Mass and Direct Appeals
Presidential Race Ideology, Demographics
In his acceptance speech to the Republican National Convention in Dallas Aug. 23, President Reagan described the 1984 presidential election as a historic contest between two political philosophies: the conservatism of Reagan and the Republican Party vs. the liberalism of Walter F. Mondale and the Democrats. “America is presented with the clearest political choice of half a century,” Reagan said. It can be argued that ideological differences were as sharp in the contest between Lyndon B. Johnson and Barry Goldwater in 1964, and between Richard M. Nixon and George S. McGovern in 1972. But the 1984 election does feature two sharply opposite political programs.
Reagan's agenda features restraint in taxation and government spending on domestic programs; it portrays the ...