Marco Rubio Accidentally Makes the Case Against Common-Good Conservatism at CPAC

A ConferenceMAGA caps were worn and repeated chants “Let’s Go, Brandon!” Sen. Marco Rubio (R–Fla.) this morning, he chose to appeal earnestly.

“The American Revolution—what was revolutionary about it was it had this audacious idea that rights were from God, not from a government,” he said from the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) main stage in Orlando. “The founding fathers of the nation knew that the nature of human beings was that if they had power they would have people who wanted to live and think the way they desired. It was something they created protections for. We are all vulnerable to it.

It was intended to be a warning about cancel culture and COVID related mandates by the left. Deliberately or not, the speech was also an argument against “Common-Good Conservatives”, the self-proclaimed conservatives who have been around for the last several years. RequirementsThe right support “muscular”, government can reorient society according to its liking.

It Taken togetherThis is the 2020 view

The Will-to-Power Conservatives believe that all societies have rulers. What matters most is to ensure that they are effective. OurThe tribe rules.

Do not take my word for this. A recent symposium was published by American ConservativeEditor of American AffairsJulius Krein, echoing Gladden Pappin’s comments, complains that contemporary conservatism lacks “a serious approach for wielding power.” Hillsdale College’s David Azerrad argues that conservatives must learn to be “manly,” “combative,” and “comfortable” using “the levers of state power…to reward friends and punish enemies.” And Claremont’s Matthew J. Peterson insists that “conservatism must not merely make arguments…it must act on them, wielding ‘regime-level’ power in the service of good political order to do so.”

Rubio has his own common-good rhetoric. He started with “a”. Address 2019at The Catholic University of America. His CPAC speech suggested that senator, whose parents came from Cuba in 1956 to South Florida, might have reconsidered this approach over the past few years.

He said, “I was raised in a family of people and was surrounded with people. I still live with people who understand what it was like to be a foreigner.” They know America’s specialness and what true tyranny is like. They’ve been a huge influence on my life. But, looking back, it seems that I have taken their warnings about the dangers to society and people who allow others to dictate how they think, live, and believe.

Rubio stated that freedom is the most important thing in our lives. It’s so difficult to recover it once it is gone. That’s what Rubio said. Let’s hope he sees the danger from both the right and the left.