Senator David B. Vitter's Political Positions

Biographical

Full Name: David B. Vitter
Current Office: U.S. Senate - Jr, Republican
First Elected: 11/02/2004
Last Elected: 11/02/2010
Next Election: 2016
Gender: Male
Family: Wife: Wendy; 4 Children: Sophie, Lise, Airey, Jack
Birth Date: 05/03/1961
Birth Place: New Orleans, LA
Home City: Metairie, LA
Religion: Roman Catholic
Project Vote Smart does not permit the use of its name or programs in any campaign activity, including advertising, debates, and speeches.
David Vitter 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?

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

  • David Vitter. 2004. Project Vote Smart: Louisiana Congressional National Political Awareness Test. Checked SUPPORT for: "e) Abortions should be legal when the life of the woman is endangered;" "f) Prohibit the dilation and extraction procedure, also known as "partial-birth" abortion;" "g) Prohibit public funding of abortions and of organizations that advocate or perform abortions." Other: "Abortion should only be legal when the life of the mother is endangered."
  • NARAL Pro-Choice America. 2009. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of NARAL Pro-Choice America 0 percent in 2009. (votesmart.org)
  • National Right to Life Committee. 2009. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of the National Right to Life Committee 100 percent in 2009. (votesmart.org)
  • Planned Parenthood. 2008. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of Planned Parenthood 0 percent in 2008. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. S Amdt 3330 to S Amdt 3325 to HR 3043. 110th Congress. To prohibit the provision of funds to grantees who perform abortions. Project Vote Smart Summary: David Vitter voted YES on 18 October 2007. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. S Amdt 3896 to S Amdt 3899 to S 1200. 110th Congress. To modify a section relating to limitation on use of funds appropriated to the Service. Project Vote Smart Summary: David Vitter voted YES on 26 February 2008. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Issue Position: Life & Values. "As a strong believer in the dignity and sanctity of all human life, I stand with many other Louisianans in defense of those who cannot defend themselves. Together, we work daily to turn the tide toward respecting, protecting, and dignifying innocent human life. To this end, I have supported all pro-life measures before Congress, including: * Supporting an immediate ban on partial birth abortions. * Expanding tax credits and other support for adoption. * Authoring legislation that would absolutely prohibit taxpayer funding to private providers of abortion services. * Supporting a full ban on human cloning. * Authoring legislation to codify safety measures designed to protect the health of women who use RU-486, responding to the misguided and politicized approval of the drug. * Participating in National Adoption Awareness Month. * Supporting legislation requiring that pregnant mothers be provided information on their unborn child's ability to experience pain 20 weeks after fertilization. * Supporting legislation prohibiting the transportation of a minor across state lines for the purpose of obtaining an abortion." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • David Vitter. 2004. Project Vote Smart: Louisiana Congressional National Political Awareness Test. Selected YES for: "4) Do you support permanent repeal of the federal estate tax?"
  • National Taxpayers Union. 2009. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of the National Taxpayers Union 88 percent in 2009. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter signed American Family Business Institute: Death Tax Repeal Pledge. (www.nodeathtax.org)
  • David Vitter. Issue Position: Small Business & Economic Development. "Small business is the backbone of Louisiana's and America's economy. I make it a point to visit as many small businesses as possible when I'm home on the weekend to hear what's on the mind of local entrepreneurs and workers. In order to prosper in the twenty-first century, Louisiana must have a successful, growing small business community. That's why I am so focused these efforts to help our small businesses. * Connecting more Louisiana businesses and homes to the Internet through the Louisiana Online Program. * Working on the Small Business Committee to reform regulations and enact programs to help small businesses comply with the rules. * Expanding and strengthening shipbuilding activities and related industries in Louisiana. * Supporting association health plans to help small businesses cope with the high costs of health care. * Fighting to end the death tax, which robs too many families of the great American dream - passing on their family business to their children." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Issue Position: Taxes. "While nobody argues against collecting taxes to fund the critical functions of government, it is clear to me that the federal government spends too much. We need to reduce the tax burden on the American people. Now more than ever, we also need to reform and simplify our tax code. That is why I was proud to support President Bush's tax relief plan when I served in the U.S. House of Representatives and will fight to extend these tax reductions. * Replacing our tax code with something much more fair and simple. * Cutting income tax rates across the board for everyone who pays taxes. * Providing marriage tax penalty relief. * Phasing out the estate tax. * Helping small businesses expand through higher expensing caps." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Club for Growth. 2008. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of the Club for Growth 90 percent in 2008. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Meet the Candidates: David Vitter. 14 October 2010. "I opposed all of the taxpayer-funded bailouts, every single one. I helped lead the fight against the Obama stimulus and offered concrete, positive alternatives." (www.wrkf.org)
  • David Vitter. HR 1. 111th Congress. Making supplemental appropriations for job preservation and creation, infrastructure investment, energy efficiency and science, assistance to the unemployed, and State and local fiscal stabilization, for fiscal year ending September 30, 2009, and for other purposes. Project Vote Smart Summary: David Vitter voted NO on 13 February 2009. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Vitter Comments on Vote Against Final Stimulus Bill. 13 February 2009. "Constituents from all over the country have voiced their strong opposition to the wasteful spending in this bill, but it appears that Congress has chosen to ignore them. We're not going to get out of this recession with more pork-barrel spending, and the American people know this. What this bloated stimulus needed was a fundamental change at its core - we needed to strip this wasteful spending and focus on those provisions that would bring real job creation. Neither this bill nor the process in how it was authored reflects much of the change that we heard so much about coming to Washington. Instead, it is sadly more Washington business as usual." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. 4 February 2009. "There is now a plurality of all Americans who think this is a bad bill, not stimulative, and it should be either dramatically changed--not at the margin but at the core--or defeated. Quite frankly, that plurality is growing every hour of every day. They are staggered, the Louisianians I have talked to, by two things. First, the enormous size and cost of the bill. This is a direct cost. There is no argument that we can recoup this as possibly we can recoup some of the TARP money. This is a direct cost. It adds on to the debt and the deficit penny by penny. A trillion dollars is a lot of money. As one of my colleagues said: A trillion dollars or nearly that surely is a terrible thing to waste. This current stimulus bill of almost a trillion dollars is the largest spending bill ever enacted by Congress. It makes the entire New Deal, even adjusted for inflation, look small. If it would be divvied up equally, the $825 billion, it would be like every family in America borrowing $10,520. That is not an analogy drawn from the air. In fact, we are collectively borrowing every cent of this money. Every dollar is another dollar of deficit and debt. We are borrowing that, $10,520 for every American family. If all of our families were asked to equally shoulder that burden, this would be the equivalent of what each average family roughly spends on food, clothing, and health care in a year." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Vitter Issues Statement on Bailout Package. 29 September 2008. "After studying the final bill carefully and talking with many people I respect, I can't support this plan. First, it's an unprecedented government bailout that will almost certainly pave the way for even more - maybe sooner rather than later. Second, it requires people at Treasury to make tens of thousands of judgment calls about what they buy and for how much. And these will be folks who are from Wall Street and want to go to back. That ensures bias and even corruption. Third, there's been no adequate discussion of the major reforms needed. And I'm afraid this big government first step helps ensure that Congress won't make those strong reforms - like breaking up Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and demanding real cash down for all home purchases." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2010. 23 February 2010. "The other big theme and concern I hear all around Louisiana is: What are you all doing about this unsustainable level of spending and debt? I share that fear. I share that concern. Even as we struggle to get out of this recession--and we are not near there yet--I am fearful that the next economic crisis is coming based on spending and debt, unsustainable levels of spending and debt. We are near debt levels today comparable to where this Nation was at the end of World War II compared to GDP." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • David Vitter. Issue Position: Social Security. "The federal government must and will honor its commitment to a secure retirement for all of our nation's seniors who have paid into Social Security. Period. We must ensure that Social Security remains financially strong and viable for this and future retirement generations. I have supported strong measures to help achive these goals, including: * Repealing the Social Security Earnings Limit. * Supporting the repeal of the Clinton tax increase on Social Security benefits. * Coauthoring legislation to fix the notch baby and government pension offset problems. * Introducing Lox Box legislation to make sure Washington politicians can't raid the Social Security Trust Fund to pay for other unrelated programs." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Citizens United for the Rehabilitation of Errants. 2005-2006. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of the Citizens United for the Rehabilitation of Errants 10 percent in 2005-2006. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. 2004. Project Vote Smart: Louisiana Congressional National Political Awareness Test. Checked SUPPORT for: "a) Support the use of the death penalty for federal crimes."
  • David Vitter. Vitter's View: Protecting Our Children. 11 July 2008. "We should do everything we can to ensure that our children can grow up in a safe and loving environment. This means not only doing our job as parents, but also doing everything we can to ensure our laws protect our kids from predators. That's why I am so troubled by the U.S. Supreme Court's recent ruling in Kennedy v. Louisiana. Last month, the court upheld the appeal of Patrick Kennedy, a Louisiana man convicted of savagely raping his own stepdaughter ten years ago. The ruling overturned laws in six states, including Louisiana, that allowed the death penalty to be applied to those convicted of raping a child. In response to this court ruling, I will soon propose a constitutional amendment that will explicitly allow for the death penalty to be applied to adults convicted of the forcible rape of a child. Voters in Louisiana and every state should have the right to decide when the death penalty should apply." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Home School Legal Defense Association. 1999-2000. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of the Home School Legal Defense Association 80 percent in 1999-2000. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Issue Position: Education. "Parents, along with local teachers, principals, and school boards, know best how to spend our education tax dollars. When it comes right down to it, I trust the people in Washington Parish to make decisions regarding their children's education far more than I trust the bureaucrats in Washington, DC. That's why I supported President Bush's education reform package. This legislation is shifting much more education decision-making and money back home." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Vitter Introduces Bill to Empower Charter Schools. 20 January 2010. "Investing in charter schools, which operate with greater freedom and flexibility than traditional public schools, is a great way to ensure that our nations' children receive a quality education. We must encourage and publicize charter school models that work, and create awareness of successful public charters," said Vitter. "Improving education begins at the local level, where decisions about education are best made by teachers, principals, and parents. My bill removes bureaucratic red tape faced by charter schools and empowers local leaders to invest in original ideas by encouraging states to support and properly fund charter schools," said Vitter." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • David Vitter. 2004. Project Vote Smart: Louisiana Congressional National Political Awareness Test. Checked SUPPORT for: "c) Require states to compensate citizens when environmental regulations limit uses of privately-owned land;" "d) Relax logging restrictions on federal lands;" "e) Relax standards on federal lands to allow increased recreational usage;" "f) Support increased development of traditional energy resources (e.g. coal, natural gas, oil);" "h) Support opening a select portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil exploration;" "i) Encourage further development and use of alternative fuels to reduce pollution;" "j) Support the use of ethanol as an alternative fuel."
  • Environment America. 2009. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of Environment America 0 percent in 2009. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. S Amdt 4825 to S 3036. 110th Congress. In the nature of a substitute. Project Vote Smart Summary: David Vitter voted NO for cloture on 6 June 2008. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter signed Americans for Prosperity: No Climate Tax. 5 June 2007. (www.noclimatetax.com)
  • David Vitter. Vitter's View: President's Cap and Tax Proposal Will Suffocate Louisiana's Economy. 24 April 2010. "I'm fighting against these efforts by the radical environmental left to impose its will on American families. In the U.S. Senate, I recently passed an amendment to the president's budget proposal that would prevent new regulations from driving up the cost of domestic energy production on the Outer Continental Shelf and elsewhere. If the Obama administration wants to curb greenhouse gases, the way to do it is not by stifling our growth at home while enabling other countries to continue growing and taking our jobs overseas. Instead, we need to continue to develop newer, cleaner sources of energy, such as nuclear power, while also focusing on sensible land and pollution management and developing the resources that we already have." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • David Vitter. 2004. Project Vote Smart: Louisiana Congressional National Political Awareness Test. Checked SUPPORT for: "c) Ease federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns;" "d) Repeal federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns;" "e) Allow citizens to carry concealed guns;" "j) Support legislation that would protect manufacturers, distributors, dealers, and importers of firearms from civil lawsuits by crime victims."
  • Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. 2003. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence 11 percent from 1988 and 2003. (votesmart.org)
  • Gun Owners of America. 2010. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. In 2010 Gun Owners of America gave David Vitter a grade of A+. (votesmart.org)
  • Gun Owners of America. 2010. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Endorsements. 14 September 2010. Gun Owners of America endorsed David Vitter in the 2010 general election. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. S Amdt 1067 to S Amdt 1058 to HR 627. 111th Congress. To protect innocent Americans from violent crime in national parks and refuges. Project Vote Smart Summary: David Vitter voted YES on 12 May 2009. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Issue Position: Second Amendment Rights. "The Second Amendment to the Constitution guarantees the right to bear arms. This means that law-abiding citizens have the right to own firearms, no ifs, ands, or buts. I have fought hard to protect this sacred right in many ways, including: * Fighting against all gun control measures that erode Second Amendment rights. * Voting to curb class action lawsuits against firearm and ammunition manufacturers and dealers. * Voting to allow residents of the District of Columbia to own firearms. * Co-authoring legislation to allow current and former law enforcement officers to carry concealed weapons. * Authoring legislation to safeguard the 2nd Amendment Right of U.S. citizens from infringement by the United Nations. * Supporting Project Exile to make sure we are expending maximum effort to prosecute existing laws." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Second Amendment Protection Act of 2005. 27 July 2005. "Mr. VITTER. Mr. President, I rise today to introduce a bill that would withhold United States contributions to the United Nations if the U.N. interferes with the second amendment rights guaranteed by our Constitution. The U.N. has no business interfering with the second amendment rights guaranteed by our Constitution. That is why I am introducing legislation to safeguard our citizens against any potential infringement of their second amendment rights...The U.S. Constitution has guaranteed our citizens the right to keep and bear arms. I intend to help protect that right with this legislation. I urge my colleagues to support the Second Amendment Protection Act of 2005." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • David Vitter. 2004. Project Vote Smart: Louisiana Congressional National Political Awareness Test. Checked SUPPORT for: "a) Providing health care is not a responsibility of the federal government;" "c) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights which includes appeal mechanisms when claims are denied;" "d) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights which includes the right to sue when claims are denied;" "e) Expand eligibility for tax-free medical savings accounts. f) Establish limits on the amount of punitive damages awarded in medical malpractice lawsuits;" "g) Support expanding prescription drug coverage under Medicare;" "h) Support expanding prescription drug coverage under private managed care plans;" "i) Offer tax credits to individuals and small businesses to offset the cost of insurance coverage;" "j) Support automatic enrollment of children in federal health care programs such as CHIP and Medicaid."
  • American Public Health Association. 2009. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of the American Public Health Association 14 percent in 2009. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter signed The Club for Growth: Repeal It! (www.repealit.org)
  • David Vitter. Meet the Candidates: David Vitter. 14 October 2010. "What about health care? Well I held 24 town hall meetings all around Louisiana during the health care debate to listen to your concerns. I fought the government takeover of health care tooth and nail based on what I heard from you in my town halls and I offered concrete, focused alternatives." (www.wrkf.org)
  • David Vitter. Health Care. 22 May 2008. "We believe we should dramatically reform the tax treatment of health care by providing powerful incentives that will increase access by allowing Americans to keep more of their hard-earned money to pay for health care. We oppose tax increases that do the opposite, that seize American money from American families to pay for government-run and government-dominated health care. That limits access to doctors. It lowers the quality of health services. Addressing health care through our Tax Code would fundamentally change the health care market, if we do it in the right way. By letting Americans keep more of their money for health care through refundable tax credits, we can empower Americans with more resources to obtain and access care." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Vitter Calls for Vote on "Repeal It" Amendment to Reconciliation Bill. 24 March 2010. "U.S. Sen. David Vitter today called for a vote on his Patient Choice Restoration Act amendment during the upcoming Senate health care reconciliation vote-a-rama. This amendment essentially nullifies the newly-passed government-run health care legislation. "This past weekend, after months of town halls and polls in which the American people overwhelmingly and loudly rejected Obamacare, liberals jammed through a partisan bill to take over our health care system using tricky procedural tactics. The president has signed into law a bill with a trillion dollar price tag that will place the government between patients and their doctors, raise premiums, drastically cut Medicare, increase job-killing taxes, allow for the federal funding of abortions and create a new entitlement program that adds to our increasing deficit."Monday, Vitter introduced a standalone piece of legislation to repeal the newly-signed, partisan health care bill. "Americans can't afford and don't want this intrusion of the government into their lives. That's why I offered a standalone measure to repeal this law as well as offered this amendment to the budget reconciliation process to fight against this takeover of health care. Repealing this unconstitutional and unpopular bill is the first step in restoring Americans with the freedom to make their own health care choices," Vitter said." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Issue Position: Health Care. Congress must make health care more accessible and affordable for all Americans. Over 43 million Americans are uninsured. Prescription drug costs are skyrocketing. Some of the steps I am taking to improve health care for all Americans include: * Supporting a strong Patients Bill of Rights, even when it means standing up to my own party leadership. * Voting to make health care premiums 100% deductible and to create new tax breaks for elderly home care and dependent care. * Writing legislation to allow reimportation of cheaper prescription drugs from Canada and other countries. * Fighting frivolous lawsuits that are driving doctors out of business and increasing costs for patients. (www.votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • David Vitter. Vitter Issues Statement on Amnesty Provision in War Funding Bill. 16 May 2008. "This effort is particularly egregious as it uses the war funding bill to extend amnesty to illegal aliens, threatening the very national security that our brave service men and women fight to protect every day."
  • Federation for American Immigration Reform. 2007-2008. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of the Federation for American Immigration Reform 81 percent in 2007-2008. (votesmart.org)
  • National Latino Congreso. 2007-2010. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of the National Latino Congreso 0 percent in 2007-2010. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. S Amdt 4087 to S 2611. 109th Congress. To modify the conditions under which aliens who are unlawfully present in the United States are granted legal status. Project Vote Smart Summary: David Vitter voted NO on 23 May 2006. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. 2010. NumbersUSA: 2010 Congressional Candidate Survey. Responded "YES" to the question "1. Do you OPPOSE offering the officially estimated 11 million people illegally in the U.S. long-term work permits and/or a path to citizenship (whether through a blanket amnesty or an "earned legalization" or other form)?" (www.numbersusa.com)
  • David Vitter. Vitter's View: Defeating Amnesty and Securing on Our Borders. 29 June 2007. "The U.S. Senate tried to revive the Kennedy immigration bill recently, even though we already defeated it numerous times. Thankfully, the proponents of the bill were again thwarted because of the large outcry and civic activity of concerned Louisianans and Americans across the country. This bill's defeat is an incredible victory for Louisiana and the American people. The Kennedy immigration bill was flawed and granted amnesty to millions of illegals. Because it tried to achieve comprehensive reform, it tied the security of our borders to the amnesty of the more than 12 million illegals living here in violation of our laws. This legislation would have sent a terrible message that our rule of law is weak and not to be respected. I could not stand for that, and neither could the majority of the country." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Vitter's View: Refocusing on Border Security and Enforcement. 7 March 2008. "This week, I joined with a group of senators to create the U.S. Senate Border Security and Enforcement First Caucus, a coalition committed to fighting amnesty and improving our border security. Our caucus will work to ensure that the laws already on the books will be enforced and act as the voice of those concerned citizens who have expressed their opinions time and time again in support of interior enforcement and border security instead of the amnesty proposals that have been offered. We will push for stronger border security and interior enforcement legislation, and we will work together in the U.S. Senate to defeat future amnesty legislation." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Vitter Expresses Concerns over Administration's Amnesty Memo. 30 July 2010. "This memo confirms what we've feared all along -- this administration is willing to use any measure to pursue their liberal agenda and implement policies that the American people oppose, like granting amnesty to illegal immigrants," said Vitter. "We now know that the administration has been looking into alternative plans to grant citizenship to those who enter our country illegally even if Congress refuses to pass a law that allows them to do so. This is yet another alarming example of how the White House is more focused on rewarding illegal behavior than it is on enforcing our current immigration laws and strengthening our borders." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • Peace Action West. 2009. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Ratings. David Vitter supported the interests of Peace Action West 0 percent in 2009. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Vitter Comments on President's Afghanistan Announcement. 2 December 2009. "'It took a while, but the president finally came forward with his plan to increase troop levels in Afghanistan. I am concerned, however, that the president hinted at a scheduled plan for withdrawal because I strongly believe that announcing such a plan will only embolden our enemies to plan their future acts of terror around the window of our proposed date of departure,' said Vitter." (votesmart.org)

Vote Smart's Research

  • David Vitter. 2004. Project Vote Smart: Louisiana Congressional National Political Awareness Test. Selected NO for: "j) Should same-sex couples be allowed to form civil unions?" Selected YES for: "k) Should marriage be restricted to a union only between a man and a woman?"
  • Eagle Forum. 2010. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Endorsements. 14 September 2010. Eagle Forum endorsed David Vitter in the 2010 general election. (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Vitter's View - Protecting Marriage. 9 June 2006. "This week, the U.S. Senate focused much of its attention on the Marriage Protection Amendment, a constitutional amendment to protect traditional marriage as being between one man and one woman. While more senators voted for it this time than two years ago, we still didn't meet the threshold for a constitutional amendment to pass. But we are making progress. Voters in Louisiana and at least 44 other states have shown their support for traditional marriage by voting to protect it. But these laws are being attacked in courts across the country, and activist judges should not be able to suppress the will of the American people. This is why we need a constitutional amendment to protect traditional marriage." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Marriage Protection Amendment. 30 September 2004. "Mr. Speaker, today I rise in support of the constitutional amendment to protect marriage as between one man and one woman. This is a very important issue for congress to address, and I am glad to have been part of the movement to bring this legislation to the House floor." (votesmart.org)
  • David Vitter. Vitter Statement on Protecting the Sanctity of Marriage. 14 July 2004. "This is a real outrage. The Hollywood left is redefining the most basic institution in human history, and our two U.S. Senators won't do anything about it. We need a U.S. Senator who will stand up for Louisiana values, not Massachusetts's values. I am the only Senate Candidate to coauthor the Federal Marriage Amendment; the only one fighting for its passage. I am the only candidate proposing changes to the senate rules to stop liberal obstructionists from preventing an up or down vote on issues like this, judges, energy, and on and on." (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

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Congressional Election 2004 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) regarding abortion.

a) Abortions should always be illegal.
b) Abortions should always be legal.
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.
Xe) Abortions should be legal when the life of the woman is endangered.
Xf) Prohibit the dilation and extraction procedure, also known as "partial-birth" abortion.
Xg) Prohibit public funding of abortions and of organizations that advocate or perform abortions.
Xh) Other or expanded principles

Abortion should only be legal when the life of the mother is endangered.

Using the key, indicate what federal funding levels you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category.

Budget Priorities

Slightly Increasea) Agriculture
Greatly Decreaseb) Arts
Greatly Increasec) Defense
Slightly Increased) Education
Maintain Statuse) Environment
Greatly Increasef) Homeland security
Slightly Decreaseg) International aid
Greatly Increaseh) Law enforcement
Greatly Increasei) Medical research
Maintain Statusj) National parks
Greatly Increasek) Public health services
Greatly Increasel) Scientific research
Maintain Statusm) Space exploration programs
Greatly Increasen) Transportation and highway infrastructure
Greatly Decreaseo) Welfare
p) Other or expanded categories

Defense Spending

Greatly Increasea) Armed Forces personnel training
Greatly Increaseb) Intelligence operations
Greatly Increasec) Military hardware
Greatly Increased) Modernization of weaponry and equipment
Greatly Increasee) National missile defense
Greatly Increasef) Pay for active duty personnel
Greatly Increaseg) Programs to improve troop retention rates
Greatly Increaseh) Research and development of new weapons
Greatly Increasei) Troop and equipment readiness
Greatly Increasej) Other or expanded categories

Using the key above, indicate what federal tax levels you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category.

Taxes

Income Taxes:

Family Income

Greatly Decreasea) Less than $25,000
Greatly Decreaseb) $25,000-$75,000
Greatly Decreasec) $75,000-$150,000
Greatly Decreased) Over $150,000
e) Other or expanded categories

Retiree Income

Greatly Decreasef) Over $40,000
g) Other or expanded categories

Other Taxes:

Slightly Decreasea) Alcohol taxes
Eliminateb) Capital gains taxes
Slightly Decreasec) Cigarette taxes
Slightly Decreased) Corporate taxes
Maintain Statuse) Gasoline taxes
Eliminatef) Inheritance taxes
g) Other or expanded categories

Deductions/Credits:

Greatly Increasea) Charitable contributions
Greatly Increaseb) Child tax credit
Slightly Decreasec) Earned income tax credit
Greatly Increased) Medical expense deduction
Maintain Statuse) Mortgage deduction
Maintain Statusf) Student loan credit
g) Other or expanded categories
Yes4) Do you support permanent repeal of the federal estate tax?
Yes5) Do you support eliminating taxes on dividends paid to individual investors?
Yes6) Should a married couple filing jointly pay the same taxes as if they were an unmarried couple filing separately?
7) Other or expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding campaign finance and government reform.

a) Support public taxpayer funding for federal candidates who comply with campaign spending limits.
Xb) Increase the amount individuals are permitted to contribute to federal campaigns.
c) Prohibit Political Action Committee (PAC) contributions to candidates for federal office.
d) Allow unregulated soft money campaign contributions to political parties or committees.
e) Allow ads paid for by soft money that support or attack a candidate for federal office.
Xf) Allow issue advocacy commercials by corporations, labor unions, and non-profit groups which appear within 60 days of a general election and within 30 days of a primary election.
g) Remove all contribution limits on federal campaigns and parties.
Noh) Do you support instant run-off voting (IRV)?
Noi) Should Election Day be a national holiday?
Noj) Should same-sex couples be allowed to form civil unions?
Yesk) Should marriage be restricted to a union only between a man and a woman?
l) 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) Impose "truth in sentencing" for violent criminals so they serve full sentences with no chance of parole.
Xd) Support programs to provide prison inmates with vocational and job-related skills and job-placement assistance when released.
Xe) Support programs to provide prison inmates with drug and alcohol addiction treatment.
f) Reduce prison sentences for those who commit non-violent crimes.
Xg) Support additional criminal penalties if a fetus is killed in the commission of a federal crime against a pregnant woman.
h) Require that crimes based on gender, sexual orientation, and disability be prosecuted as federal hate crimes.
Xi) Support programs that provide job training and placement services for at-risk youth.
Xj) Impose stricter penalties for those convicted of white-collar crimes.
Xk) Enforcement of civil rights should primarily be the responsibility of the federal government.
Xl) Minors accused of a violent crime should be prosecuted as adults.
m) Other or expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding drugs.

Xa) Support mandatory jail sentences for selling illegal drugs.
Xb) Expand federally sponsored drug education and drug treatment programs.
c) Decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana.
d) Allow doctors to prescribe marijuana to their patients for medicinal purposes.
Xe) Increase border security to stop the flow of illegal drugs into the United States.
f) Eliminate federal funding for programs associated with the "war on drugs."
g) Other or expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding education.

a) Support national standards for and testing of public school students.
Xb) Allow parents to use vouchers (equal opportunity scholarships) to send their children to any public school.
Xc) Allow parents to use vouchers (equal opportunity scholarships) to send their children to any private or religious school.
Xd) Allow teachers and professionals to receive authorization and funding to establish charter schools.
Xe) Increase funding for block grants to states to aid in the hiring of additional teachers.
Xf) Support teacher testing and reward teachers with merit pay.
Xg) Increase funding for school capital improvements (e.g. buildings, infrastructure, technology).
h) Support granting states limited control over Head Start programs.
Xi) Support changing the mission of Head Start to emphasize improving the math and reading skills of disadvantaged children.
Xj) Providing education is not a responsibility of the federal government.
k) Support affirmative action in public college admissions.
Xl) Increase funding of programs such as Pell grants and Stafford loans to help students pay for college.
Xm) Support federal tax incentives to help families save for college.
n) Other or expanded principles

1) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding employment.

Xa) Increase funding for national job-training programs that re-train displaced workers or teach skills needed in today's job market.
Xb) Reduce government regulation of the private sector in order to encourage investment and economic expansion.
Xc) Provide tax credits or grants to businesses that offer child care services to employees.
Xd) Encourage employers to offer flex-time scheduling, comp-time, and unpaid leave for family emergencies.
e) Eliminate all federal programs designed to reduce unemployment.
f) Increase the federal minimum wage.
g) Support the right of workers to strike without fear of being permanently replaced.
Xh) Allow workers to sell company stock and to diversify their company retirement funds into other investment options.
i) Other or expanded principles

2) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding affirmative action.

a) The federal government should consider race and gender in government contracting decisions.
Xb) The federal government should discontinue affirmative action programs.
c) The federal government should continue affirmative action programs.
d) Include sexual orientation in federal anti-discrimination laws.
e) Other or expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the environment and energy.

a) Strengthen the regulation and enforcement of the Clean Water Act.
b) Strengthen the regulation and enforcement of the Clean Air Act.
Xc) Require states to compensate citizens when environmental regulations limit uses of privately-owned land.
Xd) Relax logging restrictions on federal lands.
Xe) Relax standards on federal lands to allow increased recreational usage.
Xf) Support increased development of traditional energy resources (e.g. coal, natural gas, oil).
g) Strengthen emission controls and fuel efficiency standards on all gasoline and diesel-powered engines, including cars, trucks, and sport utility vehicles.
Xh) Support opening a select portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil exploration.
Xi) Encourage further development and use of alternative fuels to reduce pollution.
Xj) Support the use of ethanol as an alternative fuel.
k) Allow energy producers to trade pollution credits.
l) Support the U.S. re-entering the Kyoto treaty process to limit global warming.
m) Other or expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding guns.

a) Renew the ban on the sale or transfer of semi-automatic guns, except those used for hunting.
b) Maintain and strengthen the current level of enforcement of existing federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
Xc) Ease federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
Xd) Repeal federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
Xe) Allow citizens to carry concealed guns.
f) Require manufacturers to provide child-safety locks on guns.
g) Require background checks on gun sales between private citizens at gun shows.
h) Require a license for gun possession.
i) Establish a national database of ballistic "fingerprints" to track guns used in criminal activities.
Xj) Support legislation that would protect manufacturers, distributors, dealers, and importers of firearms from civil lawsuits by crime victims.
k) Other or expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding health care.

Xa) Providing health care is not a responsibility of the federal government.
b) Implement a universal health care program to guarantee coverage to all Americans regardless of income.
Xc) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights which includes appeal mechanisms when claims are denied.
Xd) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights which includes the right to sue when claims are denied.
Xe) Expand eligibility for tax-free medical savings accounts.
Xf) Establish limits on the amount of punitive damages awarded in medical malpractice lawsuits.
Xg) Support expanding prescription drug coverage under Medicare.
Xh) Support expanding prescription drug coverage under private managed care plans.
Xi) Offer tax credits to individuals and small businesses to offset the cost of insurance coverage.
Xj) Support automatic enrollment of children in federal health care programs such as CHIP and Medicaid.
k) Allow 55-65 year-olds to buy into Medicare.
l) Support stem cell research on existing lines of stem cells.
m) Allow laboratories to create new lines of stem cells for additional research.
n) Other or expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding immigration.

Xa) Decrease the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country.
b) Establish English as the official national language.
c) Increase the number of visas issued for agricultural workers.
d) Relax restrictions barring legal immigrants from using social programs (e.g. public housing, food stamps).
e) Support amnesty for certain illegal immigrants who already reside in the United States.
Xf) Support the detention of asylum seekers from countries known to sponsor terrorism.
g) Other or expanded principles

International Aid

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding United States economic assistance.

Xa) Aid should be granted to countries when extraordinary circumstances cause disaster and threaten civilian lives.
Xb) Aid should be granted to countries when it is in the security interests of the United States.
c) Aid should be eliminated for any nation with documented human rights abuses.
Xd) Aid programs should be scaled back and eventually eliminated.
e) Other or expanded principles

International Policy

1) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the Middle East.

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?
Noc) Should the United States withdraw its troops from Iraq?
d) Discuss your proposals for the reconstruction of Iraq. What funding sources would you use to implement these proposals? (75 words or less. Please use an attached page if the space below is not adequate.)

Iraq needs security first, so they can peacefully grow their own economy and become self-sufficient, through oil revenue and outside investment

e) Other or expanded principles

2) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding Central and East Asia.

Yesa) Should the United States use diplomatic and economic pressure to encourage North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons program?
Yesb) Should the United States use military force to destroy the North Korean nuclear weapons program?
Noc) Should the United States remove the North Korean government from power?
Nod) Should the United States increase financial support to Afghanistan?
Yese) Should the United States increase military support to Afghanistan?
f) Other or expanded principles

3) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the United Nations.

Noa) Should the United States maintain its financial support of the United Nations?
Yesb) Should the United States decrease its financial support of the United Nations?
Noc) Should the United States commit troops to United Nations peacekeeping missions?
d) Other or expanded principles

US troops should always be under US commanders and never subject to international courts.

No4) Should the United States lift the travel ban to Cuba?
Yes5) Should the United States increase its financial support to Colombia to combat "the war on drugs"?
No6) Should aid to African nations for AIDS prevention programs fund distribution of contraceptives?
Yes7) Should aid to African nations for AIDS prevention fund abstinence education?
8) Other or expanded principles

International Trade

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding international trade.

Yes1) Do you support the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)?
Yes2) Do you support the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT)?
Yes3) Do you support continued U.S. membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO)?
Yes4) Should a nation's human rights record affect its normal trade relations (most favored nation) status with the United States?
Yes5) Do you support the trade embargo against Cuba?
Yes6) Should trade agreements include provisions to address environmental concerns and to protect workers' rights?
7) Other or expanded principles

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?
Yesb) Should the United States adopt stricter rules for student visa applications from nations known to sponsor terrorism?
Yesc) Should the United States grant law enforcement agencies greater discretion to read mail and email, tap phones, and conduct random searches to prevent future terrorist attacks?
Yesd) Should the United States hold foreign states accountable for terrorists who operate in their country?
Yese) Should the federal government increase funding to states and cities for homeland security?
Yesf) Do you support a policy of pre-emptive strikes against countries deemed to be a threat to national security?
g) Other or expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding Social Security.

Xa) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts which they manage themselves.
Xb) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts managed by private firms contracted by the government.
c) Invest a portion of Social Security assets collectively in stocks and bonds instead of United States Treasury securities.
d) Increase the payroll tax to better finance Social Security in its current form.
e) Lower the annual cost-of-living increases.
f) Raise the retirement age for when individuals are eligible to receive full Social Security benefits.
g) Other of expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding technology and communication.

a) Collect taxes on commercial Internet transactions.
Xb) Continue the moratorium on Internet taxation.
Xc) Implement regulation of Internet content.
Xd) Support government mandates to curtail violent and sexual content on television.
Xe) Support strict penalties for Internet crimes (e.g. hacking, identity theft, worms/viruses).
Xf) Support legislation to detail how personal information can be collected and used on the Internet.
g) Regulating the Internet is not a responsibility of the federal government.
Xh) Impose regulations on "spam" emails.
i) Other or expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding welfare and poverty.

Xa) Require welfare recipients to spend at least 40 hours a week in a combination of work and training programs.
Xb) Increase funding for child care programs.
Xc) Continue to give states and local governments flexibility in and responsibility for welfare programs through federal block grants.
Xd) Direct federal poverty aid through religious, community-based, or other non-profit organizations.
e) Abolish all federal welfare programs.
Xf) Support housing assistance for low-income families.
g) Other or expanded principles
On an attached page, disk, or via email, please explain in a total of 75 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.

1. I will work to build great jobs in Louisiana by fighting political corruption that costs us jobs and by making the tax cuts permanent to encourage growth.
2. I will work to make quality health care more affordable, including lowering prescription drug costs by allowing reimportation safely from Canada.
3. I will protect the Social Security Trust Fund from ever being raided and spent on other programs.