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Donald 'Don' R. Betzold

Donald Betzold's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

Full Name: Donald 'Don' R. Betzold
Gender: Male
Family: Wife: Leesa; 1 Child: Ben
Birth Date: 08/27/1950
Birth Place: Minneapolis, MN
Home City: Fridley, MN
Religion: Catholic
Project Vote Smart does not permit the use of its name or programs in any campaign activity, including advertising, debates, and speeches.
Donald Betzold refused to tell citizens where he stands on any of the issues addressed in the 2010 Political Courage Test, despite repeated requests from Vote Smart, national media, and prominent political leaders.

What is the Political Courage Test?

Minnesota State Legislative 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.
Xb) Abortions should always be legally available.
c) Abortions should be legal only within the first trimester of pregnancy.
d) Abortions should be legal when the pregnancy resulted from incest or rape.
e) 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.
g) Other or expanded principles
State Budget: Indicate the funding levels you will support for the following general categories.
Maintain Funding Statusa) Agriculture
Slightly Increase Fundingb) Education (Higher)
Greatly Increase Fundingc) Education (K-12)
Maintain Funding Statusd) Environment
Slightly Increase Fundinge) Health care
Maintain Funding Statusf) Law enforcement
Greatly Increase Fundingg) Transportation and Highway infrastructure
Slightly Increase Fundingh) Welfare
i) Other or expanded categories
State Taxes: Indicate the tax levels you will support.
Greatly Increasea) Alcohol taxes
Slightly Increaseb) Capital gains taxes
Greatly Increasec) Cigarette taxes
Slightly Increased) Corporate taxes
Maintain Statuse) Estate taxes
Greatly Increasef) Gasoline taxes
Slightly Increaseg) Income taxes (incomes below $75,000)
Maintain Statush) Income taxes (incomes above $75,000)
Maintain Statusi) Property taxes
Slightly Increasej) Sales taxes
Slightly Increasek) Vehicle taxes
l) Other or expanded categories
Yesm) Should Internet sales be taxed?
Yesn) Do you support increasing the gasoline tax to fund transportation projects?
Noo) Do you support issuing state bonds to fund transportation projects?
Nop) Do you support a reduction in funding for municipalities to help balance the state budget?
Yesq) Should Hennepin County be allowed to help fund the construction of a new baseball stadium in Minneapolis?
r) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding campaign finance and government reform.
Noa) Do you support limiting the number of terms for Minnesota governors?
Nob) Do you support limiting the number of terms for Minnesota state senators and representatives?
c) Do you support limiting the following types of contributions to state legislative and gubernatorial candidates?
Yes1) Individual
Yes2) PAC
Yes3) Corporate
Yes4) Political Parties
Yesd) Do you support requiring full and timely disclosure of campaign finance information?
Yese) Do you support partial funding from state taxes for state level political campaigns?
Undecidedf) Do you support voting on-line?
Yesg) Do you support adopting statewide standards for counting, verifying and ensuring accuracy of votes?
Yesh) Do you support prohibiting the reporting of media exit polling results until all polling locations in Minnesota are closed?
Yesi) Should Minnesota recognize civil unions between same-sex couples?
Noj) Should Minnesota restrict marriage to a union only between a man and a woman?
k) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) to address crime.
a) Increase state funds for construction of state prisons and for hiring of additional prison staff.
b) Support contracting with private sector firms to build and/or manage state prisons.
c) Implement the use of the death penalty in Minnesota.
Xd) Support programs to provide prison inmates with vocational and job-related skills and job-placement assistance when released.
e) End parole for repeat violent offenders.
f) Implement penalties other than incarceration for certain non-violent offenders.
Xg) Decriminalize the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes.
h) Strengthen penalties and sentences for drug-related crimes.
Xi) Lower the .10 blood-alcohol-content limit defining drunk driving.
j) Minors accused of a violent crime should be prosecuted as adults.
Xk) Require that crimes based on gender, sexual orientation or disability be prosecuted as hate crimes.
Xl) Ban the use of racial profiling by law enforcement officers.
Xm) Increase state funding for community centers and other social agencies in areas with at-risk youth.
Xn) Increase state funding for additional security of critical infrastructure against terrorist attacks.
o) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding education.
Xa) Support national standards and testing of public school students.
b) Provide parents with state-funded vouchers to send their children to any participating school (public, private, religious).
Xc) Increase state funds for school capital improvements (e.g. buildings and infrastructure).
Xd) Increase state funds for hiring additional teachers.
e) Support teacher testing and reward teachers with merit pay.
f) Support displaying the Ten Commandments in public schools.
g) Endorse teacher-led voluntary prayer in public schools.
h) Require public schools to administer high school exit exams.
Xi) Provide state funding to increase teacher salaries.
Xj) Increase state funding to expand Head Start programs.
Xk) Provide state funding for tax incentives and financial aid to help make college more affordable.
Xl) Support age-appropriate sexual education programs that teach about abstinence, contraceptives and HIV/STD prevention methods.
m) Support abstinence-only sexual education programs.
n) Other or expanded principles
Employment: Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning employment.
Xa) Increase funding for state job-training programs that re-train displaced workers or teach skills needed in today's job market.
b) Reduce state government regulations on the private sector to encourage investment and economic expansion.
c) Provide low interest loans and tax credits for starting, expanding or relocating businesses.
Xd) Provide tax credits for businesses that provide child care for their employees.
Xe) Increase state funds to provide child care for children of low-income working families.
Xf) Include sexual orientation in Minnesota's anti-discrimination laws.
g) Other or expanded principles
Affirmative Action: Should race, ethnicity or gender be taken into account in state agencies' decisions on:
Noa) College and university admissions
Yesb) Public employment
Yesc) State contracting
d) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the environment and energy.
Xa) Promote increased use of alternative fuel technology.
Xb) Use state funds to clean up former industrial and commercial sites that are contaminated, unused or abandoned.
Xc) Restrict all-terrain vehicle (ATV) usage to trails designed to minimize environmental damage.
Yesd) Do you support state funding for open space preservation?
Yese) Should state environmental regulations be stricter than federal law?
f) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning gun issues.
Xa) Ban the sale or transfer of semi-automatic guns, except those used for hunting.
Xb) Maintain and strengthen the enforcement of existing state restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
c) Ease state restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
d) Repeal state restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
e) Ease state restrictions on obtaining a concealed handgun permit.
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) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding health issues.
Xa) Ensure that citizens have access to basic health care through managed care, insurance reforms or state-funded care where necessary.
b) Transfer more existing Medicaid recipients into managed care programs.
c) Limit the amount of damages that can be awarded in medical malpractice lawsuits.
Xd) Support patients' right to sue their HMOs.
Xe) Support patients' right to appeal to an administrative board of specialists when services are denied by their HMO.
f) Guaranteed medical care to all citizens is not a responsibility of state government.
g) Legalize physician-assisted suicide in Minnesota.
Xh) Increase state funding for training health workers to recognize and respond to the release of biological agents.
i) Other or expanded principles
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding welfare.
a) Support current time limits on welfare benefits.
Xb) Increase employment and job training programs for welfare recipients.
c) Provide tax incentives to businesses that hire welfare recipients.
Xd) Provide child care for welfare recipients who work.
Xe) Increase access to public transportation for welfare recipients who work.
f) Eliminate government-funded welfare programs.
g) Redirect welfare funding to faith-based and community-based private organizations.
Xh) Use federal TANF (Temporary Assistance to Needy Families) funds to expand state services to include the working poor.
i) Other or expanded principles
In a total of seventy-five (75) words or less, please explain what your two main legislative priorities will be if elected. Please explain how you would obtain any additional government funding needed to implement these priorities.

Education funding is our highest priority. The 2001 property tax reforms made school funding more difficult for school districts. We should allow school districts to levy for operating expenses. We should also reconsider, at on a temporary basis, some of the large tax breaks we gave to the top income tax brackets in 1999 and 2000.

Transportation funding is critical to the northern suburbs. We would benefit from a long overdue gas tax increase.

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