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Brian Higgins' Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

Office: U.S. House (NY) - District 26, Democratic
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Brian Higgins has provided voters with clear stances on key issues by responding to the 2014 Political Courage Test.

What is the Political Courage Test?

New York Congressional Election 2014 Political Courage Test

Key

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.

Pro-choiceCandidate AnswerDo you generally support pro-choice or pro-life legislation?
Other or expanded principles
YesIn order to balance the budget, do you support reducing defense spending?
YesCandidate AnswerIn order to balance the budget, do you support an income tax increase on any tax bracket?
Other or expanded principles
YesDo you support the regulation of indirect campaign contributions from corporations and unions?
Other or expanded principles
YesDo you support capital punishment for certain crimes?
Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth?
YesDo you support lowering taxes as a way of promoting growth in the economy?
YesDo you support providing tax incentives to businesses for the purpose of job creation?
Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support requiring states to implement education reforms in order to be eligible for competitive federal grants?
Other or expanded principles

I support federal efforts to raise educational standards across the country because our global competitors are doing so and we need to keep pace. But these programs must allow for local decision making and recognize the important roles that both the family and the teacher play in
educational outcomes.

NoCandidate AnswerDo you support building the Keystone XL pipeline?
NoDo you support reducing restrictions on offshore energy production?
Other or expanded principles

I strongly support the construction of infrastructure generally. But serious questions have been raised about the environmental impacts of the Keystone project and I am withholding my support for it until they have been answered.

YesDo you believe that human activity is contributing to climate change?
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions?
Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns?
Other or expanded principles
NoCandidate AnswerDo you support repealing the 2010 Affordable Care Act?
Other or expanded principles
NoCandidate AnswerDo you support requiring illegal immigrants to return to their country of origin before they are eligible for citizenship?
Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support same-sex marriage?
Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support targeting suspected terrorists outside of official theaters of conflict?
YesShould the U.S use military force in order to prevent governments hostile to the United States from possessing a nuclear weapon?
Other or expanded principles
NoCandidate AnswerDo you support allowing individuals to divert a portion of their Social Security taxes into personal retirement accounts?
Other or expanded principles
Spending
Indicate what federal spending levels (#1-6) you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category; you can use a number more than once.
Slightly Decreasea) Agriculture
Maintain Statusb) Arts
Maintain Statusc) Defense
Greatly Increased) Education
Slightly Increasee) Environment
Maintain Statusf) Homeland Security
Maintain Statusg) International aid
Greatly Increaseh) Medical Research
Greatly Increasei) Scientific Research
Slightly Increasej) Space exploration
Maintain Statusk) United Nations
Maintain Statusl) Welfare
m) Other or expanded categories

I strongly support increased funding for infrastructure including roads, bridges, transit, rail, ports, airports, schools and the power grid.

Taxes
Indicate what federal tax levels (#1-6) you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category; you can use a number more than once.
Slightly Increasea) Capital gains taxes
Maintain Statusb) Corporate taxes
Maintain Statusc) Excise taxes (alcohol)
Maintain Statusd) Excise taxes (cigarettes)
Slightly Increasee) Excise taxes (transportation fuel)
Maintain Statusf) Income taxes (low-income families)
Maintain Statusg) Income taxes (middle-income families)
Slightly Increaseh) Income taxes (high-income families)
Maintain Statusi) Inheritance taxes
Maintain Statusj) Payroll taxes
k) Other or expanded categories
Please explain in a total of 100 words or less, your top two or three priorities if elected. If they require additional funding for implementation, please explain how you would obtain this funding.

Congress has inflicted harm on the American economy by under-investing in areas that produce sustained private sector economic growth. History tells us that reducing spending in key areas is harmful to a recovering economy. Spending on infrastructure puts people to work in the short term and makes businesses more efficient in the long term. Investments in education and scientific and medical research are crucial to our ability to compete in a global economy. Cutting the budget on the
backs of these priorities is short sighted and must be reversed.

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