Man for the Mid-Point

If some of the sharp ideological edge has receded from Ronald Reagan's political rhetoric at midterm and a new realism shows in his policies, one Washington insider may be more responsible than any other. He is James Baker, the President's calm, soft-spoken chief of staff, who helped Gerald Ford in 1976 and George Bush in 1980 oppose Reagan for the Republican Party's presidential nomination. The former Texas lawyer has become the President's most influential White House crisis manager. Says a fellow presidential assistant about Baker: "He is the guy who is now driving...

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