The time is running short for George Bush to select his vice-presidential nominee, but one Tooele County man believes he might have the ideal candidate - the president's daughter, Maureen Reagan.
Arthur W. Brothers, the Republican Party chairman for Lake Point, was one of the 2,000 delegates attending the Republican State Convention in Salt Lake City in June. While at the convention, the talk turned to vice-presidential candidates, and when Reagan's name came up for consideration, Brothers said it "just made a lot of sense."Brothers, owner of Beehive Telephone, an independent Utah telephone company and a one-time write-in candidate for the House of Representatives from Salt Lake County District 14, said Reagan's involvement in the Republican Party for more than 20 years makes her an ideal nominee.
"She knows everyone in the country, she knows where all the money is, she knows who the heavy-hitters are, and unlike Mrs. Dole, she doesn't have enemies because of being an administrator," Brothers said. "Not one of the ladies who have been mentioned as vice-presidential candidates can hold a candle, I think, once it was discussed and an opinion was adopted. It just seemed to be kind of a neat idea."
Reagan, who was in Salt Lake City for the convention as co-chairman for the Republican Party, received overwhelming support and praise from the delegates. However, Brothers said, she left the convention before the proposal could be presented to her.
He said he has presented the idea to Rep. Jim Hansen, R-Utah, but has not received a reply.
"I think it would do a lot for the Republican Party," Brothers said. "I'm a Republican, I vote Republican and I've been a delegate for years and I think it would make a material difference between the Republican Party combating the lack of projectional image that we see from our presidential candidate. She's a strong, intelligent lady who could be president in her own right."
A number of people have presented the idea of nominating President Reagan as vice president. However, the nomination of President Reagan wouldn't work, said Brothers, because "he's too old and besides, bosses don't take kindly to not being bosses. When you've been to the top of the mountain, you then are through. You're not No. 2 anymore. But having a daughter to call on the phone would be a marvelously helpful thing."
With Bush keeping his nominee choices secret, it's difficult to compare Reagan with those who may or may not be in the running for the vice-president nomination. But Brothers said Maureen Reagan is the candidate that could combat the Democratic Party in winning the female vote.
"My thoughts are there's a big vote out there possessed by women. The women are thinking more their own thoughts and making their own appraisal and are not willing to accept what `husband' says, because, after all, he probably doesn't know any more than what the gals do anyway, and probably less," he said.
Brothers added that the Bush-Maureen Reagan ticket would be advantageous to Bush because the attraction of a female candidate is going to be important in the election. He said the Democrats are already counting on winning the female vote so a Bush-Maureen Reagan ticket would be the answer for the Republican Party.
"I simply think the lady could do a good job. . . . You don't work with people of the caliber that she's been associated with for 20 years without learning a great deal. . . . I don't know anything bad about her, but if there was something, don't you think the Democrats wouldn't have dug it up by now?"