Representative Brett Guthrie's Political Positions

Office: U.S. House (KY) - District 2, Republican
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Brett Guthrie 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?

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

  • "Brett Guthrie is 100% pro-life, and has voted that way since his election to Congress. In 2008, Brett was endorsed by Kentucky Right to Life and has supported their positions on issues in Washington D.C. Brett Guthrie is the only candidate for congress in the second district who will vote for a pro-life Speaker of the House, which we currently don't have." (
  • Rated 100% by National Right to Life Committee (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Today's budget agreement is a win for Kentuckians and includes many provisions that originated in the House budget. Under this agreement, we will balance the budget within 10 years without raising taxes on families or businesses." (
  • Signed a pledge stating "ONE, oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rate for individuals and business; and TWO, oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • Signed a letter stating "If we are to attempt to reverse incidences of opioid dependence and the increasing number of opioid overdoses and opioid-related deaths associated with opioid addiction, it is important that patients have access to all FDA approved treatment options." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Brett strongly believes we must restrain spending, improve government efficiency, and reduce burdensome regulations to jump-start the American economy." (
  • Rated 84% by Club for Growth (
  • "Brett has opposed Speaker Pelosi on legislation that was sold as an emergency effort to help the economy, but instead funded liberal pet projects and added hundreds of billions of dollars to the national deficit. Brett strongly believes we must cut spending in Washington D.C., and he will continue to vote that way if given another term to represent the people of the second district of Kentucky." (
  • "This historic compromise amounts to $5 trillion in savings and would result in a $32 billion surplus in 2024. By putting the fiscal health of our country first, we are ensuring that our nation will be on sound footing for our children and grandchildren." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Specifically, the bill includes reforms related to the following issues: workforce training, the R&D tax credit, comprehensive tax reform, federal oil and gas resources, EPA regulations, the repeal of Obamacare, health insurance portability, renewal of trade promotion authority, export controls and opening up more spectrum for industry for technological innovation." (
  • Rated 92% by Chamber of Commerce (
  • "Brett feels the Washington Democrat majority's agenda to raise taxes on those who create jobs would be disastrous for our economy." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "States and local school districts need flexibility to deliver a quality education to our students. This agreement does just that. It gets the Federal Government out of our classrooms and puts the decision-making back in the hands of our State and local leaders." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • Voted in favor of S.1 "A Bill to Approve the Keystone XL Pipeline" (
  • "Strongly supports development of the Keystone XL Pipeline, which could lead to the creation of 20,000 American jobs and a new supply of energy from a friendly country." (
  • "It's #TimeToBuild the Keystone XL pipeline" (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Brett Guthrie supports an 'all of the above' energy policy for our country, which should include the use of one of Kentucky's most abundant resources – coal." (
  • "I am pleased to secure funding for this important research at the University of Kentucky. This research will be critical as we work to develop energy sources that are flexible and renewable. I applaud UK for investing in the efforts to help make our country energy independent." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Specifically, the bill includes reforms related to the following issues: workforce training, the R&D tax credit, comprehensive tax reform, federal oil and gas resources, EPA regulations, the repeal of Obamacare, health insurance portability, renewal of trade promotion authority, export controls and opening up more spectrum for industry for technological innovation." (
  • Voted in favor of H.R.910 "Energy Tax Prevention Act" (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Brett was given an 'A' rating by the National Rifle Association and agrees with a recent Supreme Court ruling affirming the right to keep and bear arms as an 'individual' right. Brett is committed to supporting Congressional leadership that supports the Second Amendment; a vote for Brett Guthrie in November is a vote against liberal congressional leadership that seeks to erode our precious constitutional right to keep and bear arms." (
  • Rated 92% by National Rifle Association (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Specifically, the bill includes reforms related to the following issues: workforce training, the R&D tax credit, comprehensive tax reform, federal oil and gas resources, EPA regulations, the repeal of Obamacare, health insurance portability, renewal of trade promotion authority, export controls and opening up more spectrum for industry for technological innovation." (
  • "Like the budget first proposed in the House, this agreement repeals Obamacare in full and strengthens Medicare. The agreement also ensures a strong national defense by increasing funding above the level proposed in President Obama’s budget." (
  • Voted in favor of H.R. 596 "Repeal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and Health Care-Related Provisions in the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010" (

Vote Smart's Research

  • Voted in favor of H.R.5759 "Preventing Executive Overreach on Immigration Act of 2014" (
  • Rated 100% by Federation for American Immigration Reform (

Vote Smart's Research

  • Rated 0% by American Civil Liberties Union (
  • Human Rights Campaign "Rep. Guthrie voted in favor of amending the Kentucky state constitution to prohibit marriage between same-sex couples." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "It remains in our country's best interest to destroy ISIL […] This group has proven to be an incredibly dangerous and critical threat to our national security. As the leader of a global coalition, we must train and equip regional fighters to confront the threat at hand, as well as to restore peace in the region." (


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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Kentucky State Legislative Election 1998 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) concerning abortion.

a) Abortions should always be legally available.
b) Abortions should be legal only within the first trimester of pregnancy.
Xc) Abortions should be legal only when pregnancy resulted from incest, rape, or when the life of the woman is endangered.
d) Abortions should be legal only when the life of the woman is endangered.
e) Abortions should always be illegal.
Xf) Abortions should be limited by waiting periods and parental notification requirements.
Xg) Prohibit the late-term abortion procedure known as "partial-birth" abortion.
h) Support "buffer zones" by requiring demonstrators to stay at least 15 feet away from abortion clinic doorways and driveways.
i) Other
Noj) Should Kentucky government funding be provided to clinics and medical facilities that provide abortion services?

Indicate the principles you support (if any) concerning affirmative action. State government agencies should take race and sex into account in the following sectors:

Undecideda) College and university admissions
Nob) Public employment
Noc) State contracting
d) Other

Indicate which principles you support (if any) to address crime.

Xa) Increase state funds for construction of state prisons and for hiring of additional prison staff.
Xb) Support contracting with private sector firms to manage medium security prisons.
Xc) End parole for repeat violent felons.
Xd) Expand the use of the death penalty for additional circumstances relating to murder.
e) Oppose the death penalty.
Xf) Implement penalties other than incarceration for certain non-violent offenders.
Xg) Inform communities when a convicted sex offender moves into the community.
h) Increase state funds for programs which rehabilitate and educate inmates during and after their prison sentences.
i) Decriminalize the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes.
Xj) Strengthen penalties and sentences for drug-related crimes.
Xk) Strengthen penalties and sentences for sex offenders.
Xl) Lower the limit defining drunk driving to .08 blood alcohol content.
Xm) Prosecute juveniles who commit murder or other serious violent crimes as adults.
Xn) Increase pay for police officers.
o) Other
Undecidedp) Do you support the Racial Justice Act, which allows accused killers to seek review of whether race played a role in their death penalty prosecution?

Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning the economy and employment.

Xa) Provide low interest loans and tax credits for starting, expanding, or relocating businesses.
Xb) Reduce state government regulations on the private sector in order to encourage investment and economic expansion.
Xc) Support limits on cash damages in lawsuits against businesses and professionals for product liability or malpractice.
Xd) Increase funding for state job-training programs that retrain displaced workers or teach skills needed in today's job market.
e) Support collective bargaining for public employees.
f) Implement a deposit on beverage bottles and cans.
g) Increase the weight limit on coal trucks.
h) Other

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

Xa) Increase state funds for professional development of public school teachers and administrators.
Xb) Encourage private or corporate investment in public school programs.
Xc) Provide parents with state-funded vouchers to send their children to any participating school (public, private, religious).
Xd) Favor charter schools where independent groups receive state authorization and funding to establish new schools.
Xe) Support sex education programs which stress abstinence.
f) Support sex education programs which stress safe sexual practices.
Xg) Increase state funds for school construction and facility maintenance.
Xh) Increase state funds for hiring of additional teachers.
Xi) Endorse voluntary prayer in public schools.
Xj) Support additional funding for a literacy research center and literacy intervention programs in elementary schools.
k) Other
Yesl) Do you support requiring students to take a statewide exam (CATS) and provide financial rewards or penalties to schools based on the results?

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

a) Require the use of cleaner burning fuels in order to prevent pollution.
Xb) Support "self-audit" legislation which creates incentives for industries to audit themselves and clean up pollution.
Xc) Require a cost/benefit analysis to determine the economic impact of proposed environmental regulations before they are implemented.
Xd) Require the state to fully compensate citizens when environmental regulations limit uses on privately owned land.
e) Provide funding for recycling programs in Kentucky.
Xf) Request added flexibility from the federal government in enforcing and funding federal environmental regulations.
Xg) Suspend participation in unfunded, federally mandated environmental protection legislation.
Xh) Restructure the electric utility industry to allow consumers to choose their power company.
i) Block new mining permits for coal companies controlled by other companies that have violated environmental regulations.
j) Support stricter regulations on large scale hog production.
k) Other
Yesl) State environmental regulations should not be stricter than federal law.
Nom) Do you support the Kentucky Forest Conservation Act that requires logger training and the use of certain techniques to reduce erosion?

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

Noa) Do you support amending the Kentucky Constitution to limit the number of terms of State Senators and Representatives?
Yesb) Do you support the current law which limits the number of terms the Governor can serve? (2, 4-year terms)

c) Do you support current limits on the following types of contributions to state legislative candidates?

No1) Individual
No2) PAC
No3) Corporate
Yesd) Do you support requiring full and timely disclosure of campaign finance information?
Noe) Do you support imposing spending limits on state level political campaigns?
Nof) Do you support partial funding from state taxes for state level political campaigns?
Yesg) Would you vote to ratify an amendment to the U.S. Constitution requiring an annual balanced federal budget?
Undecidedh) Would you support an amendment to the Kentucky Constitution requiring the legislature to meet every year?
i) Other

Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning gun issues.

a) Ban the sale or transfer of all forms of semi-automatic weapons.
b) Increase state restrictions on the purchase and possession of firearms.
c) Maintain state restrictions on the purchase and possession of firearms.
Xd) Favor allowing citizens to carry concealed firearms.
e) Require manufacturers to provide child-safety locks with firearms.
f) Other

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

Xa) Provide tax incentives to small businesses that provide health care to their employees.
b) Ensure that citizens have access to basic health care, through managed care, insurance reforms, or state funded care where necessary.
c) Support the Kentucky Children's Health Insurance Program (KCHIP) that provides access to health care for uninsured children.
d) Use state funds to continue some Medicaid coverage for legal immigrants.
e) Limit the amount of damages that can be awarded in medical malpractice lawsuits.
f) Guaranteeing medical care to all citizens is not a responsibility of state government.
g) Support state-funded incentives that increase the supply and retention of health professionals in rural areas.
h) Other
i) Do you support the current law that allows insurers to charge more for people with poor health?
j) Do you support the current law that allows insurers not to provide coverage for people with certain conditions such as AIDS, strokes and cancer?
k) Do you support recent changes to the Medicaid program that brought it under a managed care system?

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding social issues.

a) Increase state funding for programs to prevent teen pregnancy.
Xb) Provide tax credits for businesses that provide child care for their employees.
c) Increase state funds to provide child care to children in low-income working families.
Xd) Deny or suspend state-issued permits and licenses to parents who are delinquent in paying court-ordered child support.
e) Favor banning smoking in public places.
f) Increase state funding for Head Start in order to serve additional children and/or increase services from a half to a full day.
g) Increase state funding for community centers and other social agencies in areas with at-risk youth.
h) Support state funding of programs for at-risk youth such as guaranteed college loans and job training and placement.
i) Other
Noj) Do you believe that the Kentucky government should include sexual orientation in Kentucky's anti-discrimination laws?
Nok) Do you believe that the Kentucky government should recognize same-sex marriages?

Indicate the funding levels you will support for the following general categories. Select one level only.

Maintain Statusa) Agriculture
Slightly Increaseb) Education (K-12)
Slightly Increasec) Education (Higher)
Maintain Statusd) Environment
Maintain Statuse) Health care
Slightly Increasef) Law enforcement
Maintain Statusg) Transportation infrastructure (highways, roads, bridges)
Greatly Decreaseh) Welfare
i) Other

Indicate the tax levels you will support. Select one level only.

Maintain Statusa) Alcohol taxes
Greatly Decreaseb) Capital gains taxes
Maintain Statusc) Cigarette taxes
Maintain Statusd) Corporate taxes
Maintain Statuse) Gas taxes
Greatly Decreasef) Income taxes (incomes below $75,000)
Greatly Decreaseg) Income taxes (incomes above $75,000)
Slightly Decreaseh) Property taxes
Slightly Decreasei) Sales taxes
j) Other
Yesk) Do you support a flat tax structure for state income taxes?
Yesl) Do you support the proposed constitutional amendment allowing the Kentucky legislature to change or eliminate taxes on personal property?

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

Xa) Maintain the current time limits on welfare benefits.
Xb) Require able-bodied recipients to participate in work activities in order to receive benefits.
c) Increase employment and job training programs for welfare recipients.
Xd) Provide tax incentives to businesses that hire welfare recipients.
e) Provide child care for welfare recipients who work.
f) Increase access to public transportation for welfare recipients who work.
Xg) Allow welfare recipients to remain eligible for benefits while saving money for education, starting a business, or buying a home.
Xh) Limit benefits given to recipients if they have additional children while on welfare.
i) Eliminate government-funded welfare programs.
j) Other
Please explain what your two main legislative priorities will be if elected. Please explain how you would obtain any additional government funding needed to implement these priorities.

1. A "K-R" (kindergarten through Retirement) education system that educates our children, prepares our young adults for careers, and provides opportunities for adults to train for better jobs.
2. Reduce taxation, regulation, and litigation so that Kentucky will have a better business climate.

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