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Opinion | Reagan Foundation to Trump, RNC: Quit raising money off Ronald Reagan’s legacy

American Politics

Opinion | Reagan Foundation to Trump, RNC: Quit raising money off Ronald Reagan’s legacy

The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute, which runs the 40th president’s library near Los Angeles, has demanded that President Trump and the Republican National Committee (RNC) quit raising campaign money by using Ronald Reagan’s name and likeness.“It was simply handled with a phone call mid-last week to the RNC, and they agreed to stop,”…

Opinion | Reagan Foundation to Trump, RNC: Quit raising money off Ronald Reagan’s legacy

The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute, which runs the 40 th president’s library near Los Angeles, has actually demanded that President Trump and the Republican Politician National Committee (RNC) gave up raising project money by utilizing Ronald Reagan’s name and likeness.

” It was just handled with a telephone call mid-last week to the RNC, and they accepted stop,” Reagan Foundation chief marketing officer Melissa Giller stated in an email Saturday.

What concerned the structure’s attention– and obliged officials there to complain– was a fundraising e-mail that headed out July 19 with “Donald J. Trump” determined as the sender and a subject line that checked out: “Ronald Reagan and Yours Really.”

The solicitation offered, for a donation of $45 or more, a “restricted edition” commemorative set including two gold-colored coins, one each with a picture of Reagan and Trump. The coins were installed with a 1987 photograph of Reagan and Trump shaking hands in a White Home getting line– the kind of fleeting contact that presidents have with countless people a year.

” Friend,” the fundraising e-mail purportedly from Trump stated, “I simply saw our new Trump-Reagan Commemorative Coin Sets and WOW, these coins are lovely – I took one appearance and immediately knew that I wanted YOU to have a set. These aren’t any common coins. They symbolize an essential time in our Country. This year, in addition to being re-elected as YOUR President, it also marks the 40 th anniversary of our Nation’s 40 th President, Ronald Reagan. Sadly, we already offered out of the very first batch we had in stock. However I liked these coins a lot that I asked my group to hurry order another batch for my TOP SUPPORTERS JUST.”

It warned: “I’ve licensed a really restricted production of these iconic coins, which is why I’m ONLY using them to our top supporters, like YOU. This deal is NOT offered to the public, so please, do NOT share this e-mail with anybody.”

Profits from the coin sales went to the Trump Make America Great Again Committee, a joint fundraising operation that benefits both the Trump campaign and the RNC.

The joint committee website, where the coins were for sale, noted: “The President only authorized the production of 5,000 sets of these renowned coins, which is why we’re ONLY providing them to our TOP fans.

In the 1990 s, both Reagan and his spouse Nancy signed legal files that approved the foundation sole rights to their names, likenesses and images. Of course, there are countless pictures and videos of Reagan that are in the public domain. However the structure declares power to obstruct them from being utilized for industrial purposes and political endorsements. When Reagan Foundation authorities were warned of the Trump e-mail solicitation, they chose “within seconds” to put a stop to it, said Giller.

Athough the RNC accepted the foundation’s demand regarding the fundraising e-mails, “we still have a lot of additional work,” Giller said. The structure is checking out how lots of people might have seen the e-mail and the number of the coin sets were sold, and might still decide to get lawyers included, she added.

Frederick J. Ryan Jr., who chairs the Reagan Structure board, is also publisher and CEO of The Washington Post. He decreased to use a comment for this column.

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This isn’t the very first time the 45 th president has actually traded on the name or likeness of the 40 th, who is revered amongst conservatives, for his own functions. In July 2019, he shared as “Cute!” a fake quote by Reagan that was making its method around social networks. According to the apocryphal story, Reagan upon meeting Trump apparently stated: “For the life of me, and I’ll never understand how to describe it, when I fulfilled that young man, I seemed like I was the one shaking hands with the president.”

Trump continued to spread out the fabricated quote, even though Joanne Drake, the chief administrative officer of the Reagan Foundation, had already informed the fact-checking website PolitiFact that Reagan “did not ever say that about Donald Trump.”

Relations in between the Trump family and the Reagan Structure have actually generally been cordial. Last November, Donald Trump Jr. appeared for a lecture and book-signing at the Reagan Library, for which the foundation charged admission. The event sold out.

” President Reagan was a proud Republican and supporter of a celebration that has actually carried on his fight for conservative principles of economic chance and restricted federal government. His likeness is utilized by countless Republicans each year who gather around the nation for ‘Reagan Dinners,’ and his library frequently hosts disputes for our presidential candidates,” RNC interactions director Michael Ahrens said in an emailed statement. “Considered that the Reagan Structure just recently hosted the Trump family to raise money for its organization and has actually not challenged us utilizing President Reagan’s likeness in the past, their objection came as a surprise. Despite the fact that we believe our use of the image was appropriate, we will stop emailing this fundraising solicitation as a courtesy.”

As of Saturday afternoon, it appeared that the coin sets were still readily available on the joint fundraising committee website.

Nancy Reagan, who passed away in 2016, was wary of those who invoked her partner’s name, even in efforts to commemorate him. In 2003, for circumstances, she openly opposed a push by conservative House Republicans to change Franklin D. Roosevelt’s profile on the penny with a picture of Reagan, who already was nearing completion of his fight with Alzheimer’s illness.

” While I can comprehend the objectives of those looking for to put my other half’s face on the dime, I do not support this proposition and I am particular Ronnie would not,” the former very first lady stated “When our country picks to honor a fantastic president such as Franklin Roosevelt by positioning his likeness on our currency, it would be incorrect to remove him and replace him with another.”

Nancy Reagan understood that a president’s place in history is valuable, distinct and vulnerable to the opportunism of those who claim to follow in his steps. It is not tough to imagine what she would have thought about the “renowned” coins that Trump has actually been hawking.

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