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The 100 Most Influential Conservatives


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61. BOBBY JINDAL

Governor-elect of Louisiana

 

BOBBY JINDAL

 

After his recent election victory, Congressman Jindal will become the first Indian-American to lead a state and, at 36, the youngest governor in the US. An orthodox conservative, he is the first non-white governor of the southern state. Was elected on a platform of attracting investment and ending corruption in what remains one of the unions poorest states.

 

The son of immigrants from India who settled in Baton Rouge, his career in public service in the state has been meteoric, and first ran for governor at age 32 and was narrowly defeated. After his win in the Katrina-ravaged state, some Republicans view him as the partys Barack Obama.

 

62. JUSTICE ANTONIN SCALIA

Supreme Court Justice

 

JUSTICE ANTONIN SCALIA

 

The first Italian-American to be appointed to the Supreme Court, by Ronald Reagan in 1986, Nino Scalia, 71, is beloved by conservative Republicans. A committed Roman Catholic and father of nine, he is a much more forceful and intellectually flamboyant personality than his fellow conservative justice Clarence Thomas.

 

A strict textualist and strongly anti-abortion, he adamantly opposes attempts to interpret the US constitution in the light of modern mores. If he were not such a lightning rod for criticism from Democrats, he would have been a natural Chief Justice. Has an acid wit, barbed tongue and relish for taking on his opponents.

 

63. MICHAEL SAVAGE

Talk radio host

 

MICHAEL SAVAGE

 

The Savage Nation show reaches more than 10 million listeners on 410 stations throughout the US, making him the third most powerful talk radio host after Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity. Under his real name, Michael Weiner, Savage has written books on homeopathy and herbal medicine. He is strongly pro-environment.

 

Savages tough stance against illegal immigration fired up the Republican base and helped damage John McCains presidential campaign. A crowd pleaser who has described liberalism as a mental disorder - he is based in the enemy territory of San Francisco he has also authored 18 books.

 

64. THOMAS SOWELL

Economist and commentator

 

THOMAS SOWELL

 

Currently Milton Friedman Senior Fellow on public policy at the Hoover Institution at Stanford. One of Americas most prominent black intellectuals, Sowell, 77, writes mainly about economics, history, race and social policy. He has been a prolific newspaper columnist since 1984.

 

Strongly free-market, against abortion, gay marriage and affirmative action and in favour of racial profiling to tackle terrorism and the flat tax, he has a pronounced libertarian streak and favours decriminalising narcotics. His writings were a powerful influence on Clarence Thomas, the Supreme Court Justice.

 

65. RICHARD LAND

President of Southern Baptist Conventions Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission

 

RICHARD LAND

 

Educated at Princeton and Oxford, Land is representative of the largest Protestant denomination in America and also publishes and hosts syndicated radio programmes. Deeply conservative and a consummate operator, his number is on speed dial from the Bush White House.

 

His recent warning that Christian evangelicals could mount a third-party challenge if Giuliani wins the Republican nomination is to be taken seriously. Land, 60, has said he could no more vote for the pro-choice Giuliani than a black could vote for a Ku Klux Klansman. Could Lands uncompromising stance and broad influence help elect Hillary Clinton?

 

66. JAMES BAKER

Former Secretary of State

 

JAMES BAKER

 

One of the most accomplished Washington operators, Republicans tend to look for Jim Baker when they are in a tough spot. George W. Bush turned to him during the 2000 election cliffhanger and again when he needed an Iraq Study Group to examine what was going wrong in Iraq.

 

Most of Bakers recommendations, jointly drawn up with former Democratic congressman Lee Hamilton, were discarded by Mr Bush, though there are signs he will return to some of them again. Now 77, he nearly returned to full-time politics as Pentagon chief in 2004. A big post for him is unlikely but any Republican president is certain to consult him.

 

67. DAVID BROOKS

Journalist

 

DAVID BROOKS

 

House conservative columnist for the New York Times, Brooks has moved towards the centre since his days at the Weekly Standard, when he offered fulsome praise from the candidacy of Senator John McCain. An assured television performer.

Was recently given an interview by Hillary Clinton and afterwards wrote in complimentary terms about her health care policy. Likely to grow in influence should Mrs Clinton win the White House he will be one of the few she will reach out to across the political divide.

 

68. IRWIN STELZER

Economist

 

 

A consultant to News International and News Corporation, Stelzer is widely viewed as very close to Rupert Murdoch. With Murdochs acquisition of the Wall Street Journal and his desire to challenge the New York Times, Stelzers influence can only grow.

 

As a confidante of both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown and one with close ties to President George W. Bush he lunched with the president and the Churchill biographer Andrew Roberts recently few are better connected in the world of Anglo-American politics. Senior fellow at the Hudson Institute and regular commentator in British and American publications.

 

69. ERICK ERIKSON

Blogger

 

ERICK ERIKSON

 

Founder and CEO of the conservative website redstate.com who also blogs on his personal site erickerickson.org, entitled Confessions of a Political Junkie, and on Georgia politics at peachpundit.com. A Republican political consultant and self-described recovering lawyer.

 

At just 32, Erickson epitomises the new power of the internet. A small-government fiscal and social conservative based in the south, he taps into and influences the Republican base that the GOPs 2008 candidates are courting. Only started blogging in 2003.

 

70. GARY BAUER

Christian conservative leader

 

GARY BAUER

 

A pragmatic evangelical who put the task of defeating Hillary Clinton above all other duties for a Republicans. He has argued against a third party challenge should Rudy Giuliani win the Republican nomination and appears to be leaning towards backing Fred Thompson.

 

Dropped out of the 2000 presidential race after he was filmed falling off a stage while flipping pancakes. He later endorsed Senator John McCain. Has continued to push his anti-abortion message as head of the Campaign for Working Families.

 

71. CHUCK NORRIS

Actor

 

CHUCK NORRIS

 

One of those rare birds, a Hollywood conservative. The martial artist and action star is a frequent financial contributor to Republican candidates and causes and recently declared his support for Mike Huckabee, a conservative Baptist minister, in 2008.

 

An evangelical Christian, Norris has filled in for Sean Hannity as the conservative co-host on the Fox News talk show Hannity and Colmes.

 

72. MICHAEL RUBIN

Middle East specialist

 

MICHAEL RUBIN

 

If Rudy Giuliani becomes president, Rubin, 36, is likely to become a key National Security Council official. Brought on board as a Middle East advisor to the former New York mayor, he is an advocate of US military action against Iran to prevent it developing a nuclear weapon.

 

Served as a Pentagon official in the Bush administration and with the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq before returning to the American Enterprise Institute, where he is one of a number of young scholars viewed as part of a new generation of neo-conservatives.

 

73. JOHN OSULLIVAN

Journalist

 

JOHN OSULLIVAN

 

Well-connected former special adviser to Margaret Thatcher who, along with Christopher Hitchens and Andrew Sullivan, is among the most prominent British transplants in Washington. Former editor-in-chief of National Review and United Press International, he remains one of the most powerful conservative voices in America.

 

Founded the New Atlantic Initiative and is a strong proponent of close ties between the US and UK. Excoriating criticism of George W. Bushs immigration policy was a classic example of his penchant for preferring conservative principle when it departed from Republican party policy. Hudson Institute fellow whose elegant prose appears frequently on both sides of the Atlantic.

 

74. DAVID WINSTON

Pollster and political consultant

 

DAVID WINSTON

 

President and founder of The Winston Group, Winstons track record in senior posts on Capitol Hill and as a policy fellow at the Heritage Foundation as well as his polling and new media expertise make him one of the most sought after and respected Republican consultants in Washington.

 

Has polled for centre-right parties of the European Parliament and in Russia, Ukraine, Estonia, Lithuania, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Canada. Writes a regular newspaper column. Churchill buff who keeps a close eye on British politics, arguing recently that Republicans have much to learn from the rise of David Cameron.

 

75. MICHAEL CHERTOFF

Secretary, Department of Homeland Security

 

MICHAEL CHERTOFF

 

A former judge on the United States Court of Appeals and assistant Attorney General, Chertoff is a Rudy Giuliani ally who made his name prosecuting mobsters and investigating the Clintons during the Whitewater scandal.

 

Harvard-educated, formidably intelligent and a fanatical runner, he has recovered from the Hurricane Katrina disaster to win broad respect as head of the sprawling Department of Homeland Security. A likely future Attorney General, though his moderate immigration stance has angered some conservatives.

 

76. TONY BLANKLEY

conservative commentator

 

TONY BLANKLEY

 

Former aide to Newt Gingrich, Blankey recently stepped down as editorial page editor of the conservative Washington Times to join Edelman public relations firm. He also holds a post at the Heritage Foundation.

 

A frequent television commentator, the British-born Blankley is a forceful and articulate advocate of the use of US might in the war against Islamism and argues that the Republican party could win in 2008 if Democrats embrace anti-war policies.

 

77. CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER

Journalist

 

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER

 

Highly influential foreign policy columnist with the Washington Post for the past two decades who coined and developed the Reagan Doctrine. He was one of the first to identify the United States as the sole superpower in a unipolar world.

 

Embraced neo-conservatism which will remain an enduring philosophy, despite the failures in Iraq, particularly if Rudy Giuliani wins the presidency. Confined to a wheelchair due to a spinal cord injury, he supports abortion rights and embryonic stem cell research.

 

78. BRENT SCOWCROFT

Former National Security Adviser

 

BRENT SCOWCROFT

 

Central figure in the realist school of Republican foreign policy who fell out of favour with the Bush administration after he counselled against toppling Saddam Hussein, arguing that this would be a distraction from the more pressing imperative of tackling al-Qaeda. Events since have greatly enhanced his reputation.

 

A former US Air Force lieutenant general, he served as National Security adviser under Presidents Gerald Ford and George Bush Snr. Now 82, his government days are over but his counsel will always be sought.

 

79. TONY CARBONETTI

Chief Strategist, Rudy Giuliani Campaign

 

BRENT SCOWCROFT

 

Former bartender and university dropout who began working on the Rudy Giuliani New York mayoral campaign in 1983 and, by September 11, 2001, had risen to become his chief of staff. Now 38, he is the presidential candidates confidante, enforcer and right-hand man.

 

Recently dubbed Giulianis brain, his role in the Giuliani universe is similar to that Karl Rove filled for George W. Bush. Many Republicans wrote Giuliani off as too liberal to win the party nomination but his campaign, guided by Carbonetti, has highly disciplined he remains the undisputed front runner.

 

80. PAT BUCHANAN

 

PAT BUCHANAN

 

Not the power he was, but Buchanan still packs a punch as a commentator and standard-bearer for staunch conservative values. Criticism of Israel and neo-conservatives means he has a difficult relationship to the Republican party, which he left after running for its presidential nomination in 1996.

 

A senior advisor to three presidents Nixon, Ford and Reagan and a failed Reform party candidate in 2000, he remains a prominent cable television commentator and edits the American conservative magazine.

 

81. TONY PERKINS

Chairman: Family Research Council

 

TONY PERKINS

 

A rising star among Christian Conservative leaders who has led the charge on opposition to gay marriage and right-to-life issues ranging from abortion to the Terry Schiavo case. Clean-cut, telegenic and highly articulate, he has a calm unthreatening manner that makes charges of extremism difficult to level.

 

Although the religious Right has waned in overall influence since its heyday, it remains a powerful part of the Republican partys base. Few endorsements are sought as much as that of Perkins, who has yet to decide with 2008 candidate to back.

 

82. BILL OREILLY

Presenter: Fox News and radio host.

 

BILL OREILLY

 

His television show, The O'Reilly Factor, is routinely the highest-rated programme on the three major US cable news channels. A relentlessly combative and confrontational performer who has a knack of encapsulating what the ordinary Middle American Conservative is thinking.

 

Through television, radio and books, he has immense reach. Describing himself as an independent traditionalist, OReilly has become a Liberal hate figure a sure sign of his influence. When he gets hold of an issue, Conservatives listen.

 

83. PEGGY NOONAN

Former presidential speechwriter

 

PEGGY NOONAN

 

Now a Wall Street Journal columnist, Noonan has turned many a beautiful phrase, broadcasts regularly and has emerged as the most public keeper of the flame of the late Ronald Reagan who remains the most dominate figure in American Conservatism.

 

Her strong independence makes people listen and she was among the first to articulate a coherent Conservative critique of President George W. Bush, for whom she took a leave of absence to campaign for in 2004.

 

84. ANN COULTER

Author and commentator

 

ANN COULTER

 

A rabid polemicist whose no-holds-barred baiting of Liberals is red meat to the angry American male. Many leading Republicans believe she does the Conservative cause more harm than good and that she will say anything to generate a headline.

 

Her books such as Slander, Godless and Treason all excoriating commentaries on Liberalism top the New York Times best-seller lists. Love her or loathe her, she is impossible to ignore.

 

85. CLARENCE THOMAS

Supreme Court Justice

 

JUSTICE CLARENCE THOMAS

 

It has been 16 years since the contentious confirmation hearings that threatened to stop him becoming the first black Conservative Supreme Court justice were held. In his recent book, he described the experience as being pursued not by bigots in white robes but by left-wing zealots draped in flowing sanctimony".

 

Still only 59, he could be on the court for another three decades, making him one of the longest serving justices in history as well as a reliable Conservative vote on virtually every issue. Adored by the party establishment, a Republican candidate is guaranteed a round of applause when he cites Thomas as a model jurist.

 

86.JEB BUSH

Former governor of Florida

 

JEB BUSH

 

A highly successful Republican governor, Jeb Bush was always viewed as a future White House occupant. But the fickle voters of Florida and the more reliable ones of Texas ensured that it was George W. and not Jeb that became commander-in-chief.

 

If Jebs surname were not Bush hed probably be the front runner for the Republican nomination in 2008. Instead, hes being written off as the victim of a Shakespearian tragedy. But at 54 he has decades in politics ahead of him and will remain a major player.

 

87. MICHAEL BARONE

Author, journalist and psephologist

 

MICHAEL BARONE

 

As the man behind the American Almanac of Politics, no one knows more about the American political landscape than Barone, who can quote statistics from every election in history and discuss the make-up of individual precincts in whichever state you care to mention.

 

A columnist with US News & World Report and Fox News commentator, he is diversifying into blogging and has just taken a post with the American Enterprise Institute think tank.

 

88. TED OLSON

Former Solicitor-General

 

TED OLSON

 

A likely attorney-general or Supreme Court justice should his friend Rudy Giuliani be elected to the White House. Successfully argued the Bush versus Gore case before the Supreme Court 2000 and later became Bushs Solicitor-General.

 

Olson was made a widower on 9/11 when his wife Barbara died in the plane that hit the Pentagon. Urbane, charming, superbly well connected within Conservative Washington and a staunch opponent of the Clintons, he is likely to become a bigger and bigger player.

 

89. SENATOR Admin CRAIG

Senator for Idaho

 

SENATOR Admin CRAIG

 

Oh dear. This is one person that Republican leaders just wish would go away. After being caught in a compromising position in a loo stall at Minneapolis airport by an undercover cop during a crackdown on gay cruising, things have gone from bad to farce for Craig.

 

He tried to make the issue go away by pleading guilty quietly. Then when the news broke he changed his mind but said he would resign from the Senate. The courts have rejected his bid to alter his plea and in another about face he is trying to cling on to his Senate seat. An unseemly ethics scandal Republicans could do without.

 

90. REUEL MARC GERECHT

Writer and Middle East specialist

 

REUEL MARC GERECHT

 

Former clandestine CIA operative with a Rolls Royce brain who is a regular commentator on Islamist issues as well as being director of the Middle East Initiative at the American Enterprise Institutes Project for the American Century.

 

A compelling voice urging the need to confront Islamic extremism who tempers his analysis with a realism deriving from undercover missions in the 1980s and 1990s. Advocate of root and branch reform of the CIA and US intelligence community.

 

91. MARK SANFORD

Governor of South Carolina

 

MARK SANFORD

 

Potential is limitless for this 47-year-old former congressman who is a staunch Conservative with a Libertarian streak. Opposed pork barrel spending even when it benefited his own district and adhered to a self-imposed term limit in Congress.

 

Supported John McCain in 2000 but has not declared for a candidate this time. His endorsement in a key Southern state is political gold dust and he would be an attractive vice-presidential running mate for Rudy Giuliani or Mitt Romney.

 

92. COLONEL OLIVER NORTH

Fox News host

 

COLONEL OLIVER NORTH

 

Former National Security Council official during the Reagan administration who became embroiled in the Iran-Contra scandal. He remains a beloved figure among Conservatives and is immensely popular with troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, whose exploits he champions in his show War Stories with Oliver North.

 

Narrowly defeated in a run for the Senate in Virginia in 1994 and now 64, North is now more of a Conservative icon than an active political player. But the Vietnam veteran remains a potent figure nevertheless.

 

93. MICHELLE MALKIN

Blogger and author

 

MICHELLE MALKIN

 

Born in Philadelphia to Filipino parents, Malkins michellemalkin.com and Hot Air websites attract massive traffic while her column is syndicated to 200 newspapers. She has enthusiastically embraced multi-media to spread her message and take the Liberal mainstream media to task.

 

Her outspoken opposition to amnesty for illegal immigrants reflects the views of most grassroots Conservatives. At 37 and already battle-tested in the culture wars, her influence looks certain to grow and grow.

 

94. CLIFFORD MAY

President: Foundation for the Defence of Democracies

 

CLIFFORD MAY

 

Former New York Times foreign correspondent who, as spokesman for the Republican National Committee, became a ubiquitous television presence and nimble advocate of the party on just about any issue imaginable.

 

Now focussing almost exclusively on foreign policy through his foundation, which he started immediately after 9/11, May is associated with the neo-Conservative wing of the Republican party. He was an adviser to the Iraq Study Group and is an outspoken proponent of the need to achieve victory in Iraq and the broader war against Muslim extremism.

 

95. HENRY KISSINGER

Former US Secretary of State

 

HENRY KISSINGER

 

Despite his 84 years, Richard Nixons Secretary of State remains a Titan in the foreign policy world. President Bush has continued to consult him and his Realpolitik philosophy has become more fashionable since the neo-Conservative vision of a post-invasion Iraq proved to be a mirage.

 

Gordon Brown has sought counsel from Kissinger and no Republican president could ignore totally his advice, though many complain his views are convoluted and shift gently to accommodate the prevailing orthodoxy.

 

96. RON PAUL

Congressman and presidential candidate

 

RON PAUL

 

Maverick former Libertarian who believes in strict interpretation of the Constitution and an isolationist foreign policy. His tirades against an overweening federal government and an expansionist war in the Middle East have made him a sensation and he has been highly effective at attracting supporters via the internet.

 

Pauls impressive $5 million haul in the third-quarter fundraising totals meant he could no longer be dismissed as an irrelevant fringe candidate. He wont be elected president or be chosen as anyones running mate, but his ideas will continue to motivate many.

 

97. CHRISTOPHER BUCKLEY

Author and satirist

 

CHRISTOPHER BUCKLEY

 

A Yale graduate who, like George W. Bush and John Kerry was a member of the Skull & Bones society, Buckley is the son of William F. Buckley, founder of the Conservative magazine National Review.

 

Once chief speechwriter to George Bush Snr when he was vice president, Buckley now describes himself as a disappointed Republican and has a strong Libertarian streak. With Republicans likely to be largely out of power, many will have time to read Buckleys latest comic novel, Boomsday, which is about Social Security reform and has a female blogger as its protagonist.

 

98. ERIK PRINCE

Founder: Blackwater USA

 

ERIK PRINCE

 

The former US Navy SEAL officer, still only 38, is the founder and co-owner of the worlds most successful private security company. A strong Roman Catholic and believer in free markets, he is the son of a self-made billionaire and has contributed about $200,000 of his own money to Republican causes.

 

Since Blackwater became embroiled in controversy over the alleged shooting dead of 17 Iraqi civilians by its personnel, Prince has abandoned his policy of shunning the media and is leading an aggressive PR strategy highlighting the fact that no one has died in Iraq while being protected by Blackwater. If he can weather the storm, he is sure to become an important figure in the Conservative movement.

 

99. WILLIAM MCGURN

Chief speechwriter to President George W. Bush

 

William McGurn

 

A former chief editorial writer for the Wall Street Journal, McGurns journalistic career also included the American Spectator, National Review and Far Eastern Economic Review. A committed Roman Catholic, he shares the strong moral sense that Bush brings to policy.

 

Shaping the voice of an unpopular president in the final year of his administration is not an easy task and if Americans are to be rallied around a final push in Iraq than McGurns efforts will be pivotal

 

100. GENERAL PETER PACE

Retired Chairman: Joint Chiefs of Staff

 

General Peter Pace

 

Pace was forced to retire last month as the head of the United States armed forces, the first man in his position not to be re-nominated for a second term in 21 years. Deemed too close to Donald Rumsfeld, the former Pentagon chief, he was made a scapegoat for the failures of the Iraq war.

 

His unfashionable views on gays serving contributed to a Democratic campaign against him. To the end, he kept on his desk a picture of a marine from his Vietnam platoon who was killed in Vietnam. Conservative activists are trying to persuade him to run for an open Senate seat in Virginia.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml...t/listintro.xml

 

Next 20 coming tomorrow and the list is finished by Friday. I'll post the rest of the lists as they follow.

 

Thought this could lead to some interesting discussion.

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Guest Night Phantom

I'm surprised Buchanan and O'Reilly were so low

O'Reilly should be lower, at least in a rational world.Influence does not imply rationality

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I'm surprised Buchanan and O'Reilly were so low

O'Reilly should be lower, at least in a rational world.

Well any list that seriously names Keith Olbermann is automatically discredited.

Anyone posting that he doesn't have influence in opinion making should be automatically discredited.

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I saw Scalia do his thing while I went to see a lawyer my wife has worked for argue in front of the Supreme Court. I find it scary when speaking of speech protected by the Constitution he suggested that speech that lacks any "social value" need not be protected. Maybe I misunderstand the whole conservative idea of government having its power limited, but the idea that anyone in government has the ability to assess the "social value" of any speech and that such will be the basis for discerning what speech is protected(legal) is a very scary idea that seems to not fit the idea of conservative small government.

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Guest CrimsonCane

I saw Scalia do his thing while I went to see a lawyer my wife has worked for argue in front of the Supreme Court. I find it scary when speaking of speech protected by the Constitution he suggested that speech that lacks any "social value" need not be protected. Maybe I misunderstand the whole conservative idea of government having its power limited, but the idea that anyone in government has the ability to assess the "social value" of any speech and that such will be the basis for discerning what speech is protected(legal) is a very scary idea that seems to not fit the idea of conservative small government.

Do you remember what case that was? I definitely consider myself a Scalia-phile and I try to read any majority or dissenting opinion he authors. I'd just like to have some context behind the particular case where he made those comments before I comment further.

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Do you remember what case that was? I definitely consider myself a Scalia-phile and I try to read any majority or dissenting opinion he authors. I'd just like to have some context behind the particular case where he made those comments before I comment further.

United States vs Williams

Nobody really likes the client, but the law really is a bad law.

 

Scalia's question/comment is at the bottom of page 32.

"I had thought that the purpose of the First Amendment was to protect speech that had some value, and that the reason obscenity is excluded entirely from

First Amendment protection is that it has no redeeming social value."

 

I thought obscenity was protected by the first amendment. Silly me.

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Obscenity doesn't have protection under the First Amendment.

 

Obscene material is not protected by the First Amendment

 

(a) whether the average person, applying contemporary community standards, would find that the work, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest; (b) whether the work depicts or describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct specifically defined by the applicable state law; and ? whether the work, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value.

Miller v. California

 

http://www.bc.edu/bc_org/avp/cas/comm/free...ech/miller.html

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I'm surprised Buchanan and O'Reilly were so low

O'Reilly should be lower, at least in a rational world.

Well any list that seriously names Keith Olbermann is automatically discredited.

Anyone posting that he doesn't have influence in opinion making should be automatically discredited.

He's also the bomb. :thumbup

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Do you remember what case that was? I definitely consider myself a Scalia-phile and I try to read any majority or dissenting opinion he authors. I'd just like to have some context behind the particular case where he made those comments before I comment further.

United States vs Williams

Nobody really likes the client, but the law really is a bad law.

 

Scalia's question/comment is at the bottom of page 32.

"I had thought that the purpose of the First Amendment was to protect speech that had some value, and that the reason obscenity is excluded entirely from

First Amendment protection is that it has no redeeming social value."

 

I thought obscenity was protected by the first amendment. Silly me.

 

Obscenity techincally is unprotected speech. But the standard set forth has to do with prevailing norms in the community and nation. So basically, because, it does have some protection because what is obscene in NY is not obscene in Nebraska.

 

Except the whole country has accepted obscene material such as pornography. Everyone except Scalia, who lives in a small cave in the middle OF super conservative land where nobody looks at porn or has sex with their wife with the lights on or outside of a bed or after the age of 40 or without the blessing of their priest or local clergy.

 

Scalia is a massive hypocrite as a Supreme Court Justice IMO. He abandons is legal philosphy all the time when the issue is conservative oriented but chides his collegues when it isn't.

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Scalia is by far the most consistent justice IMO. The thing is people forget that hes an originalist textualist, but hes also a formalist. And it all flows from there. His opinions can always be based on formalism or textualism. One or the other if not both.

 

There is no question that the First Amendment was created to sponsor a free marketplace of ideas. But those ideas did need to have value attached, which is why commercial speech was not originally protected by the first amendment and true political speech has always received the highest protection.

 

So as an originalist and a formalist, the original interpretation of the amendment as a protector of the free flow of valuable ideas is very consistent, not hypocritical, and does not imply any 'social conservative' ideals. Hes referring to lying as having no social value. "Lying" is not absolutely protected, for example defamation exists to prevent lies that damage someone or someone's interests.

 

Finally I want to state that he said that statement during oral argument not as part of an opinion.

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There is no question that the First Amendment was created to sponsor a free marketplace of ideas. But those ideas did need to have value attached, which is why commercial speech was not originally protected by the first amendment and true political speech has always received the highest protection.

Again, my problem with this is who gets to be the arbiter of which speech has value? We are not the Iranians who seemingly grant such authority to their Supreme Leader Ayatollah. The First Amendment makes no such qualification that speech must have measureable value. "Congress shall make no law...abriging the freedom of speech". The moment we make that qualification, and embrace it, and grant the government officials the ability to define social value, we have given up free speech.

 

So as an originalist and a formalist, the original interpretation of the amendment as a protector of the free flow of valuable ideas is very consistent, not hypocritical, and does not imply any 'social conservative' ideals. Hes referring to lying as having no social value. "Lying" is not absolutely protected, for example defamation exists to prevent lies that damage someone or someone's interests.

Defamation has to do with damages. Fraud has to do with commerce. But the speech itself isn't the problem.

And suggesting that speech ought to specifically have "social value" to be protected is definately a socially "conservative" view. And if that view is accepted, then we could easily have laws passed to ban probably 70% of today's popular music on the assessment of its "social value", especially if you pick the "right" person to assess value.

 

Finally I want to state that he said that statement during oral argument not as part of an opinion.

Doesn't make it that much less scary.

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Except the whole country has accepted obscene material such as pornography. Everyone except Scalia, who lives in a small cave in the middle OF super conservative land where nobody looks at porn or has sex with their wife with the lights on or outside of a bed or after the age of 40 or without the blessing of their priest or local clergy.

 

Scalia is a massive hypocrite as a Supreme Court Justice IMO. He abandons is legal philosphy all the time when the issue is conservative oriented but chides his collegues when it isn't.

 

You base this one on what? Obscenity is not protected speech and that is a long standing legal president. Scalia is considered to be a conservative because he is the most notable member of the school of legal thought that favors textualism and originalism in constitutional interpretation. He confounds conservatives because he will not limit speech unpopular to them.

 

Also, O'Reilly should not be on that list at all. He is only conservative in the middle-aged male Catholic sort of ways.

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Except the whole country has accepted obscene material such as pornography. Everyone except Scalia, who lives in a small cave in the middle OF super conservative land where nobody looks at porn or has sex with their wife with the lights on or outside of a bed or after the age of 40 or without the blessing of their priest or local clergy.

 

Scalia is a massive hypocrite as a Supreme Court Justice IMO. He abandons is legal philosphy all the time when the issue is conservative oriented but chides his collegues when it isn't.

 

You base this one on what? Obscenity is not protected speech and that is a long standing legal president. Scalia is considered to be a conservative because he is the most notable member of the school of legal thought that favors textualism and originalism in constitutional interpretation. He confounds conservatives because he will not limit speech unpopular to them.

 

Also, O'Reilly should not be on that list at all. He is only conservative in the middle-aged male Catholic sort of ways.

 

 

The fact that you can find pornography or a strip club in like 90% of the country. Now with the internet, I'd bet it is even more prevelant. The problem with allowed regulation of "obscene material" is that the definition of obscene is nearly impossible to define. Some people find Romeo and Juliet to be obscene. Some people find plays done in the nude to be obscene. Others think they can express artistic value through things like explicit sexuality. The movie Blue Velvet has been called both obscene and brilliant at the same time. We are critical of muslims for getting all up in arms over obscene depictions of their Mohammed. But should we get upset over obscene depictions of Jesus? Obscenity should not be unprotected speech, but since it is, the basic definition of it has been limited effectively.

 

 

I'll direct the rest of this towards you and legacy. How does Scalia's formalism and textualism jive with his decision in Gonzales v. Raich? How is the purely local activity of growing marijuana for one's own personal use, which is clearly a non-economic activity, allowed to be regulated by the interstate commerce clause when Scalia himself has blasted the regulation of non-economic activity whose affect on interstate commerce an enormous stretch in cases like Lopez(handgun possesion) and Morrison(rape)?? Could it be that he just doesn't like people who do drugs and therefore adjusts his decisions accordingly? His explanation for his inconsistency is such a massive cop out that it is laughable. Just like his explanation for Bush v. Gore inconsistency.

 

Also, how does his formalism jive with his stance of not reading the 14th amendment to allow affirmtive action when there is solid evidence that the drafters of the 14th amendment intended affirmitive action to be ok?

 

He is absolutely not consistent. He abandons his philosophy when it is convenient.

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21. GEORGE W. BUSH

President of the United States

 

GEORGE W BUSH

 

Derided by liberals and lambasted by disappointed conservatives, George W. Bush approaches the final year of his presidency with poll ratings stuck in the doldrums and his hands tie in Washington by an antagonistic Democratic-controlled Congress. His aides hope, at best, that he will be vindicated by history.

 

Bush fails to make our top 20 list because of his failure to shape conservatism or the Republican party despite an historic opportunity to do so after 2002. When he leaves office, his political influence looks likely to all but disappear. The ?surge? offers some hope for Iraq and no US president could have shrunk from confronting Islamic fanaticism after 9/11. But even supporters of the Iraq invasion judge him harshly for failing the competency test in a time of war.

 

22.CHRISTOPHER DEMUTH

President, American Enterprise Institute

 

CHRISTOPHER DEMUTH

 

When DeMuth recently announced he was stepping down as AEI president after 21 years at the helm of what he turned into the world?s premier think tank, David Frum (see 40 below) remarked that it was ?just remotely possible that there may be someone whose contributions to American intellectual life over the past two decades have equalled those of Christopher DeMuth?.

 

AEI provided many of the major players in the Bush administration and some of its most successful ideas. The ?surge? policy for Iraq was drawn up by its experts in AEI brainstorming sessions. An accomplished economics and law scholar in his own right, DeMuth's influence on conservative thought will be felt for decades to come.

 

23. ROGER AILES

President, Fox News Channel

 

ROGER AILES

 

Veteran media consultant for Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George Bush Snr. Along with the legendary operative Lee Attwater, he was responsible for Bush Snr?s against-the-odds victory over Michael Dukakis in 1988 by helping to portray the then Massachusetts governor as a weak leader lacking in humanity.

 

The presence of so many Fox personalities on this list is testament to the influence of the Murdoch-owned cable channel. Presenting an antidote to what conservatives see as the ingraining liberal bias of the mainstream media, Fox has redefined television news under Ailes?s direction since he was brought in to run it in 1996.

 

24.GROVER NORQUIST

President, Americans for Tax Reform

 

GROVER NORQUIST

 

One of the authors of Newt Gingrich?s ?Contract with America?, Norquist?s regular Wednesday morning meeting remains the preeminent conservative brainstorming session in Washington. A pioneering anti-tax crusader, signing Norquist?s pledge is a must for Republicans wanting to cement their conservative credentials.

 

Was damaged by his close association with Jack Abramoff (see No 38) but was already a bogeyman for the Left. A passionate proponent of monuments to Ronald Reagan, he has been accused of being too close to Arab causes by some pro-Israel conservatives. Norquist will always be controversial but shows no signs of becoming any less effective.

 

25. R. EMMETT TYRRELL JR

Founder and editor-in-chief, American Spectator magazine

 

R.EMMETT TYRRELL JR

 

Bob Tyrrell was a relentless digger of dirt on President Bill Clinton and has not let up since the 42nd president left office. His latest work The Clinton Crack-Up: The Boy President's Life After the White House does not disappoint and he even managed to crash his subject?s 60th birthday party.

 

At the helm of the American Spectator since 1967, Tyrrell has been described as a modern-day H. L. Menken. Tom Wolfe said he was ?the funniest political essayist in years?. His Saturday Night Club? which always meets on a weekday and has no members ? brings together conservative journalists and thinkers who pepper a presidential candidate or Supreme Court judge with questions. Expect him to be like a terrier clinging to the pantsuit leg of a President Hillary Clinton.

 

26. JAMES DOBSON

Chairman, Focus on the Family

 

JAMES DOBSON

 

Probably the most influential evangelical Christian in the country and could have a decisive impact on the 2008 if he follows through on his threat to help form a third party if Rudy Giuliani wins the Republican nomination. Backing Giuliani, he has argued ?could result in the abandonment of cherished beliefs that conservative Christians have promoted and defended for decades?.

 

His daily radio show is broadcast in more than a dozen languages and on over 7,000 stations worldwide as well as about 60 US television stations. Reputed to possess an email list of 2.5 million supporters, he believes he is fighting ?a culture war that is aimed right straight at the institution of the family".

 

27.CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS

Writer

 

CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS

 

Difficult to categorise such an iconoclast but the British-born Hitchens ? he is now an American citizen ? had a very public fallout with the Left and has been a strong backer of the Iraq war. A hard-drinking former Trotskyist, he is aligned with leading neo-conservatives and he was even invited into the White House to address George W. Bush?s staff.

 

An outspoken atheist and critic of both evangelical Christians and fanatical Muslims, the eclectic Hitchens target list has included Mother Theresa, Ronald Reagan, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Michael Moore and Henry Kissinger. Brother of British conservative columnist Peter Hitchens, with whom he has testy relations.

 

28. DICK MORRIS

Political strategist

 

DICK MORRIS

 

Has turned opposition to Hillary Clinton into a one-man industry. The former White House adviser to Bill Clinton ? he was forced to resign after revelations of trysts with a toe-sucking prostitute ? he first worked with the Clintons in 1978. The brains behind Bill Clinton?s ?triangulation? strategy ? which Mrs Clinton may well employ in a general election.

 

A very shrewd analyst, Morris has joked that he will emigrate if Mrs Clinton wins the White House. In fact, he will probably be jubilant ? he would have a guaranteed place on the front line of the ensuing political war for at least the next four years. Has worked with the UK Independence Party.

 

29. ALAN GREENSPAN

Former chairman Federal Reserve

 

ALAN GREENSPAN

 

The ultimate political weathervane, Greenspan, 81, has been critical of George W. Bush recently after backing his tax cuts and slipping chameleon-like into the Texan?s circle despite his close previous relationship with Bill Clinton. Received the ultimate Washington accolade ? a hagiography by Bob Woodward entitled ?Maestro?.

 

Recently retired after a record 18 years in the job, he remains a towering figure in the world of economic policy and, along with his wife Andrea Mitchell of NBC television, a fixture on the Georgetown cocktail party circuit. John McCain recently joked that he?d appoint Greenspan to review the nation?s tax code even if he were dead.

 

30. WAYNE LAPIERRE

Executive vice-president, National Rifle Association

 

WAYNE LAPIERRE

 

Never underestimate the power of the gun lobby. Al Gore probably lost the 2000 election because of his weak stance on Second Amendment issues and Rudy Giuliani has been quick to make his peace with the group he once branded as ?extremists?.

 

LaPierre has been in post since 1991 and, since Charlton Heston stepped down in 2003 after being diagnosed with Alzheimer?s, he has been the NRA?s most prominent voice. Every weekday he delivers a podcast about gun rights. LaPierre seems content with Giulaini?s shift, stating: ?It's a good thing if a politician sees the light.?

 

31. MARK LEVIN

Talk Radio host

 

MARK LEVIN

 

Nicknamed ?the Great One?, Levin went from a political adviser in the Reagan administration to one of the most popular talk radio figures in the US. A New York-based lawyer, he often lambasts Supreme Court rulings, adopting a strict constructionist approach to the constitution and railing against activist judges.

 

Levin still practices law, heading up the Landmark Legal Foundation in Washington. Has pitted himself against the Democratic presidential candidates, saying they will never talk about ?us winning in Iraq, the beauty of the American capitalist system and following and believing the Constitution?.

 

32. BILL SIMON

Policy director, Rudy Giuliani campaign

 

BILL SIMON

 

Ran for California governor in 2002, losing to Gray Davis, and again in 2003 as the conservative alternative to Arnold Schwarzenegger before dropping out and endorsing the Terminator. A long-time Rudy Giuliani friend, he is the main power behind the scenes in the former New York mayor?s campaign.

 

A social conservative, he has honed Giuliani?s conservative credentials by stressing his achievements including lowering taxes and cleaning up New York City rather than his views in favour of abortion rights. So far, the campaign strategy seems to be working and Simon would be a key figure in a Giuliani administration.

 

33. ANDREW SULLIVAN

Blogger and journalist

 

ANDREW SULLIVAN

 

Just clinging on to the conservative label, Andrew Sullivan, British born and Oxford educated but with an accent now somewhere in the middle of the Atlantic, is one of America?s pre-eminent bloggers, currently with the Atlantic Monthly.

 

Argues that the Republican Party has betrayed its roots and has slammed George W. Bush for his conduct of the Iraq war and his alleged ambivalence towards torture. HIV-positive, he is a crusader for gay rights. Supported John Kerry in 2004 and is backing Barack Obama this time but still holds affection for John McCain and Arnold Schwarzenegger.

 

34. DAVID HOROWITZ

Activist and writer

 

DAVID HOROWITZ

 

Former Marxist and radical student who now dogs his one-time ideological allies. Runs the David Horowitz Freedom Centre and edits the website FrontPage Magazine. Founded Students for Academic Freedom and is affiliated with Campus Watch.

 

Strongly pro-Israel, he is a relentless hunter of bias in universities. A persistent critic of Hollywood values and opponent of affirmative action and slavery reparations for blacks. Regular on television and fearless speaker at university campuses despite the sometimes violent protests against him.

 

35. TOM DELAY

Former Republican leader in House of Representatives

 

TOM DELAY

 

The no-nonsense Texan was known as ?the Hammer? for his rigid enforcement of party rule in the House of Representatives after the Republican Revolution of 1994. Serving first as party whip and then from 2003 to 2005 as House majority leader, he played a key role in the impeachment of President Bill Clinton in 1998 and then ensuring support in Congress for President George W Bush.

 

Was also a driving force behind the so-called "K Street project" to manoeuvre Republicans into top positions with influential lobbying firms. Stepped down in 2006 under investigation by a Texas district attorney for allegedly breaching campaign finance law but DeLay remains a powerful and popular figure with the party?s conservative base. Believed to pondering a grassroots leadership role.

 

36. MARY MATALIN

Republican operative

 

MARY MATALIN

 

A former Republican spokesperson, staffer on President George Bush Snr?s 1992 campaign and CNN television host, Matalin became a key aide to Vice President Dick Cheney. She is married to James Carville, the leading Democratic strategist. Since leaving the White House, she has been running Threshold, a new conservative publishing imprint at Simon & Schuster.

 

Now a senior strategist with the Fred Thompson campaign, she has also been a leading figure raising funds to pay the legal fees of Lewis ?Scooter? Libby, her colleague in Cheney?s office who was sentenced to jail for lying during the CIA leak investigation. George W. Bush has already commuted Libby?s sentence, expect Matalin to be a prime mover in the campaign to secure a full pardon.

 

37. FREDERICK KAGAN

Academic

 

FREDERICK KAGAN

 

A military historian and leading light at the American Enterprise Institute, Kagan was the principal force behind the study that led to the ?surge? policy being adopted by George W. Bush. Soon dubbed the "real Iraq Study Group" report, it was a "awkish rival to the official ISG report of James Baker and Lee Hamilton that was shelved by the Bush administration.

 

A former West Point lecturer, he is married to fellow defence academic Kimberly Kagan and is the brother of Robert Kagan, an accomplished military writer and foreign policy strategist. Both brothers are closely associated with the neo-conservative school of thought.

 

38. JACK ABRAMOFF

Former lobbyist

 

JACK ABRAMOFF

 

Currently serving a sentence of five years and 10 months in jail after pleading guilty to charges of corruption and defrauding American-Indian tribes, Abramoff went from being the go-to Republican lobbyist in Washington to ?Jack who?? as his former associates sought to deny they knew him.

 

Ordered to pay restitution of more than $21 million, his case sparked an extensive corruption investigation that led to the conviction of two White House officials, a congressman and nine other lobbyists and congressional aides. The stench of corruption was a key factor in the Republican mid-term elections defeat of 2006. Abramoff?s unwelcome ? for Republicans - influence will continue into 2008.

 

39. DREW CAREY

Comedian and actor

 

DREW CAREY

 

A libertarian more than a conservative, Carey, presenter of ?Whose Line is it Anyway??, has been coy about any connection to the Republican party ?which can be the kiss of death in Hollywood. ?Just because I make fun of Democrats doesn't make me a Republican," he quipped recently when asked about his politics.

 

Has aligned himself with the Reason Foundation, a libertarian think tank which has started an online series called The Drew Carey Project. Held a ?smoke-in? in 1998 to defy anti-smoking laws and has spoken out against the Iraq war. Embracing the libertarian label, he said: ?You don't know what you are sometimes until someone puts a name to it."

 

40. DAVID FRUM

Writer

 

DAVID FRUM

 

Canadian journalist and former speechwriter to George W Bush who helped craft the ?axis of evil? phrase. An ally of the neo-conservative Richard Perle, he has been a prominent support of the war against terror and a convinced hawk on the Middle East. Prolific blogger on National Review Online.

 

Has just written a book on the future of conservatism, to be published in December, entitled: Comeback: Conservatism That Can Win Again. An American Enterprise Institute scholar, Frum recently became a foreign policy adviser to Rudy Giuliani and could well return to the White House in a Giuliani administration.

 

41. EDWIN FEULNER

President, Heritage Foundation

 

EDWIN FEULNER

 

Under Feulner?s leadership, the Heritage Foundation has became a world-renowned think tank after beginning as a small policy shop. A powerhouse of conservative ideas, it has had considerable influence during the Bush years.

 

Founded by Feulner, Heritage has grown in Washington from a nine-member staff working out of a rented office on Capitol Hill in 1977 to a 200-person organisation occupying two huge office buildings close to the US Capitol. Feulner defines its mission as formulating and promoting policies based on "free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values, and a strong national defence".

 

42. KARL ROVE

Former adviser to George W. Bush

 

KARL ROVE

 

A year ago, Rove would have made any top 20 list. After the 2002 election, when Republicans made historic gains, he had the world at his feet and would probably have been second only to his boss in terms of influence among conservatives. But after 2006 and now, temporarily at least, out of politics, the man dubbed "the architect" by Bush is no longer at the centre of the right-wing universe.

 

His achievements as an election strategist, however, cannot be undone and it would be unwise to write Rove off. He was damaged by the Valerie Plame affair, about the unmasking of a CIA spy, and remains a top target for Democrats bent on revenge. Rove is writing a book and still vigorously defending the Bush legacy.

 

43. TOM COBURN

Senator for Oklahoma

 

TOM COBURN

 

A medical doctor who is highly critical of career politicians, he was one of the leading lights of the class of 1994 in Congress who were swept into power by Newt Gingrich?s Republican Revolution. A passionate opponent of "pork barrel" spending, whether by Republicans or Democrats.

 

Regarded by many Republicans as the conscience of the conservative movement, he was one of the first to demand that Alberto Gonzales, then Attorney General, resign, as eventually he did. Received a 100 per cent rating from the American Conservative Union. Many grassroots activists have urged him to run for president.

 

44. SEAN HANNITY

Cable and talk radio host

 

SEAN HANNITY

 

The heir to Rush Limbaugh. Television talk-show host for Fox News? shows "Hannity & Colmes" and "Hannity?s America". His talk radio show is second only in listenership to Limbaugh. There are few better ways for a conservative politician to reach their "base" electorate than by being interviewed by Hannity.

 

Since 2003 he has organised the annual "Freedom Concerts" which provide scholarship money to children of service members who have been killed or injured during military service. A high-profile supporter of Rudy Giuliani who has hosted a fundraiser for the former New York mayor, Hannity, 45, believes in winning power rather than ideological purity.

 

45. RICK SANTORUM

Former senator

 

RICK SANTORUM

 

A former Congressman and Senator from Pennsylvania, Santorum was first in a dramatic upset in 1990. Swiftly became a leader of the anti-abortion movement and later became an outspoken opponent of gay marriage and liberal judges. Once compared homosexuality to bestiality. Although Roman Catholic, he is an idol of evangelicals.

 

Was the Democrats? biggest scalp in 2006 when the then third-ranking Republican in the Senate lost his seat. Out of office, he has shifted his focus from social to national security issues, founding a project called "America?s Enemies" at the think tank "Ethics and Public Policy Centre". Not yet 50, he will be a major conservative figure for a long time to come.

 

46. ROBERT NOVAK

Reporter and columnist

 

ROBERT NOVAK

 

Novak remains an accomplished shoe-leather reporter at 76, breaking stories each week. Has moved steadily to the Right since his early days at the Associated Press and Wall Street Journal. A consummate Washington insider, he cultivates sources assiduously and has boasted that those who don?t play ball with him become targets.

 

Less of a television presence these days, though still a frequent guest on Fox News, Novak was a central figure in the furore over the unmasking of the CIA operative Valerie Plame after he included her name in a column. A conservative rather than a Republican party loyalist, he converted from Judaism to Roman Catholicism and has been bitterly criticised by some fellow conservatives for his opposition to the Iraq war and scepticism about US support of Israel.

 

47. JOE LIEBERMAN

Senator for Connecticut

 

JOE LIEBERMAN

 

The only person to make both of our lists. It is easy to forget that Lieberman could very easily have been a Democrat vice-president today if he had not lost so narrowly with Al Gore in 2000. Instead he is a pariah for many Democrats because of his full-throated support for the Iraq war and a bellicose stance against Iran.

 

He was re-elected for a fourth term in the senate as an ?Independent Democrat? in 2006 and holds considerable power in the chamber given the slimness of the Democrats? majority. He makes the conservative list because he would be a natural Pentagon chief in any Republican administration or a key Capitol Hill ally of a President Giuiliani or a President McCain.

 

48. WILLIAM KRISTOL

Writer and commentator

 

WILLIAM KRISTOL

 

Former chief of staff to Dan Quayle, Kristol ? the son of neoconservative guru Irving Kristol and the historian Gertrude Himmelfarb ? edits The Weekly Standard" magazine. Passionate advocate for toppling Saddam and, now, confronting Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

 

Kristol moves effortlessly between the intersecting worlds of journalism, politics and think tanks and is a frequent face on Fox News. If Hillary Clinton wins the election, he will be at the forefront of opposition to everything she does. Strongly pro-Israel, he is one of the best connected conservatives in Washington.

 

49. WILLIAM F. BUCKLEY

Author and commentator

 

WILLIAM F.BUCKLEY

 

The founder, in 1955, of National Review after writing his seminal "God and Man at Yale", Buckley remains a colossus in American conservatism if no longer, at 81, a day-to-day player. Has criticised Bush for not being a true conservative and last year pronounced the Iraq war a failure.

 

A major influence on Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan, he served in the CIA in the 1940s and has written a series of novels based on a CIA character called Blackford Oakes. Got 13 per cent of the vote when he ran for New York mayor in 1965. A skilled debater and magnetic personality, Buckley is often described as the father of modern conservatism.

 

50. ALEX CASTELLANOS

Media Consultant

 

ALEX CASTELLANOS

 

King of the Republican media consultants, Castellanos is one of the prime movers behind the formidably disciplined and well-organised campaign of Mitt Romney, who leads in the two key early-voting states of Iowa and New Hampshire.

 

Has been an adviser on television advertising to five presidential campaigns as well as helping elect eight senators and six governors. Was responsible for helping define John Kerry as a flip-flopping effete coward during the 2004 election. A native of Cuba, his parents arrived in the US in 1961 with a suitcase, two children and just eleven dollars.

 

51. CHARLES AND SAM WYLY

Businessmen

 

CHARLES AND SAM WYLY

 

The Wyly brothers or "Wyly coyotes" are billionaire Texas businessmen and major Republican donors who paid for television advertisements that blasted John McCain in 2000 but later gave money to his 2008 campaign. Are estimated to have given about $10 million to Republican causes and $90 million to charity.

 

Born in Louisiana, Charles is the elder brother while Sam reportedly enjoys the higher net worth. Founded the craft chain Michaels and their interests include oil, mining, restaurant and retail holdings. Intensely private, their political contributions make them major players behind the scenes.

 

52. BRIT HUME

Television anchor

 

BRIT HUME

 

Managing Editor of Fox New Channel, Hume is a well-known political broadcaster and commentator. Hosts "Special Report with Brit Hume" and a frequent participant on "Fox News Sunday". Highly accomplished news journalist who is never afraid to hold Republicans to account.

 

"Sure, I'm a conservative, no doubt about it," Hume has said. "But I would ask people to look at the work." Hume shuns Washington?s social life and is little interested in self-promotion. But his understated style and rigorous intellect are powerful attributes and his frequent targeting by the Left underlines his importance in the war of ideas.

 

53. RICH LOWRY

Journalist

 

RICH LOWRY

 

Not yet 40 and already at the helm of "National Review" for a decade, the boyish Lowry is a major player. Has overseen the transition of the magazine to the internet world, fostering such talents as Ramesh Ponnuru, Jonah Goldberg and Kate O?Beirne, each of whom could have appeared on this list in their own right.

 

Frequent television commentator. Supported the Iraq war but has been critical of its execution and was an early advocate of additional troops. Has written well-received books about Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan. Never a Republican cheerleader, he remains a practical journalist and his unvarnished opinions on the 2008 candidates are keenly listened to.

 

54. FRED THOMPSON

Actor and presidential candidate

 

FRED THOMPSON

 

Thompson?s relatively low position is because he has been a disappointing presidential candidate who has failed to capture the imagination of conservative voters unimpressed with the existing field. Although he remains a contender, he has yet to raise his game enough to be a plausible bet for the White House.

 

Best known as prosecutor Arthur Branch of NBC?s "Law & Order" show, Thompson was a Tennessee senator but made little impact on Capitol Hill. A true Washington insider who spent many years lobbying, sometimes for dubious clients, despite his down-home Southern demeanour. If he fails to secure the Republican nomination, expect him to disappear from politics.

 

55. JACK KEANE

Former Vice Chief of Staff, US armed forces

 

JACK KEANE

 

Co-author of the "surge", drawn up at the American Enterprise Institute, that saw 30,000 extra US troops sent to Iraq. The early success of the strategy has enabled the president to face down opposition in Congress and guarantee US troops will stay in large numbers in Iraq until the end of his presidency and beyond.

 

A Vietnam veteran, General Keane retired from military service in 2003 rather than take the job of head of the US Army. A plainspoken New Yorker, he heads his own consulting firm and is a prominent media commentator.

 

56. GEORGE WILL

Columnist

 

GEORGE WILL

 

One of the pre-eminent conservative newspaper columnists. Rudy Giuliani cites Will?s assessment of him as an heir to Margaret Thatcher to anyone who will listen. A committed Republican who once coached Ronald Reagan before presidential debates, he is not afraid to be critical of the party.

 

His opposition in his "Washington Post" and "Newsweek" columns to George W. Bush?s nomination of Harriet Miers the Supreme Court helped scupper her chances. Also called on the Bush administration to be more honest about setbacks in Iraq. Has also written two best sellers about baseball.

 

57. NORMAN PODHORETZ

Political scientist and writer

 

NORMAN PODHORETZ

 

Awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by George W. Bush, the highest honour the US president can bestow on a civilian. Considered a sage among neo-conservatives and has been consulted by President Bush over what to do about Iran.

 

Currently serves as a senior foreign policy advisor to Rudy Giuliani in his presidential campaign. A strong supporter of the Iraq war and confronting "Islamofacscism", Podhoretz, 77, has repeatedly called for the US to bomb Iran and predicted that Bush will do so before he leaves office.

 

58. VICTOR DAVIS HANSON

Military historian and columnist

 

VICTOR DAVIS HANSON

 

His book Carnage and Culture appeared before the September 11 attacks, but its message that the "Western way of war" will ultimately prevail because of Western civilisation?s values, democracy and rationalism made it an immediate best-seller. Senior Fellow at Stanford?s Hoover Institution and columnist with National Review Online.

 

It was promptly re-issued with an addition in which Hanson stated that the US would win the war on terror. A backer of Israel who is decidedly hawkish on the Middle East, he believes that the lack of freedom in the region is the root cause of Islamic terrorism.

 

59. LAURA BUSH

First Lady

 

LAURA BUSH

 

Mrs Bush has taken on an increasingly prominent role during the latter years of her husband?s presidency. She has made Burma her cause celebre and spoken passionately about the need for the junta there to free opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

 

The former librarian has also visited the Middle East to meet women?s groups and become a powerful political figure in her own right.

 

60. P J O?ROURKE

Writer

 

P J O?ROURKE

 

Satirist, journalist and author, O?Rourke?s best-selling books showed that conservatives too could have a sense of humour. His articles and essays remain essential reading for libertarians and anti-Leftists and his bons mots are still widely quoted.

 

Now a research fellow at the Cato Institute, he is a regular correspondent for The Atlantic Monthly, The American Spectator, and The Weekly Standard. A former hippie who was an early practitioner of gonzo journalism.

The next 40.

 

This list is terrible, IMO. It contradicts and changes its rules/purpose on every person.

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Guest Night Phantom

P J O?ROURKE

 

Satirist, journalist and author, O?Rourke?s best-selling books showed that conservatives too could have a sense of humour. His articles and essays remain essential reading for libertarians and anti-Leftists and his bons mots are still widely quoted.

 

Now a research fellow at the Cato Institute, he is a regular correspondent for The Atlantic Monthly, The American Spectator, and The Weekly Standard. A former hippie who was an early practitioner of gonzo journalism.

I'm a pretty big fan.

 

I also found Drew Carey to be a nice surprise, though I have to admit I haven't really watched anything with him in it in a while.

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