Biography of Ronald ReaganGeneral Knowledge »
Biography of Ronald Reagan – Fortieth President of US
Ronald Reagan’s Works & Achievements was Contributed towards ending of the Cold War and his Nationality United States.
Ronald Reagan was the fortieth President of the United States and thirty third governor of California. A short time film actor and director, Reagan was originally a member of the Domestic Party before he switched to the Republican Party in 1962, at the age of 51 and was subsequently elected the governor of California in 1967.
Ronald Reagan ran for, and failed twice in his bid for Presidency before finally winning it in 1980 and took charge in January 1981. During his first term of presidency, Ronald gained attention and appreciation both from within and outside the country for his bold political and economical policies, famously known as ‘Reaganomics’.
Ronald Reagan was reelected in a landslide victory in 1984 and this time he focused his attention on foreign matters, namely, the ending ofthe cold war , opposition to the communist Soviet Union and revelation of Iran – Contra affair. The former president died of the Alzheimer’s disease in 2004 after a long period of suffering.
Ronald Reagan Childhood
Ronald Reagan was born on 6 February 1911 in Illinois. Ronald Reagan’s family lived in several towns and cities in Illinois, including Monmouth, Chicago and Galesburg until 1919, when they returned to Tampico.
Ronald Reagan moved to Dixon in late 1920, where he attended Dixon High School and while studying there he developed interest in sports, acting and storytelling. Ronald Reagan’s first job was as a lifeguard at the Rock River, near Dixon, in 1926.
After High School, Ronald Reagan attended Eureka College, where he was a member of the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity, majored in economics and performed excellently in sports, particularly in Football.
After graduating from Eureka in 1932, Ronald Reagan worked at various radio stations as an announcer. In 1937, Ronald Reagan appeared on the large screen for the first time in the movie, Love is on the air. By the end of the 1939, he had already appeared in 19 films. Ronald Reagan was first elected to the board of Directors of the Screen Actors Guild in 1941.
Ronald Reagan led SAG through eventful years that were marked by labor-management disputes, the Taft – Hartley Act, House Committee on UN-American Activities (HUAC) hearings and the Hollywood blacklist era.
Ronald Reagan Marriages and Children
Ronald Regan had two marriages. Ronald Reagan married his first wife Jane Wyman, an actress, on 26 January, 1940, at the Wee Kirk o’ the Heather Church in Glendale, California. The couple had two children, namely Maureen and Christine and adopted a third, Michael. However, the marriage proved to be unhappy and following regular bouts of arguments and conflicts, Wyman filed for divorce in 1948 which was finalized in 1949. Ronald was the only U.S. President to have been divorced.
Nancy Davis, an actress met Reagan in 1949 and the two got married on 4 March 1952. The couple had two children, Patti and Roni. Their affection for each other was known to everyone and observers described their relationship as real, intimate and close. Nancy Davis remained his last love until his death in 2004.
Ronald Reagan Governor of California (1967 – 1975)
Initially a Democrat, Ronald Reagan formally switched to the Republican Party in 1962. California Republicans were impressed with his political views and charisma, and eventually Ronald Reagan was nominated for Governor of California in 1966.
Ronald Reagan was elected and was sworn in on 3 January 1967. Shortly after the beginning of his term, he froze all government hiring and tax hikes to balance the budget. Ronald Regan became a controversial figure after the People’s Park Protest, held on 15 May 1969. Reagan sent the California Highway patrol to quell the protest, and the incident became known as ‘Bloody Thursday’.
During his tenure as Governor, Ronald Reagan strongly advocated the Republican ideal of less government regulation of economy.
Ronald Reagan Presidency (1981 – 1989)
Ronald Reagan had failed in his run for presidency 1976 before he finally became President in 1981. During his campaign for presidency, his speech emphasized on the dangers of nuclear war and the threat posed by the Soviet Union.
Though he lost the nomination in 1976, he received appreciation and support from across the country. The 1980 presidential campaign was conducted during the ongoing Iran Hostage Crisis. His campaign stressed some of his fundamental principles : lower taxes to stimulate the economy, less government interference in people’s lives and a strong national defense.
Ronald Reagan won the election and Republicans captured the senatefor the first time since 1952, while the Democrats remained a majority.
Ronald Reagan First Term (1981 – 1985)
Ronald Reagan served two terms as President beginning From1981 till 1989. Till date, Ronald Reagan is the oldest man elected to the office of presidency. Ronald Reagan’s first inaugural address was held on 20 January 1981 that began in a dramatic manner.
As Ronald Reagan was giving his inaugural address, 52 U.S. hostages held by Iran for 444 days, were set free. During his first term, Reagan expanded military to insure national defense.
Ronald Reagan, as President, believed in individual freedom and pursued the policies that revitalized the U.S. economy, brought domestic changes and contributed to the end ofthe Cold War .
On March 30, 1981, Ronald Reagan, along with his press secretary James Brady and two others were shot by John Hinckley, Jr. The bullet passed his left lung, missing his heart by less than one inch. The bullet was removed after an emergency operation and he was released from the hospital on 11 April. The assassination attempt had a great influence on Ronald Reagan’s popularity, which rose to 73% after the incident.
Ronald Reagan Reaganomics
Ronald Reagan entered office with the mandate to revitalize the stagnating economy of U.S. Ronald Reagan implemented the supply-side policy seeking to stimulate the economy with large tax cuts and promoted the proposed tax cuts as potentially stimulating the economy enough to expand with tax base.
Ronald Reagan’s economic policy became a subject of debate with a mixed view of supporters and critics. During his presidency, federal income tax rates were lowered and GDP recovered strongly after 1982 recession. Sixteen million new jobs were created while inflation significantly decreased.
However critics argue that his policy made wealthy become wealthier and he was indifferent to the struggle of the poor. Some economists, such as Nobel Prize winner Milton Friedman and Robert A. Mundell argue that Reagan’s tax policies invigorated America’s economy and contributed to the economic boom of 1990s.
Ronald Reagan Second Term (1985 – 1989)
Ronald Reagan was sworn in for the second term on 20 January 1985, at the White House. During his second term, Ronald Reagan declared more militant policies in the War on Drugs and promised to fight for drug free schools and workplaces using stronger law enforcement and creating public awareness.
On 27 October 1986, Ronald Reagan signed a drug enforcement bill to fund the War on drugs and specified a mandatory minimum penalty for drug offenses. First Lady Nancy Reagan made War on Drugs his main priority by founding Just Say No awareness campaign.
In 1986 Ronald Reagan signed the Immigration reform and Control Act. The act made it illegal to knowingly hire or recruit illegal immigrants, making it mandate for employers to attest to their employees’ immigration status. Ronald Reagan granted amnesty to approximately 3 million illegal immigrants who enteredthe United States prior to January 1982.
In 1986, Iran – Contra war became the largest political scandal during the 1980s. The International Court of Justice ruled that the U.S. had violated the international law, ‘not to intervene in the affair of other states’.
Though the investigating Committee failed to give evidence that the President was aware of the mismanagement of the funds, Ronald’s popularity declined rapidly in less than a week. Ronald Reagan was criticized for his disengagement from managing his staff and making the diversion of funds possible. The scandal resulted in fourteen indictments within Reagan’s staff and eleven convictions.
Ronald Reagan End of the Cold War
Till 1980s, Ronald Reagan supported anti – Communist movements worldwide and describing the USSR as an ‘Evil Empire’. Ronald Reagan recognized the change in the direction of the Soviet leadership with Mikhail Gorbachev and shifted to diplomacy, with a view to encourage the Soviet Leader to pursue substantial arms agreements.
Ronald Reagan believed that allowing freedom to speech and more democracy in the Soviet Union would lead to reform and the end of Communism. Ronald Regan and Mikhail Gorbachev signed the Intermediate – Range Nuclear Forces (INF Treaty) at the White House in 1987.
Ronald Reagan Alzheimer Disease and Death
In August 1994, at the age of 83, Ronald Reagan was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, an incurable neurological disorder which ultimately results into total memory loss, callusing brain cells to die. The disease destroyed Ronald Reagan’s mental capacity, while he remained active.
Ronald Reagan was only able to recognize a few people other than his wife, Nancy. Ronald Reagan died at his home in Bel Air, California on 5 June, 2004. The then President George W. Bush declared 11 June a National Day of Mourning and international tributes came in from around the world.
On 9 June, Ronald Reagan’s body was flown to Washington, where he became the tenth U.S. President to lie in State. On June 11, 2009 a state funeral was conducted in the Washington National Cathedral, and presided over by President George W. Bush.
Ronald Reagan Timeline
1911 – Ronald Reagan was born on 6 February.
1920 – Moved to Dixon for study.
1926 – Ronald Reagan’s first job as a life guard.
1932 – Ronald Reagan graduated from Eureka College.
1937 – Ronald Reagan appeared on the large screen for the first time.
1941 – Ronald Reagan was first elected to the board of Directors of the Screen Actors Guild.
1940 – Ronald Reagan married Jane Wyman on 26 January.
1949 – Jane Wyman divorced Reagan.
1952 – Ronald Reagan married Nancy Davis on 4 March 1952.
1962 – Ronald Reagan switched to the Republican Party.
1967 – Ronald Reagan was elected Governor of California and was sworn in on 3 January.
1969 – People’s Park Protest was held on 15 May.
1981 – Ronald Reagan became the President of United States.
1981 – Ronald Reagan’s first inaugural address was held on 20 January and U.S. hostages were freed by Iran.
1981 – Ronald Reagan was shot by John Hinckley, Jr. on March 30.
1985 – Ronald Reagan was sworn in for the second term on 20 January 1985.
1985 – Ronald Reagan was sworn in for the second term on 20 January 1985.
1986 – Ronald Reagan signed the Immigration reform and Control Act.
1986 – On 27 October 1986, Ronald Reagan signed a drug enforcement bill.
1986 – Iran – Contra war became the largest political scandal.
1987 – Ronald Regan and Mikhail Gorbachev signed the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF Treaty) at the White House.
1994 – Ronald Reagan was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.
2004 – Ronald Reagan died at his home in Bel Air, California on 5 June.
2004 – 11 June was declared a ‘National Day of Mourning’ and a state funeral was conducted in the Washington National Cathedral.
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