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John Shimkus' Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

Office: U.S. House (IL) - District 15, Republican
On The Ballot: Running, Republican for U.S. House - District 15
Project Vote Smart does not permit the use of its name or programs in any campaign activity, including advertising, debates, and speeches.
John Shimkus has refused to provide voters with positions on key issues covered by the 2016 Political Courage Test, despite repeated requests. John Shimkus is still welcome to submit the test at any time.

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

Vote Smart's Research

  • Rated 100% by National Right to Life Committee http://votesmart.org/interest-group/252/rating/7227 (votesmart.org)
  • "John is an outspoken defender of the right to life, opposing abortion except in the rare case the mother's life is in danger." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/883924/issue-position-abortion#.VlMxBWwViko (votesmart.org)
  • Do you consider yourself pro-choice or pro-life? "Pro-life" http://votesmart.org/candidate/political-courage-test/246/john-shimkus/#.VYMBx3UViko (votesmart.org)
No 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

  • "Yet many people want Washington to control even more of our lives by raising income taxes and instituting other new taxes, like a carbon tax that will increase costs of electricity and every manufactured good," Shimkus noted. "They want Washington to control more of your healthcare decisions and take away some options for retirement funding." https://shimkus.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/tax-day-is-april-15-but-tax-freedom-day-is-april-13 (shimkus.house.gov)
  • Signed pledge stating "I pledge to the taxpayers of the state of Illinois and to the American people that I will: ONE, oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rate for individuals and business; and TWO, oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates." http://s3.amazonaws.com/atrfiles/files/files/120111-federalpledgesigners.pdf (s3.amazonaws.com)
Yes Inferred Answer Crime: Do you support mandatory minimum sentences for non-violent drug offenders? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Do you support reduced prison sentences for non-violent offenders? "No" http://votesmart.org/candidate/political-courage-test/246/john-shimkus/#.VYMBx3UViko (votesmart.org)
  • Do you support mandatory prison sentences for selling illegal drugs? "Yes" http://votesmart.org/candidate/political-courage-test/246/john-shimkus/#.VYMBx3UViko (votesmart.org)
No Inferred Answer Economy: Do you support federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "I firmly believe in less government, lower taxes, and more personal freedom. Those ground me. Our opponents in Washington want to make us all dependent on them for our every need." https://shimkus.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/tax-day-is-april-15-but-tax-freedom-day-is-april-13 (shimkus.house.gov)
  • Do you support using government funds in an effort to stimulate and improve the economy? "No" http://votesmart.org/candidate/political-courage-test/246/john-shimkus/#.VZLFeHUVhHw (votesmart.org)
Yes Inferred Answer Economy: Do you support lowering taxes as a means of promoting economic growth? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "The reality is spending will never be reined in if Washington is allowed to raise taxes to feed its habit. That's why John supports extending the current tax rates for all Americans. We have to keep taxes low so our economy can grow." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/736462/issue-position-budget-spending-and-tax-issues#.VZLK7HUVhHw (votesmart.org)
  • "I firmly believe in less government, lower taxes, and more personal freedom. Those ground me. Our opponents in Washington want to make us all dependent on them for our every need." https://shimkus.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/tax-day-is-april-15-but-tax-freedom-day-is-april-13 (shimkus.house.gov)
No Inferred Answer Education: Do you support requiring states to implement education reforms in order to be eligible for competitive federal grants? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "This Administration has coerced states into Common Core by throwing money at them. The states, and particularly local school districts, should be determining the curriculum for students. Federal funds should not be awarded based on the implementation of Common Core or any other national education standard." https://shimkus.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/shimkus-supports-state-education-rights (shimkus.house.gov)
  • Do you support federal education standards and testing requirements for K-12 students? "Yes" http://votesmart.org/candidate/political-courage-test/246/john-shimkus/#.VYMBx3UViko (votesmart.org)
Yes Inferred Answer Energy: Do you support building the Keystone XL pipeline? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "We continue to import oil from countries that are not our closest friends. Further blocking of this pipeline development will only increase foreign oil imports from far off places that are not our neighbor." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/650342/energy-and-commerce-members-urge-president-to-approve-keystone-pipeline-for-the-sake-of-jobs-and-energy-security/?search=Stimulus#.VlSGkWwViko (votesmart.org)
  • Voted in favor of S.1 "A Bill to Approve the Keystone XL Pipeline" http://votesmart.org/bill/votes/50944#.VXtfrHUViko (votesmart.org)
  • "Let's finish the Keystone XL pipeline from our North American neighbors--the Canadians--who are our friends and allies, who will not be an unstable regime, but would be a loyal ally, as they have been for years and years and years." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/884222/america-needs-national-energy-policy/?search=renewable#.VlSHy2wViko (votesmart.org)
  • "Congressman John Shimkus (R, Illinois-15) voted in the House Wednesday for legislation that would enable construction of the Keystone XL pipeline (HR 3), which would bring North American crude oil to the Midwest and Gulf Coast refineries. "The Administration is holding up this project that would create 20,000 direct jobs with its construction and thousands of additional spinoff jobs. This bill takes the President out of the decision making and allows the project to move forward." https://shimkus.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/shimkus-supports-keystone-xl-pipeline (shimkus.house.gov)
Yes Inferred Answer Energy: Do you support funding for the development of renewable energy (e.g. solar, wind, thermal)? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Instead of adding to your heating, cooling, and gasoline bills, I want our nation to increase production of American energy, such as clean-coal, nuclear, wind, solar, renewables, and off-shore oil and gas." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/433461/shimkus-cosponsors-all-of-the-above-energy-bill-says-no-to-energy-tax/?search=renewable#.VlSJuGwViko (votesmart.org)
  • "If we pass the Republican alternative we get jobs, offshore drilling, fuel from coal, wind and solar, renewable fuels." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/437831/vote-no-on-cap-and-trade-bill/?search=renewable#.VlSI62wViko (votesmart.org)
No Inferred Answer Environment: Do you support the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Yet, unilateral, job-killing proposals like this rule, or cap and trade, do nothing more than increase the cost of doing business in America and reduce our competitiveness in the global economy." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/815999/washington-examiner-president-obama-epa-want-to-kill-coal-and-raise-your-electric-bill/?search=cap%20and%20trade#.VZLP8nUVhHw (votesmart.org)
  • "Yet many people want Washington to control even more of our lives by raising income taxes and instituting other new taxes, like a carbon tax that will increase costs of electricity and every manufactured good." https://shimkus.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/tax-day-is-april-15-but-tax-freedom-day-is-april-13 (shimkus.house.gov)
  • "I think you mentioned that failed stimulus bill--I would call it a porkulus bill. The $787 billion really turned out to be $800 billion, and then you've got the tax on carbon, the cap-and-tax. That's something we passed in the House, but the Senate, fortunately, hasn't confirmed it." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/508165/jobs-and-our-economy/?search=Stimulus#.VlSG_2wViko (votesmart.org)
No Inferred Answer Guns: Do you generally support gun-control legislation? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Rated 80% by Gun Owners of America http://votesmart.org/interest-group/1226/rating/8555 (votesmart.org)
  • "John supports Americans' Second Amendment right to bear arms." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/737554/issue-position-gun-rights-issues#.VlSLdmwViko (votesmart.org)
  • "As a pro-Second Amendment advocate in Congress, I was not surprised by the proposals from the President and Senator Feinstein. What I am concerned about is the President not working with Congress. Our letter expresses a desire for that over unilateral action from the Administration. There are many laws currently on the books that need to be fully enforced. We do not need more laws." https://shimkus.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/shimkus-signs-pro-2nd-amendment-letter (shimkus.house.gov)
Yes Inferred Answer Health Care: Do you support repealing the 2010 Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare")? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Congressman John Shimkus (R, Illinois-19) has again voted to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and additional health care related provisions in the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act. This is the second full repeal of Obamacare approved by the House. In addition, 30 other votes have attempted to partially repeal or defund the program." https://shimkus.house.gov/media-center/press-releases/shimkus-votes-to-repeal-obamacare (shimkus.house.gov)
  • "Congressman John Shimkus (R-Illinois-15) voted today to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/947453/shimkus-votes-to-repeal-obamacare/?search=Affordable%20Care%20Act#.VZLRbnUVhHw (votesmart.org)
Yes Inferred Answer Immigration: Do you support requiring illegal immigrants to return to their country of origin before they are eligible for citizenship? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "He does not support amnesty or access to taxpayer-funded social welfare programs for illegal immigrants." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/737557/issue-position-immigration-issues#.VZLSeXUVhHw (votesmart.org)
  • Do you support a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants? "No" http://votesmart.org/candidate/political-courage-test/246/john-shimkus/#.VYMBx3UViko (votesmart.org)
No Inferred Answer Marriage: Do you support same-sex marriage? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Should marriage only be between one man and one woman? "Yes" http://votesmart.org/candidate/political-courage-test/246/john-shimkus/#.VYMBx3UViko (votesmart.org)
  • "John does not support same-sex marriage and would support a constitutional amendment to preserve marriage as a union between a man and a woman." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/737559/issue-position-social-issues#.VZLTAHUVhHw (votesmart.org)
Yes Inferred Answer National Security: Do you support targeting suspected terrorists outside of official theaters of conflict? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Should the United States continue to strike suspected terrorist targets in Pakistan? "Yes" http://votesmart.org/candidate/political-courage-test/246/john-shimkus/#.VYMBx3UViko (votesmart.org)
  • "John believes America's extraordinary economic, cultural, and military influence around the world is fundamentally a good thing for all mankind." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/737558/issue-position-foreign-affairs#.VZLTmnUVhHw (votesmart.org)
Yes 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

  • "John is open to comprehensive reform that could include a combination of: raising the retirement age for those just starting their careers, raising or eliminating the cap on payroll taxes for higher wage earners, and creating incentives for personal retirement and health care savings." http://votesmart.org/public-statement/737560/issue-position-social-security-issues#.VZLUuHUVhHw (votesmart.org)
  • Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts that they manage themselves "Support" http://votesmart.org/candidate/political-courage-test/246/john-shimkus/#.VYMBx3UViko (votesmart.org)

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.

Illinois Congressional Election 2010 Political Courage 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.

Pro-lifeCandidate Answera) Do you consider yourself pro-choice or pro-life?
b) Should abortion be legal only within the first trimester of pregnancy?
c) Should abortion be legal when the pregnancy resulted from incest or rape?
Yesd) Should abortion be legal when the life of the woman is endangered?
Yese) Should federal subsidies be prohibited from being used for abortion procedures?
f) Other or expanded principles
1) Spending
Indicate what federal funding levels (#1-6) you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category- you can use a number more than once.
Maintain Statusa) Agriculture
Slightly Decreaseb) Arts
Maintain Statusc) Defense
Slightly Increase1) Intelligence operations
Maintain Status2) Military hardware
Maintain Status3) National missile defense
Slightly Increase4) Salary and benefits for active duty personnel
Slightly Increase5) Programs to improve troop retention rates
Maintain Status6) Research and development of new weapons
Maintain Statusd) Education
Maintain Statuse) Environment
Maintain Statusf) Homeland security
Slightly Decreaseg) International aid
Maintain Statush) Medical research
Maintain Statusi) Scientific research
Slightly Decreasej) Space exploration
Slightly Decreasek) United Nations
Slightly Decreasel) Welfare
m) Other or expanded categories
2) 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.
Maintain Statusa) Alcohol taxes
Maintain Statusb) Capital gains taxes
Maintain Statusc) Cigarette taxes
Maintain Statusd) Corporate taxes
Maintain Statuse) Gasoline taxes
Slightly Decreasef) Income taxes (low-income families)
Slightly Decreaseg) Income taxes (middle-income families)
Maintain Statush) Income taxes (high-income families)
i) Other or expanded categories
YesCandidate Answer3) Do you support the elimination of the federal estate tax?
Yes4) Do you support requiring the federal budget to be balanced each year?
NoCandidate Answer5) Do you support using government funds in an effort to stimulate and improve the economy?
6) Other or expanded principles
YesInferred Answer a) Do you support privatizing elements of Social Security? View Citations
  • John Shimkus. 2008. Project Vote Smart: Illinois Congressional Political Courage Test. Checked SUPPORT for: "a) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts that they manage themselves."
  • Alliance for Retired Americans. 2007. 17 July 2009. "Representative Shimkus supported the interests of the Alliance for Retired Americans 0 percent in 2007." (votesmart.org)
Yesb) Do you support reducing government regulations on the private sector?
Yesc) Do you support increasing the federal minimum wage?
Yesd) Do you support the ability of workers to unionize?
Yese) Do you support federal funding for job-training programs that retrain displaced workers?
f) Other or expanded principles
Yesa) Do you support increasing the amount individuals are permitted to contribute to federal campaigns?
Nob) Should Congress regulate indirect campaign contributions from corporations and unions?
Noc) Do you support removing all contribution limits on federal campaigns?
Nod) Should candidates for federal office be encouraged to meet voluntary spending limits?
Yese) Do you support giving the President the power of the line item veto for items concerning appropriations?
Yesf) Do you support limiting the President's ability to define how legislation is applied through the use of signing statements?
g) Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate Answera) Do you support capital punishment for certain crimes?
Yesb) Do you support programs that provide prison inmates with vocational and job-related training and job-placement assistance when released?
Yesc) Do you support programs that provide prison inmates with substance abuse treatment?
Nod) Do you support reduced prison sentences for non-violent offenders?
Yese) Do you support mandatory prison sentences for selling illegal drugs?
f) Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate Answera) Do you support federal education standards and testing requirements for K-12 students?
b) Do you support federal funding for universal pre-K programs?
c) Do you support federal funding for charter schools?
d) Do you support federal funding for K-12 school vouchers?
Yese) Do you support the federal government providing college students with financial aid?
f) Other or expanded principles
NoCandidate Answera) Do you support enacting environmental regulations aimed at reducing the effects of climate change?
Nob) Do you support international emissions targets aimed at reducing the effects of climate change?
Noc) Do you support allowing energy producers to trade carbon credits under a "cap and trade" system?
Yesd) Do you support strengthening fuel efficiency standards on all gasoline and diesel-powered engines, including cars, trucks, and sport utility vehicles?
Yese) Do you support domestic oil exploration in federally-protected areas?
Yesf) Do you support federal funding for the development of alternative energy?
Yesg) Do you support the development of nuclear reactors?
h) Other or expanded principles
NoCandidate Answera) Do you support restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns?
Yesb) Do you believe that the Second Amendment guarantees the right of individual citizens to own guns?
Yesc) Do you support allowing individuals to carry concealed guns?
Nod) Do you support a ban on assault rifles?
e) Other or expanded principles
NoCandidate Answera) Do you support a publicly-administered health insurance option?
Yesb) Do you support expanding access to health care through commercial health insurance reform?
Yesc) Should the federal government expand eligibility for tax-free medical savings accounts?
Yesd) Do you support monetary limits on damages that can be collected in malpractice lawsuits?
Noe) Do you support relaxing regulations on the importation of prescription drugs?
f) Other or expanded principles
NoCandidate Answera) Do you support a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants?
Nob) Do you support decreasing the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country?
Yesc) Do you support establishing English as the official national language?
Yesd) Do you support the enforcement of federal immigration laws by state and local police?
e) Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate Answera) Do you support United States military action in Afghanistan?
Yesb) Do you support increasing military assistance for Afghanistan?
Yesc) Do you support increasing economic development assistance for Afghanistan?
Yesd) Should the United States continue to strike suspected terrorist targets in Pakistan?
Yese) Do you support granting aid to countries when it is in the security interests of the United States?
Yesf) Should the United States support the creation of a Palestinian state?
Yesg) Do you support increasing sanctions on Iran if it continues to defy United Nations mandates?
Noh) Do you support the withdrawal of United States troops from Iraq?
Yesi) Do you support the United States' involvement in free trade agreements?
j) Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate Answera) Should marriage only be between one man and one woman?
Nob) Do you support allowing openly-gay men and women to serve in the United States military?
Noc) Do you support federal funding for embryonic stem cell research?
Nod) Should the federal government end affirmative action programs?
e) Other or expanded principles
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.

The main priority must be getting our fiscal house in order. Both parties are culpable in bringing us to this brink and must work together to find common sense ways to cut the deficit and rein in uncontrolled spending. In addition, we must repeal and replace the most onerous parts of the health care law that will negatively impact our economy and our health care choices. Also, I will continue to provide top notch service to my constituents in need of assistance from their federal government--after all, I remember who I work for--and that's you.

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