'Conservatives In It for Long Term,' Conservative Publisher Says

July 7, 2008 - 7:32 PM

Exclusive Interview (CNSNews.com) - Conservatives, as represented by Young Americans for Freedom (YAF), did not endorse Richard Nixon over John Kennedy in 1960, publisher Alfred Regnery said in a video interview with Cybercast News Service, because Nixon did not embrace conservative principles.

Regnery, author of the recently released "Upstream: The Ascendance of American Conservatism," was interviewed by Cybercast News Service Editor-in-Chief Terence P. Jeffrey.

"If we endorse [Nixon] simply because he is better than the other guy, we are simply forfeiting our principles, and we should not do that," said Regnery, explaining the thinking of YAF's leaders.

"It was a principled position. It was a pure position to take. Now, probably most of the YAF people went out and voted for Nixon when it came down to that, but as an organization, they were going to stay pure, and that was a good thing to do.

"You have to understand," said Regnery, "conservatives who really believe it are in it for the long-term. They believe in principles. They believe in influencing public opinion. They believe in basically transforming the way the country thinks. And elections? Well, elections come and go."

Regnery has been publisher of The American Spectator since 2003. Before joining The Spectator, he was president of Regnery Publishing, where he published 22 New York Times bestsellers. He is also vice chairman of the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, an educational foundation for which Jeffrey does freelance work.

Part 1: "Bill Buckley was central to the conservative movement." Regnery explores William F. Buckley Jr.'s contributions to conservatism and recalls Buckley's visits to Regnery's childhood home - where he left the Regnery parents "aghast." Clip 1

Part 2: "The conservative movement is a movement of ideas." Regnery discusses how anti-Communists, libertarians, and traditionalists came together to form the political movement. Clip 2

Part 3: "Conservatives saw liberalism as ... a second cousin to Communism." Regnery argues that conservatives would be better positioned to grapple with the threat of radical Islam if they better understood the movement's intellectual history. Clip 3

Part 4: "The problem is with politicians who run as conservatives but don't have any conservative principles whatsoever." Clip 4

Part 5: "Conservatives are in it for the long-term. ... Elections come and go." Clip 5

Part 6: "Any young person that I hire I give them Witness and say, 'Read this.'" Clip 6

Part 7: "The one thing any member of Congress wants more than anything else is to get reelected." Clip 7

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