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Principled Conservatism: American Conservative Union Caught Whoring Itself Out to Highest Bidder

acu-logo-cashthumbnail1.jpgThe ACU, that venerable organization founded by the likes of William F. Buckley and L. Brent Bozell and host of the annual CPAC convention, is no better than a street ho.

The American Conservative Union asked FedEx for a check for $2 million to $3 million in return for the group’s endorsement in a bitter legislative dispute, then flipped and sided with UPS after FedEx refused to pay.

For the $2 million plus, ACU offered a range of services that included: “Producing op-eds and articles written by ACU’s Chairman David Keene and/or other members of the ACU’s board of directors. (Note that Mr. Keene writes a weekly column that appears in The Hill.)”

The conservative group’s remarkable demand — black-and-white proof of the longtime Washington practice known as “pay for play” — was contained in a private letter to FedEx , which was provided to POLITICO.

Conservatives are all about letting the market determine who’ll they’ll, um, service.

And FedEx said "no thanks."

After the rebuff, American Conservative Union changed sides. ACU Chairman David A. Keene was one of eight conservative leaders who signed a letter to FedEx Chairman Frederick W. Smith, a champion of capitalism who in the past has been a favorite of conservatives.

The letter accuses FedEx of “falsely and disingenuously” labeling the rules change a “bailout” for UPS, since FedEx would become subject to the same arduous union structure.

The letter is also signed by Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, who is also on ACU’s board.

Guess Grover’s trying to drown ACU’s credibility in the bathtub. 

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