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The New Conservatism: A Conversation with William Kristol & Sarah Longwell

William Kristol and Sarah Longwell

Two founders of Defending Democracy Together, William Kristol and Sarah Longwell, discuss how conservatism can remake itself after Trump.

About this Event

As part of the POLITICS ON THE EDGE series, The Philomathean Society, The Andrea Mitchell Center for the Study of Democracy, and the SNF Paideia Program present a moderated discussion with WILLIAM KRISTOL and SARAH LONGWELL, two founders of Defending Democracy Together. During the Trump presidency, traditional conservatives often found themselves on the edge of Republican politics, disparaged in part for longstanding commitments to free trade and expansive legal immigration, but mainly for insufficient loyalty to the President. Now that Trump has exited the White House, Kristol and Longwell chart the path toward a true “post-Trump” era — when conservative politics would once again embrace the norms of American democracy — and consider the challenges standing in the way.

For three decades, WILLIAM KRISTOL has been a leading participant in American political debates and a widely respected analyst of American political developments. Kristol served in senior positions in the Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush Administrations and has taught at the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard University. Kristol founded the Weekly Standard in 1995 and edited the influential magazine for over two decades. Now, as founding director of Defending Democracy Together, an organization dedicated to defending America’s liberal democratic norms, principles, and institutions, Kristol is in the midst of the national debate on issues ranging from American foreign policy to the future of the Republican Party and the meaning of American conservatism.

SARAH LONGWELL is the President and CEO of Longwell Partners, a full-service communications firm in Washington, D.C., which focuses on solving some of the country’s most intractable problems through cross-partisan coalitions. Sarah is a Co-Founder of Defending Democracy Together, spokeswoman for its project Republicans for the Rule of Law, and executive director of the newly launched Republican Accountability Project. She is also the Publisher of The Bulwark.

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