Ronald Reagan Declares that JFK Was Much More "Intelligent and Perceptive" Than President Johnson

June 2, 1967

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Ronald Reagan Declares that JFK Was Much More "Intelligent and Perceptive" Than President Johnson
Autograph Letter Signed
1 page | SMC 1478

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      Background

      Reagan writes that while he didn’t know what President Kennedy would have done had he lived, he thinks that he was a “much more intelligent & perceptive man than the present President” – Lyndon B. Johnson. And then, sounding a little like Kennedy himself, Reagan seemingly echoes JFK’s “Ask not what your country can do for you” call, saying, “It seems to me we have reached a point where all of us should do some soul searching about our country and our obligation to it.”

      Reagan formally entered political life campaigning for Barry Goldwater against Johnson in 1964 and, by 1967, was entertaining presidential ambitions of his own. At that point, in June 1967, it looked as if his opponent would have been Johnson.


      Autograph Letter Signed (“R.R.”), as Governor, 1 page, on yellow lined paper, quarto, no place, June 2, 1967. Addressed at top in an unknown hand. To Russell Davis in St. Louis, Missouri.
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      6/2/67

      Russell Davis
      Anheuser-Busch, Inc

      St. Louis, Mo.


      Dear Mr. Davis

      Thanks very much for your letter, it was good of you to take the time & trouble.

      I really dont [sic] know the answer to your question about our course if Pres. Kennedy had continued.  I do know I thought him a much more intelligent & perceptive man than the present President.

      I'm glad you liked the program.  It seems to me we have reached a point where all of us should do some soul searching about our country and our obligation to it.  May I commend you for what you are doing & for your attitude - Keep it up.

      Best Regards

      RR