Mr. Reagan, who enjoyed the outdoors (especially by horseback), would be aghast at the current effort by President Donald Trump and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt to decimate federal environmental lawmaking and enforcement. As California governor from 1967 to 1975, Mr. Reagan established a venerable record as a strong environmental champion. Mr. Reagan signed the 1967 legislation that established the California Air Resources Board, stopped a major dam on the Eel River in northwestern California and halted the Minarets highway that would have bisected a relatively pristine section of the southern Sierra Nevada range. Journalist Lou Cannon details these accomplishments in his biographical book, "Governor Reagan." Then-State Resources Agency Secretary Norman B. "Ike" Livermore, a former lumber company executive, advised Governor Reagan to take many of these landmark environmental preservation actions.
Sen. George Murphy: "unrestrained fouling of ... air. We cannot go backward."
U.S. Senator George Murphy (R-Calif.), another 1960s conservative Republican, also was a strong supporter of clean air laws; Senator Murphy helped to champion the 1967 federal Air Quality Act that included the "California waiver" to permit the Golden State to enact environmental policies that were more stringent than the federal standards. Senator Murphy said at a federal hearing at San Francisco's federal building on January 15-16, 1968, "California has passed the point in its history when it can allow unrestrained fouling of its air. We cannot go backward."
Clean air then knew no partisan bounds; California's Democratic congressmen on the House Commerce committee, John Moss of Sacramento and Lionel Van Deerlin of San Diego, also helped to pass the 1967 Air Quality Act. Congressmen Moss and Van Deerlin worked especially hard in autumn 1967 to overturn the House Commerce committee's vote against the California waiver.
Gov. Ronald Reagan: "Remove smog from politics" - "The smog we breathe brings disease without regard to political alliance."
Appended below is Ronald Reagan's "smog control" campaign plank from his first race for California governor in 1966. Mr. Reagan promised to "[r]emove smog from politics and influence by special interest groups to insure that positive steps toward air purification are taken immediately and without fear of political reprisals." Governor Reagan said at his January 9, 1968 State of the State Address, "The compelling issues which face our people are not partisan – in nature or solution. The burden of taxation presses down upon Democrat and Republican alike. The smog we breathe brings disease without regard to political alliance. The search for happier, healthier, more productive life is shared by the vast majority of our citizens. Those here of goodwill and serious intent know this to be true … While you and I wrestle here with budgets and billions, our citizens wrestle with the day-to-day problems of dirty air and dirty water and dirty and congested streets. As someone has said, it is a bit incongruous that while we reach for the stars, we stand knee-deep in garbage."
President Trump, EPA Administrator Pruitt, congressional Republicans and the wider circle of Mr. Reagan's acolytes should follow "the Gipper's" sage, time-honored advice. Federal environmental rulemaking and enforcement should be removed from politics and influence by special interest groups to insure that positive steps toward air purification are taken immediately and without fear of political reprisals.
RONALD REAGAN SPEAKS TO THE ISSUES 
I am strongly committed to eradicating smog in California … As Governor, I will:
1. Work to establish uniform laws on air pollution to insure minimum state wide standards for the reduction of pollutants from diesel trucks and buses, autos, and industrial plants.
2. Call for legislation to coordinate research in California on smog prevention and control that is currently being conducted separately by the state, county agencies, auto manufacturers, and the Federal government.
3. Work closely with local agencies in making certain that pollutants from industry are adequately regulated and controlled.
4. Remove smog from politics and influence by special interest groups to insure that positive steps toward air purification are taken immediately and without fear of political reprisals.
With decisive action, such as this, we can hasten the day when all Californians can once more breathe clean, fresh air.
REAGAN FOR GOVERNOR COMMITTEE
[an original copy of this document is found in the "Reagan" folders of Carton 599 of the Senator Thomas Kuchel Papers, Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley]