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Paul Gosar's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

Office: U.S. House (AZ) - District 4, Republican
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Paul Gosar has refused to provide voters with positions on key issues covered by the 2016 Political Courage Test, despite repeated requests. Historically, candidates have failed to complete our test due to the advice they receive from their parties and advisors and out of fear of negative attack ads.

What is the Political Courage Test?

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 issue positions, from the year 2016, are provided below as a courtesy to voters.

Pro-life Inferred Answer Abortion: Do you generally support pro-choice or pro-life legislation? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Life begins at conception and that is why I am Pro-Life." (
  • Cosponsored and voted in favor of H.R.36 "Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act" (
  • Rated 0% by Planned Parenthood (
No Inferred Answer Budget: In order to balance the budget, do you support an income tax increase on any tax bracket? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "I will not vote to increase taxes. I stand firm in my conviction that you are the best person to determine how to spend it. Between federal income taxes, property taxes, sales taxes, state taxes, payroll taxes, airline and transportation taxes, cell phone taxes, utility taxes, fuel taxes, alternative minimum taxes, etc., the American people are taxed enough. It is your money, for your family. I will always fight to ensure your family gets to keep your hard earned dollars." (
  • Arizona Republic "I do not believe our government should punish success and hard work. Nor should it punish marriage. Progressive taxes do just that. Under our current progressive tax laws, 'wealthy Americans' already pay more in taxes." (
No Inferred Answer Crime: Do you support mandatory minimum sentences for non-violent drug offenders? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • US News "While reducing mandatory minimums may be good policy, I hope the Attorney General fully understands that Congress should address the issue through legislation." (
Yes Inferred Answer Economy: Do you support federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Throughout my time in Congress, I have been a strong supporter of Arizona transportation initiatives. I have worked with local cities, towns, counties, and tribal governments to advocate on behalf of rural Arizona projects. I have fought to ensure federal transportation programs give rural proposals a fair shot in the competitive process. I was instrumental in the authorization of the future I-11 corridor project, the critical first step of the major economic development project that will connect Phoenix and Las Vegas, the two largest cities in the nation not linked by an interstate highway." (
  • "As for federal spending, however, I don’t agree every project is 'pork' since that connotes wasteful or unnecessary projects. I do not support unnecessary projects. I do believe the federal government’s role is appropriate in large scale interstate infrastructure projects. Congress is to promote commerce." (
Yes Inferred Answer Economy: Do you support lowering taxes as a means of promoting economic growth? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Arizona Republic "I support a flatter, fairer tax system. We need to simplify the tax code. It is not right that people have to spend days figuring out their tax returns and need to hire lawyers and accountants. Everyone benefits if the system is simpler, flatter and fairer. And, we need a system where every citizen contributes something." (
  • "It is time that we eliminate burdensome regulations and reduce tax rates so that our job creators and small businesses have the ability to empower themselves." (
  • Voted in favor of H.R.4438 "American Research and Competitiveness Act of 2014" (
No Inferred Answer Education: Do you generally support requiring states to adopt federal education standards? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "As a general matter, education is something that is usually best handled at the local level. Local communities and school boards know what their students need on a day to day basis far better than anyone in Washington, D.C. Dictates from the federal government about what shall or shall not be taught are generally misguided." (
  • "We need to eliminate the Department of Education and send that money to local communities so they can determine what is best for their children." (
Yes Inferred Answer Energy: Do you support building the Keystone XL pipeline? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Voted in favor of S.1 "A bill to Approve the Keystone XL Pipeline" (
  • "It took approximately 60 minutes for the president to issue a veto threat on the overwhelmingly bipartisan legislation which would finally pave the way for construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. "With this action, the president has effectively vetoed the possibility of 42,000 good paying jobs, an increase of $3 billion in GDP growth and a vital infrastructure project." (
  • Signed a letter stating "It is time to act in our nation's best interest and approve the Keystone XL pipeline." (
Yes Inferred Answer Energy: Do you support government funding for the development of renewable energy (e.g. solar, wind, thermal)? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "I have introduced bipartisan legislation, the Public Lands Renewable Energy Development Act, that streamlines permitting for wind, solar and geothermal energy projects on public lands, while creating a revenue source to assist local governments in their efforts […]" (
  • "The federal government must partner with industry, small business, and state and local governments to ensure our public lands continue to be utilized for diverse purposes such as outdoor recreation, livestock grazing, mineral development, and energy production, while still protecting natural treasures." (
No Inferred Answer Environment: Do you support the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Arizona Republic "Cap and Tax (Trade) is just another Big Government goal of taking over private markets and dictating lifestyle choices." (
  • Voted in favor of S.J.Res.23 "A Joint Resolution Providing for Congressional Disapproval Under Chapter 8 of Title 5, United States Code, of a Rule Submitted by the Environmental Protection Agency Relating to 'Standards of Performance for Greenhouse Gas Emissions from New, Modified, and Reconstructed Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units' " (
  • "The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently announced alarming new plans to set carbon standards for existing power plants […] These plans are the Obama Administration's new strategy to impose a 'cap and trade' agenda on coal-fired energy production, even though a bipartisan majority in Congress rejected those policies more than four years ago." (
No Inferred Answer Guns: Do you generally support gun-control legislation? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "I am especially pleased to see the House support my actions today to protect the second amendment and defund the 7N6 ammo ban, not only because of the legislation's merits, but also because the idea for the amendment was inspired by citizens from Prescott, Arizona." (
  • Rated 93% by National Rifle Association (
  • Voted in favor of H.Amdt.1098 "Prohibits District of Columbia from Implementing Certain Firearm Laws" (
  • "In Congress, I will not vote for a bill that attempts to interfere with the rights of gun ownership by law abiding citizens." (
Yes Inferred Answer Health Care: Do you support repealing the 2010 Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare")? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • The Arizona Republic "I have voted 29 times to repeal or defund ObamaCare and will continue to do so." (
  • "If we are serious about putting our nation back to work, then we can start by repealing the onerous health care law and work hand-in-hand with the American people to implement true health care reform." (
  • Voted in favor of H.R.3762 "Restoring Americans' Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act of 2015" (
Yes Inferred Answer Immigration: Do you support requiring immigrants who are unlawfully present to return to their country of origin before they are eligible for citizenship? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "We are not ready to address amnesty until we control and secure our borders. That is the first priority." (
  • "Congress has made no new authorizations or appropriations to send planes to Central America for the purposes of flying illegal immigrants back to the U.S. Given our current national security threats and border crises, I am appalled that the administration would create and implement a new amnesty program that will incentivize further illegal immigration." (
  • "Dr. Gosar opposes amnesty in all forms and will continue to do everything in his power to secure the border and end unlawful executive immigration policies that are putting Arizona communities at risk." (
  • Voted in favor of H.Amdt.136 "Prohibits the Enforcement of the Immigration Executive Order" (
No Inferred Answer Marriage: Do you support same-sex marriage? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Rated 0% by Human Rights Campaign (
  • Arizona Republic "I oppose same-sex marriage. I do not believe any government should discriminate against people, but same-sex marriage is a redefinition of the historic institution of marriage." (
Yes Inferred Answer National Security: Do you support increased American intervention in Iraq and Syria beyond air support? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "With recent ISIS murders of 2 Japanese nationals and a Jordanian national, the time to act is now. The United States must clearly demonstrate resolve to bring an end to these atrocities. I want these monsters to know that when you harm innocent Americans, swift and absolute justice will follow close behind." (
  • "The American people have a decreased desire for conflict as a result of lengthy and costly operations in the Middle East. But without these targeted airstrikes against ISIS, these savages will continue their horrendous and despicable acts against the Iraqi people which include rape and mass genocide. Additionally, these strikes are necessary to protect U.S troops and facilities in the region. Our nation has spilled blood and treasure over the years to liberate the Iraqi people from oppression. It would be an insult to our soldiers and the Iraqi people alike if the U.S. stood by and did nothing and let this terrorist organization rule the region as they see fit." (
Unknown Position Unknown Answer Social Security: Do you support allowing individuals to divert a portion of their Social Security taxes into personal retirement accounts? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "I oppose the privatization of Social Security. Unfortunately, my opponent -- Ann Kirkpatrick and her liberal friends from Washington, D.C. -- are trying to mislead voters about my position." (
  • "The Congressional Budget Office, as well as the Medicare and Social Security Trustees, have reported to us that the systems in place are unsustainable and will fail unless we reform them. That is why I voted for the Ryan Budget, and I voted for the RSC budget. Both budget plans save Social Security and Medicare. Without reforms now, or a drastic change in demographics, these programs will likely fail." (


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.

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