Election 2024 Conservative Agenda

If you were on Twitter or TikTok over the weekend, you might have seen people talking about Project 2025.

Led by the right-wing think tank the Heritage Foundation, Project 2025 is a presidential transition operation—essentially a government-in-waiting if former President Donald Trump returns to office on Jan. 20, 2025. The project doesn’t explicitly state that it’s specifically for Trump, but it aims to put a conservative in the next presidential seat.

The project, published in 2023, includes a comprehensive handbook detailing a conservative agenda for the next president. Project 2025 declared on its website that the handbook represents “the next conservative President’s last opportunity to save our republic.”

“It is not enough for conservatives to win elections,” Project 2025 stated on its website. “If we are going to rescue the country from the grip of the radical Left, we need both a governing agenda and the right people in place, ready to carry this agenda out on day one of the next conservative administration. That is the goal of the 2025 Presidential Transition Project.”

“With the right conservative policy recommendations and properly vetted and trained personnel to implement them, we will take back our government,” the project continued.

Dozens of conservative organizations are behind the effort. Part of the plan involves firing federal employees whom conservatives deem as obstacles to implementing right-wing policies and replacing them with their own choices, the Associated Press reported.

The handbook outlined “a top-to-bottom overhaul” of the Department of Justice and the cessation of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) efforts to combat misinformation. The handbook asserted that “the FBI have absolutely no business policing speech.”

The agenda also included a crackdown on abortion pills, which it labeled “the single greatest threat to unborn children in a post-Roe world.” The handbook urged the Food and Drug Administration to revoke the approval of the pills, claiming that the approval process was “politicized” and “illegal” (more than 100 scientific studies over decades have confirmed that both mifepristone and misoprostol, the two abortion-inducing drugs, are safe).

The Associated Press previously characterized the handbook’s language as “apocalyptic.” The handbook encouraged the next presidential administration to “reexamine the balance between media demands and space constraints on the White House premises,” stating that there is “no legal entitlement” for the press corps to have permanent space on the premises.

Many critics have labeled Project 2025 as “authoritarian.” The project relies on what legal scholars call the unitary executive theory, which dismisses the idea of three separate branches of government with checks and balances, the Associated Press reported. Instead, proponents of the theory argue that Article 2 of the Constitution grants the president total authority over the executive branch.

“Some of these visions, they do start to just bleed into some kind of authoritarian fantasies where the president won the election, so he’s in charge, so everyone has to do what he says—and that’s just not the system the government we live under,” Philip Wallach, a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute who studies the separation of powers in the U.S., previously told the Associated Press.

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