The Mount Vernon Statement: Resonate with We the People? We the Teaparty People? Read the Statement and judge for yourself. Close to 24,000 “signers” as of 2/19.

Here is a n excerpt and link to a piece from Time Magazine that looks at how  the Mt Vernon Statement fits and relates to the Tea Party Movement.  How the country and “we the people” reorient and reorganize in the short term could be a political transformation “history in the making”.  Following the excerpt is the Mount Vernon Statement in its entirety as it appears on the new website of the same name. .  Does this speak to you?  Is this the basis for a renewed effort to build a more perfect unuion?  You be the judge.   There are close to 24,000 “signers” to the “Statement” as of 2/19/2009.  Very interesting.  Walt
……..The “Mount Vernon Statement,” as they have dubbed the document, seeks to tether conservatism to constitutional principles at a time when Republicans and many independents have become outraged over what they view as governmental overreach. Its authors, a group of boldface names and Beltway veterans who have been among the movement’s leaders for decades, have been working for months to hash out language that satisfies the party’s often fractious factions. They cite the compact as a contemporary version of the Sharon Statement, a document named for William F. Buckley Jr.’s Connecticut hometown that helped shape the contours of conservatism for the past 50 years. “We recommit ourselves to the ideas of the American Founding,” the authors write. “The federal government today ignores the limits of the Constitution, which is increasingly dismissed as obsolete and irrelevant.” (See 10 promising GOP stars.)The group, led by former U.S. Attorney General Ed Meese, pronounced itself thrilled with the manifesto. “On the right, we all want the same thing, and that’s to be left alone,” says Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, who added that he was “pleasantly surprised” at how easy it was to craft a consensus document. “It sings,” says Brent Bozell, president of the Media Research Center, an organization that tracks perceived liberal bias in the media. “It has something that every conservative can sink his teeth into and sign happily.”

In part that’s because the document is light on policy specifics and heavy on freedom-loving boilerplate. Defining themselves as supporters of Founding Fathers is hardly risky; had the authors attempted to codify principles more controversial than “honor[ing] the central place of individual liberty in American politics and life” or “support[ing] America’s national interest in advancing freedom,” their interests could have clashed. For a movement whose social conservatives, fiscal warriors and national-security hawks have been roiled by infighting in the past, affirming common bonds may well have been the paramount concern.

But the document also afforded the authors a chance to define their mission as the Tea Party movement mushrooms into a potent force in American politics. With the Mount Vernon statement, conservatism’s éminences grises are opening their doors to a group without a founder, an underlying framework or even, seemingly, an organizing principle beyond opposition to the Obama Administration’s policies. “If you go out to these gatherings, you find a lot of [people] were never involved at all until they got scared by the direction of the country. Our obligation is not necessarily to lead them but to provide them a sense of what a logical conservative position will be,” says David Keene, head of the American Conservative Union, which is hosting the CPAC conference. “It’s vital that when people come into a movement, they’re attracted to the core beliefs.”……      Click here for the full article.

The Mount Vernon Statement
Constitutional Conservatism: A Statement for the 21st Century

We recommit ourselves to the ideas of the American Founding.  Through the Constitution, the Founders created an enduring framework of limited government based on the rule of law. They sought to secure national independence, provide for economic opportunity, establish true religious liberty and maintain a flourishing society of republican self-government.

These principles define us as a country and inspire us as a people. They are responsible for a prosperous, just nation unlike any other in the world. They are our highest achievements, serving not only as powerful beacons to all who strive for freedom and seek self-government, but as warnings to tyrants and despots everywhere.

Each one of these founding ideas is presently under sustained attack. In recent decades, America’s principles have been undermined and redefined in our culture, our universities and our politics. The selfevident truths of 1776 have been supplanted by the notion that no such truths exist. The federal government today ignores the limits of the Constitution, which is increasingly dismissed as obsolete and irrelevant.

Some insist that America must change, cast off the old and put on the new. But where would this lead — forward or backward, up or down? Isn’t this idea of change an empty promise or even a dangerous deception?

The change we urgently need, a change consistent with the American ideal, is not movement away from but toward our founding principles. At this important time, we need a restatement of Constitutional conservatism grounded in the priceless principle of ordered liberty articulated in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.

The conservatism of the Declaration asserts self-evident truths based on the laws of nature and nature’s God. It defends life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. It traces authority to the consent of the governed. It recognizes man’s self-interest but also his capacity for virtue.

The conservatism of the Constitution limits government’s powers but ensures that government performs its proper job effectively. It refines popular will through the filter of representation. It provides checks and balances through the several branches of government and a federal republic.

A Constitutional conservatism unites all conservatives through the natural fusion provided by American principles. It reminds economic conservatives that morality is essential to limited government, social conservatives that unlimited government is a threat to moral self-government, and national security conservatives that energetic but responsible government is the key to America’s safety and leadership role in the world.
A Constitutional conservatism based on first principles provides the framework for a consistent and meaningful policy agenda.
  • It applies the principle of limited government based on the
    rule of law to every proposal.
  • It honors the central place of individual liberty in American
    politics and life.
  • It encourages free enterprise, the individual entrepreneur, and
    economic reforms grounded in market solutions.
  • It supports America’s national interest in advancing freedom
    and opposing tyranny in the world and prudently considers what we can and should do to that
  • It informs conservatism’s firm defense of family, neighborhood,
    community, and faith.

If we are to succeed in the critical political and policy battles ahead, we must be certain of our purpose.

We must begin by retaking and resolutely defending the high ground of America’s founding principles.

February 17, 2010

Edwin Meese, former U.S. Attorney General under President ReaganWendy Wright, president of Concerned Women for America

Edwin Feulner, Jr., president of the Heritage Foundation

Lee Edwards, Distinguished Fellow in Conservative Thought at the Heritage Foundation, was present at the Sharon Statement signing.

Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council

Becky Norton Dunlop, president of the Council for National Policy

Brent Bozell, president of the Media Research Center

Alfred Regnery, publisher of the American Spectator

David Keene, president of the American Conservative Union

David McIntosh, co-founder of the Federalist Society

T. Kenneth Cribb, former domestic policy adviser to President Reagan

Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform

William Wilson, President, Americans for Limited Government

Elaine Donnelly, Center for Military Readiness

Richard Viguerie, Chairman,

Kenneth Blackwell, Coalition for a Conservative Majority

Colin Hanna, President, Let Freedom Ring

Kathryn J. Lopez, National Review

We the undersigned join in our support of the guiding principles of The Mount Vernon Statement.

Current count: more than 23,500 signers.


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