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Bruce Westerman's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

Office: U.S. House (AR) - District 4, Republican
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Bruce Westerman has provided voters with clear stances on key issues by responding to the 2016 Political Courage Test.

What is the Political Courage Test?

Arkansas Congressional Election 2016 Political Courage Test


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 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.
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. 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
NoIn order to balance the budget, do you support reducing defense spending?
NoCandidate AnswerIn order to balance the budget, do you support an income tax increase on any tax bracket?
Other or expanded principles
NoDo you support the regulation of indirect campaign contributions from corporations and unions?
Other or expanded principles
YesDo you support capital punishment for certain crimes?
YesDo you support alternatives to incarceration for certain non-violent offenders such as mandatory counseling or substance abuse treatment?
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support mandatory minimum sentences for non-violent drug offenders?
Other or expanded principles

All offenders should be held accountable for their crimes. I am a proponent of using programs such as drug courts to deal with minor drug offenses.

NoCandidate AnswerDo you support federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth?
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support lowering taxes as a means of promoting economic growth?
NoDo you support providing tax incentives to businesses for the purpose of job creation?
Other or expanded principles

I support lowering taxes on businesses to allow businesses to create jobs.

NoInferred Answer Do you generally support requiring states to adopt federal education standards? View Citations
  • "The bill prevents the feds from imposing common standards. The Student Success Act protects state and local autonomy over decisions by preventing the Secretary of Education from coercing states into adopting Common Core or any other common standards or assessments." (
  • Do you support requiring states to implement education reforms in order to be eligible for competitive federal grants? "No" (
Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support building the Keystone XL pipeline?
NoCandidate AnswerDo you support government funding for the development of renewable energy (e.g. solar, wind, thermal)?
NoDo you support increased regulations on the hydraulic fracturing ("fracking") industry?
Other or expanded principles
YesDo you believe that human activity is contributing to climate change?
NoCandidate AnswerDo you support the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions?
Other or expanded principles

Many activities can influence climate but the human activities are negligible.

NoCandidate AnswerDo you generally support gun-control legislation?
Other or expanded principles
YesCandidate AnswerDo you support repealing the 2010 Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare")?
Other or expanded principles
YesInferred Answer Do you support requiring immigrants who are unlawfully present to return to their country of origin before they are eligible for citizenship? View Citations
  • "The Supreme Court made the right call today by upholding the lower court's decision on President Obama's executive action on immigration [...] His administration's attempt to give legal status to those who broke the law was a clear overreach of his office. This should be a reminder to President Obama and future presidents that the power to make laws was given to Congress and the American people will not stand for a president who does not uphold in the principles of our Constitution." (
  • "Only when operational control is maintained for a sufficient period should Congress undertake any effort for reform. I remain opposed to amnesty, including a special pathway to citizenship, as it ignores the rule of law." (
Other or expanded principles
NoCandidate AnswerDo you support same-sex marriage?
Other or expanded principles
YesInferred Answer Do you support increased American intervention in Iraq and Syria beyond air support? View Citations
  • Arkansas News "The world is a dangerous place and U.S. leadership has been weak. We shouldn’t announce to the enemy that we won’t put boots on the ground, or continually draw lines in the sand and then back away. ISIS want to bring the war here to us and I believe they are actively doing that." (
  • "My thoughts and prayers are with the Sotloff family, his fellow journalists, as well as the family of James Foley who are reliving their horror today. ISIS has conducted a second despicable and disgusting act against an American citizen. These acts point to the urgent need for the U.S. to develop an aggressive strategy and plan to confront ISIS and protect American citizens." (
YesShould the U.S use military force in order to prevent governments hostile to the United States from possessing a nuclear weapon?
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
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.
Maintain Statusa) Agriculture
Slightly Decreaseb) Arts
Slightly Increasec) Defense
Slightly Decreased) Education
Greatly Decreasee) Environment
Slightly Increasef) Homeland Security
Slightly Decreaseg) International aid
Maintain Statush) Medical Research
Maintain Statusi) Scientific Research
Maintain Statusj) Space exploration
Greatly Decreasek) United Nations
Greatly Decreasel) Welfare
m) Other or expanded categories
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.
Slightly Decreasea) Capital gains taxes
Greatly Decreaseb) Corporate taxes
Greatly Decreasec) Small business taxes
Maintain Statusd) Excise taxes (alcohol)
Maintain Statuse) Excise taxes (cigarettes)
Maintain Statusf) Excise taxes (transportation fuel)
Greatly Decreaseg) Income taxes (low-income families)
Greatly Decreaseh) Income taxes (middle-income families)
Maintain Statusi) Income taxes (high-income families)
Greatly Decreasej) Inheritance taxes
Greatly Decreasek) Payroll taxes
l) Other or expanded categories
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.
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