Attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan
On March 30, 1981, President Ronald Reagan and three others were shot and wounded by John Hinckley Jr. in Washington, D. C. as they were leaving a speaking engagement at the Washington Hilton Hotel. Hinckley's motivation for the attack was to impress actress Jodie Foster, who had played the role of a child prostitute in the 1976 film Taxi Driver. After seeing the film, Hinckley had developed an obsession with Foster. Reagan was struck by a single bullet that broke a rib, punctured a lung, caused serious internal bleeding, but he recovered quickly. No formal invocation of presidential succession took place, although Secretary of State Alexander Haig stated that he was "in control here" while Vice President George H. W. Bush returned to Washington. Besides Reagan, White House Press Secretary James Brady, Secret Service agent Tim McCarthy, police officer Thomas Delahanty were wounded. All three survived. A federal judge subpoenaed Foster to testify at Hinckley's trial, he was found not guilty by reason of insanity on charges of attempting to assassinate the president.
Hinckley remained confined to a psychiatric facility. In January 2015, federal prosecutors announced that they would not charge Hinckley with Brady's death, despite the medical examiner's classification of his death as a homicide. On July 27, 2016, it was announced he would be released by August 5 to live with his mother in Williamsburg, Virginia. Hinckley was suffering from erotomania and his motivation for the attack was born of his obsession with actress Jodie Foster. While living in Hollywood in the late 1970s, he saw the film Taxi Driver at least 15 times identifying with Travis Bickle, the lead character portrayed by Robert De Niro; the arc of the story involves Bickle's attempts to protect a 12-year-old child prostitute, played by Foster. Toward the end of the film, Bickle attempts to assassinate a United States Senator, running for president. Over the following years, Hinckley trailed Foster around the country, going so far as to enroll in a writing course at Yale University in 1980 after reading in People magazine that she was a student there.
He wrote numerous letters and notes to her in late 1980. He refused to give up when she indicated that she was not interested in him. Hinckley was convinced, he began stalking President Jimmy Carter. He was surprised at how easy it was to get close to the president—he was only a foot away at one event—but was arrested in October 1980 at Nashville International Airport for illegal possession of firearms. Carter had made a campaign stop there, but the FBI did not connect this arrest to the president and did not notify the United States Secret Service, his parents placed him under the care of a psychiatrist. Hinckley subsequently turned his attention to Ronald Reagan whose election, he told his parents, would be good for the country, he wrote three or four more notes to Foster in early March 1981. Foster gave these notes to her dean, who gave them to the Yale police department, who sought but failed to track Hinckley down. On March 21, 1981, new president Ronald Reagan and his wife Nancy visited Ford's Theatre in Washington, D.
C. for a fundraising event. Reagan recalled, I looked up at the presidential box above the stage where Abe Lincoln had been sitting the night he was shot and felt a curious sensation... I thought that with all the Secret Service protection we now had, it was still possible for someone who had enough determination to get close enough to the president to shoot him. On March 28, Hinckley arrived in Washington, D. C. by bus and checked into the Park Central Hotel. He noticed Reagan's schedule, published in The Washington Star and decided it was time to act. Hinckley knew that he might be killed during the assassination attempt, he wrote but did not mail a letter to Foster about two hours prior to his attempt on the president's life. In the letter, he said that he hoped to impress her with the magnitude of his action and that he would "abandon the idea of getting Reagan in a second if I could only win your heart and live out the rest of my life with you."On March 30, Reagan delivered a luncheon address to AFL–CIO representatives at the Washington Hilton Hotel.
The hotel was considered the safest venue in Washington because of its secure, enclosed passageway called "President's Walk", built after the 1963 assassination of John F. Kennedy. Reagan entered the building through the passageway around 1:45 p.m. waving to a crowd of news media and citizens. The Secret Service had required him to wear a bulletproof vest for some events, but Reagan was not wearing one for the speech, because his only public exposure would be the 30 feet between the hotel and his limousine, the agency did not require vests for its agents that day. No one saw Hinckley behaving in an unusual way. At 2:27 p.m. Reagan exited the hotel through "President's Walk" and its T Street NW exit toward his waiting limousine as Hinckley waited within the crowd of admirers; the Secret Service had extensively screened those attending the president's speech. In a "colossal mistake", the agency allowed an unscreened group to stand within 15 ft of him, behind a rope line; as several hundred people applauded Reagan, reporters standing behind a rope barricade 20 feet away asked questions.
As Mike Putzel of the Associated Press shouted "Mr. President—"
Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty
The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty was an arms control treaty between the United States and the Soviet Union. U. S. President Ronald Reagan and Soviet General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev signed the treaty on 8 December 1987; the United States Senate approved the treaty on 27 May 1988, Reagan and Gorbachev ratified it on 1 June 1988. The INF Treaty eliminated all of the two nations' land-based ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, missile launchers with ranges of 500–1,000 kilometers and 1,000–5,500 km; the treaty did not apply to air- or sea-launched missiles. By May 1991, the nations had eliminated 2,692 missiles, followed by 10 years of on-site verification inspections. President Donald Trump announced on 20 October 2018 that he was withdrawing the U. S. from the treaty, accusing Russia of non-compliance. The U. S. formally suspended the treaty on 1 February 2019, Russia did so on the following day in response to the U. S. withdrawal. In March 1976, the Soviet Union first deployed the RSD-10 Pioneer in its European territories, a mobile, concealable intermediate-range ballistic missile with a multiple independently targetable reentry vehicle containing three nuclear 150-kiloton warheads.
The SS-20's range of 4,700–5,000 kilometers was great enough to reach Western Europe from well within Soviet territory. The SS-20 replaced aging Soviet systems of the SS-4 Sandal and SS-5 Skean, which were seen to pose a limited threat to Western Europe due to their poor accuracy, limited payload, lengthy preparation time, difficulty in being concealed, immobility. Whereas the SS-4 and SS-5 were seen as defensive weapons, the SS-20 was seen as a potential offensive system; the US under President Jimmy Carter considered its strategic nuclear weapons and nuclear-capable aircraft to be adequate counters to the SS-20 and a sufficient deterrent against possible Soviet aggression. In 1977, Chancellor Helmut Schmidt of West Germany argued in a speech that a Western response to the SS-20 deployment should be explored, a call, echoed by NATO, given a perceived Western disadvantage in European nuclear forces. Leslie H. Gelb, the US Assistant Secretary of State recounted that Schmidt's speech pressured the US into developing a response.
On 12 December 1979, following European pressure for a response to the SS-20, Western foreign and defense ministers meeting in Brussels made the NATO Double-Track Decision. The ministers argued that the Warsaw Pact had "developed a large and growing capability in nuclear systems that directly threaten Western Europe": "theater" nuclear systems. In describing this "aggravated" situation, the ministers made direct reference to the SS-20 featuring "significant improvements over previous systems in providing greater accuracy, more mobility, greater range, as well as having multiple warheads"; the ministers attributed the altered situation to the deployment of the Soviet Tupolev Tu-22M strategic bomber, which they believed to display "much greater performance" than its predecessors. Furthermore, the ministers expressed concern that the Soviet Union had gained an advantage over NATO in "Long-Range Theater Nuclear Forces", significantly increased short-range theater nuclear capacity. To address these developments, the ministers adopted two policy "tracks".
One thousand theater nuclear warheads, out of 7,400 such warheads, would be removed from Europe and the US would pursue bilateral negotiations with the Soviet Union intended to limit theater nuclear forces. Should these negotiations fail, NATO would modernize its own LRTNF, or intermediate-range nuclear forces, by replacing US Pershing 1a missiles with 108 Pershing II launchers in West Germany and deploying 464 BGM-109G Ground Launched Cruise Missiles to Belgium, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom beginning in December 1983; the Soviet Union and United States agreed to open negotiations and preliminary discussions, named the Preliminary Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Talks, which began in Geneva in October 1980. On 20 January 1981, Ronald Reagan was sworn into office as President after defeating Jimmy Carter in an election. Formal talks began on 30 November 1981, with the US led by Ronald Reagan and the Soviet Union by Leonid Brezhnev; the core of the US negotiating position reflected the principles put forth under Carter: any limits placed on US INF capabilities, both in terms of "ceilings" and "rights", must be reciprocated with limits on Soviet systems.
Additionally, the US insisted. Paul Nitze, a longtime hand at defense policy who had participated in the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks, led the US delegation after being recruited by Secretary of State Alexander Haig. Though Nitze had backed the first SALT treaty, he opposed SALT II and had resigned from the US delegation during its negotiation. Nitze was then a member of the Committee on the Present Danger, a anti-Soviet group composed of neoconservatives and conservative Republicans. Yuli Kvitsinsky, the well-respected second-ranking official at the Soviet embassy i
Political positions of Ronald Reagan
Ronald Reagan was the 40th President of the United States. A Republican from California, a former movie actor and governor, he was charismatic, mixed strong rhetoric with pragmatic solutions reached in compromises with his critics, he energized the conservative movement in the United States starting in 1964. His basic foreign policy was to equal and surpass the Soviet Union in military strength, put it on the road to what he called "the ash heap of history." By 1985, he began to cooperate with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev – they became friends – and negotiated large-scale disarmament projects. The Cold War was fading away when it ended as Soviet lost control of Eastern Europe overnight in October 1989; that was nine months after Reagan was replaced in the White House by his vice president George Herbert Walker Bush, following Reagan's policies. The Soviet Union itself was dissolved in December 1991. In terms of the Reagan doctrine, he promoted military and financial and diplomatic support for anti-Communist insurgencies in Afghanistan and numerous countries.
For the most part local communist power collapsed. In domestic affairs, at a time of stagflation with high unemployment and high inflation, he took dramatic steps, they included a major tax cut, large scale deregulation of business activities. He took steps to weaken labor unions, found a bipartisan long-term fix to protect the Social Security system. Although he had the support from the Religious Right, he avoided or downplayed social issues such as abortion and racial integration, he spoke out for prayers in public schools but did not promote a constitutional amendment to allow it, Fighting drugs was a high priority, but promoting feminism was not though he did appoint the first women to the Supreme Court. He became an iconic figure to which Republican candidates for the next generation praised. "Ronald Reagan was convivial, courteous, self-confident, humble. But he was opaque, remote and inscrutable," Says historian Melvyn P. Leffler/ According to James P. Pfiffner, University Professor of Public Policy at George Mason University, Reagan was a larger-than-life character, a formidable politician, an important president.
His complexity produced a "presidency of paradoxes," in which dramatic successes mingled with unfortunate failures. He strengths included clear direction. Voters appreciated his optimism and gracious nature, which made his ideals seem all that more attractive, he believed that all national problems were simple problems, had faith faith in simple solutions. That strengthened his resolve but led to failures when there were deep complications. Paradoxically, his victories depended on his willingness to make pragmatic compromises without forsaking his ideals. Reagan himself made the major policy decisions, overruled his top advisers in cases such as the Reykjavík Summit in 1986, his 1987 speech calling for tearing down the Berlin wall, he was concerned with broad issues, as well as anecdotal evidence to support his beliefs. He paid little attention to details and elaborate briefings; when senior officials did not work out, such as Secretary of State Al Haig, they were fired. Reagan went through a series of six national security advisers before settling on people.
Indeed, the one of them John Poindexter was trusted too much. Poindexter and his aide Oliver North engaged in a secret deal with Iran called the Iran–Contra affair that damaged Reagan's reputation. Reagan had travelled abroad, relied on an inner circle of advisers who were not foreign policy experts, including his wife, James Baker, Edwin Meese and Michael Deaver. Haig had the credentials to be Secretary of State, but he was arrogant and unable to get along with the other top aides, he was replaced by George P. Shultz, who proved much more collaborative, has been admired by historians. Other key players included William J. Casey, director of the CIA, William P. Clark, national security advisor, Jeane Kirkpatrick, Ambassador to the United Nations. Casper W. Weinberger, Secretary of Defense rebuilt and expanded the military, but did not coordinate well with the foreign policy leadership. Reagan served as President during the last part of the Cold War, an era of escalating ideological disagreements and preparations for war between the United States and the Soviet Union.
Reagan in 1982 denounced the enemy as an "evil empire" that would be consigned to the "ash heap of history" and he predicted that communism would collapse. He reversed the policy of détente and massively built up the United States military, he proposed the Strategic Defense Initiative, a defense project that planned to use ground and space-based missile defense systems to protect the United States from attack. Reagan believed. Reagan was convinced that the Soviet Union could be defeated rather than negotiated with. Reagan forcefully confronted the Soviet Union, marking a sharp departure from the détente observed by his predecessors Nixon and Carter. Under the assumption that the Soviet Union was financially unable to match the United States in a renewed arms race, he accelerated increases in defense spending begun during the Carter Administration and strove to make the Cold War economically and rhetorically hot. Reagan had three motivations. First he agreed with the neoconservatives who argued that the Soviets had pulled ahead in military power and the U.
S. had to race to catch up. Stansfield Turner, CIA director under Carter, warned in 1981 that, "in the last several years all of the best
Ronald Reagan Freedom Award
The Ronald Reagan Freedom Award is the highest civilian honor bestowed by the private Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation. The award is given to "those who have made monumental and lasting contributions to the cause of freedom worldwide."Until her death, the award was given by Former First Lady Nancy Reagan on behalf of her husband, who died in June 2004. The award was first given in 1992, by President Ronald Reagan himself, as well as in 1993, but in 1994 Mrs. Reagan presented the award instead of her husband. Ronald Reagan had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease a few months before, was not able to attend the ceremony. In order to receive the award, the potential recipient must "have made monumental and lasting contributions to the cause of freedom worldwide," as well as "embody President Reagan's lifelong belief that one man or woman can make a difference." Former President George H. W. Bush, awarded the medal on February 6, 2007, which would have been Ronald Reagan's 96th birthday, remarked, "I wish I had a little Ronald Reagan in me when it came to communicating with the American people.
Had I been blessed with my predecessor's remarkable skill, who knows? I might still be employed." On a more serious note, he said in the speech: "Working with Ronald Reagan was one of the greatest joys of my life." Bush served as Reagan's Vice President for the eight years. On September 17, 2008, the award was presented to former Soviet dissident Natan Sharansky by former first lady Nancy Reagan. 1992 – Mikhail Gorbachev, former General Secretary of the Soviet Union 1993 – General Colin Powell, former National Security Advisor to President Reagan 1994 – Yitzhak Rabin, former Prime Minister of Israel 1995 – King Hussein I King of Jordan 1997 – Bob Hope, former entertainer. 1998 – Margaret Thatcher, former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom 2000 – The Reverend Billy Graham, evangelical minister 2002 – Rudy Giuliani, former mayor of New York 2007 – George H. W. Bush, former President of the United States, served under Reagan as Vice President of the United States 2008 – Natan Sharansky, former KGB prisoner, human rights activist, Israeli politician.
2011 – Lech Wałęsa, former Solidarity leader and former president of Poland
Second inauguration of Ronald Reagan
The second inauguration of Ronald Reagan as President of the United States was held on Sunday, January 20, 1985 in the Grand Foyer of the White House, publicly the following day, January 21, 1985 at the United States Capitol in Washington, D. C; the inauguration marked the commencement of the second four-year term of Ronald Reagan as President and of George H. W. Bush as Vice President; as the weather outside was harsh, with daytime temperatures of 7 °F and wind chills of −25 °F, the event organizers were forced to move the public inaugural ceremony, planned for the West Front of the Capitol, inside to the Capitol Rotunda. There, as they had the day before Chief Justice Warren E. Burger administered the presidential oath of office to Reagan, former Associate Justice Potter Stewart administered the vice presidential oath to Bush. Jessye Norman sang Simple Gifts from Aaron Copland's Old American Songs at the ceremony. Presidency of Ronald Reagan First inauguration of Ronald Reagan United States presidential election, 1984 Text of Reagan's Second Inaugural Address Audio of Reagan's Second Inaugural Address
1936 Democratic National Convention
The 1936 Democratic National Convention was held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from June 23 to 27, 1936. The convention resulted in the nomination of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Vice President John N. Garner for reelection. Prior to 1936, the rule for nominating candidates for President and Vice President required a two-thirds vote of the delegates. However, this rule was abolished at the 1936 Democratic Convention and conventioneers adopted a rule which provided that a majority could nominate; this would allow for candidates to more be nominated and would thus produce less balloting. It began to diminish the South's clout at the convention, making it easier for Democrats to begin adopting civil rights and other liberal ideas into their platforms; the two thirds rule had long given the South a de facto veto on presidential nominees, but Roosevelt pushed for the removal of the policy, in part due to past deadlocks. With the rule's abolition, Missouri Senator Bennett Champ Clark noted that "the Democratic Party is no longer a sectional party, it has become a great national party."
Southern Democrats would continue to decline in power leading to the Dixiecrat movement and Nixon's 1968 Southern strategy. South Carolina Senator Ellison D. Smith walked out of the convention hall once he saw that a black minister, Marshall L. Shepard, was going to deliver the invocation. Smith recalled, "I started walking, and from his great plantation in the sky, John C. Calhoun bent down and whispered in my ear –'You done good, Ed.'" The Balloting: President Roosevelt and Vice President Garner were renominated by acclamation without need for a roll-call vote. In his acceptance speech on June 27 at the adjacent Franklin Field, Roosevelt remarked, "This generation of Americans has a rendezvous with destiny." History of the United States Democratic Party Democratic Party presidential primaries, 1936 List of Democratic National Conventions U. S. presidential nomination convention 1936 Republican National Convention United States presidential election, 1936 Democratic Party Platform of 1936 at The American Presidency Project Roosevelt Nomination Acceptance Speech for President at DNC at The American Presidency Project A film clip "Democrats Cheer, 1936/06/24 is available at the Internet Archive