The Official End of the Reagan Era

He stood for small government. Why the Age of the Gipper ends with Obama's election

Diana Walker / Time & Life Pictures / Getty

Ronald Reagan

Here's a shout-out to Andrew Jackson, Franklin Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan. You won't find them on Mount Rushmore, yet each of these Presidents can lay claim to a status that transcends stone portraiture or academic canonization. For each has stamped his name and, more important, his ideas, personality and values on a defining chapter of the American story. How do you get an age named after you? Simply put, by shattering the existing political consensus and replacing it with one of your own making, one whose influence is felt long after your time in office.

The Age of Jackson spanned four...

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