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Ronald Reagan

Ronald Reagan
Official Portrait of President Reagan 1981.jpg
40th President of the United States
In office
January 20, 1981 – January 20, 1989
Vice President George H. W. Bush
Preceded by Jimmy Carter
Succeeded by George H. W. Bush
33rd Governor of California
In office
January 2, 1967 – January 6, 1975
Lieutenant
Preceded by Pat Brown
Succeeded by Jerry Brown
President of the Screen Actors Guild
In office
November 16, 1959 – June 12, 1960
Preceded by Howard Keel
Succeeded by George Chandler
In office
November 17, 1947 – November 9, 1952
Preceded by Robert Montgomery
Succeeded by Walter Pidgeon
Personal details
Born Ronald Wilson Reagan
(1911-02-06)February 6, 1911
Tampico, Illinois, U.S.
Died June 5, 2004(2004-06-05) (aged 93)
Bel Air, California, U.S.
Cause of death Pneumonia complicated by Alzheimer's disease
Resting place Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Center
34°15′32″N 118°49′14″W / 34.25899°N 118.82043°W / 34.25899; -118.82043
Political party Republican (post-1962)
Other political
affiliations
Democratic (pre-1962)
Spouse(s)
Relations Neil Reagan (brother)
Children 5, see below
Parents
Alma mater Eureka College
Profession
  • Actor
  • politician
  • sports commentator
Awards
Signature Cursive signature in ink
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch U.S. Army Air Forces
Years of service 1937–1945
Rank US-O3 insignia.svg Captain
Unit 18th AAF Base Unit
External audio
Speech to the National Press Club
Reagan's speech on June 16, 1966 (starts at 06:16; finishes at 39:04)

Ronald Wilson Reagan (/ˈrɒnəld ˈwɪlsən ˈrɡən/; February 6, 1911 – June 5, 2004) was an American politician and actor who was the 40th President of the United States, from 1981 to 1989. Before his presidency, he was the 33rd Governor of California, from 1967 to 1975, after a career as a Hollywood actor and union leader.

Raised in a poor family in small towns of northern Illinois, Reagan graduated from Eureka College in 1932 and worked as a sports announcer on several regional radio stations. After moving to Hollywood in 1937, he became an actor and starred in a few major productions. Reagan was twice elected President of the Screen Actors Guild, the labor union for actors, where he worked to root out Communist influence. In the 1950s, he moved into television and was a motivational speaker at General Electric factories. Having been a lifelong Democrat, his views changed. He became a conservative and in 1962 switched to the Republican Party. In 1964, Reagan's speech, "A Time for Choosing", in support of Barry Goldwater's foundering presidential campaign, earned him national attention as a new conservative spokesman. Building a network of supporters, he was elected Governor of California in 1966. As governor, Reagan raised taxes, turned a state budget deficit to a surplus, challenged the protesters at the University of California, ordered National Guard troops in during a period of protest movements in 1969, and was re-elected in 1970. He twice ran unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination for the U.S. presidency in 1968 and 1976; four years later, he easily won the nomination outright, becoming the oldest elected U.S. president up to that time, defeating incumbent Jimmy Carter in 1980.


President Reagan's approval ratings
Date Event Approval (%) Disapproval (%)
March 30, 1981 Shot by Hinckley 73 19
January 22, 1983 High unemployment 42 54
April 26, 1986 Libya bombing 70 26
February 26, 1987 Iran–Contra affair 44 51
December 27–29, 1988 Near end of presidency 63 29
N/A Career average 57 39
July 30, 2001 (Retrospective) 64 27

  • Actor
  • politician
  • sports commentator
  • Beschloss, Michael (2008). Presidential Courage: Brave Leaders and How they Changed America 1789–1989. Simon & Schuster. ISBN . 
  • Brands, H.W. Reagan: The Life (2015)
  • Bumgarner, John R. (1994). The Health of the Presidents: The 41 United States Presidents Through 1993 from a Physician's Point of View. Jefferson, NC: MacFarland & Company. ISBN . 
  • Cannon, Lou (2000) [1991]. President Reagan: The Role of a Lifetime. New York: PublicAffairs. ISBN . 
  • Cannon, Lou; Beschloss, Michael (2001). Ronald Reagan: The Presidential Portfolio: A History Illustrated from the Collection of the Ronald Reagan Library and Museum. PublicAffairs. ISBN . 
  • Cannon, Lou (2003). Governor Reagan: His Rise to Power. PublicAffairs. ISBN . 
  • Hayward, Steven F. (2009). The Age of Reagan: The Conservative Counterrevolution: 1980–1989. ISBN . 
  • Holden, Kenneth. Making of the Great Communicator: Ronald Reagan's Transformation From Actor To Governor (2013)
  • Pemberton, William E. (1998). Exit With Honor: The Life and Presidency of Ronald Reagan. ISBN . 
  • Putnam, Jackson K. "Governor Reagan: A Reappraisal." California History (2006): 24–45. in JSTOR
  • Reeves, Richard (2005). President Reagan: The Triumph of Imagination. New York: Simon & Schuster. ISBN . 
  • Troy, Gil (2009). The Reagan Revolution: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford University Press. 
  • Wills, Garry (1987). Reagan's America: Innocents at Home. Garden City, NY: Doubleday. ISBN . 
  • Reagan, Nancy (2002). I Love You, Ronnie: The Letters of Ronald Reagan to Nancy Reagan. New York: Random House. ISBN . 
  • Reagan, Ronald (2003). Skinner, Kiron K.; Anderson, Annelise; Anderson, Martin, eds. Reagan: A Life in Letters. New York: Simon & Schuster. ISBN . 
  • Reagan, Ronald (2003). An American Life. New York: Free Press, A Division of Simon & Schuster. ISBN . 
  • Johns, Andrew L., ed. A Companion to Ronald Reagan (Wiley-Blackwell, 2015). xiv, 682 pp.; topical essays by scholars emphasizing historiography; contents free at many libraries
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