When you fly into our nation's capital, you land at "Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport." If you've got business to do with the government, there's a chance you'll be visiting the "Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center." If you need to check in with the Republican National Committee, you'll be walking into the "Ronald Wilson Reagan Republican Center." And if that experience leaves you feeling ill, you can always seek treatment at the "Ronald Reagan Institute of Emergency Medicine."
What Washington, D.C, really needs, says Texas Rep. Henry Bonilla, is some way to pay tribute to Ronald Reagan. "Most people agree that Ronald Reagan was an American icon," Bonilla tells USA Today. "He deserves an honor in the nation's capital."
We're not sure why an airport, a couple of buildings and a hospital emergency room in Washington plus an aircraft carrier and a slew of courthouses, office buildings and other facilities elsewhere aren't enough, but Bonilla clearly thinks that America's 40th president deserves just a little bit more. He has introduced legislation in Congress to rename Washington's 16th Street -- which begins just north of the White House -- "Ronald Reagan Boulevard."
District residents aren't exactly amused. "Sixteenth Street is one of our city's most prominent thoroughfares," Washington Mayor Anthony Williams tells USA Today. "It represents all presidents, not just one president."
Seventy-seven percent of Washington's voters are registered Democrats, and they're already stuck rooting for a baseball team with a big "W" on its caps. Even some of Bonilla's GOP colleagues seem to recognize that "Ronald Reagan Boulevard" may be one Republican tribute too many. According to USA Today, Rep. Tom Davis, the Virginia Republican who heads the House subcommittee on District of Columbia affairs, told a local radio station that Bonilla's idea was "ridiculous" and will soon find itself in an "appropriate file."
Why do we get the feeling that he might be wrong?