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Ronald Reagan vs. Bill Clinton Essay

Presidents Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton were both two termed presidents who were known to have had very favorable ratings during their presidencies. Although their policies and time periods in which they presided were different, both of them made significant contributions to the United States. The U.S. economy did very well under the Reagan and Clinton years. Despite similarities in their economic success, Reagan took over an economy under stagflation and inflation in the double-digits. Clinton, however, took on his presidency during a time of low inflation and a growing economy which was leaving its recession. In order to improve the economy, Reagan utilized Reaganomics which was a conservative approach for dealing with the 1980 recession. Reaganomics promised to reduce government spending, reduce taxes, reduce regulation, and reduce inflation by controlling the money supply. Employment growth was also at its rise during the years of these presidents.

During Clinton’s presidency, new jobs were created mainly due to the dot-com bubble, which lead to soaring stocks and free spending. Reagan and Clinton were not only accredited for their economic success but also for their other achievements. One of Reagan’s most well-known achievements was the ending of the Cold War. With his infamous line, “Tear down this wall!” Reagan challenged the Soviet Union leader to destroy the Berlin Wall. The fall of the Berlin Wall was the indicator of the demise of the Soviet Union as well as the end of the Cold War. Reagan also claimed a great victory over the invasion of Grenada which successfully contained communism. One of Clinton’s other accomplishments was the signing of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

It was an agreement signed by the United States, Mexico, and Canada. The U.S. benefitted from NAFTA since the free trade created more jobs, increased exports, and created trade surplus. In spite of these successes and accomplishments, both presidents did break a few laws and got involved with some scandals (which didn’t affect their approval rating that much since the economy was at its prime). Reagan was involved in the Iran-Contra scandal which was when he covertly sold arms to Iran. That money was then used to buy weapons for the rebels in Nicaragua. In turn, Reagan’s actions have led to breaking two U.S. laws; however, this event didn’t take a toll on Reagan’s popularity.

Clinton, on the other hand, was involved with an affair also known as the Lewinsky scandal. Though, the scandal wasn’t the reason why Clinton was put on trial for impeachment. His near impeachment was due to perjury- lying under oath that “[he] did not have sexual relations with that woman.” Despite of these infamies, the Reagan and Clinton presidencies were eras of economic success and prosperity for Americans. These leaders have provided the country with hope and change, and without them, we would probably not be as thriving as we are today.

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