SIMILARITIES AND DIFFERENCES OF
President Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan are among the top ten best presidents who have ruled America. The two presidents were democratic, independent, and bipartisan. They had excellent speeches and were republicans. In addition, they had extraordinary popularity. They all had vice presidents and were vulnerable to assassination. Their citizens had nicknamed them according to their behaviors. Both had challengers during their presidency. This paper will contrast and compare the two presidents. It will consider their achievements and failures. It will also explain the promises they made to people and how the methods they used to achieve them.
President Abraham Lincoln was unique in his bipartisan appeal, team of rivals, and speeches. Reagan was a republican and independent president. He took office on 4 March 1861 at the age of 52 years and two weeks. His party was Republican. He was assassinated on 15 April 1865 after having been in office for a period of four years and five weeks. He served one term. He had obtained a nickname “Honest Abe, The Rail Splitter, Great Emancipator.” His vice presidents were Hannibal Hamlin and Andrew Johnson. His challengers were John C, Breckinridge, Stephen A. Douglas., and John Bell (Civil war trust article has outlined facts about Abraham Lincoln).
President Ronald Reagan was a member of Republican Party. He had extraordinary popularity compared to republicans. He is the fourth among democrats and first among independents. He joined office on 20 January 1981 at an age of 69 years and 49 weeks. His term ended on 20 January 1989. He served for eight years, which was two terms. While in office, he was nicknamed “Dutch. The great communicator, The Gipper”. His vice president was George bush Woolley & Peters assert that his challengers were Jimmy Carter, John B. Anderson, and Walter Mondale. He appeared in most motion pictures as a hero. Most people believed in him. It was during his term, that the country faced the great depression. There was high unemployment, bankruptcy, and closures of firms. Despite the critics that the depression came from overtaxing by the government and lack of government assistance, he promised to end depression and support the people (3).
Abraham Lincoln restored the Union through his authority as a president. He used his strategies to end civil war through his trustworthy general. He faced a lot of resistance in his government while passing out policies. Example he introduced a military draft, which brought riots in the city of New York in 1863. He was the initiator of income tax to finance war. He suspended habeas corpus in some areas, which gave permission to the government to imprison dissenters without first putting them in trial. He gave out Emancipation Proclamation and forced its amendment in the constitution that ended slavery.
Reagan developed supply-side economic policies to control inflation, increase economic growth, and reduce government spending. In addition, he lowered federal income tax rate by signing bipartisan Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981. He fought with drug abusers and imposed a penalty on offenses related to drugs. He financially supported defense sector in the country. This reduced inflation rates during his time.
He fought civil war and won which led to victory of the union through confederacy. He protected slaves who had escaped and abolished slavery in U.S, through signing the 13th amendment of the constitution.
Lincoln ordered the two confederate diplomats to be arrested while on the British ship Trent and ordered a release of the prisoners. During his time, macroeconomic forces such as crop failures dominated the country. This contributed to import of cotton, which were blocked in South America. This created huge losses in textile industries and export sector. Other manufactured goods such as weapons found their way in the country.
Reagan indicated that communism aimed at freeing all people in areas of the country. His anti-communist attitude led him to promote world revolution into a communist state. He stressed that efforts from other administrators had favored the soviets. Lincoln diffused the Trent fair to block recognition of the confederacy in Britain. He offered economic Aid and military Aid to foreign countries. Reagan reversed US policy of détente with USSR and formed the doctrine of Reagan to support rebel movements supporting anti-communist. These movements were in Angola, Cambodia and others. In his support to anti-communist groups, he availed arms to groups such as Contras and Mujahideen. He invaded Grenada after a coup d’état and formed a Leninist government, which was non-aligned and independent.
President Lincoln did not concentrate on human rights as opposed to Reagan who strongly disagreed with abortion and agreed to legalize hiring of women and the minority groups. He strongly disagreed with homosexuality and supported the recognition of God in public. He was neutral to people who owned guns while he opposed the opinion of strictly punishing evildoers to reduce crime. He did not conform to taxation of the wealthy people.
He agreed to expand the military; he supported free trade and agreed to foreign relationships (Woolley & Peters 1-22).
President Reagan failed in the Iran-Contra Affair because the arms were sold to the hostages and their proceeds given to rebels of anti-communists. These were the contras in Nicaragua. Reagan refused to withdraw nominations when Robert Roack was appointed to the Supreme Court. This led to embarrassments and ill will with the senate. He participated in failure at Lebanon (Schlesinger 5). He encouraged Israelites to invade Lebanon and send the marines without proper forces. He strengthened his power as a president through fighting the controllers of air traffic who were on traffic. He also forced the chief of white house to resign. He directly executed laws using his power such as expansion and continuation of the review program.
Abraham Lincoln was against his former administrators. He was anxious about many casualties brought to him and the time the war had to take (Burlingame 2). He was against people who supported punishment to the southerners due to their rebellious nature. He opposed financial penalties and instead advocated for amnesty and opted for union.
In summary both presidents tried, their best at their time to rule lead the citizens. They were emotional such as preventing punishments and used their powers to effect their directions. They also maintained law and order to have a peaceful nation.