Conservative Wunderkind Jonathan Krohn Not So Much A Conservative Anymore
One of the highlights of CPAC 2009 was an appearance by Jonathan Krohn, a 13 year old kid who seemed like a miniature version of George Will, four years later he’s had a change of heart:
Jonathan Krohn took the political world by storm at 2009′s Conservative Political Action Conferencewhen, at just 13 years old, he delivered an impromptu rallying cry for conservatism that became a viral hit and had some pegging him as a future star of the Republican Party.
Now 17, Krohn — who went on to write a book, “Defining Conservatism,” that was blurbed by the likes of Newt Gingrich and Bill Bennett — still watches that speech from time to time, but it mostly makes him cringe because, well, he’s not a conservative anymore.
“I think it was naive,” Krohn now says of the speech. “It’s a 13-year-old kid saying stuff that he had heard for a long time…. I live in Georgia. We’re inundated with conservative talk in Georgia…. The speech was something that a 13-year-old does. You haven’t formed all your opinions. You’re really defeating yourself if you think you have all of your ideas in your head when you were 12 or 13. It’s impossible. You haven’t done enough.”
Krohn won’t go so far as to say he’s liberal, in part because his move away from conservatism was a move away from ideological boxes in general.
“I want to be Jonathan Krohn,” he said, “and I’m tired of being an ideology, and it’s not fun and it gets boring and it’s not who we are as individuals.”
But a quick rundown of his current political stances suggests a serious pendulum swing away from the right.
Gay marriage? In favor. Obamacare? “It’s a good idea.” Who would he vote for (if he could) in November? “Probably Barack Obama.” His favorite TV shows? “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report.” His favorite magazine? The New Yorker. And, perhaps telling of all, Krohn is enrolling this fall at a college not exactly known for its conservatism: New York University.
“One of the first things that changed was that I stopped being a social conservative,” said Krohn. “It just didn’t seem right to me anymore. From there, it branched into other issues, everything from health care to economic issues…. I think I’ve changed a lot, and it’s not because I’ve become a liberal from being a conservative — it’s just that I thought about it more. The issues are so complex, you can’t just go with some ideological mantra for each substantive issue.”
In addition to the book, Krohn also appeared more than a few times on Fox News Channel. I assume he won’t be invited back.