Over the past few months, a handful of Republican lawmakers have embraced economic policies that, not long ago, would have been unthinkable in the GOP.

In February, Sens. Mitt Romney and Tom Cotton — past and likely future Republican presidential candidates, respectively — introduced a bill proposing a path to a $10 minimum wage. The following month, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio announced his support for an Amazon unionization effort in Alabama. Elsewhere, Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley has pushed far-reaching antitrust bills that have made traditional conservatives shudder, and the bestselling author-turned-Ohio Senate candidate J.D. Vance has called for raising taxes on companies that send jobs overseas.

The emergence of the new economic counterculture is loosely connected to the two-year-old think tank, American Compass, whose founder, the Harvard-trained lawyer and former Bain consultant Oren Cass, routinely derides his adversaries as “market fundamentalists” peddling “stale pieties” from the 1980s. Cass left the free-market Manhattan Institute in 2019 to launch American Compass, the first right-of-center think tank dedicated to pushing the government to get more, rather than less, involved in national economic policy in order to help advance a certain set of social and cultural goals — a view Cass and his ilk have termed “common good capitalism.” The group’s mission: “To restore an economic consensus that emphasizes the importance of family, community, and industry to the nation’s liberty and prosperity.”

Continue Reading at Politico Magazine
Recommended Reading
GOP Fault Lines Appear as Some Press for More Relief While Others Demand a Spending Pause

Jim Antle quotes American Compass’s Oren Cass on the significant of innovative economic policymaking by several GOP senators.

The Once and Future Republican Orthodoxy

The American Enterprise Institute has just released a new white paper that defends the CARES Act against arguments from the right. Contra deficit hawks and libertarians in Congress, Jay Cost argues that recent deficit-financed economic stimulus falls squarely within the “parameters of Republican orthodoxy on economic conservatism.”

What a Post-Trump Republican Party Might Look Like

Ezra Klein interviews American Compass’s Oren Cass about challenging the right-wing economic orthodoxy and its quasi-religious veneration of markets, and focusing instead on clear social goals that put families first, eschew economic growth as the be-all-end-all of policymaking, and recognize the inescapability of government intervention in the economy.