What part did Trump and GOP establishment play in taking out Jim DeMint?

Readers and listeners of The Strident Conservative know that conservatism is under attack by Donald Trump and his buddies within the GOP establishment. On a near-daily basis, they prove conclusively that the GOP is no longer the home of conservatives.

Recently, we learned of a rumor about how The Heritage Foundation, a think-tank for those on the political Right—or at least it used to be—was severing ties with former Senator and a fellow strident conservative Jim DeMint as president and CEO under the ambiguous claim of mismanagement. Yesterday, the rumor was proven to be true.

In an email I received from the CEO of Heritage Action for America—an outreach of the Heritage Foundation—Michael Needham provided a copy of a communique he received from the Chairman of the Board of Trustees that provided the pathetic rationale for giving DeMint the ax.


The Heritage Foundation’s Board of Trustees, by a unanimous vote, has asked for and received the resignation of Jim DeMint as president and CEO of the organization. The Board elected Heritage Founder Ed Feulner as president and CEO while we conduct a thorough search for his successor.

After a comprehensive and independent review of the entire Heritage organization, the Board determined there were significant and worsening management issues that led to a breakdown of internal communications and cooperation. While the organization has seen many successes, Jim DeMint and a handful of his closest advisers failed to resolve these problems.

This was a difficult and necessary decision for the Board to take. As trustees, we have governance and oversight responsibilities for this organization and our 500,000 members. We were compelled to take action.

Heritage has never been about one individual, but rather the power of conservative ideas. Heritage is bigger than any one person.

As Chairman of the Board, I wholeheartedly endorse this change. It will make Heritage stronger in the short-term and the long run.

Heritage is a permanent policy research institution fighting for conservative ideas, as Ed Feulner often reminds us. We remain committed, as ever, to the principles that have made America great: free enterprise; limited government; individual freedom; traditional American values; and a strong national defense. This will continue under the leadership of Ed and his successor.

Feulner led Heritage for more than three decades and returns to our organization after serving on President Trump’s transition team. There is no one better to guide the ship while we seek our new leader and continue to push for conservative ideas and policies in Washington and around the nation.

As conservatives, we have a tremendous opportunity ahead of us to restore the principles of the American founding. You and the 500,000 Americans who donate to support Heritage have played a crucial role in making our work possible, and I look forward to working with you in the future. As we move forward, the Board of Trustees will be seeking your thoughts and input about our search for the next leader of Heritage.

Thanks to your support, our scholars have shaped public policy in a firmly conservative direction for the last 44 years and will continue to do so in the future.

I regret not being able to let you know sooner about this change. While we were trying to resolve this matter amicably, we honored our side of the bargain to remain silent.

I wanted to ensure that the Board’s decision was final before alerting you. Unfortunately, the media ran with speculation about this story before the facts could be disclosed. As a loyal Heritage supporter, I hope that you will understand the reasons that compelled these changes and stand with us in this time of transition.

Thank you for all your support and dedication to the conservative cause.


Thomas A. Saunders III
Chairman, Board of Trustees
The Heritage Foundation

As I pointed out on Monday, the timing and motivation behind this action is highly suspect. Heritage opposed the fake repeal of the disastrous Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). The group is also opposed to the $1.1 omnibus, a measure strongly supported by Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan.

You may remember that Trump openly threatened conservatives for obstructing the passage of Obamacare 2.0., and McConnell has held Jim DeMint and other conservatives in contempt for years.

As stated in the email above, Heritage Foundation Founder Ed Feulner has been chosen as interim president and CEO. While it can be argued that he is a good choice based on his history with the organization, it should be noted that Feulner just happens to be returning to Heritage after working for Donald Trump since last summer.

Trump and the GOP establishment have a long history of opposing conservatives. Is it possible that they had a hand in taking one of them out?


Don't Feed The RINOsDavid Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative, your source for opinion that’s politically incorrect and always “right.” His articles are also featured on RedState.com.

His daily radio commentary is nationally syndicated via Salem Radio Network and can be heard on stations across America

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