American Principles In Action - A Breakthrough

American Principles Project

Dear Friend,

We’ve just had a major public breakthrough for APIA that I want to share with you.

POLITICO—the current leader in breaking news for the mainstream media and the Washington political class—has just acknowledged that APIA is at the vanguard of a new movement among social conservatives seeking to overcome the politically suicidal “truce strategy” in conservative politics.

This development is important enough that I want to quote POLITICO’s January 2nd story at some length:

“[S]ome of the religious right’s wealthiest backers and top operatives gathered at the Ritz-Carlton to plot their entry into the conservative civil war. Their plan: take a page out of the playbooks of Karl Rove and the Koch brothers by raising millions of dollars, coordinating their political spending and assiduously courting megadonors. . . .It’s all geared toward elevating the place of social issues like abortion and gay marriage in conservative politics,” writes POLITICO.


The story goes on to take note of “American Principles in Action’s paper, issued in October, which argued that such a tactic ‘would likely consign the GOP to a permanent minority status,’ whereas emphasizing the social issues will help rally the base and attract coveted demographics with which the GOP has failed to connect, including Hispanics and women.”


“Social conservatives need to take things into their own hands and can’t rely on the establishment to make that case to donors or voters,’ I told POLITICO. ‘We need to alert donors who care about social issues that, without financial support behind those issues themselves, you have a consulting class of the party that’s decided that those issues need to be jettisoned.”


POLITICO also identifies APP Chairman of the Board Sean Fieler as an “emerging mid-tier GOP megadonor”:


“He told POLITICO there’s a chance to reorder the conservative movement — and American politics as a whole — by revealing Democrats to be ‘their own worst enemy’ on social issues like abortion and gay marriage. ‘The rigidity and extremism they have around some of these issues is so out of step with the American electorate that there is enormous opportunity for Republicans. We have to pick some spots and win some elections and frame the debate in a way that’s favorable to us,’ Fieler said. ‘If we can show that integrated conservatism which embraces a middle class and a resonant economic message as well as a pro-family socially conservative message is the winning formula, then I think there will be a lot of money for that.’”


As I told POLITICO, “Nothing exists on the scale on the social issues side of the Koch operation or the Crossroads operation”—yet. But 2014 is the year we launch and this POLITICO breakthrough is going to help us persuade the conservative donor class they need a new strategy.


POLITICO followed up with a January 6th story, in which they called APIA number 3 on a top 10 list of “Wallets to Watch”:

“This outfit — comprised of a pair of nonprofits and a super PAC — is the advance guard of a planned big-money effort by the religious right to push back on establishment efforts to minimize divisive issues like abortion rights and gay marriage.”

In other big, breakthrough news: on January 22nd, for the first time in history, the Chairman of the RNC will be a part of the March for Life. This demonstrates the RNC’s commitment to the greatest principle of equality and liberty in American life: that every human life is worthy of respect and protection--from the most distressed mother who needs our help, to the child in her womb.

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus deserves enormous credit for this definitive rebuke of the idea that the path to victory for conservatives involves jettisoning the life issue.

Let me tell you privately that we are hearing from many people in D.C. of the seminal role APIA’s “autopsy” report is having on powerful insider elites.

On January 23, I will be speaking (along with APIA Fellow Maggie Gallagher) before all 168 RNC members, making the political case against the “truce strategy”, which turns conservatives into punching bags when the Democrats trump up their “War on Women” attacks.

We hope this meeting of the RNC will be a turning point for conservatives and for the nation.

The other big news this week is that Liz Cheney dropped out of her challenge to Wyoming Senator Mike Enzi, citing family health issues. But, the 20-point drop in her personal popularity since American Principles Fund aired the ads alerting voters that she opposed the Federal Marriage Amendment played a role in her dropping out of the race, and once again POLITICO noticed:

“The success of the ads hitting Cheney in the Wyoming Republican Senate primary should help the group raise more money to air ads elevating social issues in more raises, said its leading donor, New Jersey hedge funder Sean Fieler.”

This week, I appeared on C-Span’s Washington Journal and discussed APIA’s leadership in the fight against the truce strategy. You can watch it here:

When I decided to found the American Principles in Action, one of my urgent concerns was the way social conservatives were underrepresented—missing in action, to be frank—in most of the key insider Washington fights over tactic and strategies, insider fights that have real consequences for the arguments voters end up hearing, because they affect how money is allocated.

No more.

I cannot promise you victory, but I can tell you: they will know there’s a fight.

We not only have the moral right on our side, but political common sense. And with your help we will prevent conservatives from committing suicide by political consultant.

As final note, POLITICO’s influential First Look in their Playbook, spotlighted APP’s upcoming Red, White and Blue Gala, which will take place on February 5th at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C. This year’s Gala will feature Senator Rand Paul as the keynote speaker, and founder Erick Erickson will be the master of ceremonies.

Come and join the emerging vanguard of conservatives who recognize that standing on American Principles is the key to victory.

For America,


Frank Cannon


American Principles in Action