Student Speaks Out for Concealed Carry on Her Indiana Campus
Joshua Gill
March 19, 2015
Student Speaks Out for Concealed Carry on Her Indiana Campus
From Campus Reform to the New York Times, Leadership Institute graduates are letting freedom ring in the media and making a difference throughout our country.Former Leadership Institute intern and Indiana University Senior Crayle Vanest, who became the first woman on the board of the lobbying group Students for Concealed Carry, caught The New York Times limelight Wednesday, February 18 speaking out on two explosive college campus issues that have people fired up around the nation. The New York Times' article “A Bid for Guns on Campuses to Deter Rape” reports Crayle “said she should be able to carry her licensed .38-caliber Bersa Thunder pistol on campus, where she said she had walked unarmed after her late-night shifts at a library food court.”The article also quotes Crayle linking the issue of gun rights to the issue of campus safety and sexual assault.“‘Universities are under a ton of investigation for how they handle sexual assaults — that shows how safe campus maybe isn't,' said Ms. Vanest, who is lobbying Indiana lawmakers. ‘Our female membership has increased massively. People who weren't listening before are listening now.'”Conservative leaders like Crayle Vanest and Larry Pratt, LI faculty and executive director of Gun Owners of America, have helped put the prospect of concealed carry on college campuses and more expansive gun rights at the forefront of the national consciousness. They have done so amidst an ocean of controversy and liberal backlash.The campaign for constitutional gun rights is a fight that has gone on for years in the arena of public opinion. The issue of sexual assault against women, reinvigorated by the Rolling Stone story “A Rape On Campus,” puts a new perspective on the issue. In the face of threats like deranged shooters and sexual predators, conservatives like Crayle say students, especially women, should have a decisive means of defense.LI's Campus Reform has often reported on campus gun rights, the issue of sexual assault on campus, and other issues that affect the rights and wellbeing of college students across the country.The Leadership Institute boasts a long line of graduates like Crayle who have gained public attention in support of hot button issues and candidates. LI is committed to training conservative leaders like Crayle, giving them the skills and tools to make their voices heard, and shining the spotlight on important issues concerning the rights of college students through Campus Reform.The Leadership Institute offers 44 types of training programs, working with more than 1,591 active conservative student groups, and helping employers connect with conservative jobseekers. Since the Institute's 1979 founding, more than 162,508 conservative activists, students, and leaders have been trained. Graduates include members of Congress, state legislators, local officials, media personalities, and conservative organization leaders. For more information, please visit: www.LeadershipInstitute.org. >
Fearless Journalist Kaitlyn Schallhorn
Morton Blackwell
February 2, 2015
Fearless Journalist Kaitlyn Schallhorn
Drumroll please…..the winner of the Leadership Institute's 2014 employee of the year is Miss Kaitlyn Schallhorn. Kaitlyn Schallhorn joined the Leadership Institute as a Campus Reform (CRO) reporter in February of 2014. One of the first things Kaitlyn wrote for CRO was a 1,500 word exclusive report that uncovered a corrupt Black Panther professor, who was intimidating students, and involved in a graduation scandal that resulted in the resignation of the university's chancellor. But Kaitlyn's crowning achievement has been her tireless work developing and implementing the Campus Reform Campus Correspondent Program. In less than one year, Kaitlyn grew the Campus Correspondent Program from just one to 22 correspondents. The Campus Reform Campus Correspondent Program started with Lauren Cooley, a student at Furman University in South Carolina. While at Furman, Cooley discovered and wrote about the University of South Carolina - Upstate using taxpayer dollars to host a “How to be a Lesbian in 10 Days or Less” symposium. After she broke the story on CampusReform.org, the school was forced to cancel the event. Cooley's victory was just the beginning of the program's success. As the program grew, Samantha Reinis and Miller Thompson, both Clemson University campus correspondents, exposed an offensive mandatory student survey. While the South Carolina school said the survey was to help curtail sexual assaults on campus, the survey asked personally invasive questions about the sex lives of students and faculty on campus. Kaitlyn investigated the information and assisted the students in reporting the facts. Within six hours of the story being published on Campus Reform, Clemson withdrew the mandatory survey. The story was carried by nearly every major news outlet, including The Washington Post, ESPN, and was even featured in the monologue for NBC's Late Night with Seth Meyer, a first for Campus Reform. Because of Kaitlyn's hard work, campus correspondents have been featured on national television programs exposing liberal bias on campus. Lauren Clark, a junior at Arizona State University, has been featured on Fox News and Fox Business; Gabriella Morrongiello, a senior at George Washington University, has appeared on Fox News, One America News Network, and Sun News in Canada. Because of her exceptional work ethic, fearless approach to journalism, and all that the Campus Correspondent Program has accomplished in 2014, I am proud to name Kaitlyn Schallhorn as the 2014 Leadership Institute Employee of the Year.
President Reagan on New Year's Day
Morton Blackwell
January 1, 2015
President Reagan on New Year's Day
On January 1, 1982, Ronald Reagan said: “Although I know most of the world celebrates the New Year with us today, I think this holiday is an especially American tradition. Most of us are at home or with our families this morning, getting ready to watch the splendor of parades and excitement of football. Later our families will gather around the dinner table, and we'll pray for guidance and strength in the New Year. Today we take a short and well-earned break from the building and industry and enterprise that make our country strong. We pause to reflect on the values of God and family and freedom that make us great.” Ronald Reagan was a strong president. A man of faith, a man of conservative principles, and a man of action – who loved America and knew what made our country great. I served for three years under President Reagan on his White House Staff. I miss him. But with your help, the Leadership Institute trains students, leaders, and activists who believe in the conservative principles Reagan embraced – and the principles you and I cherish today. Those conservatives you train through the Leadership Institute work to restore our founding principles to America. You equipped them with Institute training, and many of them won elections in 2014. Many Institute graduates prepare now for the crucial 2016 elections. And young conservatives push back and win against the liberals on college campuses nationwide, thanks to you. Thank you for your friendship. With your help, you and I will see more conservatives in the mold of President Reagan rebuild our precious country. Cordially, Morton C. Blackwell
George Washington and the Leadership Institute
Morton Blackwell
November 26, 2014
George Washington and the Leadership Institute
Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family. Our nation's first president issued a proclamation of Thanksgiving on October 3, 1789 “to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many favors of Almighty God ... especially an opportunity to establish a form of government for our safety and happiness.” In his proclamation, George Washington also asked Americans to pray for our government to be “a blessing to all the people by constantly being a government of wise, just, and constitutional laws.” A fellow Leadership Institute's donor graciously loaned a full-size portrait of George Washington. It stands in the Leadership Institute's headquarters to remind my staff and me about the America our founding fathers built – a country built on prayer, tradition, and hard work. With your help, the Leadership Institute fights to uphold those “wise, just, constitutional” principles – our shared conservative principles – for this generation and those to come. I'm thankful for your friendship and support. Have a blessed Thanksgiving Day. Cordially, Morton C. Blackwell President Leadership Institute
Today, you and I celebrate Veterans Day
Morton Blackwell
November 11, 2014
Today, you and I celebrate Veterans Day
Today, you and I celebrate Veterans Day. All my staff at the Leadership Institute join me in honoring our veterans in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard. Our nation's armed forces give their blood, toil, tears, and sweat – both in war and peacetime – to keep America free. I count myself blessed to live in a prosperous country defended by the greatest military in the world. And our country still holds a special place in history, despite all that the liberals do to sabotage it. Let me share with you an article about Army veteran and Leadership Institute graduate Larry Provost. Please click here to read how LI donor support trained Larry in our grassroots schools – and helped him flip a Virginia legislative seat from liberal to conservative. That's the kind of victory your support achieves. Our veterans serve to protect our founding principles. And to the Leadership Institute donors, I thank you for your continued support to preserve those principles you and I share. Cordially, Morton C. Blackwell President Leadership Institute
DC Summer Interns Get Trained
Ali Kudlick
June 30, 2014
DC Summer Interns Get Trained
Last week 84 conservative DC summer interns gathered at the Leadership Institute to learn the secrets for a successful internship.Experts on everything from networking and résumé writing to dressing for success addressed interns and provided tricks of the trade and personal experiences.Steve Sutton, vice president of Development at the Leadership Institute, began the training by advising interns to develop the “Four P's of Excellence: philosophical, political, professional and personal.”Knowing what you believe in is good, but it isn't sufficient. “You owe it to your philosophy to know how to win,” said Steve, famously quoting Morton Blackwell, LI's president. The rest of the day was dedicated to learning how to win through professional and personal excellence.Vice President for Strategic Communication at Wise Public Affairs Laura Rigas posed the question, “What does success look like?” She gave practical advice on knowing your leadership style, developing personal mission statements and defining your personal brand. She emphasized self-awareness in combination with specific measurable goals.“I feel equipped and better prepared to excel in Washington this summer and in the future,” said Austin Pendergist, intern in the office of Congressman Mark Sanford (R – SC).Interns from across the city had the chance to not only listen, but also to ask questions of the speakers as well as a panel of recruiters who work for political organizations around town. “Opportunities fall into your lap sometimes and you have to be ready for them,” said Lauren Wills, scheduler and intern coordinator for Congressman Thomas Massie (R – KY).“LI's Conservative Intern Workshop was a practical how-to guide for every conservative intern in Washington,” said Elizabeth Green, who is interning at the Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity.>
The 2016 Republican Presidential Nomination
Morton Blackwell
April 2, 2014
The 2016 Republican Presidential Nomination
This will not be a cheery update because the news is not good. I shall do my best to summarize developments and not take you too far into the weeds.At the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa, Mitt Romney broke all precedent and used his power as the coming nominee to change the rules, to centralize power in the hands of the establishment, and to make it very much harder for any power in the party to flow from the bottom up.For one example, the rules previously had required that, to be placed in nomination for President, a candidate had to have the written support of a plurality of the delegates from at least five states.In Tampa, the Romney campaign changed that requirement. Currently, a 2016 presidential candidate will have to have the support of a majority of the delegates from at least eight states.The power grabs regarding the party rules in Tampa were so outrageous that the proposed new rules were almost rejected in a voice vote by the convention, and thousands of people left Tampa furious as a result.The worst of the Romney rules changes at the Tampa convention was a new rule, now Rule 12, which authorized the Republican National Committee to further amend 24 of the 41 national rules between conventions. That opens the way to abuses limited only by the imagination of future power grabbers.With RNC Chairman Reince Priebus pushing hard, the Republican National Committee has drastically shortened the period in which national convention delegates can be elected, selected, or bound. The period is shortened at both ends. All but four states, New Hampshire, Iowa, South Carolina, and Nevada, must wait until March 1 to hold their primaries or conventions to elect national convention delegates. Those four states may begin selecting delegates in February.That was fine with me. The same rule was in effect in 2012 but violated by a number of states which broke the rule and held earlier primaries. New penalties now in place should dissuade states from jumping ahead in 2016.However, the changed rules now will also end the 2016 primary process far earlier than before, because states must certify their elected delegates by June 3, forty-five days before the 2016 national convention convenes in Cleveland. In 2016's truncated period of delegate selection, it will be almost impossible for a less well-known conservative candidate who does much better than expected in the early primaries to parlay that good showing into much better fundraising and much greater grassroots organization. There won't be enough time for a conservative candidate to come from behind and elect a majority of the convention delegates.The establishment candidate will almost certainly be Jeb Bush or Chris Christie. Bush would start with more money and more news media acclaim than any of the more numerous, more conservative candidates likely to be splitting the conservative vote.There is no way, before the convention convenes, to change the current national rules regarding the timing and the methods of election of national convention delegates. The shortening of the delegate selection process is a done deal for the 2016 election cycle. The shorter period will almost certainly provide sufficient time for the content-free, establishment Republicans to unite but perhaps too little time for conservatives to unite behind a single one of the more numerous conservative candidates.In modern times there have almost never been multiple candidates with a chance to win the race by the time of the national convention. It's human nature for people to yearn to be on the winning side. For many Republicans interested in participating in the presidential nomination contest, that desire becomes all-consuming. When one candidate seems to be winning, the compulsion to jump on that candidate's bandwagon becomes all but irresistible.By the time the Republican National Convention convened, there has not, since 1976, been any doubt as to who will be nominated. National rules changes have had the intended effect of eliminating favorite-son candidates capable of controlling their states' delegations, thus ending another factor which might insert some uncertainty regarding who will win the nomination. Remember, to be placed in nomination, a person now must have proof of the support of the majority of the delegates from eight different states.Even in states which allocate their delegates by some type of proportionality, the plurality winner generally will get a much higher percentage of the delegates than the percentage of the primary vote that candidate received. Where a state primary has a winner-take-all system, the candidate with a plurality gets all the state's delegate votes. The current rules guarantee that, once again, the supporters of unsuccessful candidates will go home angry and insulted. Some beneficial rules changes could be adopted after all the delegates are selected, just before the 2016 convention in Cleveland begins. These changes cannot pass without the support of some 2016 Republican presidential candidates. One rules change can and must be made by the 2016 Convention Rules Committee and adopted by the convention before the actual nomination process is taken up by the convention.In the run-up to the 2012 national convention in Tampa, the Romney campaign employed strong-arm tactics to prevent the possibility that any other candidate would have a plurality of delegates in any five states, which would have enabled that candidate's name to be placed in nomination before the convention.As a result, only Mitt Romney's name was formally placed in nomination.Then came the roll call of the states.Each state delegation chairman, starting with Alabama, called out the number of delegate votes each candidate had won in that state.Then an outrageous thing happened. The convention secretary, from the rostrum, called out the number of delegate votes which would be counted from that state. Only the number of delegate votes cast for Mitt Romney in each state was announced!Hundreds of delegates who had been duly elected by their states, had traveled to the convention, and had been certified as delegates by the Convention Credentials Committee were thus deprived of their right to have their votes counted. In many cases, delegates were bound by state law or state party rules to vote for candidates other than Romney. Too bad for them in Tampa.Already upset by the Romney campaign's many power grabs regarding the rules, supporters of other candidates and many fair-minded Romney delegates were thoroughly outraged when hundreds of duly elected and credentialed delegates were summarily disenfranchised.How would it have hurt the Romney campaign to have the legitimate votes for other candidates announced and counted? Romney had the votes to win on the first ballot.An honest tally of the delegate votes won by other candidates would not have hurt Romney at all.Instead, the arrogant and ham-handed Romney campaign, determined to demonstrate who was boss, trampled on the rights of other candidates and their supporters and sent thousands of grassroots Republicans home angry at them.This happened at the very time when the Romney campaign should have been striving for good will and party unity in the fall campaign against President Barack Obama.As the Rules of the Republican Party are now written, this ugly scenario could be repeated at the 2016 Republican National Convention.The only way to make sure this doesn't happen at the Cleveland convention is for the 2016 Convention Rules Committee to propose and for the national convention to adopt a change in the rules to provide that the votes of duly elected and credentialed delegates shall be announced, recorded, and counted during the balloting for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination.Any requirements for prior proof of support for a presidential candidate should affect only the determination of which candidates may be presented to the convention by formal nominating speeches.Unless bound to vote for specific candidates by state law or by state party rules, duly elected and credentialed delegates should be able to exercise their rights to vote for the candidates of their choice.It is obvious that conservatives should be making plans right now to unite as much as possible behind a single good candidate before the short primary season begins. Otherwise, Republicans shall almost certainly have another establishment presidential nominee in 2016. The short duration of the 2016 presidential primary period, the large number of conservatives likely to run for president, and the much smaller number of establishment Republicans likely to be in the race combine to increase greatly the possibility that an establishment Republican will win the 2016 nomination.Think back to the moment just before Ronald Reagan clinched the 1980 nomination. Define all his supporters then as Reaganites and all other Republicans as non-Reaganites.No Reaganite presidential nominee since Reagan!It's time for the Republican Party to nominate another Reaganite.>
New Pro Freedom Directory for Latin America
Morton Blackwell
November 21, 2013
New Pro Freedom Directory for Latin America
The first edition of the Leadership Institute new Latin America Freedom Supporters Directory is now available for free online. The new directory contains the contact information for hundreds of pro-freedom people and organizations in Latin America.The objective of the directory is to connect people and organizations who share a commitment to free markets, private property rights, individual freedoms, and democratic participation in the public policy process.Considerable experience in Latin America has shown that supporters of freedom often do not know that there are many others in their own countries who share these principles. Very few are acquainted with like-minded people in other Latin American countries.In contrast, activists for leftist causes in Latin America usually know each other well and often cooperate closely with leftists in their own countries and internationally.The Latin America Freedom Supporters Directory will change that for the benefit of free-market supporters and principles.To compile the information, The Leadership Institute requested and received suggestions from experienced people in Latin America and from many people in the United States who are widely acquainted in Latin America.The first edition of the directory contains the names, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, and other available facts about worthwhile contacts in the public policy process.In the directory you will find:• government officials, elected and appointed;• political party and youth group leaders;• educators and lecturers on free-market issues;• organizations located in Latin America or running programs in the region; and• activists who want to make contacts with their counterparts in the U.S. and elsewhere.How can we best undo generations of propaganda and conditioning in Latin America? How can Latin Americans learn the economic principles which make possible wealth creation when they have absorbed the false notion that the main purpose of economics is the centralized and thus “fair” distribution of goods and services?The best solution is to educate and support a new infrastructure of pro-freedom and pro-democracy activists in Latin America. That is why The Leadership Institute created the directory, to get to know each other, to exchange information, and to enable potential allies to work together on activities and projects of mutual interest.Click here to download the Latin America Freedom Supporters Directory. >
Ballerina Dances Her Way Into Colorado Politics
Kelly Macfarland
August 26, 2013
Ballerina Dances Her Way Into Colorado Politics
Alexa Van Anne isn't your ordinary 19-year-old. She's a competitive ballerina, a committed conservative activist, and dreaming of running for office herself – but first, she's got to finish college. Alexa got her start in politics working for the reelection of her congressman, Rep. Mike Coffman, in 2012. As area campaign director for Mike Coffman for Congress, Alexa went door-to-door canvassing and phone banking. As November neared, Alexa became more involved in working on projects with the field director for her district. “Every week or so, we would have large groups of college students come in to help make phone calls and canvass, so I helped to train them on our systems,” Alexa said. Alexa also worked to publicize the debate between Congressman Coffman and his opponent, Joe Miklosi – one of the most competitive House races in 2012. She recruited campaign supporters so they made up the majority of the audience – and media coverage. Alexa's experience with the Coffman team didn't end with November elections. After the election results, she felt inspired by the work her Congressman was doing and decided she wanted to apply for an internship with his fundraising firm, The Starboard Group. Through her internship at The Starboard Group, Alexa got involved with other local political opportunities, including Congressman Corey Gardner's campaign, Colorado Secretary Scott Gessler's campaign, and local non-profits. During the legislative session, Alexa interned for State Representative Jerry Sonnenberg; after the session, for Secretary Scott Gessler's campaign. Alexa is very much an advocate for her state, and has big dreams that include running for office. “I would like to run for elected office in my home state of Colorado,” Alexa said. Growing up, Alexa learned the value that small businesses bring to the community and families. Working for her father's store—Blade Runner Services—Alexa gained valuable insight that has made her appreciate the hard work that goes into building and maintaining a business and the people behind them. “Working at a small business founded by my father provided me the opportunity to know what it takes to run a company,” Alexa said. Alongside being a committed activist for liberty, Alexa has spent the last 14 years of her life practicing ballet. During her time performing, Alexa lettered twice and was in a dance company for six years. After hearing about the Leadership Institute's Youth Leadership School from a friend who took the political bootcamp, Alexa decided to attend. Her experience was one that she will never forget. “I had an incredible experience at LI's Youth Leadership School. I learned exactly what it takes to be a conservative leader, and I was left with the tools to be one,” Alexa said. “The speakers were remarkable, and I was humbled by the opportunity to learn from each of them. Being a part of this two-day training alongside like-minded individuals was a great experience, and I met many promising future leaders. Most impressive, however, was the sheer amount of applicable information.” After taking the Youth Leadership School at the Leadership Institute in July with 141 others, she said she was “better informed” for her political future. And this fall, she will be joining 10 other conservatives to intern for the Leadership Institute. “I would recommend the Youth Leadership School to anyone who wants to become involved in politics. Everyone could learn something because the focus is on highlighting the skills of a selfless leader, which is very uncommon,” she said. Sign up now for one of LI's Youth Leadership Schools (YLS). The weekend trainings are hosted all over the country, or you may contact Daryl Ann Dunigan (DDunigan@LeadershipInstitute.org or 703-247-2000) to host a YLS training near you. Please congratulate Alexa Van Anne on receiving the Leadership Institute's Conservative Leader-In-Training Award and please encourage her to continue advancing conservatism in Colorado. To nominate a Leadership Institute graduate or faculty member for the Conservative Leader Award or Conservative Leader-In-Training Award where they will have an article written about them, please contact LI's Director of External Affairs Lauren Day, at Lauren@LeadershipInstitute.org.
From College Socialist to Conservative Journalist
Carol Wehe
August 6, 2013
From College Socialist to Conservative Journalist
The son of a “hippie vagabond” and a New York City journalist, Lachlan Markay grew up surrounded by liberals, argued his way to conservatism in college, and has become a staple in the conservative world as a journalist and lecturer across the United States.A self-described “proud Yankee,” Lachlan grew up in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut – states not exactly known for their conservatism.“I like to think I'm a product of the American melting pot,” said Lachlan, whose roots come from New York Jews on his dad's side and Wisconsin Catholics on his mom's side.His parents' stories still fascinate Lachlan. “My dad was a Kerouacian hippie vagabond for years,” said Lachlan. “The day after he graduated from high school, he hitchhiked from Long Island to Leadville, CO, where he worked in a mine for five or six years, before hitching back east to Maine.”Then there's his mother, a journalist who joined Newsweek at the bottom rung and “worked her way up… to a prominent spot in their NYC newsroom,” said Lachlan. Lachlan gets his adventurous side from his father, and his love of journalism from his mother.“My love and reverence for my family has really shaped who I am and continues to influence me,” said Lachlan.But, family isn't where Lachlan found his conservatism – his liberal college pushed him toward the right.“I was…a liberal,” said Lachlan. “Socialist might be more accurate.”He was surrounded by liberal thought at Hamilton College, where neither faculty nor students questioned their “knee-jerk” liberal philosophy. And that bothered Lachlan.“No thinking was required, and few of my peers could actually defend their political views,” said Lachlan. “That irked me, so I'd take every chance I could to challenge them, often taking positions with which I didn't necessarily agree.”A contrarian by nature, Lachlan challenged the status quo. “It was a combination, I think, of my affinity for arguing and my late exposure to conservative political thought that spurred the transition.”During his college years, Lachlan started studying conservative and libertarian philosophers.“Burke, Kirk, Buckley, Hayek, Nozick, Friedman, Strauss – theirs were ideas I'd never been exposed to,” said Lachlan, “and I quickly realized that I agreed with many of them.”During his political transformation as a junior in college, Lachlan followed his mother's footsteps, turning to journalism. It started with an internship and, in the end, “I wanted to write for a living,” said Lachlan, “but do so in a way that comported with and/or advanced my views.”He helped start a student newspaper, Dexter, at Hamilton College.After college, Lachlan went on to work in the D.C. area as a contributing editor for NewsBusters.org, the media watchdog site, and posted to the Washington Examiner's Opinion Zone blog. He became an investigative journalist at The Heritage Foundation in 2011. Much of his work can be found at Heritage's blog Scribe.Lachlan now works for the Washington Free Beacon on topics ranging from energy policy to campaign finance to government spending.Lachlan's advice to aspiring journalists and bloggers hits home for many activists.“It sounds harsh,” he said, “but no one cares about your opinion. If you want people to read what you write, add something new to the conversation. Do some reporting. Pick up the phone (please!) and call the people you want to write about.”When he's not investigating, on the news, or appearing on Red Alert Politics' 30 Under 30 list, Lachlan spends his time lecturing across the country for center-right organizations. He has spoken at conferences and trainings for The Heritage Foundation, FreedomWorks, Americans For Prosperity, the Franklin Center, the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, the Institute for Humane Studies, and of course the Leadership Institute, to name a few.Lachlan says “helping folks learn the tools of the trade…has been really rewarding.”Lachlan has lectured at the Leadership Institute since 2010, serving as faculty at the Writing Workshop, Blogging Workshops, and at LI's recent webinar.“When I went into my first LI training session, I assumed I'd be speaking with college students and other 20-somethings. I was pleasantly surprised to see a wide range of ages. This was during the heart of the tea party's meteoric political rise, so it was great to see people from all walks of life getting involved and really trying to learn skills that would help them advance the cause,” he said.“If you need to learn the basics,” he continued, “take an LI course. If you want more advanced training, take a Leadership Institute course. If you're just curious about how to be more effective, take an LI course. There's really no political skill that you can't learn or improve upon through LI's programs.”You can learn more about training, and watch Lachlan's most recent LI appearance in the webinar Secrets to Success at LI's website.Please congratulate Lachlan Markay on his work as an investigative journalist and training conservative activists, and please applaud him for receiving LI's Conservative Leader Award.To nominate a Leadership Institute graduate or faculty member for the Conservative Leader Award or Conservative Leader-In-Training Award where they will have an article written about them, please contact LI's Director of External Affairs Lauren Day, at Lauren@LeadershipInstitute.org.>
College Senior Sues His University
Gabriella Hoffman
July 30, 2013
College Senior Sues His University
The administration at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo, nicknamed the University at Buffalo, is not pleased with Christian Andzel.You see, he's a conservative rising senior recruiting more students to his cause, and the university has attempted to silence him and his club members. The University at Buffalo (UB) Students for Life club, of which Christian was president, hosted the Center for Bio-Ethical Reform's Genocide Awareness Project last semester. It compares the victims of abortion to the victims of the genocides of world history. The panel display attracted a lot of attention from students and faculty members, and subsequent confrontation by radical feminist professors who shouted expletives at pro-life students. One female professor was later arrested by the police for accosting a student. Campus Reform, a project of the Leadership Institute, covered the incident. Christian, a Leadership Institute graduate, had the courage to politely confront one of the professors who protested his club's display.But another professor filed charges of “disruption” against Christian. If he's found guilty of these charges, Christian faces an unnecessarily harsh punishment involving community service hours and a mark on his record.So now, he is suing his university for not protecting his right to free assembly and speech.“I am in two big lawsuits against my university because I believe in freedom and, at the University at Buffalo, there have been times when freedoms are not protected,” Christian said. “I will be the last person they bully and coerce with unconstitutional policies and actions.”The university unfairly charged Christian's group a heightened security fee when they hosted a debate, and the university went after Christian when he spoke out against a professor in the classroom.“I am the defendant in this case, University at Buffalo v. Christian Andzel, because I raised my hand in class and spoke up in a respectful manner about content the professor did not agree with. To make an example of me she filed school charges of ‘disruption,'” Christian said.Christian is cautiously optimistic about the case. Free speech, he says, must be safeguarded for all students, even conservative ones.“I want to be very clear and say I did not disrupt the class. If she thinks providing an opinion is disruption, and if the court rules against me, we will see a dangerous precedent where when professors do not like what a student says, she or he can report the student for disruption. Say goodbye to our freedom of speech,” Christian said. “We must stand strong and fight for freedom in our classrooms.”Despite these pending cases, Christian plans to continue more conservative events, speakers, and campaigns. He'll continue to use the skills he acquired through Leadership Institute trainings. His plans for the semester include holding a pro-life human rights conference, hosting several speakers, and recruiting more students to all conservative-leaning clubs on campus.Christian credits his Catholic faith and love of country as driving forces behind his activism. He is a tireless defender of faith, family, and freedom – and he's not afraid to champion these principles on campus. Like a growing number of young people today, Christian affirmed his conservative beliefs in college.“I became a conservative because in my early years of college I was sick of the left pushing their values onto me in a rather forceful way,” Christian said. “Liberalism deteriorates families and the economy. I needed answers and policies that could fix the stagnation and decline -- and the answers lie in conservatism.”He added, “I am a conservative because I know that free enterprise and free markets, traditional values, and a common-sense foreign policy is what has made and will continue to make America great and prosperous.”Christian has been involved in conservative groups for most of his collegiate career. Currently, Christian serves as the president of UB Conservatives, a group that promotes conservative values of limited government, traditional values, and strong national defense.He previously presided over the UB Students for Life club as president. Although UB repeatedly refused to recognize the pro-life club on campus, Christian worked tirelessly to make it happen – and his hard work paid off. In April 2012, the Students for Life club was officially recognized.He has worked with the Young Americans for Liberty chapter to help grow the campus conservative coalition and was selected to be a Government Relations Coordinator within student government past year.Outside of campus, Christian is involved in local Republican and conservative groups. He has volunteered for several candidates, including newly-elected Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27).As an outspoken conservative on campus, Christian often is subject to attack by his liberal peers and professors.“I face challenges, as an out and proud conservative activist, almost every day,” Christian admitted. “Some people know me on campus as that activist kid that loves to debate and think of solutions to today's problems. I will constantly, in a respectful way, challenge the ideas of the liberal status quo in my peers and professors.”You can impact your campus too!Check out LI's training schedule here.During his time in college, Christian has participated in a plethora of Leadership Institute trainings including the 2012 Student Leadership Conference, Public Speaking Workshop, and Campus Elections Workshop.“The Leadership Institute has allowed me to flourish as a committed conservative activist because the staff has not only taken an interest in my conservative clubs, but they also care about me as an individual. LI wants to ensure that as an activist you are well prepared for the battlefield,” Christian said. You too can be “prepared for the battlefield” by working with your Regional Field Coordinator this fall to challenge bias on your campus and stand up for your freedom. Contact Mike Armstrong at MArmstrong@LeadershipInstitute.org to get connected to the person who specifically works with students in your state.He added, “Without the Leadership Institute, I would not be where I am today because they have always had my back. The left on campus hates me and in several ways has gone out of their way to demonize and destroy my credibility. I will continue to fight back with Leadership Institute's help because this war of ideas – and our future – is worth it.” Christian will be graduating from the University at Buffalo next spring with Bachelor's degree in political science and history.Please congratulate Christian Andzel on his activism, and please applaud him for receiving LI's most recent Conservative Leader-In-Training award.To nominate a Leadership Institute graduate or faculty member for the Conservative Leader Award or Conservative Leader-In-Training Award where they will have an article written about them, please contact LI's Director of External Affairs Lauren Day, at Lauren@LeadershipInstitute.org.>
5 Things You Learn During Your First Few Weeks of a DC Internship
Katie Johnson
July 22, 2013
5 Things You Learn During Your First Few Weeks of a DC Internship
Intern season is here again in the DC metro area!During the summer students and young professionals from across the country and all over the world descend upon the District, a.k.a. Hollywood for political junkies, hoping to jump-start their careers.Thirteen lucky interns, me included, have the opportunity of a lifetime: interning with the Leadership Institute this summer!No matter what organization interns work for in the DC metro area, whether it be on the Hill, a non-profit, or a private company, interns are sure to learn a great deal during their time in the DC.Working at the Leadership Institute has been no exception. Below are some basic things I've learned during my first few weeks as an intern!.*Be prepared to fail, but learn your lesson and don't make the same mistake twice—Interns are new to the office. They can and will make mistakes. During one of my first weeks, my supervisor gave me directions on how to refill the coffee maker, which I completely forgot. Later a fountain of coffee came flowing out of the coffee pot and all over the kitchen counter. Always listen to your supervisors: the advice and directions they give are there for a reason.*Stay optimistic and have a can-do attitude— Sometimes you will be put in high-stress situations and will certainly be required to multitask and juggle directives from several different bosses and intern coordinators at once. Don't be afraid to lighten the situation with a joke or two (appropriate, of course). Always make the best of your situation and stay positive! Be willing to face challenges head on; don't complain, and your hard work will pay off in the end.*Social media: it's a blessing and a curse— Some jobs, including mine, require the use of social media. That's awesome! Young people today are all about Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. However, you are still working so be sure to balance your social media usage with time delegated to other tasks. Prioritize—some tasks need to get done immediately, while others, such as a Facebook post or a tweet, can get done later, or can be scheduled ahead of time using awesome programs such as Hootsuite or Buffer.*Watch your spending – This applies to internships in any city, not just DC. When you're not working, you have a vast array of entertainment choices: events, concerts, restaurants, shopping, food trucks, museums, etc. However, city life is expensive! Know your limits when it comes to spending and also take advantage of discounts whenever possible. In DC there is always another happy hour, intern appreciation week, or free networking luncheon. Take full advantage of these free and inexpensive events and be smart with your finances.*Be Concise and Direct—Know what you want and ask for it in the shortest and most concise way possible. People are willing to help you if you ask for help, but you need to do it in a way that isn't verbose. This applies to everything from writing e-mails to co-workers to asking for an extended lunch so you can attend that policy briefing. Just remember to keep it simple. >
A scandal ... and a rare opportunity
Morton Blackwell
July 13, 2013
A scandal ... and a rare opportunity
With smart and effective graduates like you, it's no wonder that the left hates the Leadership Institute. You may have seen your Institute's name in the Wall Street Journal or on Fox News this summer. As a grad, you'll recall LI does not seek media attention as a general rule. But the largest and latest scandal that threatens to derail the Obama administration has LI at the center of it. How could I say no? I refer to the scandal of deliberate IRS targeting and interminable blocking of conservative groups' applications for tax-exempt status -- which has by no means run its course. Instead, it's given way to a second, unfolding scandal. Ordinarily, information about abuses in IRS auditing practices is a deep, dark secret. Targets choose to suffer in silence for fear that an IRS audit will scare away some of their donors or that publicly complaining would cause the IRS to persecute their organizations even more. Those calling the shots at the IRS believed there was no chance at all that they would ever be held accountable for specially targeting conservative groups. But a groundswell of conservative complaints and considerable new information has led Congressmen Darrell Issa and Jim Jordan to ask Treasury Department Inspector General J. Russell George to “conduct an investigation to determine whether groups that possess tax-exempt status were targeted for audits or examinations based on their political beliefs or ideology.” Your Institute is one such targeted group. The timing of the audit of LI coincided with the period for which the IRS stonewalled applications by new conservative groups for tax-exempt status. During this period, the IRS office in Cincinnati asked an applicant, the Hawaii Tea Party, about its relations with LI. The IRS Baltimore office was conducting the audit of LI -- a sign of coordination between the IRS offices, not just a couple of rogue agents in Cincinnati. This should be big news. IRS targeting of existing groups for audits is a second can of worms to be opened. It's one thing to try to kill nascent conservative groups; it's quite another and even more serious thing to persecute existing conservative groups which already have tax-exempt status. No one at the IRS could be sure whether or not a brand new group might be effective, but it's very easy for them to target existing groups which have already proven their effectiveness -- like your Institute. Surely congressional investigators will dig up more facts about these abusive practices. Soon there may be public-spirited whistleblowers inside the executive branch willing to expose abusive conduct, including information about who ordered those abuses and who knew about those abuses but took no steps to stop the illegal practices. Some guilty people may decide to confess and implicate others in order to reduce the criminal charges they know they are about to face. This is certain: if no one at the IRS is fired, fined, or jailed for the persecution of conservatives that has already become public knowledge, the guilty people there will conclude that they can continue their abuses with impunity. You and I must not allow that to happen. Please thank Congressmen Issa and Jordan for continuing their investigations into the IRS scandal. Please contact me or my staff if you or your conservative organization were asked about a relationship to the Leadership Institute. Let's keep building our case. Guilty people may actually be held accountable for abuses of power by the IRS. That's a rare and precious opportunity.
Stand up for free speech with your own campus publication
Morton Blackwell
May 6, 2013
Stand up for free speech with your own campus publication
Why do studies show that college seniors are more liberal than college freshmen? Simply put, campus radicals dominate almost every college campus in America and create a hostile environment for conservatives and libertarians. Leftists claim to support diversity. But “safe spaces,” “trigger warnings,” and political correctness run amok show that liberals in higher education reject diversity of thought and freedom of speech. Conservatives rarely have an outlet for their beliefs. When students get news about their campus, the official student newspaper is often simply a tool for spreading leftist propaganda. Many university administrations blatantly censor conservative ideas and opinions. However, many conservatives and libertarians now fight back and stand up for free speech with newspapers of their own. Papers such as the Harvard Salient, the Notre Dame Irish Rover, and the University of Georgia Arch Conservative now shatter the leftist monopoly of campus debate with hard-hitting editorials and unique reports of liberal abuses. Here are two examples of how one paper fought back against liberals on campus and made national news. Last year, The Minnesota Republic at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities shined a spotlight on the student government's rejection of a campus-wide moment of silence for victims of the 9/11 attacks. Pausing for a moment of recognition to honor the victims would increase racism and Islamophobia on campus, the student government said. “The passing of this resolution might make a space that is unsafe for students on campus even more unsafe,” one student representative said. “Islamophobia and racism fueled through that are alive and well.” The representative went on rhetorically to ask, “when will we start having moments of silence for all of the times white folks have done something terrible?” The resolution that would have honored the 9/11 victims with a moment of recognition was defeated by a 36-23 margin. However, the staff of The Minnesota Republic didn't let go - they fought back and reported on the story. The Republic's story, which was re-published on the Leadership Institute's Campus Reform, gained national media attention and generated public outrage. The university's board of regents rejected the student government's “safe space” argument and announced the university would move forward with a moment of recognition for victims of 9/11 in future years. The Dartmouth Review, the conservative paper at the Dartmouth College, broke national news about liberal bias last November. On November 12, Black Lives Matter protesters stormed the college's library, chanted loudly, screamed curses, and intimidated students who were trying to study. The Dartmouth Review staff, which had recently received training at a Leadership Institute Student Publications Workshop, captured video of the protest and authored a story that exposed the protesters' vicious mob mentality. Both the video and the story went viral, receiving national coverage on Fox News and CNN. The video of the protest now has over one million views on YouTube. The Dartmouth Review was the first campus outlet to write about the intimidation many students experienced that night. Because of their journalistic efforts, the college's president promised that the school would investigate the protesters and vowed to “enforce appropriate sanctions.” Without the Review, the emboldened protesters would have continued their campaign of intimidation. Instead, they found themselves at the center of a national media firestorm, all because the Review took a stand. The Leadership Institute launched its Student Publication Workshop in 1983 to expose leftist bias and abuses just like these. Their purpose is to teach conservative students how to set up and run independent conservative campus publications of their own. This was the second type of training the Institute offered, and it is still going strong today. The papers this workshop produces are often the only strong conservative voice on college campuses dominated by liberals. On dozens of campuses across America, independent campus newspapers published by Leadership Institute graduates now give students a point of view they might otherwise never hear. When you create a conservative paper on your campus, you'll follow an illustrious group of trailblazers. Former staffers of conservative campus publications have gone on to become some of the movement's brightest stars. Luminaries such as documentarian Dinesh D'Souza, radio host Laura Ingraham, and Pulitzer Prize-winning Wall Street Journal columnist Joseph Rago all began their careers with The Dartmouth Review, the flagship of the conservative campus publications. Ann Coulter was a founding member of the aforementioned Cornell Review. National Review Editor-in-Chief Rich Lowry cut his teeth as the editor of a conservative student newspaper at the University of Virginia. Bernadette Malone, a Leadership Institute graduate who became editor of the Manchester Union Leader editorial page, says that her campus conservative student newspaper changed her life. Bernadette realized she was a conservative by reading the Binghamton Review, the conservative newspaper at the State University of New York at Binghamton. She joined the staff of the paper, attended the Leadership Institute's Student Publications Workshop, became the paper's editor, and decided to pursue journalism as a career. Bernadette worked for several years as a political reporter for the late conservative columnist and TV commentator Robert Novak. That's the kind of impact working on a conservative student newspaper can have on your career. Like Bernadette, Amanda Carpenter will tell you that the Student Publications Workshop changed her life. Amanda served as Texas Senator Ted Cruz's Communications Director. You may have seen her during her primetime appearances on Fox News and CNN. Amanda attended LI's Student Publications Workshop while a student at Ball State University. She left the school, in her words, “with a domain name and ideas for 10 stories.” She began writing and publishing on her campus, and she never looked back. Since she graduated, Amanda has written for Human Events as a congressional correspondent, for Townhall as a national political reporter, and as a columnist for The Washington Times. This constellation of conservative stars provides great examples of how experience as a student journalist can lead to a career advancing conservative principles and providing balance to the national liberal news media. Young conservatives who set up and run independent conservative student newspapers learn what it's like to battle the liberals every day. They relish it. By starting your own student publication, you will gain skills to make you a valued member of any campaign or organization you join. Successful student editors learn immediate, valuable skills such as: how to write, edit, and design a regularly published, effective publication how to do investigative journalism how to recruit and train a motivated staff of like-minded students how to manage a budget how to fundraise and sell advertising Are you ready to start your career as a conservative student journalist today? The Leadership Institute will help you every step of the way. The first step is scheduling a Student Publications Workshop on your campus. Find a few dedicated, conservative friends and contact Emily Larsen, the Leadership Institute's Student Publications Coordinator, at ELarsen@leadershipinstitute.org. After your workshop, which will be held either in-person with a visit from a journalism professional or remotely online, the Leadership Institute will help you fund your first issue through the Balance in Media grant. That's right -- my Leadership Institute will grant you up to $750 to aid publication of your first issue. Well, what are you waiting for? Contact my Leadership Institute today and let us help you advance the conservative cause on your campus today. Fifty years of personal observation have proved to me that, even if conservative students leave journalism after graduation, those who publish their own campus papers tend to be much more successful in whatever career paths they take. P.S. It's time to stand up for free speech and hold universities accountable for their liberal biases and abuses. The choice is yours. Will you carve your path to success in the conservative movement with a publication of your own? Then contact Emily Larsen, Campus Reform's Student Publications Coordinator, at ELarsen@leadershipinstitute.org today.
Hold liberals accountable with your own campus publication
Morton Blackwell
April 23, 2013
Hold liberals accountable with your own campus publication
Why do studies show that college seniors are more liberal than college freshmen? Simply put, campus radicals dominate almost every college campus in America and create a hostile environment for conservatives and libertarians. Conservatives rarely have an outlet for their beliefs. When students get news about their campus, the official student newspaper is, more often than not, simply a tool for spreading leftist propaganda. However, many conservatives and libertarians now fight back with newspapers of their own. Papers such as the Harvard Salient, the Notre Dame Irish Rover, the University of Georgia Arch Conservative, and the California Patriot now shatter the leftist dominance of campus debate with hard-hitting editorials and unique reports of liberal abuses. Here are two examples of how one paper fought back against liberals on campus and made national news. The Michigan Review, the conservative paper at the University of Michigan, broke national news about liberal bias just this month. The university had planned to show American Sniper, the blockbuster war film that depicts the life of Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle, but they quietly withdrew the film after a petition tarred the film as “anti-Muslim,” “provocative,” and “unsafe.” The Michigan Review leaked the story to online conservative media outlets. The university reversed its position a few hours later, thanks to withering national criticism from online, broadcast, and print media of its absurd political correctness. When the university finally showed the film, many students turned out to watch. Earlier this year, the staff of the Cornell Review, fresh from training at a Leadership Institute Student Publications Workshop, captured video of a profane lecture on their campus by MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry. Harris-Perry, who was speaking at the university's Martin Luther King Commemorative Lecture, declared that she hoped Trayvon Martin “whooped the shit” out of George Zimmerman before he died. The rest of the lecture, which took place in a chapel, was just as shocking. She declared that Dr. Martin Luther King was “the one great voice, like Beyoncé,” and cracked jokes about the Tea Party and George W. Bush. Members of The Cornell Review attended the lecture and filmed Harris-Perry's outrageous remarks. After the Review published the video, the story quickly went viral and was featured in outlets such as the Leadership Institute's Campus Reform, Mediaite, and The Independent Journal Review. By that evening, the story was trending on Facebook, and the video had received tens of thousands of views. Without the Review, her remarks would have gone unnoticed, the latest entry in a long, silent list of outrages at that prestigious Ivy League school. Instead, Harris-Perry found herself in the center of a national media firestorm, all because the Review did solid journalism. Exposing examples of liberal bias and abuses like these is why the Leadership Institute launched its Student Publications Workshop in 1983. The aim: to teach conservative students how to set up and run independent conservative campus publications of their own. It was the second type of training the Institute offered and is still going strong today. The papers this workshop produces are often the only strong conservative voice on college campuses dominated by liberals. On at least 52 campuses across America, independent campus newspapers published by Leadership Institute graduates now give students a point of view they might otherwise never hear. When you found a conservative paper on your campus, you'll be following an illustrious group of trailblazers. Former staffers of conservative campus publications have gone on to become some of the movement's brightest stars. Luminaries such as documentarian Dinesh D'Souza, radio host Laura Ingraham, and Pulitzer Prize-winning Wall Street Journal columnist Joseph Rago all began their careers with The Dartmouth Review at Dartmouth College, the flagship of the conservative campus publications. Ann Coulter was a founding member of the aforementioned Cornell Review. National Review Editor-in-Chief Rich Lowry cut his teeth as the editor of a conservative student newspaper at the University of Virginia. Bernadette Malone, a Leadership Institute graduate who became editor of the Manchester Leader editorial page, says that her campus conservative student newspaper changed her life. Bernadette realized she was a conservative by reading the Binghamton Review, the conservative newspaper at the State University of New York at Binghamton. She joined the staff of the paper, attended the Leadership Institute's Student Publications Workshop, became the paper's editor, and decided to pursue journalism as a career. Bernadette worked for several years as a political reporter for the late conservative columnist and TV commentator Bob Novak. That's the kind of impact working on a conservative student newspaper can have on your career. Like Bernadette, Amanda Carpenter, Texas Senator Ted Cruz's Communications Director, will tell you that the Student Publications Workshop changed her life. You may have seen Amanda during her primetime appearances on Fox News. Amanda was a student at Ball State University when she attended the workshop. She left the school, in her words, “with a domain name and ideas for 10 stories.” She began writing and publishing on her campus, and she never looked back. Since she graduated, Amanda has written for Human Events as a congressional correspondent, for Townhall as a national political reporter, and as a columnist for The Washington Times. This pantheon of conservative stars provides great examples of how experience as a student journalist can lead to a career advancing conservative principles and providing balance to the national liberal news media. Young conservatives who set up and run independent conservative student newspapers learn what it's like to battle the liberals every day. They relish it. By starting your own student publication, you will gain skills that will make you a valued member of any campaign or organization you join. Successful student editors learn on-the-spot, valuable skills such: how to write, edit, and design a regularly published, effective newspaper how to do investigative journalism how to recruit and train a motivated staff of like-minded students how to manage a budget how to sell advertising Are you ready to start your career as a conservative student journalist today? The Leadership Institute will help you every step of the way. The first step is scheduling a Student Publications Workshop on your campus. Find a few dedicated, conservative friends and contact Sterling Beard, the head of LI's Student Publications Department, at SBeard@leadershipinstitute.org. After your workshop, which will be held either in-person with visit from an expert member of LI's faculty or remotely over the Internet, the Leadership Institute will help you fund your first issue through our Balance in Media grant. That's right: My Leadership Institute will actually provide you with up to $750 to aid publication of your first issue. Well, what are you waiting for? Contact my Leadership Institute today and let us help you advance the conservative cause on your campus today. And one more thing: Fifty years of personal observation have proved to me that, even if they take a career path outside of journalism, conservative students who publish their own campus papers tend to be much more successful later in life.
Leadership Institute Employee of the Quarter: 
Lauren Day
Morton Blackwell
April 17, 2013
Leadership Institute Employee of the Quarter: Lauren Day
Early this year, Lauren Day sought out the responsibility of overseeing LI's role at the Conservative Political Action Conference 2013 -- no small task and one she did not have to assume. And was CPAC ever a success for the Institute. The trainings, job fair, and happy hour were all well-attended. The booth was stocked with eye-catching marketing materials and trained staff. Lauren worked tirelessly to promote LI's events at CPAC, supply training coordinators with needed materials, and -- behind the scenes -- negotiate the very best deals for LI with ACU staff. Many staff join me in remarking on how well run CPAC was this year. I suspect all will join me in commending Lauren's enthusiasm and dedication to the Institute. Naming her employee of the quarter today recognizes her work on CPAC, but also the dozens of good projects she has accomplished for LI -- often without credit or praise. Lauren is an invaluable part of LI's team, and I am pleased to name her employee of the quarter.
Remembering Judge Robert Bork: Conservative Legend and Leadership Institute Donor
Morton Blackwell
March 21, 2013
Remembering Judge Robert Bork: Conservative Legend and Leadership Institute Donor
Remembering Judge Robert Bork: Conservative Legend and Leadership Institute DonorBy Morton BlackwellThe staff of the Leadership Institute honors generous donors who make the work of the Leadership Institute possible. We are saddened at the death of one of our long-time donors, conservative hero Robert Bork. The Leadership Institute received Judge Bork's final donation just one day before he died. My staff and I honor Judge Bork, a stalwart for judicial conservatism.Conservatives will remember Robert Bork as President Ronald Reagan's nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1987. I attended his recent funeral.Along with other conservatives, I was thrilled when the president nominated Judge Bork. He graduated from the University of Chicago and was a professor at Yale Law School for over 15 years. This brilliant man, who served in the Marine Corps before and after obtaining his law degree, would be a boon to conservative principles and values on the Supreme Court.But it was not to be.Defender of the Constitution meets liberal onslaughtIt soon became clear that the liberals in office were going to stop his nomination. Joe Biden, then Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, led the charge against Judge Bork.Bork was criticized for stating that the Constitution should be interpreted as the framers originally intended. Rumors began to circulate that the Reagan administration might quietly ask Bork to request that his name be withdrawn.But Bork—and conservatives—wanted a vote, because conservatives had every intention of holding senators who voted against him accountable.During the nomination proceedings, I wrote a personal letter to Ronald Reagan, asking him to make sure the Senate voted on Bork's nomination. I thought it would be a terrible mistake for the Bork nomination to be withdrawn—there had to be a recorded vote for many good reasons.About a week later, I received a letter back from President Reagan. He assured me that he intended to keep the nomination active and force the Senate to vote on it.A liberal-controlled Senate rejected Judge Bork's nomination in a hotly-contested 58-42 vote.Bork: Friend of Reagan, Friend of MortonI was happy to receive that letter of assurance from the President, but I was by no means confident that he had actually seen the letter—it might have just been drafted in the Presidential Correspondence office.Some years later, a friend was researching at the Reagan library. There, he found my original letter to the President, the President's hand-written draft of a response to me, and a copy of the final letter which was typed word-for-word as Reagan had drafted it. It moved me to learn that President Reagan had personally penned his response to me.LI and Bork: mutual support of conservative principlesMy acquaintance with Robert Bork goes back to the 1970s, long before the Supreme Court nomination. While Robert Bork was a professor of law at Yale University and I was on the U.S. Senate staff, I brought his son Charles Bork to intern for me.After Bork's rejection by the Senate, Leadership Institute graduates led a 200-strong protest against liberal Republican Arlen Specter, who along with Senator Biden and Senator Ted Kennedy, opposed Bork's nomination.In 1995, a Leadership Institute graduate at the University of Oklahoma battled and outwitted liberal Professor Anita Hill (the one who lobbed allegations against Justice Clarence Thomas) to bring Bork to standing room-only lectures at that university.And since that year, Judge Bork has been a faithful donor to the Leadership Institute. But not only a donor, Bork also gave talks to gatherings of Leadership Institute donors.Robert Bork believed in the Leadership Institute's work of training conservative activists and students on college campuses throughout the nation.My staff and I thank him for his 17 years of sustained and loyal support. Our condolences go to the family and friends of the Honorable Robert Bork.>
An open letter to conservatives
Morton C. Blackwell
November 15, 2012
An open letter to conservatives
I had a very exciting time at the Republican National Convention. My conservative allies and I all worked very hard in the presidential election. When I woke up the day after the election, everything I had worked for appeared to be in ruins. An extreme leftist had been reelected president of the United States. Some liberal Republicans immediately began to blame newly activated conservatives for the presidential defeat. I knew they were wrong. It was clear to me that these newly active conservatives would be the key to major future victories for conservative principles. The day was Wednesday, November 4, 1964. The Republican nominee, Barry Goldwater, had suffered a crushing defeat. He won just six states and 52 votes in the Electoral College. But from the ashes of that loss sprang a vigorous conservative movement. The conservative movement grew from modest beginnings to become a major force capable of nominating and electing candidates at the local, state, and national level, including Ronald Reagan. Waves of newly activated conservatives elected Ronald Reagan, broke the Democratic monopoly in the Congress, and were decisive in the thrilling 2010 elections. The influx of new conservatives greatly benefited the Republican Party then, as it has again in recent years. It would be foolish for conservatives, defeated for now, to form a circular firing squad and start shooting at each other. Each element of our coalition — limited government, free enterprise, strong national defense, and traditional values — has a long and strong background of working together. These principles will lead to victories in the future as they have in the past, as recently as two years ago. For those disappointed by the results of this year's presidential election, remember that it is a long ball game. Politics has a natural ebb and flow. Now is the time to study the lessons of this election and to chart a course for conservatives to win in the future. The stakes could not be higher. The margins of victory in the public policy process may be smaller now than at any other time in American history. Conservatives must reach out and identify philosophically compatible individuals among the types of people with whom leftist organizers have had the most success. Seek out the reasonably conservative people, the younger the better, who happen to be in categories long-targeted for organization by the left, people who share our American view of individual rights rather than group rights. Help them deepen their understanding of public policy issues. Many have strong opinions they already share with us. Then undertake systematic, persistent actions to recruit them into the public policy process, teach them political skills, and place them where they can be effective. Work hard and wisely to increase the number and effectiveness of conservative activists in all categories of people. Do all you can to advance and to protect them. Their success will break the leftist organizers' near monopolies among people like them. In closing, let me share with you the most important lesson you will learn at any time in your life about success in the public policy process. Being right in the sense of being correct is not sufficient to win. The winner in a political contest over time is determined by the number and the effectiveness of the activists and leaders on the respective sides. You owe it to your philosophy to study how to win. You have a moral obligation to learn how to win. That was the clinching argument Goldwater conservatives used to revive the power of conservative principles in America in 1964. I know you will find it helpful today. Conservatives can and will win big again in presidential elections. But first we must learn from our experience, do what must be done, and study diligently to become ever more effective. You have fought for good causes before. I pray you'll continue your fight for good causes now. Victories may be just around the corner.
LI President Thanks Attendees of the Values Voter Summit's gala
Morton Blackwell
October 3, 2012
LI President Thanks Attendees of the Values Voter Summit's gala
Thank you for your support as I accepted the 2012 James C. Dobson Vision and Leadership Award. Your attendance at the Family Research Council's Faith, Family and Freedom Gala was a tangible display of your commitment to defend traditional values against those leftists who seek to fundamentally transform (i.e., ruin) our country. In the late 1960s and 1970s, left-wing efforts to undermine traditional values prompted social conservatives to get involved in politics. Like many of you, I took action. The subsequent formation of ad hoc coalitions grew into oday's conservative movement. Despite numerous conservative victories since then, the assault on family values and religious faith continues. Here are just a few chilling examples of leftist bias and abuse my staff exposed this year through the Leadership Institute's campus website, www.CampusReform.org: ·Professor wants to reduce human population by ‘controlling human fertility' ·Lutheran university announces opposition to traditional marriage amendment ·University of Southern Mississippi professor: ‘Anti-gay' Chick-fil-A needs to be removed from campus ·College professor: 'Jesus was a Muslim' ·Obama's DOJ Forces University to Allow 38 Year Old Male to Access Women's Restrooms ·Same-Sex "Marriage" Supporters Assault, Spit on Pro-Marriage Students The left is relentless, but so is my faith in the Almighty to use our powerful movement to fundamentally save America. That's why your support of the Family Research Council, my Leadership Institute, and other conservative organizations means so much to me. There is truly a crisis in America today. However, I am encouraged by good people like you who actively fight for faith, family, and freedom. On behalf of the Leadership Institute staff (photo enclosed), I thank you for the honor to fight alongside you in this battle. Cordially, Morton C. Blackwell President Leadership Institute
Webinar replay: effective door-to-door
Patricia Simpson
September 27, 2012
Webinar replay: effective door-to-door
The key to winning an election is much more than simply turning out more voters than your opponent. You must learn the techniques that successful campaigns have been using for years, and then adapt them to fit your winning formula.A successful door-to-door effort could be the difference you need to win!
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