- The Washington Times - Monday, May 10, 2010

There he goes again.

Ronald Reagan, 40th president of the United States, is expected to “three-peat” as the subject of a U.S. commemorative postage stamp on the occasion of his birth’s centennial next year.

The Web site of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation & Library lists the issuance of a U.S. Postal Service commemorative stamp among the planned events for the Reagan Centennial Celebration.

“The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation is planning a series of exciting events, programs and initiatives to celebrate this historic moment including … [a] Commemorative postage stamp,” the site says.

Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform and a Reagan aficionado who has led a campaign for nationwide public commemorations of the 40th president, doesn’t doubt the stamp will appear.

“If the Reagan Library has it, they’ve been told,” he told The Washington Times.

The Reagan birth-centennial stamp was reported in the May 24 issue of Linn’s Stamp News, which bills itself as the “world’s largest weekly stamp” newspaper. Linn’s also noted the mention of the stamp by U.S. News & World Report “Washington Whispers” columnist Paul Bedard. Linn’s writer Jay Bigalke told The Times he has received independent confirmation of the stamp from within the Postal Service.

Although no official announcement has been made, the Postal Service hasn’t denied the reports, saying instead it will announce its 2011 stamp schedule in August.

When asked by The Times, Postal Service spokesman Roy Betts didn’t deny the pending release but said the Linn’s report was “the first I’d heard of it.”

Mr. Betts said the 2011 stamp schedule was “still in progress” pending the late-summer announcement. “Come see us in August,” he said.

Mr. Norquist called a Reagan centennial stamp “a no-brainer for the post office.”

“Stamps are good, and there should be more Reagan stamps,” Mr. Norquist said. “And they should put Reagan on the $20 or $50 bill.”

Honoring presidential birth anniversaries with commemorative stamps, even of lesser-known chief executives, isn’t unknown over the 163-year history of American postal issues. Numerous stamps have honored George Washington, the nation’s first president. The Postal Service, in ceremonies in Springfield, Ill., on Feb. 9, 2009, released four commemoratives marking the birth bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln.

James K. Polk’s birth bicentennial was honored in 1995 with a stamp intended to be the start of a series of such, but was the only emission of its kind. James Madison’s 250th birthday was noted in 2001 with a commemorative stamp honoring the nation’s fourth president.

All modern U.S. presidents since John F. Kennedy have been honored with a commemorative stamp, generally within a year of their deaths. Reagan’s first postal tribute, a 37-cent stamp, appeared in 2005; it was reissued less than a year later when first-class mail rose to 39 cents.