Regan, Donald Thomas

Regan, Donald Thomas

(rē`gən), 1918–2003, U.S. government official and financier, b. Cambridge, Mass. A graduate of Harvard (B.A. 1940), he went to work (1946) at a brokerage house that became Merrill Lynch after serving as a Marine officer in World War II. Regan rose through the company to become its youngest president in 1968 and chief executive in 1973, transforming the firm into a publicly owned financial services company. A long-time Republican, he was active in Ronald ReaganReagan, Ronald Wilson
, 1911–2004, 40th president of the United States (1981–89), b. Tampico, Ill. In 1932, after graduation from Eureka College, he became a radio announcer and sportscaster.
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's presidential campaign and became (1981) his Treasury secretary and a strong advocate of supply-side economicssupply-side economics,
economic theory that concentrates on influencing the supply of labor and goods as a path to economic health, rather than approaching the issue through such macroeconomic concerns as gross national product.
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, tax cuts, government cutbacks, and deregulation. In 1985 he became White House chief of staff, a post in which he wielded great power. As revelations concerning the Iran-contra affairIran-contra affair,
in U.S. history, secret arrangement in the 1980s to provide funds to the Nicaraguan contra rebels from profits gained by selling arms to Iran. The Iran-contra affair was the product of two separate initiatives during the administration of President Ronald
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 hurt the president's image, the first lady blamed Regan and worked to force him out. Regan resigned in 1987 and wrote For the Record (1988), in which he attacked Nancy Reagan; she shot back in My Turn (1989).
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