Skip to comments.Texas' Reagan revolution
Posted on 02/06/2011 5:13:53 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
WASHINGTON On the evening of May 1, 1976, Ronald Reagan warbled the lyrics of The Eyes of Texas Are Upon You into a telephone from a hotel in Indiana.
On the other end of the line, hundreds of Reagan revolutionaries in Houston burst into applause as the former California governor's rendition of the state song punctuated their giddy celebration of his 2-to-1 thrashing of incumbent Republican President Gerald Ford in that day's Texas presidential primary.
Little did anyone at that Houston victory party know, but that moment would be a turning point not only for Reagan but also in the history of the Texas Republican Party and of Texas politics in general.
...............In 1976, prominent Houston attorney Jim Baker.. was among the detractors who at first viewed Reagan as "a shoot-from-the-hip cowboy." ...
"Our (Bush) campaign called it 'voodoo economics,'" Baker recalls. "I'm a reformed drunk when it comes to that. The Reagan economic policies that he put into place worked."
Touched by optimism
Charles Bacarisse, associate director of President Reagan's Office of Media Relations, was typical of the new Republicans brought into the fold by Reagan. His great-grandfather was chairman of the Harris County Democratic Party. His father was a Kennedy Democrat. But he was touched by Reagan's optimism, his toughness and his ability "to capture the hopes and desires" of average Americans.
....In October 1988, Reagan bade his political farewell to Texas. His hair now streaked with gray, Reagan appeared to thunderous applause at the Mesquite Rodeo wearing a brown suit, waving a white Stetson and riding in the open cab of a horse-drawn wagon.
"He made people feel good," says Baker. "He was such a sunny optimist. He was almost totally guileless. And he's one of the kindest, lovely men I've known."
(Excerpt) Read more at chron.com ...
We will not see his like again.
We will not see his like again.It's true. He had a greatness that is rare in history.
But remember what it is that he accomplished. Besides ending the cold war and reshaping American politics he also did this: he reminded all of us that the greatness of America is within each of us.
When people say Sarah Palin is no Ronald Reagan they are right, but they miss the point.
We should not be looking for "the next Ronald Reagan".
We should be looking for the Ronald Reagan in each of us.
And that, in my opinion, is the greatness of Sarah Palin. It is a lesser greatness, to be sure, but it is a greatness that fits the times we live in.
The greatness of Sarah Palin is that she is one of us and that she is living the life that Reagan talked about when he spoke often and lovingly of the greatness that is in all people who are truly free, and in all Americans.
I salute you, Ronald Reagan, and I will always remember what you said about me, and about all my fellow Americans.
The greatness of Sarah Palin is that she is one of us BTT!!!
Reagan brought a revolution to the Nation and Texas, but I began my journey before that. The first President I voted for was Richard Nixon and have no regret for that either. The Dem defections had already begun when I reached voting age in Texas.
Thanks for the video link!
And the gathered crowd sang to him, “The Eyes of Texas are Upon you,” as he left the arena.
A lot more Aggies in Texas now than in ‘76, and they are the heart and soul of conservatism in the state. Not a lot of conservatives from the commune in Austin that sings that stupid song. If a politician wants to endear himself to conservatives in Texas today(Aggies), I would avoid singing “The Eyes of Texas”.
This link is to a video of Janet McBride singing/yodeling a song as President Reagan left the stage to get in the horse drawn carriage. Poor quality but is of the same event.
New York Times article from Nov. 7, 1988 talking about President Reagan’s ride into the sunset so to speak at the Mesquite Rodeo:
Great video. Brought tears to my eyes.
We heard him speak in front of the Alamo during the 1980 campaign. What an unforgettable moment! The overpasses from the airport were loaded with well-wishers waving banners and flags. Jimmy Stewart introduced him to the crowd at Alamo Plaza, and then we all went to work to elect the best president of the twentieth century.
Thank you for those.
I lived in a suburb of Houston during the decade of the ‘70s. Texas Republicans were NOT so enamored of RR in those days — splitting their support between John Connolly (former Gov. now turned Repbulcian) and George H. W. Bush. As a former Californian, I had a hard time making a dent in the Old Guard of Texas with my arguments in favor of Reagan in 1976. I remember a blue haired Republican politico looking down her nose at me, proclaiming that Reagon was “too old”. They had changed their tune after 4 years of Carter.
Jimmy Stewart and the Gip in the same room.
In 1976, prominent Houston attorney Jim Baker.. was among the detractors who at first viewed Reagan as "a shoot-from-the-hip cowboy."
The state song of Texas is not The Eyes of Texas!
I miss Reagan.
The question should not be is Palin or Joe or ABC or DEF or whomever the next Ronald Reagan. The question should be: “Is this somebody Ronald Reagan would favor?”