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Bart Stupak's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

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What is the Political Courage Test?

Michigan Congressional Election 2008 Political Courage Test

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) regarding abortion.
a) Abortions should always be illegal.
b) Abortions should always be legal.
c) Abortions should be legal only within the first trimester.
d) 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) Dilation and extraction or "partial-birth" abortion procedures should be legal.
g) Medicare, Medicaid, and federal subsidies should be prohibited from being used on abortion procedures.
h) Other or expanded principles.
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.
1) Budget Priorities
Maintain Statusa) Agriculture
Slightly Increaseb) Arts
Slightly Decreasec) Defense
Greatly Increased) Education
Greatly Increasee) Environment
Maintain Statusf) FEMA
Greatly Decreaseg) Homeland security
Maintain Statush) International aid
Greatly Increasei) Law enforcement (Federal)
Slightly Increasej) Law enforcement (State)
Slightly Increasek) Medical research
Maintain Statusl) National parks
Greatly Increasem) Public health services
Slightly Increasen) Scientific research
Maintain Statuso) Space exploration programs
Greatly Increasep) Transportation and highway infrastructure
Maintain Statusq) United Nations
Slightly Increaser) Welfare
s) Other or expanded categories

Department of Homeland Security has its fingers in everything and should be reveiwed for effectiveness. I would move FEMA and the Coast Guard out of Homeland Security.

America must invest in our crumbling infrastructure and restore the 2/3 cut in the Federal Law Enforcement Bryne grants.

2) Defense Spending
Slightly Increasea) Armed forces personnel training
Maintain Statusb) Intelligence operations
Slightly Increasec) Military hardware
Maintain Statusd) Modernization of weaponry and equipment
Greatly Decreasee) National missile defense
Greatly Increasef) Pay for active duty personnel
Maintain Statusg) Programs to improve troop retention rates
Slightly Decreaseh) Research and development of new weapons
Greatly Increasei) Troop and equipment readiness
j) Other or expanded categories

Better accountability is needed in the Department of Defense as it has been reported that the military gives away "bricks of dollars" on the Baghdad streets; there is no accountability of reconstruction efforts in Iraq, and no more "no bid" contracts.
Intelligence operations and expeditures are always a "closed" section of the appropriation bills so members do not have a good idea on how much is being spent. Therefore, it is hard to say whether you should increase or decrease.

3) 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.
Family Income Taxes
Eliminatea) Less than $12,000
Eliminateb) $12,001-$40,000
Maintain Statusc) $40,001-$100,000
Maintain Statusd) $100,001-$180,000
Maintain Statuse) $180,001-$350,000
Greatly Increasef) $350,001 and above
g) Other or expanded categories

I believe Congress should simplify the tax code and use a tax percentage of income for the listed categories with only deductions for home mortgage, taxes, and charitable contributions.

Other Taxes
Slightly Decreasea) Alcohol taxes
Maintain Statusb) Capital gains taxes
Greatly Increasec) Cigarette taxes
Maintain Statusd) Corporate taxes
Maintain Statuse) Gasoline taxes
Maintain Statusf) Inheritance taxes
g) Other or expanded categories

Beer and wine should be lowered to the previous tax rate as they were unfairly taxed!
With the deficit and massive federal debt, spending and tax decreases must be paid for in the current budget year. We must have fiscal responsibility and discipline in the federal government, beginning with pay-as-you-go!

Deductions/Credits
Maintain Statusa) Charitable contribution deduction
Maintain Statusb) Child tax credit
Slightly Increasec) Earned income tax credit
Greatly Increased) Medical expense deduction
Maintain Statuse) Mortgage deduction
Maintain Statusf) Student loan credit
g) Other or expanded categories

I wish to see comprehensive health insurance for all Americans and there will probably be tax consequences to any plan.
Student loan legislation has been submitted to the Senate for approval that would increase pell grant and assist with the cost of education.

No4) Do you support the permanent repeal of the federal estate tax?
Yes5) Do you support requiring the federal budget to be balanced each year?
6) Other or expanded principles

I would not repeal the federal income tax until a new tax structure is in place.
I support a balance budget with exceptions for war and disasters.
I also support a line item veto for the President.

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding campaign finance and government reform.
a) Support increasing the amount individuals are permitted to contribute to federal campaigns.
b) Prohibit Political Action Committee (PAC) contributions to candidates for federal office.
c) Allow unregulated soft money campaign contributions to political parties or committees.
d) Remove all contribution limits on federal campaigns and parties.
e) Support prohibiting ads containing candidates' name that are paid for by third parties from airing 60 days before a primary and 30 days before a general federal election.
f) Support instant run-off voting (IRV).
g) Support designating Election Day as a national holiday.
Xh) Support giving the President the power of the line item veto for items concerning appropriations.
Xi) Support limiting the President's use of signing statements in order to prevent an alternative interpretation of the bill.
Xj) Support a federal shield law to protect reporter-source privilege.
k) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding crime.
Xa) Support the use of the death penalty for federal crimes.
b) Eliminate the use of the death penalty for federal crimes.
Xc) Support programs to provide prison inmates with vocational and job-related skills and job-placement assistance when released.
Xd) Support programs to provide prison inmates with drug and alcohol addiction treatment.
Xe) Reduce prison sentences for those who commit non-violent crimes.
f) Support mandatory jail sentences for selling illegal drugs.
Xg) Support strict penalties for internet crime (e.g. hacking, identity theft, worms/viruses).
Xh) Require that crimes based on sexual orientation be prosecuted as federal hate crimes.
i) Other or expanded principles

Only allow death penalties in the most heinous crimes such as torture, terrorism, and unconscionable acts!

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding education.
Xa) Support the federal government funding universal pre-K programs.
b) Allow parents to use vouchers to send their children to any public school.
c) Allow parents to use vouchers to send their children to any private or religious school.
d) Allow teachers and professionals to receive federal funding to establish charter or magnet schools.
Xe) Increase funding for the Pell Grant program.
Xf) Decrease interest rates of Stafford Loans.
Xg) Support federal tax incentives to help families save for college.
Xh) Ban university financial aid officers from owning stock in or accepting gifts from student loan lenders.
Xi) Require universities to disclose financial relationships with lenders.
j) Support federal education standards and testing requirements for K-12 students (No Child Left Behind).
Xk) Eliminate all federal education standards and testing requirements for K-12 students (No Child Left Behind).
l) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding employment.
Xa) Increase funding for national job-training programs that retrain displaced workers or teach skills needed in today’s job market.
b) Reduce government regulation of the private sector.
Xc) Encourage employers to offer child care services, flex-time scheduling, comp-time, and unpaid leave for family emergencies.
Xd) Increase the federal minimum wage.
Xe) Support the right of workers to unionize.
f) Eliminate all federal programs designed to reduce unemployment.
Xg) Include sexual orientation in federal anti-discrimination laws.
Xh) Include gender identity in federal anti-discrimination laws.
i) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the environment and energy.
Xa) Strengthen the regulation and enforcement of the Clean Water Act.
Xb) Strengthen the regulation and enforcement of the Clean Air Act.
Xc) Support increased development of traditional energy resources (e.g. coal, natural gas, oil).
d) Strengthen emission controls on all gasoline and diesel-powered engines, including cars, trucks, and sport utility vehicles.
e) Strengthen fuel efficiency standards on all gasoline and diesel-powered engines, including cars, trucks, and sport utility vehicles.
f) Support domestic oil exploration in areas that are currently restricted.
Xg) Encourage further development and use of alternative fuels.
Xh) Support the use of ethanol as an alternative fuel.
Xi) Support research and development of nuclear reactors as an alternative energy source.
j) Allow energy producers to trade pollution credits under "cap and trade" laws.
k) Support international mandatory emission targets to limit global warming.
Xl) Support international voluntary emission targets to limit global warming.
m) Other or expanded principles

There are approximately 93 acres available in Alaska and outer continental shelf for oil and gas exploration that the oil companies are NOT drilling in now! These 93 million acres have been leased and permits approved! Congress should require these oil companies to drill or give up their leases so those companies who wish to drill for new sources can do so.
Congress must get the speculators out of the oil futures contract market. Removing the oil speculators, could lower the cost of a barrel of oil by 30 to 50 percent.

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding guns.
Xa) Allow individuals to carry concealed guns.
b) Ban the sale, ownership or possession of handguns except by law enforcement and other government officials.
On (c) and (d), indicate what levels (#1-6) you support for the following categories.
Maintain Statusc) Enforcement of existing restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
Maintain Statusd) Restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
e) Other or expanded principles

Congress should strike at the root of crime by investing in social, educational, and economic conditions and NOT just pass more gun laws

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding health.
a) Implement a universal healthcare program to guarantee coverage to all Americans, regardless of income.
b) Expand eligibility for tax-free medical savings accounts.
Xc) Allow the importation of prescription drugs into the United States.
Xd) Support expanding prescription drug coverage under Medicare.
Xe) Offer tax credits to individuals and small businesses to offset the cost of insurance coverage.
Xf) Support expanding child healthcare programs.
g) Providing healthcare is not a responsibility of the federal government.
h) Other or expanded principles

Congress can provide health care by simply allowing all Americans access to voluntarily "buy in' to the Medicare, Medicaid, Children's Health Initiative and Federal Employees Health Benefit Package.

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding immigration.
a) Decrease the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country.
b) Establish English as the official national language.
c) Support a temporary worker program.
d) Support harsher financial punishments for those who knowingly employ illegal immigrants.
e) Support amnesty for illegal immigrants already working in the United States.
f) Illegal immigrants should have to return to their countries of origin before being considered for citizenship.
g) Illegal immigrants should be given a pathway to citizenship.
h) Support merit-based visas over family-based visas.
i) Other or expanded principles
International Aid
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding international aid.
Xa) Support the United States granting aid to countries when extraordinary circumstances cause disaster and threaten civilian lives.
Xb) Support the United States granting aid to countries when it is in the security interests of the United States.
Xc) Eliminate United States aid for any nation with documented human rights abuses.
d) Aid granted by the United States should be scaled back and eventually eliminated.
e) Other or expanded principles
International Policy
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding international policy.
Yesa) Should the United States continue to provide leadership in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process?
Yesb) Should the United States support the creation of a Palestinian state?
Yesc) Should the United States impose greater international sanctions on Iran if it continues to defy United Nations mandates?
Yesd) Should the United States support the Lebanese government against insurgent forces?
Noe) Should the United States maintain its troop levels in Iraq?
Yesf) Should the United States withdraw its troops from Iraq?
g) Discuss your proposals for Iraq.

I did not vote for the Iraq war. I beklieve it is time for the Iraqis to stand up for their country. Bring our troops home now! I will not engage in military operatiion in Lebanon.

Yesh) Should the United States apply greater economic and diplomatic sanctions against North Korea if it fails to abide by its agreement to suspend its nuclear program?
Yesi) Should the United States increase financial support for Afghanistan?
Yesj) Should the United States increase military support for Afghanistan?
Yesk) Should the United States trade nuclear fuel to India for civilian purposes?
Nol) Should the United States decrease financial support for Pakistan?
Undecidedm) Should the United States decrease military support for Pakistan?
Yesn) Should the United States be involved in bringing an end to the violence in Darfur, Sudan?
Undecidedo) Should the United States be involved in bringing an end to the violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo?
Undecidedp) Should the United States provide economic and military support to the Transitional Government of Somalia?
Yesq) Should the United States use sanctions to encourage the government of Zimbabwe to end its human rights abuses?
Yesr) Should the United States support the creation of an independent nation of Kosovo?
s) Other or expanded principles

I voted for the war in Afghanistan and we must win the war!
We cannot be the world's policeman and should have greater use of diplomatic and economic sanctions by the United States and our allies! The Congo, Somalia, Zimbabwe, Kosovo and Pakistan, the US should not be using military force to bring about change and there has not been enough sanctions against these countries.

International Trade
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding international trade.
Yesa) Do you support the United States imposing economic sanctions on China?
Undecidedb) Do you support the United States imposing trade sanctions on Venezuela?
Noc) Do you support the United States involvement in free trade agreements?
Nod) Do you support the United States involvement in intergovernmental organizations dedicated to trade?
e) Other or expanded principles

We must enforce our trades laws! China is currently dumping coat paper in our country and the ITC ruled it did not cause enough of an economic disruption in the paper industry. Dumping is illegal and must not be allowed. Approximately 550 American unionized workers lost their good paying jobs with benefits because of China illegal dumping of coated paper and the US did nothing!

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding national security.
Yesa) Do you support using military tribunals to try suspected terrorists when ordinary civilian courts are deemed inappropriate or impractical?
Nob) Should law enforcement agencies have greater discretion to monitor domestic communications, to prevent future terrorist attacks?
Undecidedc) Should the United States hold foreign states accountable for terrorists who operate in their country?
Nod) Should the federal government increase funding to states and cities for homeland security?
Undecidede) Do you support pre-emptive military strikes against countries deemed to be a threat to United States national security?
Nof) Do you support the creation of a federal identification card system?
Nog) Do you support long-term use of National Guard troops to supplement the armed forces in assignments overseas?
Noh) Should the United States expand its missile defense shield?
i) Other or expanded principles

Pre-emtive strikes is only for immediate danger to the US, not because we don't like the ruler!
I would not go after a country that maybe the site of terrorist activity unless that country encouraged and promoted terrorism.

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding social issues.
Noa) Should same-sex couples be allowed to marry?
Undecidedb) Do you support a federal constitutional amendment defining marriage as between a man and a woman?
Yesc) Do you support federal funding for research on existing embryonic stem cell lines?
Nod) Do you support federal funding to create lines of stem cells from new embryos?
Undecidede) Should the federal government consider race and gender in government contracting decisions?
Yesf) Should the federal government continue affirmative action programs?
Yesg) Should the federal government regulate internet gambling?
h) Other or expanded principles

Science has developed a new method that does not destroy the "human life" of the embryo.
I would support federal funding as along the the embryo is not destroyed.

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding Social Security.
a) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts that they manage themselves.
b) Ensure the viability of Social Security by increasing the payroll tax.
c) Decrease benefits paid to retirees.
Xd) Support proportional increases of Social Security benefits based on the cost of living index.
e) Raise the retirement age for individual eligibility to receive full Social Security benefits.
f) Other or expanded principles

To solve the insolvency problem, most income should be subject to social security tax. Currently, to receive full benefits, it depends on the year you were born. For me I cannot receive full social security until I am 66.

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding welfare and poverty.
a) Require welfare recipients to spend at least 40 hours a week in a combination of work and training programs.
Xb) Continue to give states and local governments flexibility in and responsibility for welfare programs through federal block grants.
Xc) Support housing assistance for welfare recipients.
d) Abolish all federal welfare 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.

End the "Enron loophole" that allow speculators to control the oil futures contract market in order to lower the cost of a barrel of oil by 30-50%.
Provide voluntary "buy in" access to health care for all Americans and end the war in Iraq now!

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