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By Jim Newell:
conservatism in the tank
When Sen. Jim DeMint, the upper chamber’s godfather of Tea Party nihilism, abruptly announced his retirement from his lawmaking career and his plans to take over as president of the conservative Heritage Foundation think tank, the consensus in Washington was that this was a step down for a guy who had never done all that much in the first place. For goodness’ sake, the pundits wailed, what legacy does this man think he’s leaving behind? What authorship can he claim for any significant—or, for that matter, trivial or failed—piece of legislation?