George Will: "What I Did See At CPAC Was The Rise Of The Libertarian Strand Of Republicanism"


GEORGE WILL: First, here's the New York Times headline on the CPAC conference "GOP Divisions Fester at Conservative Retreat." Festering an infected wound, it's awful. I guarantee, if there were a liberal conclave comparable to this, and there were vigorous debates going on there, the New York Times headline would be healthy diversity flourishes at liberal conclave.

Republicans have been arguing, social conservatives and libertarian free market conservatives since the 1950s when the National Review was founded on the idea of a fusion of the two. It has worked before with Ronald Reagan. It can work again.

What I did see at CPAC was the rise of the libertarian strand of Republicanism, which has an effect on foreign policy, that is a pullback from nation building and other kind of ambitions abroad that they never countenance from government at home, and a since of live and let live with subjects such as decriminalization of certain drugs and gay marriage.

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