The Mount Vernon Statement

Today’s manifesto for the new conservatism: The Mount Vernon Statement, signed by a who’s who of right and far right figures.

Including Richard Viguerie. Right Wing Watch points out that just a couple of days ago, Viguerie told the Washington Times:

“This is embarrassing,” activist and longtime direct-mail advertiser Richard Viguerie told The Washington Times. “If the people in the leadership of the conservative movement are going to put out pablum like this, the tea party people are going to make them seem irrelevant. And the tea party people are going to march to the forefront.”

In a dig at current and former Republican congressional leaders whom many blame for betraying conservative principles of limited government and reduced spending, Mr. Viguerie added, “This is almost as if the movements leaders were taken over by Tom DeLay and John Boehner.”

That’s pretty accurate; the statement is bland stuff, a watered down version of the usual “culture war” dogma. The only noteworthy part is that the document seems to be trying to refrain from stating outright the more radical agendas of the religious faction, represented in the signers by Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council. (And it contains a very obvious typo, by the way; none of these leading lights of conservative intellectualism noticed that ‘selfevident’ isn’t a word.)

However, two days later Viguerie is singing a different tune:

Among those in attendance will be Richard Viguerie, the chairman of Conservative hq.com, who believes the conservative movement “got seriously off track during the big government days of George Bush, Karl Rove and Tom DeLay.” This document, Viguerie says, is designed to unite conservatives.

“This is an attempt to draft a document that conservatives — whether they’re Tea Party conservatives or social or economic or foreign policy conservatives — can get behind and begin the process of reclaiming the Republican Party for small-government conservatives,” Viguerie explains.

I do like the WordPress parchment theme, and the Edwardian Script font they used for the signatures, though. Gives it that authentic 1776 feeling.

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