A Declaration of Dependence: For over 100 years, conservatives have been losing the battle of ideas, and with it, our most precious freedoms. The Founders’ vision of limited government is all but lost because conservatives have been using the wrong argument, and as a result public sentiment has defaulted to progressivism. The Claremont Institute has identified the principles that will be necessary to defeat progressivism. We teach the principles of the American Founding, and their application today, to the brightest young conservative men and women who will, with our help, go on to positions of power and influence in government, the courts, academia, and the media. These distinguished Claremont fellows number over 450 and are leading the conservative charge to recover the American idea. Imagine when there are 4,500!
The mission of the Claremont Institute is to teach the practical application of the principles of the American Founding to the next generation of Conservative leaders, and to build them into a community dedicated to preserving constitutional government.
Winning the War of Ideas
The Founders believed that the natural and God-given rights of man were fixed and universal. Combining this understanding of human nature with American traditions and circumstances, they created the freest, most just government the world has ever seen.
The Progressives rejected the Founders’ understanding and asserted a new, ever-evolving conception of man, matched with a new ever-expanding government.
Progressive political success over the last century is based on winning the philosophical argument. Conservatives have been losing this battle of ideas. That is where the Claremont Institute fulfills its essential role. We provide the philosophical foundations that justify conservative policies.
Changing the Terms of the Debate
Think of us as a post-graduate school with a very select student body—the smartest, most talented, and promising young conservatives coming out of our universities, graduate schools, and law schools. You don’t need many. If you can reach a few, the right few, you can change the terms of our national debate and the course of our country. Our graduates have been growing in influence over 30 years. Many of them now hold important positions in Congress, in universities, at the top think tanks in Washington, and as clerks for the Supreme Court.
With your support, we will continue to build a bigger, better school—expanding our student body, deepening the curriculum, and increasing alumni support; expanding our Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence; adding faculty, and increasing faculty publications; giving more reach and impact to the Claremont Review of Books and our video series, The American Mind.
“Public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment, nothing can fail; without it nothing can succeed.” – A. Lincoln
A free people, the American people, will do the right thing if they understand what is at stake. Political and intellectual leaders need to point the way. That is the work of the Claremont Institute: to build a community of thinkers and doers who understand the principles on which America is founded and will lead us back to a politics that is faithful to those principles.