Reagan Foundation Distances Itself from Trump Campaign

July 28, 2020by Brian Niemietz, New York Daily News (TNS)
In this composite image a comparison has been made between former US President Ronald Reagan and his serving Secretary of State George Shultz. The Reagan Foundation, representing the interests and legacy of late President Ronald Reagan, reached out to President Donald Trump's campaign last week to ask that that they stop hawking a commemorative coin set featuring the two presidents to raise money. (Paul Marnef/Hulton Archive/Getty Images/TNS)

Don’t win this for the Gipper, Mr. President.

The Reagan Foundation is distancing itself from President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign.

CNN reports that the organization representing the interests and legacy of late President Ronald Reagan reached out to Trump’s campaign last week to ask that that they stop hawking a commemorative coin set featuring the two presidents to raise money. The Republican National Committee was also asked to knock it off.

Coin collectors who donated $45 or more were offered an opportunity to win a coin.

The RNC was surprised by the request, noting “(Reagan’s) likeness is used by thousands of Republicans each year who gather around the country for ‘Reagan Dinners,’ and his library regularly hosts debates for our presidential candidates.”

RNC spokesman Michael Ahrens told CNN the Trump family had recently helped raise money for the late president’s foundation. He also said the RNC would honor the Reagan Foundation’s request and stop promoting the collectible coin.

Trump lashed out against the foundation and other perceived adversaries Sunday.

“So the Washington Post is running the Reagan Foundation, and RINO Paul Ryan is on the Board of Fox, which has been terrible,” he tweeted. “We will win anyway, even with the phony @FoxNews suppression polls (which have been seriously wrong for 5 years)!”

The president seems to be referring to Washington Post CEO Frederick J. Ryan, who was Reagan’s chief of staff from 1989–1995. That Ryan also runs Reagan’s foundation. Former House speaker Paul Ryan joined the Fox Corporation in early 2019.

There has been no comment from the Reagan Foundation.

The Republican incumbent, who is under fire for his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic among other things, is struggling to connect with tradition Republicans. Conservative organizations like The Lincoln Project have sprung up to oppose Trump’s reelection.

Trump has Reagan to thank for the “Make America Great Again” campaign slogan that will be remembered as one of the most effective in political history. It was Reagan whose 1980 campaign against Jimmy Carter successfully reached out to voters with posters and pins reading “Let’s Make America Great Again.”

Reagan, at the time, was the challenger, not the incumbent.

Reagan also famously asked voters during that race to simply ask themselves, “Are you better off now than you were four years ago?” The Harvard Kennedy School called that “one of the most important campaign questions of all time.”

Reagan won a second term in 1984 by overwhelmingly defeating Walter Mondale, who won only his home state and Washington, D.C.

A C-SPAN survey of historians rated Reagan the ninth best president to date, with Abraham Lincoln, George Washington and Franklin D. Roosevelt filling out the top three slots, respectively.

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©2020 New York Daily News

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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