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Lloyd Doggett II's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

Office: U.S. House (TX) - District 35, Democratic
Project Vote Smart does not permit the use of its name or programs in any campaign activity, including advertising, debates, and speeches.
Lloyd Doggett II has refused to provide voters with positions on key issues covered by the 2016 Political Courage Test, despite repeated requests. Historically, candidates have failed to complete our test due to the advice they receive from their parties and advisors and out of fear of negative attack ads.

What is the Political Courage Test?

Issue Positions

In response to the increasing unwillingness of candidates to answer issue questions, Project Vote Smart has researched Presidential and Congressional candidates' public records to determine candidates' likely responses on certain key issues. These issue positions, from the year 2016, are provided below as a courtesy to voters.

Pro-choice Inferred Answer Abortion: Do you generally support pro-choice or pro-life legislation? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "As you look ahead to future decisions affecting the health of millions of women, including those relating to birth control access, we urge you to put science first." (
  • Rated 100% by NARAL Pro-Choice America (
Yes Inferred Answer Budget: In order to balance the budget, do you support an income tax increase on any tax bracket? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "We have the 'dynamic' Bush tax cuts to look at and what their effect has been. And the Congressional Budget Office tells us that the effect has been they cost $1 trillion, $1 trillion toward the budget deficit that we have, and if we extend the Bush tax cuts for those at the very top, again, it will cost another trillion dollars." (
  • "Instead of eliminating $3 billion from our crumbling roads and bridges, why not ask those giant corporations that currently get a $3 billion annual deduction when they borrow money to build a factory overseas without recognizing any of the income from that factory, to begin to pay their fair share. And instead of accepting this Republican nonsense that we have to have more tax breaks for the very wealthy in our country, why not use the same money to ensure a little dignity for our seniors in nursing homes across the country?" (
Unknown Position Unknown Answer Crime: Do you support mandatory minimum sentences for non-violent drug offenders? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Despite exhaustive research, Project Vote Smart was unable to find information about this candidate's position.
Yes Inferred Answer Economy: Do you support federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "The suggestion is that well, some of these folks need to have more skin in the game. I can tell you that Donald, and Jenny, and Mary--they've got skin in this game. Their lives are at stake in this game. The Meals on Wheels program says they will be devastated if these cuts are made." (
  • "A strong budget would invest in infrastructure, in roads and rails and bridges and harbors, like the Chinese are doing to move goods and move people and be competitive." (
Yes Inferred Answer Economy: Do you support lowering taxes as a means of promoting economic growth? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "We are going to give you a simple Tax Code that is easy to comply with. In addition to that, we are going to lower your rate; and you know what, we are going to do all that, and we are not going to add a penny to the national debt, and we will keep the rates relatively the same for everybody." (
  • "Now is not the time to let the Republicans raise taxes on thousands of Texas families in order to provide more tax breaks for a privileged few." (
Yes Inferred Answer Education: Do you generally support requiring states to adopt federal education standards? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "This struggle is about seeing that the State does not deny aid to education to local schools solely because they have received additional federal aid. The bottom line is this: Federal aid to education should actually aid education in our local Texas schools." (
  • "Our sole objective has remained to ensure that federal aid to education actually aids local Texas schools with additional help rather than being diverted by the State as occurred in 2009 with $3.25 billion of federal aid. The governor and the legislature still have the power to do right by our Texas children." (
  • "Doggett's proposal, adopted by the all-Democratic Congress last summer, requires Texas -- and only Texas -- to guarantee that it will maintain state funding for education throughout 2013. Democrats support the amendment because it requires the state to use the federal money to supplement, rather than supplant, its existing public education funding." (
No Inferred Answer Energy: Do you support building the Keystone XL pipeline? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Voted against H.R. 3 "Northern Route Approval Act" (
  • Rated 100% by Environment America (
Yes Inferred Answer Energy: Do you support government funding for the development of renewable energy (e.g. solar, wind, thermal)? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Signed a letter stating "We are writing on behalf of the 80,000 Americans employed by the U.S. wind industry – representing jobs in all fifty states – to ask that you promptly extend the current law Production Tax Credit (PTC) and the Investment Tax Credit (ITC)." (
  • "Encouraging the expansion of renewable energy is vital for protecting our planet and our national security. With my support, Congress has expanded tax incentives for renewable power and provided resources to help finance renewable energy facilities." (
Yes Inferred Answer Environment: Do you support the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Signed a letter stating "We applaud and support your Climate Action Plan, the joint announcement with China establishing ambitious carbon pollution reduction targets, and the national commitment to the Green Climate Fund. These actions are critical to protect Americans from the most dangerous effects of climate change." (
  • "Proper action now on climate change will spur both job growth and energy independence. I have introduced the Safe Markets Development Act, an innovative piece of climate legislation that will ensure emission reduction goals while containing costs." (
  • "I will continue my efforts to ensure that the Environmental Protection Agency is allowed to do its job to protect public health by updating and improving Clean Air Act standards." (
Yes Inferred Answer Guns: Do you generally support gun-control legislation? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Signed a letter stating "Our nation has suffered at least 74 school shootings since the Sandy Hook massacre. The factors allowing these rampages are no mystery: loopholes in the background check laws, straw purchases, restrictions on law enforcement, and gaps in our mental health system." (
  • Rated 100% by the Brady Campaign to End Gun Violence (
No Inferred Answer Health Care: Do you support repealing the 2010 Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare")? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "With the goal that every family have access to a family doctor, my work remains to improve on the foundation we have built. The Affordable Care Act helps ensure Big Insurance companies treat families fairly." (
  • "So I don't view this aspect of the Affordable Care Act as necessarily the best way to do it or the only way to do it. But when all they offer us is nothing except vouchering Medicare for our seniors and similar, I think we should stick with the reform that we have until a better alternative is presented, and that alternative is not being presented tonight." (
  • "Mr. Speaker, I rise today in opposition to the Patients' Rights Repeal Act. Like a broken record repeating the same old, scratchy, sad verse, these Republicans cannot stop repeating their record of indifference to the health care crisis." (
No Inferred Answer Immigration: Do you support requiring immigrants who are unlawfully present to return to their country of origin before they are eligible for citizenship? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Signed a letter stating "We hope that your actions will prevent the separation of undocumented family members of U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, and DACA beneficiaries and offer protection to others who have long worked in the United States and have established strong ties with our communities." (
  • "Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of young DREAMers: young people brought as children without proper documentation to this country; young people willing to work hard to share in the American Dream; young people who have so much to offer America." (
Yes Inferred Answer Marriage: Do you support same-sex marriage? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "We urge the Court to make the Constitution’s promise of equality a reality for gay and lesbian couples throughout the nation and reverse the judgments below." (
  • Rated 100% by the Human Rights Campaign (
No Inferred Answer National Security: Do you support increased American intervention in Iraq and Syria beyond air support? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "What we learned is that torture does not work. It failed, and our country is really left less safe when our values are debased and when our unassailable position on justice and human rights is brought into question." (
  • "U.S. Rep. Lloyd Doggett, an Austin Democrat with an independent streak, said Wednesday he's leaning against supporting a proposed congressional resolution backing U.S. military intervention in Syria." (
No Inferred Answer Social Security: Do you support allowing individuals to divert a portion of their Social Security taxes into personal retirement accounts? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Rep. Doggett has long opposed efforts to privatize Social Security […]." (
  • Rated 98% by Alliance for Retired Americans (


Candidate Answer

Official Position: Candidate had the Political Courage to address this issue directly.

Inferred Answer

Inferred Position: Candidate refused to address this issue directly, but Project Vote Smart inferred this issue position based on the candidate's public statements, voting record, and evaluations from special interest groups.

Unknown Answer

Unknown Position: Candidate refused to address this issue.

Project Vote Smart's Research: Click on this icon to reveal more information about this candidate's position.

Other or Expanded Principles & Legislative Priorities are entered exactly as the candidate has submitted it. Project Vote Smart does not edit for misspelled words, punctuation or grammar.

Congressional Election 2002 National Political Awareness Test

This candidate has responded to a Political Courage Test in a previous election. As a continued effort to provide the American public with factual information on candidates running for public office, these archived responses are made available here.

The Political Courage Test asks candidates which items they will support if elected. It does not ask them to indicate which items they will oppose. Through extensive research of public polling data, we discovered that voters are more concerned with what candidates would support when elected to office, not what they oppose. If a candidate does not select a response to any part or all of any question, it does not necessarily indicate that the candidate is opposed to that particular item.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning abortion.
a) Abortions should always be illegal.
b) Abortions should always be legally available.
c) Abortions should be legal only within the first trimester of pregnancy.
Xd) Abortions should be legal when the pregnancy resulted from incest or rape.
Xe) Abortions should be legal when the life of the woman is endangered.
f) Eliminate public funding for abortions and public funding of organizations that advocate or perform abortions.
Xg) Other or expanded principles


Budgetary Priorities
Using the key below, indicate what levels of federal funding you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category.
Slightly Decrease Fundinga) Agricultural
Maintain Funding Statusb) Arts
c) Defense
Slightly Increase Fundingd) Education
Slightly Increase Fundinge) Environmental
f) International Aid
Slightly Increase Fundingg) Law Enforcement
Slightly Increase Fundingh) Medical Research
Maintain Funding Statusi) National Aeronautical Space Administration (NASA)
Maintain Funding Statusj) National Parks
Slightly Increase Fundingk) Public Health Services
Slightly Increase Fundingl) Scientific Research
Slightly Increase Fundingm) Terrorism Prevention
Slightly Increase Fundingn) Transportation and Highway Infrastructure
o) Welfare
Eliminate Fundingp) Other or expanded categories


Defense Spending
Using the key below, indicate what levels of federal funding you support for the following categories. Select one number per category.
a) Armed Forces personnel training
b) Covert intelligence operations
c) Military hardware
d) Pay for active duty personnel
Greatly Decrease Fundinge) National Missile Defense Program
f) Programs to improve military retention rates
g) Research and development of new weapons
h) Troop and equipment readiness
i) Other or expanded categories
Using the key below, indicate what levels you support concerning taxes, deductions, and tax credits in the following categories. Select one number per tax.
Income Taxes - Family Income
a) Less than $25,000
b) $25,000 - $75,000
c) $75,000 - $150,000
d) Over $150,000
e) Other or expanded categories
Income Taxes - Retiree Income
f) Over $40, 000
g) Other or expanded categories
Other Taxes
a) Alcohol taxes
b) Capital gains taxes
c) Cigarette taxes
d) Corporate taxes
e) Gasoline taxes
f) Inheritance taxes
g) Other or expanded categories
Maintain Statusa) Charitable deductions
Maintain Statusb) Medical expense deductions
Maintain Statusc) Mortgage deductions
d) Child tax credit
Slightly Increasee) Earned income tax credit
f) Student loan tax credit
Eliminateg) Other or expanded categories

Corporate tax shelters

Yes2) Should a married couple filing jointly pay the same taxes as if they were an unmarried couple filing separately?
3) Would you use Social Security surpluses to balance the budget?
4) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding campaign finance and governmental reform issues.
a) Support public taxpayer funding for congressional candidates who comply with campaign spending limits.
b) Increase the amount individuals are permitted to contribute to federal campaigns.
c) Prohibit Political Action Committee (PAC) contributions to candidates for federal office.
d) Provide free or low-cost television advertising to candidates who agree to voluntary campaign spending limits.
Xe) Ban unregulated soft money campaign contributions to political parties or committees.
f) Prohibit non-U.S. citizens from making soft money contributions to national parties or party committees.
Xg) Require full disclosure of funding sources of issue advocacy commercials which appear within 60 days of an election.
h) Remove all contribution limits to federal candidates and parties.
i) Require congressional candidates to raise over half of their campaign money from their home state.
j) Require that unions give members the option of not having membership dues used for political purposes.
Yesk) Support the federal government mandate that creates national voting system standards.
Nol) Do you support amending the Constitution to limit the number of terms that members of Congress can serve?
m) Do you support voting on-line?
n) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) to address crime.
a) Eliminate the use of the death penalty for federal crimes.
b) Increase spending to build more federal prisons.
Xc) Impose "truth in sentencing" for violent criminals so they serve full sentences with no chance of parole.
Xd) Support programs to provide prison inmates with vocational and job-related skills and job-placement assistance when released.
Xe) Support programs to provide prison inmates with drug and alcohol addiction treatment.
Xf) Increase funding for community policing programs.
g) Implement penalties other than incarceration for certain non-violent offenders.
Xh) Require that crimes based on gender, sexual orientation, and disability be prosecuted as federal hate crimes.
Xi) Enforcement of civil rights should primarily be the responsibility of the federal government.
j) Minors accused of a violent crime should be prosecuted as adults.
Xk) Support programs that provide job training and placement services for at-risk youth.
Xl) Other or expanded principles


Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning illegal drugs.
a) Increase penalties for selling illegal drugs.
Xb) Support mandatory jail sentences for selling illegal drugs.
Xc) Expand federally sponsored drug education and drug treatment programs.
d) Decriminalize the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes.
Xe) Increase border security to stop the flow of illegal drugs into the U.S.
f) Eliminate federal funding for programs associated with the "war on drugs."
g) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning education.
Xa) Support national standards and testing of public school students.
b) Allow parents to use vouchers (equal opportunity scholarships) to send their children to any publicly-funded school.
c) Allow parents to use vouchers (equal opportunity scholarships) to send their children to any participating school: public, private or religious.
Xd) Support charter schools where teachers and professionals receive authorization and funding to establish new schools.
Xe) Increase funding for block grants to states to help them hire additional teachers.
f) Support teacher testing and reward teachers with merit pay.
g) Increase funding for computers and computer training in public schools.
h) Increase funding for school capital improvements (e.g. buildings and infrastructure).
i) Eliminate restrictions on federal education funding, giving educators or local school districts more flexibility to design and implement their programs.
Xj) Increase funding of programs such as Pell grants and Stafford loans to help students pay for college.
Xk) Support federal tax incentives to help families save for college.
Xl) Other or expanded principles


Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding employment and affirmative action.
a) Increase funding for national job-training programs that re-train displaced workers or teach skills needed in today's job market.
b) Reduce government regulation of the private sector in order to encourage investment and economic expansion.
Xc) Establish empowerment zones in areas with large numbers of unemployed people.
Xd) Provide tax credits for businesses that provide child care for their employees.
e) Encourage employers to offer flex-time scheduling, comp-time, and unpaid leave for family emergencies.
f) Eliminate any federal programs designed to reduce unemployment.
Xg) Increase the federal minimum wage.
h) Considering race and gender in government contracting decisions is appropriate for the federal government.
Xi) Include sexual orientation in federal anti-discrimination laws.
Xj) Continue federal affirmative action programs.
k) Discontinue federal affirmative action programs.
l) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding America's environment and natural resources.
Xa) Strengthen the regulation and enforcement of the Clean Water Act.
Xb) Strengthen the regulation and enforcement of the Clean Air Act.
c) Support opening a select portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil exploration.
d) Support the U.S. re-entering the current Kyoto treaty process to limit global warming.
e) Require states to fully compensate citizens when environmental regulations limit uses of privately owned land.
Xf) Promote increased use of alternative fuel technology.
Xg) Strengthen emission controls on all gasoline or diesel-powered engines, including cars, trucks, and sport utility vehicles.
h) Provide tax credits for state and local bonds to preserve open spaces, build parks, improve water quality and redevelop brownfields.
Xi) Support the National Forest Protection and Restoration Act prohibiting commercial logging in our national forests.
j) Provide states and local communities with more flexibility to address their respective environmental problems.
k) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning gun issues.
a) Ban the sale or transfer of semi-automatic guns, except those used for hunting.
Xb) Maintain and strengthen the enforcement of existing federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
c) Ease federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
d) Repeal federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
e) Allow citizens to carry concealed guns.
Xf) Require manufacturers to provide child-safety locks on guns.
Xg) Require background checks on gun sales between private citizens at gun shows.
h) Require a license for gun possession.
i) Raise the minimum age for ownership of handguns from 18 to 21.
j) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding health issues.
a) Providing health care is not a responsibility of the federal government.
b) Implement a universal health care program to guarantee coverage to all Americans regardless of income.
Xc) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights to define and enforce the rights of insured patients, including greater access to specialists and emergency rooms, wider choice of health care providers, and appeal mechanisms when claims are denied.
Xd) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights which includes the right to sue when claims are denied.
Xe) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights which includes the right to appeal to an administrative board of specialists when services are denied.
Xf) Support legislation to provide prescription drug coverage under Medicare.
Xg) Increase research funding of the human genome to find cures for diseases such as cancer, AIDS/HIV, Alzheimer's, and heart disease.
Xh) Increase federal funding for training health workers to recognize and respond to the release of biological agents.
i) Prohibit the procedure of cloning human embryos.
j) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding immigration.
a) Decrease the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country.
b) Provide extra federal aid to states with higher numbers of immigrants for necessary medical and social services.
c) Prohibit states from passing laws that deny human services (medical care, education) to illegal immigrants or their children.
d) Increase the immigration quota for computer scientists and other information technology workers.
e) Establish English as the official U.S. language.
f) Collect fingerprint data from all U.S. visa applicants which would be accessible to all federal immigration-related agencies.
g) Allow legalization for certain illegal immigrants working in the U.S.
h) Other or expanded principles
International Aid
Indicate which principles (if any) you support regarding U. S. economic assistance.
Xa) Aid should be granted to countries when extraordinary circumstances cause disaster and threaten civilian lives.
Xb) Aid should be granted to countries when it is in the security interests of the U. S.
c) Aid should be granted to countries that are close allies of the U. S. and in need of financial/military assistance.
d) Aid should be eliminated for any nation with documented human rights abuses.
e) Aid programs should be scaled back and eventually eliminated except for extraordinary circumstances.
f) Other or expanded principles
International Policy
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the Middle East.
a) The U.S. should take military action against Iraq only as part of an international effort.
b) The U.S. should end the economic embargo against Iraq.
c) The U.S. should not continue to play a prominent leadership role in the peace process between Israel and the Palestine Authority.
d) The U.S. should support the formation of a Palestinian state.
e) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the United States-United Nations relationship.
a) The U.S. should participate in United Nations peacekeeping missions only when vital U.S. interests are involved.
b) The U.S. should not commit military troops to United Nations peacekeeping missions.
c) The U.S. should withdraw completely from the United Nations.
d) Other or expanded principles
Yes3) Should the U.S. have full diplomatic relations with Cuba?
No4) Should the U.S. recognize and extend full diplomatic relations to Taiwan?
No5) Should the U.S. increase its financial support to Colombia for the "war on drugs?"
Yes6) Do you support the cooperative threat reduction programs with Russia to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons? ___ Yes ___ No ___ Undecided
No7) Do you support the recent withdrawal of the U.S. from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) treaty in order to deploy a national missile defense system?
Yes8) Should the U.S. hold nations accountable for terrorists who operate from their country?
9) Other or expanded principles
International Trade
1) Do you support the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)?
Yes2) Do you support the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT)?
Yes3) Do you support continued U.S. membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO)?
Yes4) Do you support China becoming a member of the World Trade Organization?
Yes5) Should a nation's human rights record affect its normal trade relations (most favored nation) trading status with the United States? ___ Yes ___ No ___ Undecided
6) Should the President have "fast-track" authority to negotiate trade agreements?
No7) Do you support the trade embargo against Cuba?
8) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding national security.
No1. Do you support the President using military tribunals to try terrorist suspects when the President deems ordinary civil courts to be inappropriate or impractical?
Yes2. Should the U.S. adopt higher qualification rules for student visa applications from nations known to sponsor terrorism?
3. Should law enforcement agencies be granted greater discretion to read mail and email, tap phones, and conduct random searches to prevent future terrorist attacks?
4. Should federal law enforcement agencies share intelligence data with local law enforcement agencies?
Yes5. Should the federal government provide states with funding for homeland security?
6. Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding Social Security.
a) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts which they manage themselves.
b) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts managed by private firms contracted by the government.
c) The federal government should invest a portion of Social Security's assets collectively in stocks and bonds instead of U.S. Treasury securities.
d) Increase the payroll tax to better finance Social Security in its current form.
e) Lower Social Security's annual cost-of-living increases.
Xf) Support a "lock box" measure, limiting Congress's ability to spend Social Security and Medicare surpluses on any other federal programs except Social Security and Medicare, until each program's long-term solvency is guaranteed.
g) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding technology.
a) Continue the moratorium on Internet sales taxes.
b) Implement regulation of Internet content by the federal government.
c) Regulation of the Internet should not be controlled by the federal government.
d) Support government mandates to curtail violent and sexual content on television.
Xe) Other or expanded principles


Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding poverty and the welfare system.
Xa) Support housing assistance for welfare recipients.
b) Provide homeless families with apartment vouchers they can use to defray the cost of an apartment.
Xc) Continue to give states and local governments responsibility for welfare programs through TANF block grants.
Xd) Maintain current welfare-to-work requirements in order for states to qualify for block grants.
Xe) Restore food stamp programs to legal immigrants.
f) Transfer homeless housing programs to states through block grants.
Xg) Provide continued Medicaid benefits for those welfare recipients who have moved from welfare to work.
h) Require states to return any unused welfare block grant funding to the federal government.
i) Direct federal poverty aid through religious, community-based, or other non-profit organizations.
j) Provide states with additional funding for Medicaid programs to alleviate increasing state budget deficits.
Xk) Other or expanded principles

increase availability of quality child care

In a total of seventy-five (75) words or less, please explain what your top two or three priorities will be if elected. Please explain how you would obtain any additional funding needed to implement these priorities.

1) Fiscal Responsibility: Avoid further federal debt and ensure Social Security's solvency for our children. 2) Continue working to improve the quality of life for Central Texas families; local transportation improvements; a Patients' Bill of Rights and affordable prescription medications; safe, quality child care and public education; clean air and water; real reductions in crime and domestic violence. 3) Close unfair tax loopholes and hold corporations accountable when they do not play by the rules.

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