Surprise Senate Exit by Jim DeMint

One of President Obama’s most outspoken critics is quitting the U.S. Senate to take over the reins at the Heritage Foundation, the nation’s preeminent conservative think tank.

As first reported by the Wall Street Journal, Tea Party movement-supported Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) said he is leaving public office in order to help the conservative movement regain the upper hand in the war of ideas. Replacing Heritage co-founder Ed Feulner, DeMint expects to take over as president at Heritage early next year.

“This is an urgent time because we saw in the last election we were not able to communicate conservative ideas that win elections,” said DeMint, a market researcher before he entered public life.

“This really gets my blood going again thinking about the possibilities. This is the time to elevate the conservative cause.”

The three-term senator who frequently clashes with Republican leadership in the Senate said he wants to use Heritage’s research along with those of state think tanks and “translate those policy papers into real-life demonstrations of things that work.” He added, “We want to figure out what works at the local and state level” and promote those policy solutions nationally.

DeMint addressed 200 Heritage staffers yesterday.

“This organization is in a position to do more to save our country than any other organization I’m aware of,” he said. ”I believe that we have put together here the power, the muscle, the ideas to turn things around.”

The Heritage Foundation reportedly has an annual budget of $80 million so DeMint’s fundraising expertise will come in handy. The foundation itself is a nonprofit educational institution recognized under section 501c3 of the Internal Revenue Code. Its sister 501c4 organization, Heritage Action for America, is an advocacy group. Donations to the 501c3 group are tax-deductible to the donor but donations to the 501c4 entity are not.

DeMint founded the Senate Conservatives Fund, an important political action committee that has raised more than $25 million to help elect eight limited-government GOP candidates to the Senate in 2010 and 2012. Among them are Pat Toomey (Pennsylvania), Marco Rubio (Florida), Mike Lee (Utah), and Ron Johnson (Wisconsin), along with Senators-elect Ted Cruz (Texas), Jeff Flake (Arizona), and Deb Fischer (Nebraska). DeMint cut his formal ties to the fund earlier this year, making it a non-affiliated, multi-candidate PAC.

SCF Executive Director Matt Hoskins said DeMint “has consistently fought for conservative policies and he’s helped elect a new generation of conservatives who will continue this legacy.”

DeMint’s “new role puts him in a powerful position to fight for conservative principles for many years to come,” Hoskins said. “This is a win-win for the conservative movement.”

With Mitt Romney’s shocking loss last month in the presidential election, it is clear that the conservative movement needs help getting its message out. At times during the campaign Romney struggled to articulate conservative ideas.

In addition to hitting Democrats, conservatives, including DeMint, have been harshly critical of leading figures in the Republican Party, accusing them of being too willing to compromise with President Obama.

Right now Republicans are losing the political battle over the so-called fiscal cliff, a potentially toxic combination of steep tax hikes and deep spending cuts scheduled to take effect on January 1, 2013. Negotiations aimed at avoiding the cliff are not going well.

Polling suggests most Americans would blame congressional Republicans — not congressional Democrats and President Obama — if the country goes over the metaphorical cliff.

Meanwhile, Republicans will have 43 members in the incoming Senate, down from 45 in the current Congress. DeMint’s departure should have no effect on GOP standings in the Senate because his home state governor is a Republican who will presumably appoint another Republican to the seat.

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley will soon decide whom to appoint to succeed DeMint. Of course it’s early in the process but so far talk has centered on Congressman Tim Scott (R-S.C.), a black conservative with the enthusiastic backing of the Tea Party movement as a potential replacement.

Unlike President Obama, Scott has an inspiring life story that happens to be true. Unlike Obama he was not a “red diaper baby” surrounded by Marxists from his first breath. Scott was actually born poor and unlike the president embraced the American Dream, running a business and achieving upward mobility before entering politics.

If appointed Scott would be the first African-American senator from the South since Reconstruction.

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  • Dwee

    DeMint will hopefully get rid of all the holier than thou rhetoric embraced, with no doubt good intentions, by religious conservatives. Religious people need to realize they have no right to inflict THEIR ideas about morality onto others. Just as no one wants wacko muzzies forcing their beliefs onto others, likewise no one likes to hear from xtians as well. Jews at least keep it to themselves. Thank you! Catholics should NOT be forced to pay for abortions, but I also don't think it is any of their business if people have abortions. How do religious people come to grips with the fact that every time a man ejaculates thousands of potential humans must die?

    It's also not the conservative's business if a guy wants to marry a guy. Seems ridiculous to me, but my brain chemistry is just the average, not the only way it can be. Soon their will probably be hormone treatments for homosexuality, but that doesn't mean it should be forced on people.

    Conservatives MUST focus on the things people NEED to care about, not what they SHOULD care about. Responsible economic policies — take postal service, health care and education from the government where they do FAR more harm than good and it costs 10 times what it should! And that sort of thing….

    • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLNn2YflwNs Roger

      They have morality on things like murder.
      In places that reject that morality the murder rate is high, like in Chicago and Detroit.

      How do you come to terms with the fact that you aren't forced to have Christian values? Not all religions would allow you that freedom.

    • JDP

      i always find it weird that the most hardcore anti-Obamaites are some of the squishiest conservatives, or want to redefine conservatism to "who cares?" winning message you got there.

      • Matthew Vadum

        What are you talking about?

    • patron

      Politically this will loose the GOP it's evangelical base, and you will see Florida, North Carolina and Virginia go strong blue as the evangelicals either become apathetic or split and form their own party. Texas would become a swing state.

      Concerning your issues Barak Obama voted against giving human rights to babies who survive abortion. In regards to the "war on women", the figures are skewed as the black vote, consisting mostly of women, went to Obama 90%. On homosexual marriage, conservatives believe the federal government should not be in the business of approving lifestyles. My opinion is both are contrived issues raised by big government advocates to grow government's reach first, and to make conservatives look like fools.

      • Jim_C

        Evangelical base is already loosening and becoming more what it was prior to Reagan–a group that applies its values and votes to multiple issues instead of just one. That is as it should be. And I think you are correct about the states. I think Texas will be pretty much a blue state in ten years' time.

    • Snow White

      Re: The right to abortion on demand….I bleieve abortion is murder because it stops a beating heart. Murder is a crime.

  • Western Spirit

    Dwee you are a wee, small time, thinker. Judeo-Christian values have defined this country throughout its history. You aren't talking about liberty, but about license. Believe me there is a difference.

    We need the religion of our fathers to keep the nation inherited from our fathers as it has been— free and strong.

    Our faith and our nation used to be interwined and inseparable and must remain so if we are to remain healthy. Presently we are sick and in decline from too many people who think like you.

  • marios

    Senator Jim DeMint is one of the best in Congress if not the best. He is Man of Principles, he is Patriot country established by our Founding Fathers. It's bad that he leave Senate in this time. On the other had "Heritage foundation" is great organization and he is perfect candidate for being its President.
    country was founded on Judeo-Christians values and it's provided her prosperity and mighty. To destroy great country first enemies always destroyed it's culture and morality. As result of morality decline always come economical disaster. We see first sign of it now in our own great country.
    Dem's unleashed war against Christians, especially against Catholics last 10 years. They clean up path to new religion Islam. People should realize it ASAP. Leftists/commies and Jihadists united the same goal to get Power for ever. We see how WH socialists build totalitarian system in our time. We need such people as Jim DeMint to stop it!

    • patron

      Leftists are all style no substance. People have lost their jobs and homes thanks to the feel good, results be damned Obama rampage.

      Obama has failed the very poor. 40% literacy rate in Detroit with drug addiction and violent crime skyrocketing as cities fail. If the conservatives can produce now outside of government in cities where corruption and graft has deserted America, it may be the future of conservatism.

  • κατεργάζομαι

    .blessings upon you & your family, most fine sir………..

    Now Ted Cruz is one of the few U.S. Senators that are worth a flip.

    • Looking4Sanity

      Being the poster boy for "diversity" doesn't hurt either, does it? It smells like pandering to me. Let's face it…the GOP is running scared, and they're scared stupid. They ought to be. After this election I think a lot of them are going to be out on their ears. Their days of abusing their own base with impunity are over.

      • Boston Tea Party

        Replying to Looking4Sanity said: "Jim DeMint can go suck on it as far as I'm concerned. There MUST be someone better "

        Sober up ace. What's your gripe against Jim Demint? List five current GOP Senators you find superior to Jim DeMint?

        Jim DeMint, a key advocate of grassroots conservativism and a Tea Party champion.

        Crawl back into your ocd bottle,

        • Looking4Sanity

          Anyone who considers Harry Reid “A good man and a personal friend” is a traitor to conservatism in my book. I live in a black and white world. Good luck with your shades of gray.

          • Boston Tea Party

            Composite conservative voting scores rank Senator Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., at the top and gives him a more conservative score than Sens. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., and Jeff Sessions, R-Ala.

            Judging by your intensedebate record, you spend your entire day with vapid cut and pastes, and initiating attacks on others. Sober up.

          • Looking4Sanity

            Explain his endorsement of Harry Reid on the Rush Limbaugh radio show two days ago to my satisfaction and I'll consider recanting…bozo.

          • Roy

            Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, is best friends with Ruth Bader Ginsburg. So what's your point? You are a walking fallacy attack dog. After skimming your profile comments, it is evident that you are a foul mouthed person of no particular intellectual honesty.

            I know you did not have time to read the article and post a gazillion posts all day; so please allow me assist you. "DeMint founded the Senate Conservatives Fund, an important political action committee that has raised more than $25 million to help elect eight limited-government GOP candidates to the Senate in 2010 and 2012. Among them are Pat Toomey (Pennsylvania), Marco Rubio (Florida), Mike Lee (Utah), and Ron Johnson (Wisconsin), along with Senators-elect Ted Cruz (Texas), Jeff Flake (Arizona), and Deb Fischer (Nebraska). DeMint cut his formal ties to the fund earlier this year, making it a non-affiliated, multi-candidate PAC.

            SCF Executive Director Matt Hoskins said DeMint “has consistently fought for conservative policies and he’s helped elect a new generation of conservatives who will continue this legacy.”"

            Senator DeMint's record speaks for itself.

          • Looking4Sanity

            You're a hoot! Stupid as dirt, but a hoot nonetheless! You admit that DeMint FOUNDED SCF, and then give an endorsement of him by the Executive Director of the very organization he founded!

            Yes, DeMint's record speaks for itself. Let's see what a more OBJECTIVE source has to say about that record, shall we?

            http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/12/jim-de

      • Roy

        L4S said this, "Being the poster boy for "diversity" doesn't hurt either, does it? It smells like pandering to me. Let's face it…the GOP is running scared, and they're scared stupid. They ought to be. After this election I think a lot of them are going to be out on their ears. Their days of abusing their own base with impunity are over. "

        L4S: what does that even mean to you? you blog obsessive-compulsively. your record says that you log more than 100 posts a day on this venue alone. don't you have a life? if this is your life, to attack others to make yourself feel good, – at least make sense once in the while during your disconnected angry drive-by posts.

        • Looking4Sanity

          Let us know when you have anything of substance to add, why don't you. If you disagree, say why instead of engaging in ad hominim attacks that have nothing to do with the subject. It only makes you look stupid…er.

          • Roy

            Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, is best friends with Ruth Bader Ginsburg. So what's your point? You are a walking fallacy attack dog. After skimming your profile comments, it is evident that you are a foul mouthed person of no particular intellectual honesty.

            I know you did not have time to read the article and post a gazillion posts all day; so please allow me assist you. – "DeMint founded the Senate Conservatives Fund, an important political action committee that has raised more than $25 million to help elect eight limited-government GOP candidates to the Senate in 2010 and 2012. Among them are Pat Toomey (Pennsylvania), Marco Rubio (Florida), Mike Lee (Utah), and Ron Johnson (Wisconsin), along with Senators-elect Ted Cruz (Texas), Jeff Flake (Arizona), and Deb Fischer (Nebraska). SCF Executive Director Matt Hoskins said DeMint “has consistently fought for conservative policies and he’s helped elect a new generation of conservatives who will continue this legacy.”

            Senator DeMint's record speaks for itself, as does your profile illustrate that you are a foul mouthed, addlebrained, disrespectful provocateur.

      • Dale Evans

        "Their days of abusing their own base with impunity are over. " blah, blah, blah.

        And you have logged over 25,000 posts on intensedebate under various names to illustrate that you are that of which you speak.

    • Snow White

      White South Carolinians will never vote for a black Senator. White S Carolinians have had wide spread experiences of abuse by blacks in power. I have never heard of a blackperson coming ot the assistance of a white person in SC. Yet White people have showed compassion and acted as protectors andmentors of many blacks. The South has gotten a raw deal because of slavery, when in fact those huge plantations, run by overseers, where m ost of the abuse took p-0lace, were mostly owned by Yankee industrialists. I got this info from reading the census records of 1850 and 1869,

  • Looking4Sanity

    Jim DeMint said of Senator Harry Reid yesterday "He's a good man and a personal friend of mine" on a nationally syndicated radio show.

    "Show me your friends and I'll show you your future" – Glenn Beck's mom

    Jim DeMint can go suck on it as far as I'm concerned. There MUST be someone better qualified to carry the conservative standard than this guy.

    • Not John Smith

      L4S says, :"Jim DeMint can go suck on it as far as I'm concerned." – That is not an unpredictable cheap swipe from a loser blog fly who lives on the internet and chooses to elevate Glenn Beck's mother as one whom is noteworthy. Jim DeMint is far more accomplished and principled than you could ever hope to be.

      • Looking4Sanity

        Nice to know YOU support Harry Reid too. There is no substitute for knowing one's enemies. The ad hominim attack was a nice touch, unfortunately it's a TOS violation on this site.

    • Roy

      L4S: what does that even mean? get a grip, man. you blog obsessive-compulsively. your record says that you log more than 100 posts a day on this venue alone. don't you have a life? if this is your life, to attack others to make yourself feel good, – at least make sense once in the while during your disconnected angry drive-by posts.

  • W. C. Taqiyya

    I actually agree with some of Dwee's comment. But I see his concerns from a different perspective. I agree that religion should not be forced. While we agree on this point Dwee seems to confuse speaking about or displaying or living your own personal faith with force. It's not at all the same thing. You can turn off the radio or not buy the book or choose not to believe or attend church, but you cannot shut down speech. People who believe, can speak and act like they do. That is not forcing their beliefs on others. Nothing says you must be sheltered from things you don't like or disagree with. It's very sad how many people simply can't understand the difference anymore.

    As for abortions. The people who believe them to be immoral are just as free to lobby for legal change as were the supporters to make it legal. Further, there is this additional problem, while people now have the "right" to an abortion, they do not legitimately have the right to make me pay for it. And since the federal government subsidizes abortions, they are using my money to perform an immoral act. This is a crime against conscience, is unconstitutional and must be abolished. Legal abortion is one thing, get the supporters to pay for it. Not sure if Dwee knows that Catholics are already paying for abortions. But we both agree they should not.

    The gays. First, despite their constant propaganda, nobody, barring the occasional single criminal, has been promoting the policy of killing or jailing or suppressing gays. They haven't been oppressed and those old sodomy laws were hardly ever prosecuted. What they do and with whom is their concern, provided it is between consenting adults. Dwee and I seem to agree on this point. From a broader perspective, institutionalizing those non-procreative relationships by calling them marriage is a good way to make marriage meaningless. Even more than it is. No time or space for the full dissertation. But historically, nobody ever called it marriage. Not in Greece, not in Rome. Marriage was marriage and it was blessed by the State because the State was interested in procreation. It was interested in procreation because the State was interested in a continuing supply of workers and soldiers. You see, once upon a time people understood the importance of having people instead of pets. People can farm and make things and build stuff and defend the kingdom. Gay marriage, like marrying pets and cars and trees is just silly. From a personal perspective, I don't care. Let them join the parade of suddenly much poorer people who supply the family courts and all those lawyers with money. It's their funeral.

    The whole cure or vaccine thing for homosexuality is nonsense. IMO, it's a qualified lifestyle choice based on narcissistic impulses. Self love is a character trait we all share in some measure and in some form. It's not unnatural and there's no vaccine. It's just, for whatever innumerable combination of personality factors, and maybe some unknown genetic predispositions, is what some are drawn to, consciously or otherwise. No need to shoot them. Yet.

    Dwee is partially correct. Conservatives need to focus on the key conservative issues. But first, we need to define conservatism. And that looks like a tough row to hoe. Contrary to what too many people seem to think, there are limits to how much diversity a society can take and still function as a coherent unit. When diversity scatters core values, beliefs, traditions and assumptions to the four corners of the earth, the society fails. That is where we are. Everyone is an island and chaos is king.

    • stevef

      Leave the homosexuals to the Muzzies…already in much of Europe they have the "gays" on the run; the MSM just won't tell you this.

  • Ghostwriter

    What's Dwee talking about? With this thing about homosexuals,I want to say this and I doubt it'll be popular. To me,homosexuality and lesbianism should be a private matter,discussed among that person's family and friends. There's no need to make a person's sex life a public issue,unless what that person does harms someone else,like in the case of pedophilia. That's my view of it and I'm sticking to it.

    • stevef

      Isn't homosexuality a symptom something went wrong? Certainly most homosexuals believe this….it would seem to be self-evident.

  • BS61

    I'm gonna miss him!

    He was on Glenn Beck at the first 9/12 protest with Pence stating that finally the calvary had arrived!

  • stevef

    Getting out the Conservative message is only one aspect of the job….another should be to tell the ugly truth about the Progressives: they are a racist Fascist totalitarian movement. See J. Goldberg's "Liberal Fascism" for the historical background to the evil now confronting our Republic.

  • fanlad

    God speed Jim Demint, we need more conservatives cut from the same cloth. America is in a life or death struggle for its cultural, moral, fiscal, and spiritual life. For evil to prevail, all good men and women need to do is nothing.

  • Paul

    I have always been a supporter of Jim Demint but the other day I heard him speak the words that Looking4Sanity refers to and it knocked me for a loop.We are living in a new world and no one gets it , not even Jim Demint.

  • Arlie

    Jim DeMint has long been my favorite Senator and has the best record on Constitutional Conservative Principles and Values. There is no one better for the position than Senator DeMint. With his marketing background he is an asset to the Heritage Foundation and I hope he goes out and inspires a million more. Americans need to be educated by the millions on the responsibilities of being a prosperous asset to their communities. If this does not happen soon things are going to be bad for everyone…that's 0's plan..collapse the system into his lap. I, for one do not want tyranny for America. President DeMint sounds great to me. Well, I can dream can't I?