Not even one for the Gipper?
The new icon of Massachusetts Democrats has rebuffed efforts to commemorate a day for Ronald Reagan, the last Republican to win the Commonwealth in a presidential election. And Reaganites are not happy.
Governor Deval Patrick decided not to sign a proclamation recognizing Feb. 6 as "Ronald Reagan Day." A month into his term as governor, snubbing the Gipper's birthday has left Patrick open to partisan sniping.
A prominent conservative said Democratic New York Governor Eliot Spitzer declared the holiday.
"It's the difference between a little more sophisticated guy who's governor and a guy who's still playing partisan politics after a campaign," said Grover Norquist, founder and chairman of the Ronald Reagan Legacy Project.
Thirty-three governors -- 20 Republicans and 13 Democrats -- inked the agreement to recognize Reagan's birthday in their states, Norquist said. The 17 remaining governors either didn't reply or refused outright; Patrick was a frank "no," Norquist said.
State Republican Party Chairman Peter Torkildsen said he felt disbelief.
"To me, Ronald Reagan is one of the great figures of the 20th century, and not only that, he carried Massachusetts twice, which no Republican for president had done since Dwight Eisenhower," Torkildsen said in an interview.