Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Mike Lee Ponders Conservatism's Future With or Without the GOP

In his short time in the U.S. Senate, Utah Republican Mike Lee has distinguished himself as a policy innovator and a constitutional conservative who actually knows the Constitution. He has written two books, given a series of speeches outlining a substantive conservative policy agenda, and, last week, pushed the Republican National Committee to adopt reforms that would empower the conservative grassroots. He is widely recognized as one of the intellectual leaders of his party, and of Congress more broadly, even by those with whom he often disagrees.
Photo credit: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call/Newscom
Lee has also refused to endorse the presumptive Republican nominee for president, though in a reflection of his stubborn optimism and a fierce determination to be constructive, he has not entirely ruled out doing so. He sat down with THE WEEKLY STANDARD at the beginning of the convention that will officially make Donald Trump the GOP’s public face and de facto leader. Among the many topics we discussed: Utah as a swing state (Lee believes Hillary Clinton could win in November); the dissolution of the Republican party (Lee think such an outcome is possible); and how the modern Republican party resembles Van Halen without David Lee Roth (and he divulges who he believes is Sammy Hagar in that analogy). Here is the transcript, lightly edited for readability
TWS: Maybe a good place to start would be to reflect a bit on the last few days—what going through the Rules Committee process taught you, the lessons learned.
Lee: There's a lot of support for reforms within the Republican Party, particularly changing the rules to make sure we remain a vibrant party, a party that welcomes grassroots participation and nurtures activists rather than shunning them. It was disappointing for me that we didn't adopt some of those reforms.
The calls for those reforms are not going to disappear—they will remain there. I still think they need to be addressed and I hope and believe that they will be at some point.
On Trump Endorsement ...
Read the rest of the story HERE and read a related story below:

Sen. Mike Lee: 'We are now in uncharted territory'

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