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Raj Raghavan's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

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Raj Raghavan has demonstrated Political Courage by telling citizens where he stands on the issues he may face if elected.

What is the Political Courage Test?

Presidential Election 2012 Political Courage Test

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: Click on this icon to reveal more information about this candidate's position.

Other or Expanded Principles & Legislative Priorities are entered exactly as the candidate has submitted it. Project Vote Smart does not edit for misspelled words, punctuation or grammar.

Pro-lifeCandidate AnswerDo you generally support pro-choice or pro-life legislation?
Other or expanded principles

However, abortion should be allowed in cases of rape, provided it occurs as early as possible during pregnancy. Non-consensual incest is rape. If the mother's life is in danger, doctors should attempt to save both lives if at all possible, otherwise favoring the mother's. Abortion should be allowed in the case of early detection of birth defects which would significantly impede the child's quality of life, at the parents' discretion.

Budget
Indicate which proposals you support (if any) for balancing the federal budget.
In order to balance the budget,
YesCandidate Answerdo you support reducing defense spending?
YesCandidate Answerdo you support an income tax increase on any tax bracket?
NoCandidate Answerdo you support reducing Medicaid spending?
YesCandidate Answerdo you support reducing Medicare spending?
YesCandidate AnswerIs balancing the budget an administrative priority?
Other or expanded principles

There is no need for the U.S. to spend more than the rest of the world combined on defense. Even 3.5% of GDP is more than adequate. Health care costs - not just Medicare - are the primary cause of the deficit. That is why strengthening health care reform to control costs is vital. Taxes are at their lowest share of the economy in over 60 years. We can raise them some for those who can afford it.

Spending
Indicate what federal spending levels (#1-6) you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category; you can use a number more than once.
Greatly Decreasea) Agriculture
Greatly Decreaseb) Arts
Slightly Decreasec) Defense
Slightly Increased) Education
Maintain Statuse) Environment
Maintain Statusf) Homeland Security
Slightly Increaseg) International aid
Maintain Statush) Medical Research
Slightly Increasei) Scientific Research
Slightly Decreasej) Space exploration
Maintain Statusk) United Nations
Maintain Statusl) Welfare
m) Other or expanded categories
Taxes
Indicate what federal tax levels (#1-6) you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category; you can use a number more than once.
Greatly Increasea) Capital gains taxes
Slightly Decreaseb) Corporate taxes
Maintain Statusc) Excise taxes (alcohol)
Maintain Statusd) Excise taxes (cigarettes)
Slightly Increasee) Excise taxes (transportation fuel)
Eliminatef) Income taxes (low-income families)
Slightly Increaseg) Income taxes (middle-income families)
Greatly Increaseh) Income taxes (high-income families)
Slightly Increasei) Inheritance taxes
Maintain Statusj) Payroll taxes
k) Other or expanded categories

Additional revenues and the elimination of wasteful tax breaks are part of any solution to balancing the budget. Increased excise taxes on fuel are necessary for infrastructure improvements. Corporate taxes can be reduced, while eliminating numerous tax breaks to simplify business taxes. Capital gains tax rates mainly benefit the wealthy who earn more of their income from investments rather than wages. Payroll taxes are necessary to preserve Medicare and Social Security.

NoDo you support the regulation of indirect campaign contributions from corporations and unions?
Other or expanded principles
NoDo you support capital punishment for certain crimes?
Other or expanded principles

With the exceptions on abortion noted above, I support the views of the Catholic Church on abortion, euthanasia, and capital punishment.

YesCandidate AnswerDo you support federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth?
NoCandidate AnswerDo you support providing tax incentives to businesses for the purpose of job creation?
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support spending on infrastructure projects for the purpose of job creation?
YesDo you support the 2010 temporary extension of unemployment benefits?
NoDo you support the 2010 temporary extension of tax relief?
Other or expanded principles

Tax incentives to businesses distort the market, especially since Congress grants these based on political lobbying as opposed to sound economic principles. Spending on airports, bridges, highways, and rail (infrastructure) are necessary for the proper maintenance of interstate commerce and to keep our economy growing. Without this, the economy will suffer. The Bush tax cuts were a bad idea to begin with, and should have been allowed to expire.

YesCandidate AnswerDo you support requiring states to implement education reforms in order to be eligible for competitive federal grants?
Other or expanded principles

Improving America's educational standards is vital to maintaining our standard of living in a competitive global economy.

YesDo you believe that human activity is contributing to climate change?
NoCandidate AnswerDo you support the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions?
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support reducing restrictions on offshore energy production?
Other or expanded principles

Yes, human activity contributes to climate change. But carbon dioxide is not a pollutant. Plants need CO2 for photosynthesis. We cannot reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere. We can only adapt to changes in climate. The world is facing an energy crisis as emerging economies continue to develop. All sources of energy must be part of a balanced mix.

YesCandidate AnswerDo you support United States' combat operations in Afghanistan?
NoDo you support a timetable for withdrawal from Afghanistan?
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support targeting suspected terrorists outside of official theaters of conflict?
Other or expanded principles

Although we cannot stay in Afghanistan forever, the U.S. needs to consolidate its gains to make sure they are preserved, before withdrawing.

NoCandidate AnswerDo you support restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns?
Other or expanded principles

One only need to look at the Arab Spring to realize that governments which restrict access to firearms abuse their military and police powers when dealing with their own citizens.

NoCandidate AnswerDo you support repealing the 2010 Affordable Care Act?
YesCandidate AnswerShould individuals be required to purchase health insurance, as mandated in the 2010 Affordable Care Act?
Other or expanded principles

Health care reform needs to be strengthened further to control costs. This is the only real way to bring the federal deficit under control.

YesCandidate AnswerDo you support requiring illegal immigrants to return to their country of origin before they are eligible for citizenship?
YesDo you support allowing illegal immigrants, who were brought to the United States as minors, to pursue citizenship without returning to their country of origin?
YesDo you support the enforcement of federal immigration law by state and local police?
Other or expanded principles

I support a guest visa program for agricultural workers, since it is primarily illegal immigrants who harvest our nation's produce in extreme weather conditions that discourage American workers from performing those same jobs.

YesCandidate AnswerDo you support same-sex marriage?
Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support allowing individuals to divert a portion of their Social Security taxes into personal retirement accounts?
Other or expanded principles
Please explain in a total of 100 words or less, your top two or three priorities if elected. If they require additional funding for implementation, please explain how you would obtain this funding.

Education funding needs to be better spent, with more of the same money going to merit-based teacher salaries to encourage the best and brightest to enter the profession. This is vital for America's global competitiveness. Infrastructure spending needs to be increased by raising the gasoline tax to compensate for improvements in vehicle mileage. Without good infrastructure, the nation's economy suffers. Beyond that, health care costs need to brought under control, along with reduced defense spending, to bring the federal budget into balance.

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