Top story: Did you feel different when you woke up today? You should have. Jim DeMint officially takes the reigns at the Heritage Foundation today—and the American political landscape is about to change because of it.
- His first public action? A letter to supporters that begins “Dear patriots.” (The Foundry)
- Among other claims, the letter states that “in Louisiana, they’re getting their schools to work by giving parents the freedom to choose.” Of course, the man responsible for trying to dramatically expand school vouchers, Gov. Bobby Jindal, is suffering all-time lows in his polling. (Shreveport Times).
- A curious bit from the DeMint letter: The man who has previously touted his Constitutional bona fides hopes Supreme Court’s “judges will stand up for marriage as we have known it.” Of course, they’re called “Justices.” (The Foundry)
- We’d give him a pass on that one, but he wrote that “unelected judges shouldn’t try to settle this question for the entire country” last week in USA Today, too. (USA Today)
- Okay, but why care about who heads which think tank in Washington? Several reasons in DeMint’s case. First, because DeMint can strike fear in the heart of Republican incumbents worried about a challenge to their right. (Manu Raju) and (Slate)
- In fact, “during the 2010 election cycle [DeMint] endorsed a number of contenders running against the NRSC’s preferred candidates.” (The Hill)
- Second, so much for the GOP autopsy: “The Period of Republican Introspection is over. Boss Jim DeMint has lost patience with it.” (Ed Kilgore)
- Third, headlines like this one: “The Heritage Foundation goes on war footing with timeless values, innovative policy.” Ah, yes, the timeless values of a war footing. (The Washington Times)
- Fourth, DeMint and Heritage will be building the policy agendas that the next Republican presidential candidate may endorse: “In Washington, the regiments on the battlefield are often think tanks and public intellectuals working for the day when some leader will take their visions off the shelf and try them.” (National Review)
- Fifth and finally, “hiking the Appalachian Trail” reasons: “A certain irony that Mark Sanford’s political comeback is possible due to staunch social conservative Jim DeMint’s Senate resignation.” (David Mark)
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Top Links: Welcome to the Jim DeMint Era at Heritage — and in American politics