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The 1980 presidential election pitted Republican presidential candidate and former California governor Ronald Reagan against President Jimmy Carter, the Democratic candidate. In the West, a number of issues were at the forefront of the election, including the economy, environment, regulation, and taxes. As it had in previous presidential elections, the West voted for the Republican candidate, although it was not a decisive battleground in the election.

Ronald Reagan was the favored western candidate. Although born and raised in Illinois, he moved to California in the late 1930s to start his acting career. Reagan moved from acting to working as a spokesperson for General Electric to, in 1966, being elected governor of California. He served two terms as governor. A former Democrat, Reagan moved right in the ...

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