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May 31

The Common Defense: What It Means to Conservatives

The Preamble of the Constitution gives paramount importance to the federal government to “provide for the common defense.” Yet, there is a growing misconception that all federal spending is more or less equal, and that it doesn’t matter too much what gets cut. Defense spending, says this thinking, is but one of the luxuries America cannot afford right now, dispensable as, say, subsidies for wealthy farmers. Yet, the Founders knew that defense spending wasn’t a luxury and recognized as General George Washington, famously said, “To be prepared for war is one of the most effective means of preserving peace.”

Fielding a first-rate military and exercising principled American leadership in the world depends on a robust economy. America is facing a budget crisis and a crisis of confidence. Washington has saddled Americans with such debt that it wants to cut defense to pay for burgeoning entitlements. We should not be forced to surrender security or our desire for liberty to fund government largesse.

As part of The Heritage Foundation’s 4th Annual Protect America Month, we invite you to join us as our distinguished speakers discuss the importance of a strong national defense and the need for principled leadership and reform to remove us from this unsustainable path.

More About the Speakers

Keynote Remarks by
The Honorable Trent Franks (R-AZ)
Member, United States House of Representatives

Followed by a Discussion with
The Honorable Ken Blackwell
Former Secretary of State of Ohio

Alison Acosta Fraser
Director, Thomas A. Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies, The Heritage Foundation

Hosted By

Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D.

Distinguished Fellow Read More