Reagan: Round Two

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by Zoe Pollock

Hendrik Hertzberg reviews the HBO documentary on Reagan by Eugene Jarecki, and weighs in on its main interviewee, Ron Reagan, only son of Nancy and Ronald:

He’s now a fit and youthful fifty-two, with no particular career. I wish he’d run for office. I don’t know where he lives, but I suspect it must be someplace where being a liberal Democrat (which he is) isn’t a big liability. Ron has a lot of his late father’s easygoing, nonhostile likeability, without the vagueness and the offputting (to me, though I know many found it charming) heh-heh inanity. Ron has often been quoted as saying he could never be elected to anything because he’s an atheist. To which I say: come to Manhattan. 

... Frank Mankiewicz once told me (I hope I’m remembering this right) that back around 1948 or 1950, he (Frank) and his fellow members of the Beverly Hills Democratic Committee considered drafting Ronald Reagan as their local congressional candidate. They decided against the idea because they thought Reagan was too liberal to win. How different history might have turned out if they had not made that monumental blunder. Reagan probably would still have become President, but he’d have been “our” President, if you get my drift. We’d probably have gotten single-payer!

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