Bill O’Reilly: “Reagan was an establishment man”

MP   |   Published originally January 8, 2016

Bear in mind, O’Reilly purportedly spent years researching Reagan…

In 1974, George Will wrote…

Reagan is 63 and he looks it. His hair is so remarkably free of gray, but around the mouth and neck, he looks like an old man.

He has never demonstrated substantial national appeal. His hardcore support today consists primarily of the Kamikaze Conservatives who thought the 1960 Goldwater campaign was jolly fun. And there is reason to doubt that Reagan is well suited to appeal to the electorate that just produced a Democratic landslide.

In 1976, when Reagan challenged Gerald Ford– a sitting Republican president from the establishment wing– Will urged party leaders to “purge” Reagan supporters…

In 1980, Reagan only picked George H.W. Bush for VP as an olive branch to the establishment, in the hopes of unifying the party…

Reagan was prepared to embrace the wing of the Republican Party that had ridiculed him, probably disliked him and would surely do its best to undermine his agenda.

George Bush was not really on Reagan’s radar screen. Since the primaries, the two men had barely spoken, and they certainly hadn’t discussed the vice presidency. Apart from serious policy differences, Bush had refused to admit defeat in the primary battles despite being vanquished by Reagan in 29 of 33 primaries and did not withdraw from the race until just before the California primary in June. Reagan considered the belated departure willful and unnecessary and was offended by it.

To call Reagan “establishment” in ’68, ’76, or ’80 would be like calling O’Reilly a [insert sexual harassment lawsuit-related burn HERE].

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