Before There Was Goldwater or Reagan, There Was Bill Buckley

Senior Fellow Newt Gingrich
Senior Fellow
Newt Gingrich
From writing books, to creating, leading, and sustaining National Review, to his 33-year run as the host of TV's Firing Line, Bill Buckley became the indispensable intellectual advocate from whose energy, intelligence, wit, and enthusiasm the best of modern conservatism drew its inspiration and encouragement.

It was not until William F. Buckley Jr., founded National Review in 1955 that the tide began to slowly turn for conservatives. National Review was a lonely voice of conservatism in an overwhelmingly liberal establishment. Buckley began what led to Senator Barry Goldwater and his Conscience of a Conservative, which led to the seizing of power by the conservatives from the moderate establishment within the Republican party. From that emerged Ronald Reagan. Bill stood up to defend freedom as a positive value of greater moral worth than either the state or the elite, and over time his work had a transformational impact on the quality of American politics that continues even today.

He was a wonderful friend, a great patriot, and a lively human being. Callista and I are praying for him and those who loved him. He will be missed.

Newt Gingrich is a senior fellow at AEI.

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