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Leigh-Ann Bellew's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

Project Vote Smart does not permit the use of its name or programs in any campaign activity, including advertising, debates, and speeches.
Leigh-Ann Bellew has refused to provide voters with positions on key issues covered by the 2013 Political Courage Test, despite repeated requests. Leigh-Ann Bellew is still welcome to submit the test at any time.

What is the Political Courage Test?

Congressional Election 2006 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 public funding of abortions and to organizations that advocate or perform abortions.
g) Other or expanded principles

I believe all human life is valuable and deserves respect and dignity @ all stages of development from conception through maturity and into senior ages - no matter the infirmities or limitations.

Using the key, indicate what federal funding levels you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category, you can use a number more than once.
Budget Priorities
Greatly Decreasea) Agriculture
Greatly Decreaseb) Arts
Slightly Increasec) Defense
Maintain Statusd) Education
Slightly Decreasee) Environment
Greatly Increasef) Homeland security
Slightly Decreaseg) International aid
Greatly Increaseh) Law enforcement
Maintain Statusi) Medical research
Maintain Statusj) National parks
Maintain Statusk) Public health services
Slightly Increasel) Scientific research
Slightly Increasem) Space exploration programs
Maintain Statusn) Transportation and highway infrastructure
Greatly Decreaseo) Welfare
Greatly Increasep) Emergency preparedness
q) Other or expanded categories
Defense Spending
Slightly Increasea) Armed forces personnel training
Greatly Increaseb) Intelligence operations
Slightly Increasec) Military hardware
Greatly Increased) Modernization of weaponry and equipment
Slightly Increasee) National missile defense
Greatly Increasef) Pay for active duty personnel
Slightly Increaseg) Programs to improve troop retention rates
Greatly Increaseh) Research and development of new weapons
Greatly Increasei) Troop and equipment readiness
j) 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
Maintain Statusa) Less than $25,000
Greatly Decreaseb) $25,000-$75,000
Greatly Decreasec) $75,000-$150,000
Slightly Decreased) Over $150,000
e) Other or expanded categories
Retiree Income
Slightly Decreasef) Over $40,000
g) Other or expanded categories
Other Taxes:
Maintain Statusa) Alcohol taxes
Greatly Decreaseb) Capital gains taxes
Maintain Statusc) Cigarette taxes
Slightly Decreased) Corporate taxes
Greatly Decreasee) Gasoline taxes
Greatly Decreasef) Inheritance taxes
g) Other or expanded categories
Deductions/Credits:
Greatly Increasea) Charitable contributions
Greatly Increaseb) Child tax credit
Slightly Increasec) Earned income tax credit
Greatly Increased) Medical expense deduction
Slightly Increasee) Mortgage deduction
Slightly Increasef) Student loan credit
g) Other or expanded categories
Yes4) Do you support the permanent repeal of the federal estate tax?
Yes5) Do you support making President Bush's tax cuts permanent?
6) Discuss your proposals for balancing the federal budget. (75 words or less. Please use an attached page if the space below is not adequate.)

Simplification of Tax Code to increase revenues, ending the practice of earmark and pork spending, forthright review of all spending programs to determine appropriate spending decreases and eliminate frivolous spending programs. Place a sunset on spending bills that will require review and analysis spending programs for results. Taxpayers deserve a Gov't that balances the budget and spends their dollars responsibly. A Fiscally Accountible Gov't.

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) Remove all contribution limits on federal campaigns and parties.
f) Require Section 527 organizations to register with the Federal Election Commission as Political Action Committees.
Undecidedg) Do you support instant run-off voting?
Yesh) Should Election Day be a national holiday?
Yesi) Do you support a constitutional amendment that would define marriage as a union between a man and woman?
j) Other or expanded principles

I believe the Constitution protects the free speech rights of groups & individuals and that is especially true when the speech is part of the political process, such as elections and on issues that concern the Governed.

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding crime.
a) 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 educational, vocational and job-related skills and job-placement assistance when released.
Xd) Support programs to provide prison inmates with drug and alcohol addiction treatment.
e) Reduce prison sentences for those who commit non-violent crimes.
f) Require that crimes based on gender, sexual orientation, and disability be prosecuted as federal hate crimes.
Xg) Impose stricter penalties for those convicted of corporate crimes.
h) Minors accused of a violent crime should be prosecuted as adults.
i) Other or expanded principles

While I do not support the death penalty for I respect ALL human life. I am in favor of strict mandatory sentence guidelines which include lifetime sentences that are served in high security prisons for LIFE.

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding drugs.
Xa) Support mandatory jail sentences for selling illegal drugs.
b) Expand federally sponsored drug education and drug treatment programs.
c) Decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana.
d) Allow doctors to recommend 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."
Xg) Support a federal law to standardize testing and penalties for steroid use in professional sports.
h) Other or expanded principles

Drug addiction and Drug use is seldom a victimless crime and in most cases leads to more serious & even violent crime. Therefore, drug related crime must be taken seriously and addicts must receive treatment to end the cycle of destruction.

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) Reward teachers with merit pay for working in low-income schools.
f) Increase funding for school capital improvements (e.g. buildings, infrastructure, technology).
g) Support affirmative action in public college admissions.
h) Increase funding of programs such as Pell grants and Stafford loans to help students pay for college.
Xi) Support federal tax incentives to help families save for college.
j) Other or expanded principles

Local School Boards and Parents are best equipped and suited to make decisions about the educational needs of THIER CHILDREN

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.
c) 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.
h) Include sexual orientation in federal anti-discrimination laws.
i) Other or expanded principles

Although Gov't may make assistance available, it should not be able to remove the primary decision-making on all issues from the private employer or local entities

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) Other or expanded principles

All people should be given the opportunity to succeed based on thier skills and character and NOT on race, creed, nationality, gender or religious and political affiliations

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.
c) Support Clear Skies Act to reduce power plant emissions by setting a national cap on pollutants.
Xd) Require states to compensate citizens when environmental regulations limit uses of privately-owned land.
Xe) Relax logging restrictions on federal lands.
Xf) Relax standards on federal lands to allow increased recreational usage.
Xg) Support increased development of traditional energy resources (e.g. coal, natural gas, oil).
h) Strengthen emission controls and fuel efficiency standards on all gasoline and diesel-powered engines, including cars, trucks, and sport utility vehicles.
Xi) Support opening a portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil exploration.
Xj) Encourage further development and use of alternative fuels to reduce pollution.
Xk) Support the use of ethanol as an alternative fuel.
l) Allow energy producers to trade pollution credits.
m) Support the Kyoto Protocol to limit global warming.
n) Other or expanded principles

The results of regualtions and spending should be thoroughly reviewed and analyzed before more funding be committed. For those programs producing results more funding should be considered. For those programs/regulations not producing results should be examined as to why they are not working

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding guns.
a) Reauthorize the ban on the sale or transfer of semi-automatic guns, except those used for hunting.
Xb) Maintain and strengthen the current level of enforcement of existing federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
c) Ease federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
d) Repeal federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
Xe) Allow citizens to carry concealed guns.
f) Require background checks on gun sales between private citizens at gun shows.
Xg) Require a license for gun possession.
h) Other or expanded principles

The 2nd Amendment to the Constitution clearly states that it is a RIGHT of the people to keep and bear arms and that right SHALL NOT be infringed. The writers of the Constitution also are well documented on their reasoning behind this clause for the right of self defense & defense of property

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) Expand eligibility for tax-free medical savings accounts.
Xd) Establish limits on the amount of punitive damages awarded in medical malpractice lawsuits.
Xe) Support expanding prescription drug coverage under Medicare.
f) Offer tax credits to individuals and small businesses to offset the cost of insurance coverage.
g) Support automatic enrollment of children in federal health care programs such as CHIP and Medicaid.
h) Support stem cell research on existing lines of stem cells.
i) Allow laboratories to create new lines of stem cells for additional research.
j) Other or expanded principles

Stem cell research (and public funding there of) should be limited to non-embryonic as that is the only field of research producing cures and treatments now and in the foreseeable future. In addition, the risks of embryonic stem cells causing cancerous tumors is 1 in 4 to 1 in 100. That is a risk too high to risk.

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding immigration.
a) Decrease the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country.
Xb) Establish English as the official national language.
c) Support a temporary worker program that would enable illegal immigrants to work in the United States legally.
d) Relax restrictions barring legal immigrants from using government funded social programs (e.g. public housing, food stamps).
e) Support amnesty for illegal immigrants already working in the United States.
f) Other or expanded principles

All immigration reform must include stricter enforcement of the border & greater security. Background checks on all applying for temporary work permits. Penalties must be increased and imposed on all employers who hire illegal immigrants knowingly, and for those who illegally enter our country

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.
Xc) Aid should be eliminated for any nation with documented human rights abuses.
d) International Aid programs should be scaled back and eventually eliminated.
e) Other or expanded principles

All foreign aid should be based on human right protection and the freedom & liberties allowed & protected by the governments receiving aid. As well as the foreign gov't's ability to distribute aid to its citizens without fraud and corruption

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?
Undecidedb) Should the United States support the creation of a Palestinian state?
Noc) Should the United States withdraw its troops from Iraq?
Nod) Should the United States send more troops to Iraq?
e) Discuss your proposals for an exit strategy in Iraq. (75 words or less. Please use an attached page if the space below is not adequate.)

The U.S. should stay in Iraq until such time as the Iraqi Gov't. & military can defend and protect the citizens and visitors from enemies foreign and domestic. Iraq cannot be used as a permenant base of operations for terrorist organizations. The Iraqi people deserve a secure & free Iraq

f) Other or expanded principles

The Iraqi Gov't must be able to protect & defend the rights & liberties of it's people. And the Coalition must stay until such time as the Gov't of Iraq can do so.

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?
Undecidedb) Should the United States use military force to dismantle the North Korean nuclear weapons program?
Yesc) Should the United States remove the North Korean government from power?
Undecidedd) Should the United States increase financial support to Afghanistan?
Yese) Should the United States increase military support to Afghanistan?
f) Other or expanded principles

All diplomatic & economic efforts must be attempted before the use of force is entertained: however; North Korea should not be allowed to possess nuclear weapons.

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?
Undecidedc) Should the United States commit troops to United Nations peacekeeping missions?
d) Other or expanded principles

As it is clear to me that the U.N. has NOT performed its stated duties effectively, I cannot justify giving that body any additional funding. In fact it has peformed so poorly that the U.S. Gov't should consider decreased funding until such time as there is a notable improvement in U.N. function

No4) Should the United States lift the travel ban to Cuba?
Undecided5) Should the United States increase its financial support to Colombia to combat "the war on drugs?"
Yes6) Should aid to African nations for AIDS prevention programs fund distribution of contraceptives?
Yes7) Should aid to African nations for AIDS prevention programs fund abstinence education?
8) Other or expanded principles

Funding should be reviewed and analyzed for results before committing additional funds. However, this does not mean that I favor a decrease in current funding levels at this time

International Trade
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding international trade.
Undecided1) Do you support the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)?
Undecided2) Do you support the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA)?
Undecided3) Do you support the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT)?
Undecided4) Do you support continued U.S. membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO)?
Yes5) Should a nation's human rights record affect its normal trade relations (most favored nation) status with the United States?
Yes6) Do you support the trade embargo against Cuba?
Yes7) Should trade agreements include provisions to address environmental concerns and to protect workers' rights?
8) Other or expanded principles

I would like to review the economic effects of NAFTA, CAFTA, GATT & WTO on the U.S. worker. Also all trade agreements must be honored by BOTH parties. I am unsure if our partners are abiding by thier agreements. As is the case w/ Mexico & the border situation.

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 grant law enforcement agencies greater discretion to read mail and email, tap phones, and conduct random searches to prevent future terrorist attacks?
Yesc) Should the United States hold foreign states accountable for terrorists who operate in their country?
Yesd) Should the federal government increase funding to states and cities for homeland security?
Yese) Do you support the prohibition of torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment of prisoners in U.S. custody?
Yesf) Do you support a policy of pre-emptive military strikes against countries deemed to be a threat to U.S. national security?
g) Other or expanded principles

After the attack that took place in our nation on 9/11/01, we cannot take lightly threats that are accumulating in distant lands beyond our borders. It is the principal responsibility of our Federal Gov't to protect the lives and security of it's citizens

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 individual eligibility to receive full Social Security benefits.
g) Other of expanded principles

Social Security reform is needed now. The promise must be fulfilled for our mature citizens. However, it must also be changed to adequately remain effective for younger workers in the future. The current system is broken and if not fixed will be broken in less than 20 yrs

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.
c) Implement government 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).
f) 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.
h) Other or expanded principles

The Gov't has the responsibility to monitor for decency public airways (TV, radio) as that is accessible to minors. However private access that is paid for by an individual should not be under the same decency standards.

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.
b) 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.
f) Support housing assistance for welfare recipients.
g) Other or expanded principles

For those capable of doing so after a reasonable time - self-reliance should be the ultimate goal of all public assistance and welfare programs. That self reliance goal will ultimately lead to better economic security in the future for those who are in need of assistance

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.
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