#Teneo members represent different facets of the conservative movement writ large.
Some Teneo members were “very strong Trump defenders,” #Baehr said in the 2019 town hall video, while others have opposed Trump vehemently. Baehr said there were clear divisions within the group’s members about immigration and trade policy.
“Hopefully other ones, maybe Green New Deal, I hope that’s more like 99 to 1” in opposition, he said.
In the town hall video Baehr assured new members that Teneo “is private and #confidential.” He said the group will never reveal the names of its members without their permission, though they are free to disclose their membership if they want to. Members must be in their 40s or younger to join.
A Leo acolyte and member of Teneo’s Midwest membership committee, Will #Scharf, is now running for Missouri attorney general. Campaign finance records show that dozens of Teneo members made substantial early contributions to Scharf’s campaign, including Leo, Baehr and other members of Teneo’s leadership, who last year each gave the maximum allowable donation of $2,650.
In an email, Scharf said many of his “dearest friends are members of Teneo, and it has been a privilege to be involved with such an extraordinarily talented and committed group of young conservatives.”
A recent #Teneo fundraising email laid out how the group can bring its members' influence together in service of a cause.
To “confront” what he dubbed “woke capitalism,” Jonathan #Bunch, a longtime Leo deputy and now Teneo board member, wrote that the group had brought together a coalition of Teneans “working with (or serving as) state #attorneys #general, state #financial #officers, state #legislators, #journalists, media #executives and best-in-class public affairs #professionals” to launch investigations, hold hearings, pull state investment funds and publish op-eds and news stories in response to so-called environmental, social and governance, or ESG, policies at the corporate level.
“Our members were in the rooms where it happened,” Bunch wrote.
Another project underway, #Baehr explained in a 2020 presentation, was a “#surreptitious and #exciting” effort to map key institutions in major cities — private #schools, #countryclubs, #newspapers, #Rotary and so on — and find ways to get Teneo members inside those institutions and help members connect with each other.
The initiative has begun by mapping Atlanta and several cities in Texas
Enter #Leonard #Leo.
In the early years of the Trump administration, he and the #Federalist #Society had remarkable influence within the new government. The Federalist Society had brought the legal doctrines of #originalism and #textualism — close readings of laws and the Constitution to adhere to the intent and words of the authors — into the mainstream.
Leo had taken a leave of absence from the group to advise President Trump on judicial appointments, helping shepherd the appointments of Neil #Gorsuch, Brett #Kavanaugh, and Amy Coney #Barrett to the Supreme Court and helping to fill more than 200 other positions in federal district and appellate courts.
By the time Trump left office, he had put on the bench 28% of all federal judges in America.
Leo’s “secret sauce,” he said, was to identify an “inner core” group of people within the Federalist Society’s 60,000 members.
A rare bright spot on their side, Baehr and Thiel agreed, was the #FederalistSociety. Thiel had, in fact, served as president of the Stanford Federalist Society.
In 2008, Baehr, Hawley and others launched #Teneo — Latin for “I grasp" or “I endure.”
Hawley, then an associate lawyer in private practice, authored Teneo’s founding principles, according to the new member talk hosted by Baehr, and served on the group’s board.
Its core beliefs align with the broader conservative establishment’s: #limited government, #individual liberty, #free enterprise, #strong national defense and #civil society and belief in a “#transcendent order” that is “founded in #tradition, #philosophy, or #theology.”