Heritage Action for America, the political activist “sister organization” of the Conservative Heritage Foundation and “thorn in the side” of the permanent political class in Washington, is out with a concise, yet comprehensive Presidential Platform Review.
It evaluates the records and policy positions of 12 of this year’s GOP presidential candidates across six areas critical to conservative thinking.
Heritage Action for America CEO Michael A. Needham joined host and Executive Chairman Stephen K. Bannon on Breitbart News Daily on Sirius XM Patriot channel 125 to discuss the launch of the candidate review, designed to “focus on issues,” not personalities and “let people come to their own conclusions” for the 2016 Republican primary, according to Needham during today’s interview.
As Needham recently said to the Washington Post, “Americans are not looking for a president to simply manage the status quo in Washington. They want someone that will fight the well-connected special interests and advance policies that work for everyone. Fortunately, conservatives have a deep and visionary field to choose from.” Also, as Needham told Bannon today on air, Heritage Action is a “three-legged stool conservatism group,” so its review doesn’t ignore social issues, or immigration issues, which the so called “Karl Rove wing” of the Republican Party usually tries to ignore.
Heritage Action has been working on the review since April, as Politico reported at the time.
The evaluations are the latest move in a broader push by Heritage to influence the debate in concrete ways, including a January conference tied to the release of a 192-page book on policy ideas aimed at providing “opportunity for all but favoritism to none.” The group took heat from the GOP’s establishment wing for its push to defund Obamacare in 2013, which congressional leaders blamed for the two-week federal government shutdown.
“Civil society,” one of the six categories, includes support for religious freedom and opposition to gay marriage and abortion. The “favoritism” category includes an insistence that candidates should oppose “amnesty” in any immigration reform. The broad categories include specific questions on everything from Common Core to net neutrality, transportation funding and military spending.
The Presidential Platform Review is, in essence, a matrix which lists the 12 leading GOP contenders for 2016 across the top. Down the left side are six categories, Growth, Opportunity, Civil Society, Lmtd. Gov., Favoritism and Nat’l Security. One simply has to click on the appropriate square within the easily understandable grid to read the analysis of a specific candidate on a particular issue, or category.
Clicking on a square brings you to a concise, one paragraph highlight of where the candidate stands as regards one of the six categories, while a “read more” link allows you to dig deeper on any candidate across the selected area or issue. Heritage Action for America’s Presidential Platform Review can be found here. Below is this morning’s Breitbart News Daily interview with CEO Mike Needham.