Former Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC), now president of the Heritage Foundation, told the Conservative Political Action Conference on Saturday that “we the people remember that the solution to America’s problems will not come from Washington but the little platoons all around the country.”
DeMint drew a straight line between a return to federalism and grassroots activism.
“Americans will unite,” DeMint said, “around the core ideas from our founding… These are the conservative ideas that built a strong America… This unity can be brought through the original constitutional idea of federalism.”
Power, DeMint said, should flow from the federal government “back to the states, communities and to the people.”
“When Washington stops trying to direct all aspects of our lives, Americans will fall in love with each other and their country.”
DeMint hit on the theme of restoring the federalism outlined in the constitution. “If we let states compete… this competition will revive our economy, expand opportunities… We see this competition working in school choice in Florida and Texas, in energy development in North Dakota.”
“America,” DeMint said, “is the greatest, most prosperous, most compassionate country in the history of the world.” This greatness, he added, derives from “a vast army of little platoons [around the country] that constantly sustain and revive us.”
DeMint concluded by asking his audience to “join me in falling in love with America again and again and again.”