Jayne Another Reagan Todays GOP wouldnt welcome him

first_imgIt always is inspiring.As the seat of American government and the embodiment of the American Dream and the cauldron of so much of our nation’s history, Washington, D.C., always is inspiring. So, as we recently took a family vacation to the nation’s capital, I was confident that I would be struck by a column idea along the way. I just didn’t expect it to come from our tour guide at the Capitol building.“We get calls all the time from people saying, ‘Why can’t we have another Ronald Reagan?’ ” said the young woman, an intern from the office of Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Camas. “Some people just want to vent, but they wonder why we can’t have another Reagan.”This, I suppose, is predictable. For three decades now, Reagan has been viewed as the pinnacle of modern conservatism, as the model for the Republican Party, as the man who made it morning again in America. He was the first president of my adult life, winning re-election in 1984 by capturing 49 states and 59 percent of the popular vote.And while I can understand how Reagan is lionized by the right, I can’t help but notice that many modern Republicans have distorted and bastardized his legacy to suit their own desires.As political activist Mark McKinnon said: “Ronald Reagan was long thought to be the most conservative of Republicans. And by any standard today he is the most popular Republican in modern history. Yet he raised taxes 11 times, supported a ban on assault rifles and the Brady Bill, which mandated background checks, and established amnesty for 3 million undocumented workers.”last_img

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