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Crisis of Conservatism?The Republican Party, the Conservative Movement, and American Politics After Bush$
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Joel D. Aberbach and Gillian Peele

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199764013

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199764013.001.0001

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Thoughts That Count?

Thoughts That Count?

The GOP's Woes and the Work of Conservative Think Tanks

Chapter:
(p.212) 10 Thoughts That Count?
Source:
Crisis of Conservatism?
Author(s):

Pietro S. Nivola

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199764013.003.0010

The Republican Party took a beating in the elections of 2006 and 2008. And though it is likely to recover much lost ground in this year's mid-term election, the party—and indeed conservatism generally—have yet fundamentally to repair a tarnished brand. This chapter asks whether conservative think tanks played a part in the GOP's setbacks of recent years. It argues that the role of think tanks was different and more complex than has widely been supposed. Conservative policy intellectuals contributed to both the disappointments and the achievements of Republican administrations, but more consequentially to the latter. That record is of limited consolation, however, since voters tend to punish failures more than reward successes.

Keywords:   Think tanks, public policy, Republican Party, conservative movement, Cato Institute, Brookings Institution, American Enterprise Institute, environmental policy, foreign policy, Heritage Foundation, terrorism, New American Century

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