Conservatives Defined

Over 80 leaders, representing tens of millions of conservative activists nationwide, yesterday signed The Mount Vernon Statement, a
declaration of leadership for a new generation of conservatives that
defines the principles, values and beliefs of the conservative movement.  All Americans are invited to join them.

“With this statement, and its many signatories, a new day dawns for the conservative movement,” said Edwin Feulner, Jr., president of the Heritage Foundation, and one of the drafters of the statement.  “It reasserts conservative principles, values and beliefs that are embraced by more people in this country than those of any political ideology.  Fifty years ago, the federal government threatened to grow exponentially.  Visionaries then gathered in Sharon, Connecticut, to articulate essential principles of American governance.  Today, that threat is even greater, and so we must articulate anew the nature of Constitutional Conservatism in the 21st Century.”

“This is an historic moment as, since the 2008 election, conservative leaders from across the country have been meeting and planning a comeback.  A year ago some pundits claimed that conservatism was effectively dead.  But today, as revelations about Washington’s futility in addressing America’s problems continue to mount, the movement is alive and poised for a resurgence of Constitutional Conservative leadership,” said Edwin Meese, former U.S. Attorney General under President Reagan and master of ceremonies for the signing event.

In September 1960 a similar document called the Sharon Statement was signed by the movement’s leaders at the home of National Review Editor William F. Buckley, Jr., at his home in Sharon, Conn.  Today’s signing event took place at the Collingwood Library and Museum in Alexandria, Va., part of the original Mount Vernon estate owned by George Washington. 

In a demonstrable show of unity, The Mount Vernon Statement was signed by conservative leaders who represent all major elements of the conservative movement – economic, social and national security.  The signing ceremony was organized by, and an outgrowth of, the Conservative Action Project, which is chaired by Mr. Meese and designed to facilitate conservative leaders working together on behalf of common goals.  Individuals may sign The Mount Vernon Statement as well by going to the web site:

“This event demonstrates that the conservative movement is vibrant, energized and organized to lead America into a renewed era of liberty and self government,” said L. Brent Bozell, president of the Media Research Center, and nephew of William F. Buckley,Jr.

“Conservative principles are timeless and effective.  Americans are realizing this truth as they watch – in horror – as government officials violate the principles and practices that have America strong and good,” said Wendy Wright, president of Concerned Women for America.  “This is the right time – with more and more citizens becoming involved – to clearly and plainly lay out the foundational beliefs that bind us together, the values that will put American back on track.”

“The strength of the American conservative movement has always been its firm adherence to the first principles of the American Founding.  The Mount Vernon Statement is in that honored tradition, building on the Sharon Statement and offering a reaffirmation of the ideas of the most important document in our history—the U.S. Constitution,” said Lee Edwards a leading historian of the conservative movement and Distinguished Fellow in Conservative Thought at the Heritage Foundation.  Mr.Edwards was at the Sharon Statement signing in September 1960.

Among other conservative leaders, signatories to The Mount Vernon Statement included: 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 and Kathryn J. Lopez, National Review and many others.