The latest news from Heritage offered exclusively for members.

Friday, June 16, 2017
The Heritage Foundation
Member Briefing
This week has been very busy and I’m excited to share with you the impact that you are having through Heritage.

First, in response to President Trump’s executive order calling for federal agencies to provide a plan to increase their efficiency, Heritage released the Blueprint for Reorganization this week to "drain the swamp" in Washington. This comprehensive analysis of the federal agencies lays out a plan to reorganize their structure as well as eliminate unnecessary agencies.  Read more about how Heritage experts came together to create the plan in the first article today.

Next, former Heritage Action Vice President of Grassroots and Policy, Russ Vought, came under fire for his Christian faith at his Senate confirmation hearing last week. Now Russ is waiting on a final vote to be confirmed as the Deputy Director of the Office of Budget and Management. Read more about his recent hearing and watch Senator Bernie Sanders interrogate him in the video below.

I would also like to share with you an example of how we work to facilitate unity in the conservative movement by constantly bringing together conservative leaders at Heritage to create the best policy solutions together. Last Friday, four members of the conservative House Freedom Caucus participated in a panel discussion at Heritage focused on tax reform. I encourage you to watch their remarks in the third article below.

Lastly, President Trump announced today that he will be overturning many of Obama’s policies regarding US-Cuba relations. This marks a significant foreign relations transition and an important end to the era of failed policy enacted by the Obama administration. Read more about this announcement as well as the impact Heritage had on this new policy in the last article today.

None of our work here at Heritage could be done without your help and support. Thank you for keeping us on the front lines of these important fights.

Onward!

Edwin J. Feulner, President
Heritage releases plan to “drain the swamp”

by Kathleen Reynolds

In response to President Trump’s executive order calling for each agency to put together a plan to increase efficiency within the federal government, Heritage experts just released the Blueprint for Reorganization. This comprehensive analysis of the federal agencies lays out a plan to reorganize their structure, eliminate wasteful spending, and increase efficiency.

In order to seize this opportunity, Heritage experts from all different disciplines came together and worked tirelessly to create a comprehensive reorganization plan based on fundamental conservative positions.

This plan provides a detailed analysis of just how to “drain the swamp.” It outlines what departments ought to be cut back, when they should be cut back, and how. In fact, the plan recommends the elimination of 53 programs within the different agencies.

Thanks to you, Heritage was able to seize this opportunity. Thanks to you, Heritage is equipped with the resources and dedicated staff able to turn out a comprehensive plan on short notice. And thanks to you, Heritage was able to maximize a truly unique opportunity to apply our core principles to make real impact on the federal government.

Read the full Blueprint for Reorganization plan >>

 

Do you believe the federal government needs to be reorganized? What federal agencies would you like to see cut?

Former Heritage employee’s faith attacked in confirmation hearing


by Kathleen Reynolds

We live in a time where our basic constitutional rights are being redefined. This is a time where free speech can be seen as a crime and where sincerely held religious conviction could be enough of a reason to disqualify an individual from public office. A perfect example of this happened just last week during a Senate confirmation hearing.

Last week, former Heritage Action Vice President of Grassroots and Policy, Russ Vought, had his Senate confirmation hearing for the position of Deputy Director of the Office of Management and Budget in President Trump’s administration. 

In his hearing, Russ – who has a reputation as a principled conservative, well-equipped and favored for the position for which he was nominated – came under fire from Senator Bernie Sanders–not for his qualifications, but for his Christian convictions.

According to Article IV of the Constitution, “no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States”.

As this report by the Daily Signal points out:

"Religious tests for holding public office are banned in the Constitution and go against the very core of the American tradition.

But you wouldn’t have learned that on Wednesday listening to Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., as he questioned Russ Vought, the nominee for deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget.

His questioning of Vought was nothing less than theological interrogation, and in the end, excoriation."

Watch the exchange between Sanders and Vought below:

Bernie Sanders applies religious litmus test on nominee

Russ has been with our sister organization, Heritage Action, since it’s inception in 2010. Russ’ wife, Mary, currently works for The Heritage Foundation and his family has been a significant part of the Heritage family for years. 

In his role at Heritage Action, he oversaw the building and management of America’s leading conservative grassroots activist army that keeps Congress accountable to the American people. We are extremely thankful for Russ’ leadership at Heritage Action and for his courageous conservative stance.

Why do you think Article IV’s requirement that no religious test be required as a qualification for public office is important? Did Senator Sanders violate Article IV in his questioning?
You are leading the conversation on tax reform

by Kathleen Reynolds

Implementing conservative solutions on tax reform is key to creating a stronger economy in America.

Last Friday, at Heritage’s Washington DC headquarters, four members of the House Freedom Caucus participated in a panel discussion to work towards tax reform.

The panel highlighted the conservative perspective on the border adjustment tax, welfare reform, and other tax policies. Conversations like this serve to spark ideas and spread the discussion of sound, conservative policies while also serving as a catalyst to unify the conservative movement.

Watch the full discussion below:

Principles for Tax Reform

We were honored to host our conservative allies from the House and are thankful for their work on tax reform.

What do you think about the conservative solution to tax reform?

Another victory for conservatives in foreign policy

by Kathleen Reynolds

Today, President Trump announced he is reversing many of Obama’s executive policies towards Cuba.

For years Heritage has constantly fought for a U.S.-Cuba policy that would end the Castro regime–recognizing that the Castro dictatorship will never be friendly to the United States. The United States’ relationship to Cuba must be transactional and must require the Cuban government to meet high standards.

We saw this same attitude reflected in the President’s announcement today, as many of the key points in his policy closely reflect Heritage’s own position.

Writing for the National Interest, Heritage expert Mike Gonzalez had this to say on the U.S.-Cuba policy:

If “America First” means anything, it must mean preventing a virulently anti-American criminal enterprise from perpetuating its existence next door and reproducing itself throughout the hemisphere. And since this is precisely what President Obama’s opening to the Castros accomplished, President Trump is duty-bound to reverse this mistake.

Read Mike’s full analysis>>

Do you agree with the Trump administration’s new policy position on US-Cuba relations? Why or why not?

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