Ronald Reagan was 69 years old in 1980. At the time, Reagan was the oldest person to be elected to the presidency. Reagan had been a Democrat until the early 1960s. He was an actor and had twice been the president of the Screen Actors Guild, the labor union for actors. He became governor of California in 1967, remaining in that post for two terms. Among many notable achievements as President, Reagan signed the Immigration Control and Reform Act of 1986, which granted amnesty to over 3 million illegal immigrants that entered the country prior to 1982, and made it illegal for employers to knowingly hire illegal immigrants. Reagan probably helped push the Soviet Union toward its collapse in 1989, by simultaneously increasing defense spending and calling for increased freedom from Soviet leaders. He survived an assassination attempt in his first term, and eventually acheived historic reductions in the numbers of nuclear weapons held by both the United States and the Soviet Union.
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Author of Thy King Dumb Come and Accountability Citizenship, Stephen P. Tryon is a businessman and technologist with extensive experience in e-commerce, a retired Soldier, and former Senate Fellow.