[Donald T. Regan] also said he expected that Nancy Reagan and Raisa Gorbachev would not discuss substantive issues addressed during the summit. The two women would "build bridges, talking as the wives of two leaders as to how things could be done mutually." They might talk about "drugs and other common problems that affect people in both countries," he said. "(Nancy Reagan) doesn't get into throw-weights or warheads or methods of transporting these warheads," Regan said.
Later, reporters caught up with Nancy Reagan and asked her twice if she agreed with Regan's remarks. She replied twice, "I didn't see the statement." A reporter then posed the question in an indirect way: "Do women understand substantial, substantive issues?" Mrs. Reagan looked at the reporter very seriously and said, "I'm sure they do."
A spokesman for the Republican National Women's Committee said the group would not comment on Regan's views. But a former chairperson of the Republican National Committee, Mary Louise Smith, called Regan's words "disastrous" and "most unfortunate."