2022 Agenda

Leading center-right conservative thinkers will present their vision for a principled political movement.

This Summit brings together principled conservative thinkers and grassroots activists from across the country over two weekend days to discuss current challenges facing the United States and the conservative movement and to articulate the principles that ought to shape both.

Principles of Justice: The Constitution and the Rule of Law

  • Is our Constitution in peril? How do we ensure the Constitution remains elevated above political modes of the day?
  • What are the virtues of the rule of law? Is the rule of law political? How does it erode?
  • Should the DOJ be independent or political? Why?
  • How does the law protect against official corruption? Who enforces it? When?

Principles & the Pulpit: The Future of Faith in America

  • Is faith relevant to the problems our country faces today? Why or why not?
  • Why have people of faith lost credibility in the eyes of Americans? How can that credibility be repaired?
  • Separation of church and state is a key American principle. How do we protect it?

Principled Leadership and National Security in the 21st Century

  • Recent campaigns have created a broad consensus for isolationism – for "nation-building at home." What are the limits and risks of this foreign policy?
  • What is globalization? What are its benefits and risks?
  • Which big principles should steer America's foreign policy today, particularly in response to Russia, North Korea, China, and Iran?

Equality & Opportunity: Principles that Serve People

  • How do we account for inequality of opportunity among Americans born into different circumstances (e.g., race, family income, education access, family stability, etc.)?
  • How should government policy create opportunity?
  • What is equality today and how do we achieve it?

Principles of Public Finance: What Does 'Fiscal Conservatism' Mean?

  • What is a principled approach to government spending? What is the process and what are the common myths?
  • Should we rethink our approach to taxes in light of the massive national debt and sustained deficits?
  • Do deficits and debt matter? Why?
  • How do we combat inflation? Should we?

Profiles in Courage: Putting Country Before Self

  • This panel will feature the firsthand accounts of those who have taken principled stands in official capacities in recent years.
  • What did it take? How did you deal with the blowback?
  • Did it make a difference? Did you change hearts and minds? How?

Defending Democracy: Principles of Protecting Elections

  • What is a principled approach to electoral reform?
  • What's the truth about "election integrity" vs. "voter suppression"? Which reforms are actually needed?
  • How can we harden our elections against foreign interference and bad actors?

Building a Principled Coalition

  • Who is currently part of the Principles First political coalition?
  • How do we welcome new voices into the principled fold?
  • Identity politics and class warfare have driven the country further apart. How will principles bring us together?

The Practical Politics of Principle: Should We Stay or Should We Go?

  • Does starting a new party make sense? Why or why not?
  • How can we advance our principles outside of the party structures? And within the current party structures? Is one way better than the other?
  • Should we try to retake the GOP? Is there an opening? Should we vote in Republican or Democratic primaries?
  • What can we learn from previously successful grassroots political movements on both sides of the aisle, like the Tea Party and Occupy Democrats?

Principles for a New Era: Technology, Progress, and Freedom

  • Everybody seems to want to "break up Big Tech" these days – is that wise? Is it principled? What are the antitrust arguments for and against?
  • How can government keep up with increasingly rapid pace of innovation. What values are we losing as technology becomes more pervasive? Which values should we strive to preserve?
  • How does innovation today differ, if at all, from innovation waves of the past and should our regulatory approach change?

Looking Ahead: Conservatism, Liberalism, and Illiberal Threats

  • Is conservatism dead? Should it be resurrected or discarded for "classical liberalism"? Or something else?
  • Why are illiberal, anti-American ideas so politically persuasive these days? How can we push back?
  • Are intellectual consistency and ideology important in politics? Or is it just a hodgepodge of policies cobbled together to win enough votes?

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