Coverage

In preparation for power, America’s new right builds new institutions

Jul 05, 2022

Come November, when Republicans expect to retake one if not both chambers of Congress, the national conservatives hope to translate their budding movement’s energy into a share of that power.

To translate such ideas into policy, new think-tanks have sprung up. Among the more sophisticated is American Compass, founded in 2020. “There was this white space in the institutional landscape to put out new ideas in a rigorous way,” says Oren Cass, its founder. He has no love for Mr Trump, whose actions after the 2020 election Mr Cass called “impeachable offences”. Mr Cass prefers to focus on wonkish proposals in support of the Republican Party’s turn towards statism, which have been influential among lawmakers.

Last year Senator Mitt Romney proposed a universal child allowance to cut poverty and encourage family formation. It shared many characteristics with a scheme from American Compass, but Mr Cass and his colleagues criticised the absence of an incentive for work. A new version of the bill released on June 15th incorporated an earnings requirement. Another proposal from the think-tank to create firm-based workers’ councils, rather than labour unions, has been taken up by Senator Marco Rubio.

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