Mitt Romney’s staffer is right: whatever their family origins, Britons and Americans are joint heirs to Anglo-Saxon liberties

From Daniel Hannan:

Americans take justified pride in their successful assimilation of newcomers. Millions have been drawn to their country, from every continent and archipelago, determined to become American.

What do we mean by becoming American? When we break it down, there are three irreducible elements. First, accepting the values encoded in the US Constitution: free speech, the division of powers, religious toleration and so on. Second, understanding the unwritten codes bound up with those values: civic engagement, open competition, private contract. Third, speaking English.

And where do these characteristics have their roots? In Anglo-Saxon civilisation. When a Romney aide told this newspaper that the US and Britain shared an ‘Anglo-Saxon heritage’, he or she was stating the obvious.

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