Friday, August 7, 2015

Trump and the Reagan-Bush Divide

The two Republicans Carter’s political team feared most were Sen. Howard Baker and George Bush. Their favorite opponent: Ronald Reagan. Handling the extremist 69-year old ex-movie actor would be an easy piece of work, they thought, especially now that the issue of war and peace would be at the center stage of the 1980 campaign. “The American people,” (Carter White House chief of staff) Hamilton Jordan said, “are not going to elect a seventy-year old, right-wing, ex-movie actor to be president.”

So went one of the much reported views of the day on Ronald Reagan, this one by President Jimmy Carter’s White House chief of staff and campaign manager. In the event, in the three-way race for the presidency that actually took place in November of 1980 (the third candidate was Republican Congressman-turned-Independent Party nominee John Anderson), Reagan — trailing Carter in that December 1979 Gallup poll by a 60-36 percent margin — won the White House with 50.8 percent of the vote to Carter’s 41.0 percent, with Anderson scoring 6.6 percent in third. Reagan carried 44 states to Carter’s six-plus-the-District-of-Columbia.

Read more at American Spectator

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