For starters, he did not start senseless wars like the presidents after him. Those being Bush and Obama mainly. Now while Obama did not technically start a war he did drag wars on longer than needed as well as he seems rather happy to send in reaper drones to murder innocent civilians in the Middle East on a 50:1 ratio.
Reagan had good economic plans. In the time that Reagan served as President, he was one of the best presidents that has thrived in successful economic plans, he pulled us out of a deep recession caused by former presidents (especially Nixon), who ruin the country for us. Richard Nixon stole from government, democrats and started senseless wars. Reagan however was a civilized and mellow politician (hard to come by) who knew what he was doing and just how to do it. Shame on the other presidents for making America look bad.
Foreign Policy. Well for another reason, his foreign policy was good too. Immigrants were allowed in as long as they were legal immigrants. How can we say now to a president (who was Republican, breaking party-based stereotypes) who had similar ideals to the sane liberal. Reagan was obviously a proper choice.
It really is too bad that he died in Las Vegas in 2004, too bad. :(
I wish Reagan could always be President.
He was very important in helping to end the Cold War, fixing the economy ruined by Carter, bi-partisanship, strong foreign policy, tax reform, lowering the amount of power the federal government had, and forcing the democrats to move to the right a little bit. He wasn't perfect but better than most.
I voted for Reagan. He was, despite Hollywood, able to understand the average, American. Perhaps, it was his own humble beginnings in life? Or perhaps, he was just able to connect with a wide range of people? That much, about him, was impressive. He was willing and often did work with Democrats. That too was the mark of a good leader. He showed strength, when necessary. He had vision. Both are good. When toughness was required, the Gipper could deliver. His Tax Reform Act of 1986 was one of his finest achievements, in the Oval Office. SEAL Team Six was another.
Still ... Interest rates were high, in those days. The debt ceiling was raised, on Reagan's request, 18 times in 8 years. We are still juggling with that debt. Twelve years after Reagan was first elected, the U.S. economy was so fragile that Bill Clinton made it his priority on the campaign trail -- and won! Ah, recessions ...
Where Reagan fell short of greatness was with Iran-Contra, for starters. I doubt that he was directly involved. And I believe him, when he testified under oath, that he couldn't remember. A few years later, the man was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. I think, Reagan entrusted too much to too many. It caused him to lose the reins of his administration. If you don't know what your administration is doing, you aren't a very good leader. When so much happens, that individuals are going to jail and rumors of impeachment are wafting in the air, that's even worse!
Do we really believe any of those ideas were his own. He provided a great image for the people in power to hide behind and he was great at selling there ideas even when they were obviously bad for most of the population. He worked closley with Thatcher, which should tell us alot about what he really though of the common man.
Lincoln dealt with the sectional conflicts and the Civil War. FDR dealt with the Great Depression and instated his New Deal. JFK dealt with a large portion of the Cold War, including the Cuban Missile Crisis. Reagan's problems were not nearly as big as those from those presidents, and each one of those three solved their problems with poise and clarity. I would put all three of those above Reagan, as well as Teddy Roosevelt who built the canal and maybe a few others.
With all due respect the President Ronald Reagan and his legacy, he was not the best President the United States has had. He was a great President who protected the interest of the United States during the Cold War, and he helped to bring down the totalitarian government inside the Soviet Union - but he was not the best President this country has had. The accomplishments and struggles of Abraham Lincoln surpasses those of the Reagan administration easily in my opinion. Other Presidential administrations also come to mind, like FDR's. However, Reagan does deserve credit for the successes of his Presidency; it would not be fair to deny him well-deserved credit.