Overview Of The Reagan Election Of 1980

Ronald Reagan started off as an average American that no one knew. Eventually over the years, he became someone that everyone knew very fondly of. Reagan emerged to become not only the face of the conservative, Republican party, but also emerged as the face of the United States of America and everlasting decades of debatable politics. During his time in office, Reagan brought the nation back up onto its feet after the previous president, Jimmy Carter, had left it in shambles. Because Carter held America under such substandards in the time he was president, candidate Reagan’s prospective promises in his campaign to uplift the future of America sparked phenomenal support from all around. As a former advocate of liberal, Democratic practices, Ronald Reagan ran as a presidential candidate in the election of 1980 as a conservative, Republican candidate against Jimmy Carter.

Ronald Wilson Reagan, nicknamed “The Great Communicator,” born February 6, 1911, made an appearance in his late years to serve the United States of America as its fortieth president after having served as the thirty-third governor of California. Growing up, he pursued a career in acting where he diligently worked to pick up leads in low budget movies and eventually taking on minor roles in universal ones. The parts he played portrayed traits that were indifferent from those of his own: humorous, self-efficacy and his amiability. When America got involved in World War II, Reagan spent a majority of wartime at a military base in California, where he was assigned to an army film unit to make army training movies. Post war, his career in entertainment and the love he had for it vanished. As his passion became something he enjoyed less and less, Reagan invested himself in politics. For most of Reagan’s life, he affiliated himself as a hardcore, liberal Democrat. In fact, people considered him too liberal. However, as a nominee running in the presidential election of 1980, he formally switched over to run as a member of the conservative, Republican party. His beliefs and moral values still centered around those of Democrats for quite some time though. As a widely known political figure, Reagan envisioned nothing but optimism and prosperity for the nation’s future, two ideals prominently emphasized in his inaugural address and campaign advertisements shown on television.

If elected into office, Ronald Reagan would assure his people the fixing of ongoing issues that have taken a negative toll on American’s quality of living. He promised to reestablish religion and faith in society through his “Religious Right” in order to strengthen traditional familial customs by advocating for the allowance of public prayers in schools. He also pushed for pro-life practices at the same time. Additionally, Reagan promised to improve the economy on a large scale. Reagan believed that the implementation of Reaganomics, a series of economic policies based on the foundation of supply-side economics and the trickle-down theory would successfully put an end to America’s recurring economical challenges. His vision of the supply-side theory was that the higher class would take their money and reinvest it by paying taxes to construct businesses, which would in turn aid in the increase of profit margins and also provide the middle and lower classes with more job opportunities. He would cut federal taxes to stimulate market growth. He would increase military spending because he believed doing so would cause the Soviet Union to do nothing but collapse. He would attempt to balance the national budget and institute market deregulation. He would minimize the results of “stagflation,” which was a combination of high inflation and little economic growth, left from Ford and carried into Carter’s presidency. Over the course of Reagan’s time in office, tax rates, inflation and unemployment rates have drastically decreased as a result of his effective Reaganomics scheme. His execution of the Tax Reform Act of 1986 cut the tax amount being paid by the people earning the most money down twenty-eight percent when he had only projected a twenty-five percent reduction in the first place.

As the Republican nominee for president, Ronald Reagan ran for office under the ideals and beliefs that he thought would best conform to those of the people. Candidate Ronald Reagan, for one, believed that policies aimed to improve environmental conditions and the quality of living it supplied was hurting the American economy, hence the national recession that left the nation in stagflation and high unemployment rates. He believed that the federal government should be small in size because “small government is the cornerstone of American freedom and prosperity.” The first words of the Preamble, “we the people,” was emphasized in a majority of

Reagan’s speeches in claim that the federal government should serve to be an occupation of the people. He thought that it was time for Americans to take matters into their own hands, voice their opinions and be involved in the process of policy making. He envisioned the nation going in either one of two ways: a path “that embraced conservative principles,” which focused on reducing the number of people in poverty, in turn “creat[ing] opportunity for all, or one that would give Americans less freedom with an oppressive form of government.” Reagan had this optimistic outlook on the nation’s future while his opponent, Jimmy Carter did not. Carter’s campaign was primarily centered around personal attacks on Reagan, and not to mention, he had a downbeat perspective on what was to happen in America in the years to come. The presidential campaign of 1980 was extremely competitive due to the continual problems of inflation, unemployment, threats of communism amongst many more. Nonetheless, It was obvious that their approaches to presidency were in total opposition.

Ronald Reagan defeated Jimmy Carter in clear, wide margins. He gained 489 out of 538 electoral votes during the general election, carrying forty-four states, winning the highest number of electoral votes in American history as a non-incumbent running for office with a three percent lead and ten percent victory margin. He got over forty-three million popular votes, which accounted for about fifty-one percent of the total voting population. Meanwhile, Jimmy Carter merely gained 49 electoral votes, with over thirty-five million popular votes. Carter’s hopes for

his chances at winning “re-election had crumbled all over the country.” Third party, Republican Congressman, John B. Anderson won no electoral votes but did have a whopping six million people who supported his beliefs and ideals. Because Ronald Reagan’s campaign laid upon the foundation of continuity and change, his landslide victory for presidency marked a significant turning point for the Republicans. For the first time in twenty-eight years, the Republicans finally regained control of the Senate, and set forth the beginning of the Reagan Revolution. This presidential election realigned the ideals of the Republican party to become the most conservative it has ever been.

Serving eight successful years as president of the United States, president Ronald Reagan leaves America “more prosperous, more secure and happier” than it was at the time of his inauguration. His economic policies, Reaganomics, leaves a historical legacy in that it led the national market into a seven year period of peaceful growth, prosperity and recovery through his proposed tax cuts, lowering of interest rates and best efforts in balancing the federal and trade budget deficits. Reagan also left a historical legacy, political wise. His election made it clear to the Democrats that they were “unlikely to return to the White House under a traditional liberal banner.” He brought home a huge win for the Republican party within itself as he helped secure the party’s power over Congress. As one who was heavily involved in politics and “committed to [nothing] but success” for the nation’s future, Reagan efficiently influenced the standpoint of American society through his conveyance of conservative ideals and what he thought would most benefit the quality of living for the people. His impact set precedent for the basis in which presidents to come will base their campaigns upon. He left knowing that he “set the course of the country for decades to come.”