I completely forgot about watching this last night. The Discovery Channel revealed who American picked as the “Greatest American” and it was none other than Ronald Reagan. In fact, the Top Ten was very heavily Republican oriented, with 3 names in the Top 6.
1. Ronald Reagan
2. Abraham Lincoln
3. Martin Luther King, Jr.
4. George Washington
5. Benjamin Franklin
6. George W. Bush
7. Bill Clinton
8. Elvis Presley
9. Oprah Winfrey
10. Franklin Delano Roosevelt
I believe Matt Lauer hosted this show, which had to be painful for him to have to announce Reagan as the “Greatest American”.
I missed the ceremony at the National Cathedral but I did manage to catch some of the speeches on C-Span. Margaret Thatcher’s taped speech was fantastic, but it was George HW Bush’s speech that I found the most moving. Seeing the way he almost broke down, you could tell it was from the heart. Then watching the motorcade from the airport to the Reagan Library, it was great to see the numerous people and cars on the side of the road watching Reagan go by on his way to his final resting place. Finally the outdoor funeral ceremony was absolutely beautiful and poignant. But it was the final moment, with Nancy Reagan clutching the folded American flag and breaking down as she kissed the casket where even I couldn’t contain myself emotionally.
While this week has been a time to mourn the loss of Ronald Reagan, it has also been a celebration of the life of one of the greatest Presidents this country has ever seen.
Just got back from the Reagan funeral procession and I must say it was even more beautiful than even I was expecting. We had a great location at the corner of 7th and Constitution. The crowds were easily 12 people deep in the areas we were in. Luckily we were able to stand up on a concrete retaining wall so that we could see above the crowd in front of us. After today’s wonderful events, I don’t feel like even reading the news or posting any polls tonight. I will just leave you with these two photos that I managed to get of the Reagan Caisson and the Riderless horse. Click for the full-sized image.
We also walked up to the Capitol just to check out the line. I don’t know what the official tme to reach the front was, but if you plan on going, be prepared to stay a while.
Unfortunately he decided to stick around instead. A pretty funny story that was reported by the NY Post.
When ABC News broke the sad news of Ronald Reagan’s death Saturday afternoon, it sent its competitors into a frenzy. The press corps traveling with President Bush in Normandy first heard the news when ABC’s White House reporter Terry Moran began doing a live report in their midst. The reaction, according to one eyewitness, was “total chaos â€” people running everywhere, knocking into things.” CNN’s John King yelled into his cellphone that CNN had been beaten and was so upset he threatened to quit. King ended his tantrum by throwing his cellphone to the ground. Bad move: his meltdown was captured on tape.
Maybe if the John King and his fellow Democratic partisan hack “journalists” at CNN spent less time trying to find new ways to attack President Bush on a daily basis, they wouldn’t have a problem beating the other netwroks to breaking news events.
For those of you who haven’t been to the George W. Bush campaign site lately, the front page has a tribute to some of President Reagan’s greatest speeches. They range from his speech in support of Barry Goldawater in 1964 to his final big speech at the 1992 Republican convention.
The Baltimore Sun has a round up of prominent Maryland figures on the passing of the great Ronald Reagan. Here was Governor Bob Ehrlich’s remarks.
“President Reagan’s politics touched a nation,” Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr.’s administration said in a statement issued yesterday. His “words of inspiration brought forth the innate patriot in all Americans and reminded us that freedom has its price.”
This is a sad hour in the life of America. A great American life has come to an end. I have just spoken to Nancy Reagan. On behalf of our whole nation, Laura and I offered her and the Reagan family our prayers and our condolences.
Ronald Reagan won America’s respect with his greatness, and won its love with his goodness. He had the confidence that comes with conviction, the strength that comes with character, the grace that comes with humility, and the humor that comes with wisdom. He leaves behind a nation he restored and a world he helped save.
During the years of President Reagan, America laid to rest an era of division and self-doubt. And because of his leadership, the world laid to rest an era of fear and tyranny. Now, in laying our leader to rest, we say thank you.
He always told us that for America, the best was yet to come. We comfort ourselves in the knowledge that this is true for him, too. His work is done, and now a shining city awaits him. May God bless Ronald Reagan.
The Washington Post has a pretty good compilation of articles on Predient Reagan that woill probably take me days to get through. Obviously they’ve probably had these articles ready to go for years in the sad anticipation of this day. Most of them are online as well.
To his credit, John Kerry also released a gracious statement and has stated he is suspending overt campaign activities. I, therefore, shall also avoid attacking Senator Kerry until that time Kerry begins launching attacks against President Bush again. It’s too bad the folks at some mainstream Democratic websites like Daily Kos and Democratic Underground can’t seem to follow Kerry’s lead. Their ability to spew hatred towards Republicans, even on the death of a former President, is quite sad. I said I wasn’t going to delve into the details, so I will leave it at that. It just amazes me that people can have that much hatred built up inside themselves.
A lot of people giving their “Where I was when Reagen died” tidbits. Mine wasn’t that exciting. I had a party that I was going to last night that was supposed to begin at 6:00pm. The plan was to get to the party around then so we could watch the Belmont Stakes (Smarty Jones choked!) before really getting the party started. All afternoon, I was essentially killing time until I had to leave. Obviously I had heard about the news all day about Reagn’s health taking a turn for the worse. We’ve heard this type of news before; however, never hav the news networks been so focused and repetitive with it that you knew something bad was happening. As I was flipping around, I saw the words “Ronald Wilson Reagan: 1911-2004″ at the bottom of the Fox News and I knew right away. I ended up glued to the TV for the next hour until I left for the party.
When I got home from the party, I stayed glued to the TV for another hour, flipping between MSNBC with Chris Matthews and Fox News with Rita Cosby. CNN, for some reason wasn’t even LIVE and had on a Larry King rerun of all things I also took a trip around the blogosphere. My first inclination was to highlight some of the far-left Democratic sites and some of the ludicrous things they said, but then decided it wasn’t even worth it. Those type of people are beyond hope. Most people, on both the left and right had some great things to say about Reagan. The best paragraph I found that probably hit me as how I felt came from the guys at Powerline.
Every American should live through at least one great presidency — a presidency that achieves both great triumph and great transformation. But such presidencies are rare enough that not every American does. Reagan’s is the great presidency that I lived through. If I were more like Reagan, I’d believe that I will live through another, but I’m not, so I don’t.
I too hope I have the opportunity to live under another President as great as Ronald Reagan.