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Ronald Reagan

Mark English, 1933 - 2019
Ronald Wilson Reagan, 6 Feb 1911 - 5 Jun 2004
Oil paint and pastel pencil on canvas
Board: 56.5 x 39.4cm (22 1/4 x 15 1/2")
Frame: 95.6 x 62.5 x 3.8cm (37 5/8 x 24 5/8 x 1 1/2")
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Time magazine
Restrictions & Rights
© Mark English
Object number
Exhibition Label
Midway through the first term of Ronald Reagan's presidency, Time magazine ran this cover and an accompanying story, titled "How Reagan Decides." At the time, Reagan and his chief advisers were preparing a budget with a proposed deficit of about $155 billion, more "than twice as large as any recorded by a previous administration" and contrary to Reagan's major tenets of restrained government spending and balanced budgets. In spite of the record-high tallies, in Reagan's mind he was not violating his long-held principles, but rather working toward them in the long run. He believed that his tax cuts, "slashes in social spending," and a revived economy would soon shrink the deficits. Reagan's reelection in 1984 was yet another testament to his optimism and to his uncanny ability to communicate with the American people.
Mark English (born 1933)
Oil and pastel on canvas mounted on board, 1982
Time cover, December 13, 1982
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
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National Portrait Gallery Collection