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Journal of Transatlantic Studies

, Volume 8, Issue 3, pp 257–267 | Cite as

Ronald Reagan: Conviction politics and the transatlantic relationship

  • Alison R. HolmesEmail author
Article

Abstract

This article argues that any ‘nomination’ of a president for Transatlantica, interpreted here as being a ‘territory’ primarily occupied by the United States and the United Kingdom, should have three elements. The first is an acceptance by the ‘governed’ of the said ‘president’, with the former in this case being the leadership of the UK. The second is a unity of purpose founded on a common world view and evidenced at all levels, from the identification of enemies abroad to the proffered solutions to practical issues at home. The third is a consistency of action and a resiliency of trust in the face of differences in opinion or policy. Margaret Thatcher, while prime minister, accepted Ronald Reagan’s leadership, despite the fact she was arguably the more experienced international politician. The two shared a form of ‘conviction politics’ that drove not only their foreign policies, but also their domestic ones, throughout their extended and shared tenure. When disagreements inevitably arose between them, they were able relatively quickly to reestablish a strong working relationship, based upon their close personal partnership. This article concludes therefore that Ronald Reagan certainly satisfied the criteria of president of Transatlantica.

Keywords

Ronald Reagan Margaret Thatcher conviction politics consensus politics politics of reconstruction special relationship ‘exceptional’ politics 

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Notes

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Copyright information

© Board of Transatlantic Studies 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Yale UniversityNew HavenUSA

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