Politics

Heritage picks up former Cheney aide

David Addington, a former aide to former Vice President Dick Cheney, is taking over a top job at the conservative Heritage Foundation in Washington D.C., the think tank is announcing today.

Addington will become vice president for domestic and economic policy studies, replacing Stuart Butler, who is leaving the position to develop Heritage’s new Center for Policy Innovation.

Once described by U.S. News and World Report as the “most powerful man you’ve never heard of,” Addington served as legal counsel to Cheney from the beginning of the administration until 2005, when he became chief of staff to the vice president.

“Mr. Addington is a brilliant policy expert with over twenty years of senior experience at all levels and branches of governance,” said Ed Feulner, president of Heritage. “As a trusted advisor to two White Houses, the Defense Department and four congressional committees, Mr. Addington understands Washington and how policy ideas become law.”

Addington, through a spokesman, said, “Heritage advances sound conservative principles in American public life and that’s the team I want to join.”

Butler, who has led the organization’s domestic and economic research team since 1982, will also remain a member of Heritage’s senior management team and serve as a distinguished fellow, the think tank said.

“He has been a dear friend, loyal mentor and courageous leader for over 31 years here at Heritage and his continued drive to improve the way we generate big ideas is greatly appreciated,” Feulner said.

Butler’s new Center for Policy Innovation, he said, will essentially be a “think tank within a think tank,” whose immediate challenge will be to take on “how to break the paralysis on fixing the long-term fiscal crisis facing America.”