Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) praised the late Ronald Reagan as a “staunch conservative” who raised taxes "11 times when he saw the economy needed revenue." Reid was honoring the centennial of Reagan's birthday in a floor speech Monday afternoon.

"As much as he criticized government, he knew it wasn’t a faceless machine," said Reid. "He appreciated that government exists, as Lincoln said, of, for, and by the people. that’s why he was more beholden to simple pragmatism than stubborn principle."

"That’s why he, a staunch conservative, raised taxes 11 times when the economy needed revenue. It’s why he viewed the challenge of immigration through a practical lens." 

Prominent conservatives across the nation have seized on the centennial of Reagan's birthday to amplify their message for lower taxes and smaller government. 

But in his speech, Reid also noted that he did not always agree with Reagan. 

"I didn’t agree with many of his politics or policies, but I always admired the way he captured our country’s imagination," said Reid.