DeMint launches new group to boost conservatives in Washington

Former Senator Jim DeMint will serve as chairman of the new Conservative Partnership Institute (CPI) to fortify the presence of conservatives in Washington, he said in a press release Tuesday, adding that he thinks the status quo is hindering the development of conservative lawmakers and staffers.

“There’s a missing piece that has proved costly: shepherding conservatives through the Washington swamps without being infected with Potomac Fever,” DeMint said. “The Conservative Partnership Institute will fill this void by providing the resources, expertise and training needed for leaders and staff in Washington to succeed.”

Previously, DeMint served at the helm of the Heritage Foundation, a venerable conservative think tank that has had a turbulent relationship with the rise of Donald Trump at times. He was ousted in May after internal disputes over Heritage’s mission.

DeMint said his new role should not crowd out other right-leaning organizations, citing a common goal of “the conservative agenda” as Republicans in Congress struggle to form consensus around marquee campaign issues, such as healthcare.

“CPI will not seek to replicate the excellent work of other conservative groups, we view them as partners and I’m excited to continue working with these leaders,” DeMint said. “We will host regular meetings and strategy sessions with Members of Congress and House and Senate staff, connecting them with the best thought leaders throughout the Movement, to help them shape strategy and drive the conservative agenda.”

DeMint’s announcement received praise from House and Senate Republicans.

“No conservative leader is more trusted than Jim DeMint on Capitol Hill and his staff is second to none in rock solid conservative principles,” Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) said.

The new CPI chairman also received an endorsement from Rep. Mark Meadows (R-North Carolina), chairman of the House Freedom Caucus.

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