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Ron Reagan

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Ron Reagan

Ronald Prescott Reagan (born May 20, 1958), usually known as Ron Reagan, is the son of late President Ronald Reagan and his wife Nancy and is a talk show host and political commentator.

Life and family

Reagan grew up in Los Angeles and then Sacramento, while his father was Governor of California from 1967 to 1975. He attended Yale University but dropped out in 1976 after one semester. At that time, his father was running in the Republican Presidential primary against incumbent Gerald Ford, and Reagan disliked the attention he received at Yale. He joined the Joffrey Ballet in pursuit of a lifelong dream to become a ballet dancer.

Reagan now lives in Seattle with his wife, Doria, a psychologist whom he married in 1980. He has worked in recent years as a magazine journalist, and has hosted talk shows on cable TV networks such as the Animal Planet network. Reagan serves on the board of the Creative Coalition, an organization founded in 1989 by a group including Susan Sarandon and Christopher Reeve to politically mobilize entertainers and artists, generally for liberal causes.

He currently hosts Connected: Coast to Coast with Ron Reagan and Monica Crowley on MSNBC each day at noon and 5pm ET.

He has a sister, Patti Davis, five and a half years his senior and a half brother, Michael Reagan, the adoptive son of Ronald Reagan and his first wife Jane Wyman. A half sister, Maureen Reagan, is deceased.

Political activities

Reagan has always been a political liberal, although he has never considered a political career. Asked in a June 2004 New York Times interview if he would like to be President of the United States, he responded, "I would be unelectable. I'm an atheist. As we all know, that is something people won't accept." His speech at his father's funeral in June 2004, however, seemed to suggest that he believes in an afterlife. He is known to have dissented from some of his father's policies and actions, but his views have only become widely known in recent years, when he became an outspoken critic of Republican President George W. Bush.

In an April 2003 interview, Reagan said "The Bush people have no right to speak for my father, particularly because of the position he's in now. Yes, some of the current policies are an extension of the '80s. But the overall thrust of this administration is not my father's – these people are overly reaching, overly aggressive, overly secretive, and just plain corrupt. I don't trust these people."

He also strongly opposed the Bush administration's decision to invade Iraq. "9/11 gave the Bush people carte blanche to carry out their extreme agenda – and they didn't hesitate for a moment to use it," Reagan said. "By 9/12 Rumsfeld was saying, 'Let's hit Iraq.' They've used the war on terror to justify everything from tax cuts to Alaska oil drilling."

On July 28, 2004, Reagan spoke at the Democratic National Convention about his support for lifting Bush's restrictions on federally-funded Embryonic stem cell research, a form of research which some scientists believe could lead to a cure or new treatments for Alzheimer's Disease, which slowly killed President Reagan.

"There are those who would stand in the way of this remarkable future, who would deny the federal funding so crucial to basic research. A few of these folks, needless to say, are just grinding a political axe and they should be ashamed of themselves," Ron Reagan said of the restrictions. "We can choose between the future and the past, between reason and ignorance, between true compassion and mere ideology."

Reagan was quoted as saying that he would vote for Democratic candidate John Kerry in the 2004 presidential election.

Weeks later, Reagan wrote an essay entitled "The Case Against George W. Bush by Ron Reagan" for Esquire Magazine.

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