Culture Wars/Current Controversies

National Review Fails to Kill Its Monster

The New Republic takes on National Review‘s take on Trump.

By Jeet Heer

The New Republic

National Review is the great intellectual gatekeeper of the American right, a journal of opinion that has long served as the arbiter of what counts as respectable conservative thought. Throughout its six-decade history, the magazine has been known for launching crusades against ideological factions it regards as unworthy of belonging to the conservative tribe, including anti-Semites in the late 1950s, libertarians and members of the John Birch Society in the 1960s, and anti-war conservatives in the 1990s and post-September 11. Acting as a kind of bouncer, National Review has earned enemies who accuse it of purging dissident thought on the right. But there’s no question that the many wars National Review has fought to purify the conservative movement have often had a salutary effect, particularly in excluding anti-Semitism and more overt forms of racism.

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