The Heritage Foundation didn't invent conservative principles, but since 1973 the Washington based think tank can take credit for providing the salt to the life of the modern conservative political movement.
Founded in 1973 by Paul Weyrich, Joseph Coors, and Ed Feulner, Heritage's mission has always been to "formulate and promote conservative public policies based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values, and a strong national defense." Heritage blossomed during the Reagan Administration with a President whose agenda and principles were an ideal match for the mission of the Heritage Foundation.
Feulner was named President of Heritage in 1977, the fourth president in four years, with a skeleton staff of just seven people. Under Feulner's leadership, Heritage has become “the Parthenon of the conservative metropolis” according to the New York Times. Today, Heritage occupies three buildings on Capitol Hill with a staff of nearly 300 people.
Three years ago, Feulner announced his intentions to retire in early 2013. The anticipation over who would be named his successor ended last month with the announcement of South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint.
While the list of potential candidates to replace Feulner was no doubt long and distinguished, I am hard pressed to think of anyone better qualified and capable to accept the mantle of leadership of Heritage than DeMint. He is a conservative's conservative, articulate, energetic, goal oriented, and a strategic thinker.
Like Reagan, DeMint is a great leader. He attracts talented people, inspires those around him to aim higher and do better than they otherwise might. DeMint "believes in the power of ideas" and is proud of his role to elect solid conservatives to the Senate including Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Pat Toomey, Mike Lee, Ron Johnson, Jeff Flake, and Ted Cruz to now help advance those ideas.
DeMint's devotion to America and those core conservative principles stated in the Heritage Mission is unquestioned. Additionally, his relationships and working knowledge of Capitol Hill can only make the influence of Heritage that much more effective.
Conservatives looking for a ray of sunshine after the disappointing election in 2012 can be very encouraged to know that Jim DeMint is the new Heritage President. Rest assured that under DeMint's leadership Heritage and Conservative Principles will continue to advance and America and Freedom will be the better for it.