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Ronald Reagan and the Presidency

President Reagan’s reassertion of presidential power left a significant mark on events of the 1980s and reinvigorated the office of the presidency. It is generally acknowledged that President Reagan’s policies were key factors leading to the collapse of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, liberating millions. President Reagan proved flexible in his dealings with the Soviet Union, reducing tensions and negotiating a reduction in arms. However, opponents thought that President Reagan's policies of strengthening the American military and confronting the Soviet Union would increase the danger of armed conflict while adding to the budget deficit. In some instances, these policies led to claims that the United States had supported governments and outside groups that at times disregarded human rights. Nevertheless, during his eight years in office, Ronald Reagan’s political instincts and determination to spread democracy and freedom raised American morale and promoted liberty around the world. Although scholars continue to debate the merits of his policies, popular esteem for Ronald Reagan has risen over time. Public opinion polls indicate that he remains one of the country’s most popular and admired presidents.

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