Empowering Rising Leaders

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The 2019 Rising Leaders Fellows. (Photo: Tavit’s Photography)

The 2019 Rising Leaders Fellows.  (Photo: Tavit’s Photography)

This year, Heritage is delighted to introduce the Rising Leaders Fellowship – a new initiative that identifies top student and youth influencers across the country and brings them to Resource Bank to learn from seasoned leaders.

At this year’s Resource Bank, 35 Rising Leaders Fellows took a dive deep into policy issues, learned communication and leadership skills, and networked with policy experts and think tank leaders.

“As a young student leader with a passion for the conservative movement, I have greatly enjoyed my time at Resource Bank,” said Ellen Wittman, a junior at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. “Through networking, policy discussions, and talking with experts, this week has equipped me with the strength and skills to help protect our founding principles for years to come.”

The 2019 Fellows were nominated by the following allied organizations: Black Conservative Movement, Claire Boothe Luce Policy Institute, Foundation for Individual Rights, The Fund for American Studies, Generation Joshua, Alexander Hamilton Society, The Gloucester Institute, Leadership Institute, Network of Enlightened Women, Young America’s Foundation, Speech First, Intercollegiate Studies Institute, Alliance Defending Freedom, Heritage’s Local University Conservatives Program, and Turning Point USA.

How can conservatives better identify talent and help young conservatives become leaders?

Honoring The Federalist’s Mollie Hemingway and the Honorable Janice Rogers Brown

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On Thursday at Resource Bank, The Heritage Foundation presented the Salvatori Prize for American Citizenship to Mollie Hemingway, senior editor at The Federalist and a Fox News contributor, for her contributions to journalism.

At the prize ceremony, David Azerrad, director of Heritage’s B. Kenneth Simon Center for Principles and Politics and the AWC Family Foundation Fellow, said: “We need more people who speak truth to power, including to the media. In short, we need more people like Mollie Hemingway.”

Hemingway’s new book, Justice on Trial: The Kavanaugh Confirmation and the Future of the Supreme Court, will reveal new details in the drama surrounding Kavanaugh’s confirmation. Co-written by Carrie Severino, it will be released on July 9.

This year’s keynote speaker for the Robert H. Krieble Lecture was the Honorable Janice Rogers Brown.  Brown is a former United States Circuit Judge of the U.S Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, often referred to as the most powerful court in the country, second only to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Krieble Lecture is named after chemist, entrepreneur, and philanthropist Robert H. Krieble who not only generously supported many conservative causes and organizations such as The Heritage Foundation but who also used his talents and treasures to fight against the spread of socialism and communism in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union.

Brown was no less a stalwart for America’s founding principles and faithfulness to the Constitution during her years on the bench.  In her remarks, she said the major push for progressivism in our society comes from those who deny the laws of nature and nature’s God.  Referring to the theme of this year’s Resource Bank, she called on attendees to rise to the challenge and renew their efforts to promote and defend American exceptionalism and the rule of law, not just in our nation’s courtrooms but also in the public square.

Who are some of your favorite and most trusted journalists?  What do you believe is the biggest threat to American exceptionalism? 

Celebrating Women’s Right to Vote

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Heritage President Kay Coles James commemorates the House’s 100-year anniversary of ratifying the 19th Amendment, the first major step toward recognizing women’s right to vote.

On Tuesday, the U.S. House of Representatives celebrated the 100-year anniversary of the House’s approval of the 19th Amendment, which recognized women’s right to vote. The amendment was ratified by the required three-fourths of the states and became the law of the land a little over a year later, on Aug. 18, 1920. Read more in The Daily Signal.

In 2017, Congress established the Women’s Suffrage Centennial Commission, with the goal of observing the centennial of the passage of the 19th Amendment with a series of programs and activities. President Trump appointed Heritage President Kay Coles James to the commission of 14 women, who then unanimously elected James as commission chair.

James stated on Tuesday, “This centennial celebration ensures that we don’t forget the sacrifices, struggles, and the hard-fought victory to secure women’s right to vote … I know that the leaders of the early women’s movement would certainly be proud to know that today, the women’s vote outnumbers that of men and that women are vigorously exercising the franchise that they fought so hard to secure.”

Learn more about the history of women’s suffrage and events

From The Daily Signal: 100 Years Ago, the House Voted for Women’s Suffrage. Here’s the Back Story.

How can conservatives welcome more women into our coalition?

Heritage Unveils New Blueprint for Balance

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On Monday, The Heritage Foundation released its new Blueprint for Balance, a guide Congress can use both to reduce taxes and prioritize national defense. The Blueprint would balance the budget in 10 years, reduce spending by $10.8 trillion over 10 years, and reduce publicly held debt as a percentage of GDP to 61 percent.

“Recognizing that America will be strong only if she is on financially sound footing, our experts recommend important reforms to the biggest government programs in the budget, from Social Security to health care, to protect the most vulnerable, deliver better services at lower cost, and return control of personal decisions from the Washington bureaucracy to the American people,” said Heritage Foundation President Kay Coles James to The Washington Times.

Read: Blueprint for Balance: A Federal Budget for Fiscal Year 2020

Read more about the Blueprint on The Daily Signal.

With the total national debt exceeding $22 trillion, it is imperative that lawmakers control spending. In the coming weeks and months, Congress will be forced to confront both the debt limit and the future of the Budget Control Act discretionary spending caps. Read how the Blueprint for Balance can help lawmakers do this the right way: Skyrocketing Debt Too Important to Be Paired With Spending Deal

How do you think the national debt will impact 2020?

Heritage Research Influences Trump to Withdraw from U.N.’s “Unserious” Arms Treaty

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U.S. President Donald Trump shows the crowd a signed document rejecting the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty at the NRA-ILA Leadership Forum during the 148th NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits on April 26. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump recently announced that he would withdraw the United States from the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty, a move that analysts at The Heritage Foundation have long advocated.

The Arms Trade Treaty is an international agreement that attempts to limit the sale of arms abroad. It was backed by a coalition of left-wing, non-governmental organizations and gun-control proponents.

The Arms Trade Treaty “has no substantive achievements and is fundamentally unserious, but its effort to promote norms to shape U.S. policymaking poses significant risks to U.S. security,” says Ted Bromund, a research fellow in Heritage’s Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom. “To the extent that the treaty reduces arms exports from the West, it can only have the perverse effects of driving potential importers to buy from China or Russia—or to develop their own indigenous arms industries that will not fall under the treaty’s purview.”

Learn more about how Heritage’s influence helped untangle the United States from this treaty: Heritage Research Influences Trump Administration Decision to Withdraw from U.N. Arms Trade Treaty

 What else should be done to limit the overreach of the United Nations?

Russell Kirk Lecture: “What is China’s Grand Strategy?”

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There was a time when American foreign policy experts believed that China’s economic ascent would lead to political liberalization. That view has clearly been proven false. But is China a threat to American interests?

On Thursday, Heritage hosted David P. Goldman, a columnist at Asia Times and a principal of Asia Times Holdings LLC, who addressed this question in Heritage’s Russell Kirk Lecture: “What is China’s Grand Strategy?” You can listen to his assessment of China’s economic, industrial, and technological growth, and its implications for the United States, here: What is China’s Grand Strategy? A Russell Kirk Lecture

What should the conservative position be on the trade and national security challenges posed by China?

Trump Unveils Plan to Revise Legal Immigration as Graham Targets Gaps in Border Security

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Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

President Trump announced on Thursday his new plan to overhaul the U.S. immigration system. One of his most important plans is to focus on merit: the skills and knowledge that immigrants would contribute to the well-being and success of the United States. The President’s proposal would increase the share of legal immigrants who are admitted based on merit from 12 percent to 57 percent. The plan would use a point-based system that rewards jobs skills and education. The plan eliminates the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program, which awards 50,000 visas per year based not on merit, but on a random system where individuals are selected from countries that have been deemed “underrepresented” in immigration rates to the United States. Learn more in The Daily Signal.

Heritage President Kay Coles James called Trump’s proposal “a welcome step in the right direction.” The proposal aligns with many of the immigration policy recommendations that Heritage published in a report in February: An Agenda for American Immigration Reform.

While Trump’s proposal addresses legal immigration, a new proposal in the U.S. Senate would address illegal immigration at our southern border.

On Wednesday, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., unveiled the Secure and Protect Act of 2019. The Act would stop those who seek to “game” the U.S. asylum system and use it to enter the country illegitimately. It would require asylum-seekers from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and bordering countries to file for asylum at refugee processing centers in their home countries and Mexico.

The bill would also add 500 new immigration judges to handle the backlog of illegal immigration cases, expand the length of time that migrant families may be held together while their asylum claims are processed, and allow U.S. officials to return unaccompanied minors from Central America to their home countries rather than releasing them into the United States. You can learn more in this Daily Signal article: Lindsey Graham Proposes to Tighten Asylum, Immigration Procedures to Relieve Border.

Read Heritage’s key takeaways on what immigration reform should look like here. You can also read or share the takeaways in Spanish here.

 What do you think about these steps to fix the immigration system?

Pro-Life Victories Sweep the States

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Photo: Ariel Skelley/Getty Images

Several states recently took steps to protect the unborn. On Wednesday, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed a law that bans abortion in most circumstances. Read more in this article in The Daily Signal. On Thursday, Missouri’s state senate passed a bill that would ban abortion after eight weeks of pregnancy.

Georgia, Mississippi, and Ohio recently passed pro-life legislation that bans abortion as soon as a doctor can detect a fetal heartbeat.

“There’s a reason more than 300 pro-life laws have passed at the state level in the last decade,” said Melanie Israel, a research associate in Heritage’s DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society. “Americans largely reject the radical vision of abortion on demand and are supporting pro-life leaders in state legislatures who pass pro-life laws.”

In reaction to these pro-life victories, actress Alyssa Milano called for a nationwide “sex strike” in protest. Heritage’s Kelsey Bolar, Lauren Evans, and Monica Burke discuss Milano’s accidental support for abstinence along with other timely issues in the latest edition of the Problematic Women podcast.

What do you think about these laws, and the possibility that they will challenge Roe vs. Wade at the Supreme Court?

House Passes the ‘Equality Act’

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Photo: NurPhoto/Contributor/Getty Images

On Friday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Equality Act, which would amend all major civil rights law, including the 1964 Civil Rights Act, to include “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” along with race, sex, and religion as classes that are protected from discrimination.

Read more in The Daily Signal: With Support of 8 Republicans, House Passes Equality Act

The Equality Act would give the federal government power to punish citizens who dissent from sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) ideology, including medical professionals, parents, women and girls, businesses, and charities. The bill would violate the right to freedom of conscience, religion, and speech for every American adhering to a traditional view of these issues. The bill would also take away the authority of local communities to determine who is allowed in single-sex facilities and whether biological men and boys are allowed to join women’s and girls’ sports teams.

Watch: Heritage Explains: How The Equality Act Harms Parents and Children

Read all about it:

Sexual Ideology Indoctrination: The Equality Act’s Impact on School Curriculum and Parental Rights

The Equality Act Could Let Schools, Not Parents, Make Decisions About Children

Rep. Debbie Lesko, R-Ariz., recently explained how the Equality Act would take away rights from women and girls; watch her remarks here.

School administrators are already trying to silence women and girls who dare to speak out against “transgender,” biologically male students competing in women’s sports. The Daily Signal recently interviewed a girl in Connecticut who refused to be bullied: 8th Place: A High School Girl’s Life After Transgender Students Joined Her Sport.

Leftists continually push to invent new rights for certain groups of people while undermining the rights of others. How should conservatives respond to this disturbing trend?

8th Place: A High School Girl’s Life After Transgender Students Joined Her Sport

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