerity.

Reagan's universally praised decency was undoubtedly rooted in a healthy sense of his own limitations, and of politicians generally. That, ironically, is why he was larger than his ideology, his party, or his record, and why his memory will live on when all the debates that accompanied his long political career have faded.

(To read the entire piece, click here.)


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