On October 7, 1984, President Reagan famously said to Walter Mondale, “There you go again.” Historically, gentlemanly detractors also maligned him. Mark Weinberg makes this same mistake in his Trump-Reagan column, “Where do we go from here”. For Weinberg, political nostalgia has caused confusion over personality and substance regarding his subjects.
On the basis of policies and accomplishments President Trump has proven he’s our generation’s Reagan. What of Donald Trump's “Make America Great Again” motto: a Reaganesque message trumpeting U.S. exceptionalism? Specifically, Trump has modeled Reaganomics by lower taxes to spur today’s 4.2 percent GDP. In his first year, the Trump administration reduced the federal workforce by almost 13,000. Given Reagan’s abhorrence for the size and scope of government, the Trump era rollback of 22 regulations for every new one is clearly something “The Gipper” would approve of. Furthermore, both men value the rule of law and keeping our country safe.
Similar in substance is Trump to Reagan on the international stage. His policy of direct engagement with foreign leaders and his “Peace through strength” doctrine mirror Reagan’s. In the 1980s, the geopolitical foe was Gorbachev, and the “evil empire” was the Soviet Union. Today’s villainous regime is North Korea and Kim Jong Un. The actors have changed, but not the chairs. Where it counts, who’s more Reagan than Trump?