Senator Kelly A. Ayotte's Political Positions

Office: U.S. Senate (NH) - Jr, Republican
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Kelly Ayotte refused to tell citizens where she 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?

This candidate has demonstrated 0% courage during the test.

*Note: This percentage is calculated based on the number of issue areas addressed by the candidate on the Political Courage Test at the conclusion of the testing period. It does not indicate support or lack of support by Project Vote Smart.

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 are provided below as a courtesy to voters.

Vote Smart's Research

  • New Hampshire Citizens for Life. 2010. New Hampshire Citizens for Life endorsed Kelly Ayotte in the 2010 general election.
  • Susan B. Anthony List. 2010. Susan B. Anthony List endorsed Kelly Ayotte in the 2010 general election. (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. Family Values. 16 September 2010. "'Kelly is committed to rescinding taxpayer funding of abortion in health care. She has expressed her strong determination to be a vocal advocate for women and unborn children in abortion debates on the floor of the U.S. Senate.' - Susan B. Anthony List Kelly Ayotte believes in traditional marriage and is Pro-life. As New Hampshire's Attorney General, Kelly aggressively fought an attempt by Planned Parenthood to challenge the New Hampshire Parental Notification Prior to Abortion Act. She personally appealed the case to the Supreme Court and in Ayotte v. Planned Parenthood of Northern New England and the Court remanded the earlier ruling, saying that 'States have the right to require parental involvement when a minor considers terminating her pregnancy.'" (www.ayotteforsenate.com)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "The death tax should also be eliminated once and for all. Too many family businesses across New Hampshire are forced to spend money on complicated estate planning. This is double taxation and I will stop it." (www.ayotteforsenate.com)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "It's time for Congress to wake up and realize that real job creation comes from the private sector - not from government. That's what I learned from my family's business - and it's a lesson I'll take to the U.S. Senate." (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "The co-author of a recent report prepared by Senate Republicans indicated that 300 dubious stimulus projects have cost taxpayers over $15 billion. According to the government's own numbers, about $295 billion of stimulus dollars have yet to be spent. We should stop the program and use unspent funds for deficit reduction. Similarly, any unspent funds from the TARP program, which I would have opposed, should go to pay down our crippling debt." (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "We saw it with the stimulus, we saw it with the bailouts, we're seeing it with this health care-and I disagree with all of it. I think fundamentally, we need to be looking for smaller, more accountable government." (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Schoenburg, Shira. 2010. Concord Monitor: Ayotte in Line with GOP Policy. 16 August 2010. "She added that stimulus programs have done little to stimulate growth among private businesses. Ayotte said she would support extending unemployment benefits only if they were paid for." (www.concordmonitor.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. Issue Position: Jobs and Economy. "Kelly Ayotte is committed to strengthening New Hampshire's economy and nurturing new opportunities for business owners. She understands the critical role that entrepreneurs and small business owners play in ensuring that New Hampshire has a vibrant economy. Kelly knows that small businesses, not the government, create jobs." (votesmart.org)
  • Kelly Ayotte. Issue Position: Budget and Spending. "Kelly Ayotte supports the following reforms to eliminate out of control, wasteful government spending: * Pass a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution. (New Hampshire and 48 other states have some requirement to balance their budgets) * Stop spending taxpayer money on the bailouts and the stimulus package and return the money to pay down the deficit * Sunset government programs that have far outlived their utility * End the reckless earmarking process that has used taxpayer dollars to fund wasteful projects such as the 'bridge to nowhere'." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Landrigan, Kevin. 2010. Nashua Telegraph: Senate Hopeful Ayotte Favored Ariz.-type Law on Illegals. 2 September 2010. "The only option that Ayotte ruled out would be to support converting Social Security system into privately managed retirement accounts. 'I do not support privatization of Social Security, but there should be a discussion of all of the options,' Ayotte said." (www.nashuatelegraph.com)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "ANNOUNCER: When he arrived on the scene, Officer Briggs was shot in cold blood?murdered. DET. WILLARD: It was the Manchester Police Department's job to bring Mike's killer in, but it was Kelly Ayotte's job to bring him to justice. ANNOUNCER: For this horrible crime, Kelly Ayotte sought and won the death penalty." (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Rogers, Josh. 2010. New Hampshire Public Radio: Kelly Ayotte Steps Out at Wolfeboro GOP Event. 12 August 2010. "She also spoke with relish about seeking the death penalty for the killer of Manchester police officer Michael Briggs. Ayotte said the case became personal following a visit with Briggs's parents. 'And that's why I made the decision that I would personally try that case and ask for the strongest penalties available under our law, and that's the leadership you will see from me. I'm going to roll up my sleeves, and I will read the bills.'" (nhpr.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Tuohy, Dan. 2010. The Union Leader: Ayotte Wants to Take Hatchet to Spending. 17 August 2010. "Such is the case with the No Child Left Behind law, which U.S. Sen. Judd Gregg, R-N.H., co-sponsored with the late Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., according to Ayotte. She said in her travels around the state that teachers have said the law does little to improve schools. 'It has been a one-size-fits-all (program),' Ayotte said. She said she is not an advocate for taking Washington out of education altogether; she wants to 'detangle federal requirements' and support school choice, charter schools, and home schooling." (www.unionleader.com)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Kelly Ayotte. 2010. Nashua Telegraph: Comparison. Responded: "The 'cap and trade' bill Democrats are pushing would amount to a de facto new national energy tax. That's the last thing we need in a down economy. I could not support any environmental proposal that harms our economy and kills jobs. America needs an "all of the above" approach to making our country energy independent. We need responsible exploration of domestic sources of oil and natural gas. And we should expand the use of nuclear power." to the question "Is comprehensive climate-change legislation so critical that you would support it, even if it means increasing energy prices substantially over the next decade? Why, or why not?" (www2.thevoterguide.org)
  • Schoenberg, Shira. 2010. Concord Monitor: Ayotte in Line with GOP Policy. 16 August 2010. "Ayotte opposes cap and trade but does see the need to reduce U.S. dependency on foreign oil. She advocated for expanding the use of nuclear power, using technology to access natural gas resources, and looking at developing clean and renewable energy." (www.concordmonitor.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. Issue Position: Energy. "Kelly understands that we need common sense solutions to our energy problems and opposes 'cap and trade' legislation that is essentially a tax on Granite State families at a time when they can afford it least." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "'Gun owners on my team back me because they know I will fight vigorously to protect the individual right to keep and bear arms. In Washington, our Second Amendment rights are constantly threatened. I will bring the same strong leadership I showed on this issue as AG to the U.S. Senate.'" (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "'Today's Supreme Court ruling in McDonald v. Chicago is a victory for gun owners and for individuals' ability to protect themselves. State and local governments should not be allowed to infringe upon our cherished Second Amendment rights, and that principle is reflected in today's decision. As Attorney General, I proudly joined Supreme Court briefs arguing for Americans' individual right to keep and bear arms, including a case challenging the Chicago handgun ban. In the U.S. Senate, I will vigorously defend the individual right to keep and bear arms and will fight regulations that infringe upon that right. I pledge to fight any effort by Congress to undermine today's historic ruling.'" (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "She also received praise from the National Rifle Association for being the only attorney general in the Northeast to oppose reinstatement of the federal ban on semi-automatic assault firearms." (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Rogers, Josh. 2010. New Hampshire Public Radio: Kelly Ayotte Steps Out at Wolfeboro GOP Event. 12 August 2010. "Among other things, she said an individual's right to bear arms keeps the nation safe." (nhpr.org)
  • Kelly Ayotte. Issue Position: 2nd Amendment. "Kelly is a strong and passionate supporter of our citizens' individual right to keep and bear arms. Kelly supports nationwide recognition of concealed carry licenses in accordance with the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the United States Constitution. She believes the ability to carry a firearm is an individual protected civil right under the Second Amendment and that the right to self defense is a basic human right. . . . 'The right to keep and bear arms under the Second Amendment is not just a fundamental liberty interest … [I]t is among the most fundamental rights because it is essential to securing all our other liberties. The founders well understood that, without the protections afforded by the Second Amendment, all other rights and privileges ordinarily enjoyed by Americans would be vulnerable to acts of oppression.'" (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Kelly Ayotte. Blog. 17 September 2010. "Sen. Jim DeMint is introducing legislation to repeal the Dems' health care takeover. If I were in the Senate, I'd be the first to back that bill. Please help me hold the Democrats accountable . . .'Traveling up and down our state, New Hampshire citizens tell me every day that they don't want a federal takeover of health care. They know it won't lower costs and they're worried that it will lead to rationing of care,' said Ayotte. 'Small business owners know that higher taxes and more mandates will make it tougher to stay in business. Seniors and those headed for retirement are worried about the bill's Medicare cuts. And everyone agrees that the plan's $1 trillion price tag will only make our massive debt even worse.'" (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "'On a fundamental level,' she said, 'this is a bill that mandates really that people buy health insurance. I don't agree with the mandate. Going back to our state motto, this is not something consistent with what New Hampshire would expect the federal government to be mandating on us." (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "Ayotte has pledged to support efforts to repeal the health care reform law passed this year." (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Landrigan, Kevin. 2010. Nashua Telegraph: Senate Hopeful Ayotte Favored Ariz.-type Law on Illegals. 2 September 2010. "'I don't think it's the proper role of government to mandate that people have to purchase insurance,' Ayotte said." (www.nashuatelegraph.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. Issue Position: Health Care. "That's why I have signed the Club for Growth Repeal It health care pledge, stating that, upon my election to the U.S. Senate, I will sponsor and support legislation to repeal any federal health care takeover passed in 2010, and replace it with real reforms that lower health care costs without growing government." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "'We don't need to add, necessarily, more laws," she said. "Let's look at enforcing what we have on the immigration context and then measure where we are.' Ayotte would push for illegal immigrants already living in the U.S. to be immediately deported and does not support any form of amnesty, she said." (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Schoenberg, Shira. 2010. Concord Monitor: Ayotte in Line with GOP Policy. 16 August 2010. "Ayotte said she would first address illegal immigration by securing the country's borders, enforcing existing immigration laws and making English the official language of the U.S." (www.concordmonitor.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. Issue Position: Crime and Safety. "Kelly believes in the importance of enforcing our national borders and in ensuring only legal immigration." (votesmart.org)
  • Kelly Ayotte. Issue Position: Immigration. "In the Senate, Kelly's top immigration priority will be to secure our borders -- no excuses. Simultaneously, she will work to ensure that existing immigration laws are enforced and is against amnesty. Kelly knows that Americans can solve any problem if they put their mind to it -- and she will bring that results-oriented approach to this critical issue." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Landrigan, Kevin. 2010. Nashua Telegraph: Senate Hopeful Ayotte Favored Ariz.-type Law on Illegals. 2 September 2010. "The mission in Afghanistan should be to prevent terrorists from running that country or using it or neighboring Pakistan as a staging area from which to launch attacks against the U.S. and its allies, she added. 'We have to constantly be monitoring what is happening, and there needs to be a constant reassessment,' said Ayotte, who opposed President Obama setting a timetable for withdrawal of US combat troops." (www.nashuatelegraph.com)
  • Kelly Ayotte. News. 16 September 2010. "Ayotte supports the counterinsurgency strategy led by Gen. David Petraeus in Afghanistan and opposes setting deadlines for withdrawal." (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Knickerbocker, Brad. The Christian Science Monitor: Kelly Ayotte election: a relief to mainstream Republicans. 15 September 2010. "She has spoken favorably of a timetable for the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan." (www.csmonitor.com)
  • Schoenberg, Shira. 2010. Concord Monitor: Ayotte in Line with GOP Policy. 16 August 2010. "On foreign policy, Ayotte said she supports giving Gen. David Petraeus time to stabilize Afghanistan and establish an Afghan government. 'We can't allow it to be a haven for terrorism,' Ayotte said. She said succeeding in Afghanistan is also important in not allowing Pakistan to become destabilized. Ayotte would not commit to a time frame for withdrawing troops. 'I don't think we should signal to our enemy when our withdrawal should be,' she said." (www.concordmonitor.com)
  • Tuohy, Dan. 2010. The Union Leader: Ayotte Wants to Take Hatchet to Spending. 17 August 2010. "'We've got to stabilize Afghanistan because we can't allow it to be a haven for terrorists again,' she said. She also opposes a hard-set deadline for withdrawal of troops." (www.unionleader.com)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Kelly Ayotte. Family Values. 16 September 2010. "Kelly Ayotte believes in traditional marriage and is Pro-life. " (www.ayotteforsenate.com)
  • Rogers, Josh. 2010. New Hampshire Public Radio: Kelly Ayotte Steps Out at Wolfeboro GOP Event. 12 August 2010. "-Gay marriage? 'I have a belief that marriage is between a man and a woman.'" (nhpr.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

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