Moral foundations theory (MFT), while inspiring much empirical work, has been the target of both methodological and theoretical criticism. One important criticism of MFT is that, in its attempt to explain variability in political ideology, it only repackages the core motives (resistance to change and opposition to equality) and does not actually provide additional explanatory potential. Indeed, some previous studies show that moral foundations do not explain variability in ideology beyond other relevant variables, and that the relation between moral foundations and political orientation is mediated by other ideological variables. In the present research, we examined whether moral foundations can explain variability beyond the core motives in samples from Turkey and the United States. Contrary to some previous findings, we found that moral foundations explain unique variance in general, social, and economic conservatism. These findings suggest that the moral foundations proposed by MFT cannot be reduced to other variables that have been used in the literature to measure ideological proclivities.