Prepare yourselves. Remember you heard it here first. Ronald Reagan's impending death will unleash a tidal wave of right-wing hagiography which will significantly boost the Boy King (He Who Carries the Reagan Torch -- it doesn't matter if that is true or not -- Bush will claim it, and reasonably so) in the polls. The closer Reagan's death is to the November election, the better shot Bush has of winning.
Ronald Reagan's children gathered at his bedside today as word reached the White House that the health of the 93-year-old former president had seriously deteriorated. . . .Change "for" in that last sentence to "to" and you've got it pretty much right.
White House officials who checked on the former president's health Friday were told "the time is getting close," a person familiar with Reagan's health, who did not want to be identified, told The Associated Press. "It could be weeks. It could be months." . . .
Mitch Daniels, who was political director for the Reagan White House in the mid-1980s, issued a statement from his home in Indianapolis upon hearing the latest news on the former president.
"Even though the day must ultimately come, it will be hard to say goodbye. Few Americans have done more for their country than Ronald Reagan," Daniels said.
UPDATE: Reagan died at 1 p.m. today at his home in the Bel-Air section of Los Angeles. He was 93. The Reagan quote that sums it all up: "You'd be surprised how much [being] a good actor pays off." [Washington Post, 7 May 1984]
Let the hagiography begin.