Anne Nelson writes in The New Republic about 10 people you probably never heard of. Each of them is intent on destroying democracy. At the center of this group is the Bradley Foundation, a major funder of vouchers since the 1990s. Vouchers play a central role in the effort to undermine democracy. If they can take down and privatize public schools, they can do the same to other public institutions.

Here are a few of the malefactors:

Larry Arnn
President, Hillsdale College

For decades, Michigan-based Hillsdale has served as an academic partner for the religious right. The college has had a close relationship to the Council for National Policy, the secretive Christian right umbrella organization that directs so much right-wing activism, through Arnn and his predecessor, George Roche III (who left in a cloud of scandal). Hillsdale’s major donors have constituted a who’s who of the radical right, including the Koch network and leading figures from the CNP. Arnn has expanded Hillsdale’s role as a platform for the CNP’s network of megadonors, fundamentalist activists, and media outlets, providing their policy prescriptions with a thin veneer of academic respectability. The college enrolls around 1,500 students, but its leaves an outsize footprint in political messaging. Its highly politicized publication Imprimis is sent to more than six million recipients. Hillsdale operates the Kirby Center in Washington, D.C., where it has groomed young conservatives at the Capitol Hill Staff Training School, run by the Leadership Institute (see Morton Blackwell, below). Hillsdale is also playing a role in the current disruption of public education, which has been used for political leverage in Virginia and beyond. In 2020, Donald Trump appointed Arnn chair of the 1776 Commission, to promote a “patriotic” rebuttal to the 1619 Project’s racially inclusive approach to U.S. history. Hillsdale has led an ongoing campaign to politicize public schools, promoting anti–critical race theory campaigns and assisting in the launch of “affiliate” charter schools in 11 states.


Joe Seales
CEO, Right Side Broadcasting Network

RSBN serves as the equivalent of a Trump-specific C-SPAN that has carried nearly every Trump speech, rally, and town hall since July 2015, as well as full coverage of the pro-Trump Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). It also broadcasts a show called The Right View, with Trump daughter-in-law Lara Trump. On January 6, it livestreamed Trump’s speech inciting the march on the Capitol, and it gave live coverage to the Florida “Freedom Rally to Show Support for President Trump and January 6th Political Prisoners” a year later. In July 2021, RSBN was temporarily suspended by YouTube, but the network looked to its own app and the new pro-Trump platform Rumble to continue to carry Trump’s rallies. The radical right has been assiduously constructing a parallel media system in recent decades. RSBN, Rumble, and Trump’s new Truth Social platform complement other media initiatives, ranging from traditional fundamentalist broadcasters like American Family Radio to social sites like Gettr and Parler, in the ongoing construction of an alternate political reality for millions of followers. In March 2022, after the height of the Ottawa truckers’ protests, RSBN promoted a truckers’ convoy roundtable hosted by Representatives Matt Gaetz and Marjorie Taylor Greene, and it has offered ongoing amplification of Trump’s false election fraud claims. We can be sure that whatever Trump fabricates for future news cycles, RSBN will be repeating it.

There are eight more. How many do you know?