Reply To: Reagan and Eisenhower Administrations


Reagan sympathizers only controlled Congress during the first two years of Reagan’s presidency. Not coincidentally, that was also the only two-year period in my life when domestic discretionary spending declined. Thereafter, Reagan decided that of his three priorities — arms buildup, tax reductions, and spending reductions, the last was the least important. To the shock of his opponents, the buildup led not to a world conflagration, but to the end of the Soviet Union. (Don’t take my word for it: take Alexander Bessmertnykh’s.)

Reagan was also primarily responsible for a serious renaissance in constitutionalism, both in his appointments (including of the attorney general who made “original intent” a common term and of hundreds of judges, among them the best chief justice in history). This is one of Reagan’s chief legacies.

It’s common to comment critically upon Reagan’s administration by assuming that he had the power of an Arab dictator and commenting on everything that the Federal Government did as if Reagan had desired it. This approach is, of course, fallacious.