Every election, as presidential hopefuls jockey for the Republican nomination, each one claims to be a Reagan conservative. But what is a “Reagan conservative?”
In 11 Principles of a Reagan Conservative (Beaufort Books, March 2014), acclaimed Reagan biographer and presidential historian Paul Kengor paints the first comprehensive picture of Reagan’s beliefs. He identifies 11 principles, what he calls his “Reagan Eleven,” that comprised Reagan's conservatism. “These eleven,” says professor Kengor, “tell us what Reagan’s conservatism was truly about, and what his emulators might take to heart.” Here are those 11 principles:
· Sanctity and dignity of human life
· American exceptionalism
· The Founders’ wisdom and vision
· Lower taxes
· Limited government
· Peace through strength
· Anti- Communism
· Belief in the individual
It is these principles that Reagan's modern emulators should follow. Ronald Reagan himself believed that these principles could and would allow Republicans to take back the White House. They could if they had the courage of these convictions. Republicans, said Reagan, needed not merely “political principles” but “principled politics.” Reagan called for a “program of action” that included an embrace of both social and economic conservative values. “We can do it in America,” Reagan insisted. “This is not a dream, a wistful hope. It is and has been a reality. I have seen the conservative future and it works.”
Kengor has provided a manifesto not only on conservatism but on conservatism generally.
Many a politician has asked: What would Reagan do if he were president now? Where would Reagan stand on today's issues? Who is the next Ronald Reagan? Paul Kengor dissects Reagan's presidency and provides decisive conclusions. The answers to some of these questions may surprise conservatives and liberals alike.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dr. Paul Kengor is a professor of political science at Grove City College and executive director of the college’s Center for Vision & Values. He is an internationally recognized authority on Ronald Reagan and the presidency. ANew York Times bestselling author, Kengor’s numerous writings on Reagan have appeared in academic presses, scholarly journals, and publications ranging from the Washington Post and USA Today to CNN.com. He has spoken on Reagan in venues from the Reagan Library and Reagan Ranch Center to Eureka College. His books on Reagan are the basis for the coming biopic “Reagan: The Movie.” A native of Western PA, Kengor lives in Grove City, PA, with his wife and their seven children.
For more information, a review copy, or to schedule an interview with Paul Kengor