THE GIPPER-FDR CONNECTION is explored by Michael Barone, who writes:
Ambitious to succeed, the young Reagan went off to college, then made a career in radio, then passed a screen test and became a movie star. The 1920s and 1930s radio and 1930s and 1940s movies were universal media, aimed at all Americans, presenting a vision of a friendly and open nation. Those movies were the strongest popular culture since Charles Dickens and, for many, still define the American character. Ronald Reagan was suffused with their spirit and brought it or, rather, brought it back to American politics.
Brought it back, because it was the same spirit brought to politics by Franklin Roosevelt, for whom Reagan voted four times. Roosevelt and Reagan both came to office when people had given up on the American economy, and both brought it back toward prosperity and abundance