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*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 Vote Smart.
In response to the increasing unwillingness of candidates to answer issue questions, 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.
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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.
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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.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning abortion.
|a) Abortions should always be illegal.|
|b) Abortions should always be legally available.|
|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.|
|e) Abortions should be legal when the life of the woman is endangered.|
|f) Eliminate public funding for abortions and public funding of organizations that advocate or perform abortions.|
|g) Other or expanded principles|
I favor a woman's ability to choose. In the case of late-term abortions, I support restrictions except in cases when the procedure is needed to preserve the life of the mother or avert serious health consequences to the woman.
Using the key below, indicate what levels of federal funding you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category.
|Slightly Decrease Funding||a) Agricultural|
|Maintain Funding Status||b) Arts|
|Maintain Funding Status||c) Defense|
|Greatly Increase Funding||d) Education|
|Maintain Funding Status||e) Environmental|
|Maintain Funding Status||f) International Aid|
|Slightly Increase Funding||g) Law Enforcement|
|Greatly Increase Funding||h) Medical Research|
|Slightly Decrease Funding||i) National Aeronautical Space Administration (NASA)|
|Slightly Increase Funding||j) National Parks|
|Maintain Funding Status||k) Public Health Services|
|Slightly Increase Funding||l) Scientific Research|
|Greatly Increase Funding||m) Terrorism Prevention|
|Slightly Increase Funding||n) Transportation and Highway Infrastructure|
|Maintain Funding Status||o) Welfare|
|p) Other or expanded categories|
Most of these areas need and deserve additional resources; however, the economic downturn and the irresponsible tax and budget policies of the Bush Administration and the Republican Majority in Congress have vaporized the hard-won budget surpluses of recent years and replaced them with large budget deficits for as far as the eye can see. As a direct consequence, critically needed priorities are being staved for resources, and my responses reflect that reality.
Using the key below, indicate what levels of federal funding you support for the following categories. Select one number per category.
|Slightly Increase Funding||a) Armed Forces personnel training|
|Greatly Increase Funding||b) Covert intelligence operations|
|Maintain Funding Status||c) Military hardware|
|Slightly Increase Funding||d) Pay for active duty personnel|
|Slightly Decrease Funding||e) National Missile Defense Program|
|Maintain Funding Status||f) Programs to improve military retention rates|
|Maintain Funding Status||g) Research and development of new weapons|
|Slightly Increase Funding||h) Troop and equipment readiness|
|i) Other or expanded categories|
With regard to federal outlays for military hardware and R&D for new weapons, I supported the significant increases for both these functions included in the most recent defense funding legislation. At the same time, the Pentagon must do a much better job prioritizing the focus of our nation's procurement and R&D priorities. Simply put, we have too many weapons systems chasing too few dollars.
Using the key below, indicate what levels you support concerning taxes, deductions, and tax credits in the following categories. Select one number per tax.
Income Taxes - Family Income
|a) Less than $25,000|
|b) $25,000 - $75,000|
|c) $75,000 - $150,000|
|d) Over $150,000|
|e) Other or expanded categories|
Income Taxes - Retiree Income
|f) Over $40, 000|
|g) Other or expanded categories|
|a) Alcohol taxes|
|b) Capital gains taxes|
|c) Cigarette taxes|
|d) Corporate taxes|
|e) Gasoline taxes|
|f) Inheritance taxes|
|g) Other or expanded categories|
|a) Charitable deductions|
|b) Medical expense deductions|
|c) Mortgage deductions|
|d) Child tax credit|
|e) Earned income tax credit|
|f) Student loan tax credit|
|g) Other or expanded categories|
|2) Should a married couple filing jointly pay the same taxes as if they were an unmarried couple filing separately?|
|No||3) Would you use Social Security surpluses to balance the budget?|
|4) Other or expanded principles|
We are currently in year two of a 9-year, $1.6 trillion tax cut. As many predicted during the debate on the President's tax cut last year, the sheer size of the tax cut has been a key factor in sending the federal budget back into deficit, to the point where Social Security and Medicare funds are being used to fund the tax cut. Congress should retain the tax cuts that have already taken place, but postpone most of the tax cuts scheduled for future years that are not yet in effect - the vast majority of which benefit only the very richest taxpayers. These funds should be reserved for Social Security and Medicare.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding campaign finance and governmental reform issues.
|a) Support public taxpayer funding for congressional candidates who comply with campaign spending limits.|
|b) Increase the amount individuals are permitted to contribute to federal campaigns.|
|c) Prohibit Political Action Committee (PAC) contributions to candidates for federal office.|
|X||d) Provide free or low-cost television advertising to candidates who agree to voluntary campaign spending limits.|
|X||e) Ban unregulated soft money campaign contributions to political parties or committees.|
|X||f) Prohibit non-U.S. citizens from making soft money contributions to national parties or party committees.|
|X||g) Require full disclosure of funding sources of issue advocacy commercials which appear within 60 days of an election.|
|h) Remove all contribution limits to federal candidates and parties.|
|i) Require congressional candidates to raise over half of their campaign money from their home state.|
|j) Require that unions give members the option of not having membership dues used for political purposes.|
|Yes||k) Support the federal government mandate that creates national voting system standards.|
|No||l) Do you support amending the Constitution to limit the number of terms that members of Congress can serve?|
|No||m) Do you support voting on-line?|
|n) Other or expanded principles|
Indicate which principles you support (if any) to address crime.
|a) Eliminate the use of the death penalty for federal crimes.|
|b) Increase spending to build more federal prisons.|
|c) Impose "truth in sentencing" for violent criminals so they serve full sentences with no chance of parole.|
|X||d) Support programs to provide prison inmates with vocational and job-related skills and job-placement assistance when released.|
|X||e) Support programs to provide prison inmates with drug and alcohol addiction treatment.|
|X||f) Increase funding for community policing programs.|
|g) Implement penalties other than incarceration for certain non-violent offenders.|
|X||h) Require that crimes based on gender, sexual orientation, and disability be prosecuted as federal hate crimes.|
|X||i) Enforcement of civil rights should primarily be the responsibility of the federal government.|
|j) Minors accused of a violent crime should be prosecuted as adults.|
|k) Support programs that provide job training and placement services for at-risk youth.|
|l) Other or expanded principles|
Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning illegal drugs.
|X||a) Increase penalties for selling illegal drugs.|
|b) Support mandatory jail sentences for selling illegal drugs.|
|X||c) Expand federally sponsored drug education and drug treatment programs.|
|d) Decriminalize the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes.|
|X||e) Increase border security to stop the flow of illegal drugs into the U.S.|
|f) Eliminate federal funding for programs associated with the "war on drugs."|
|X||g) Other or expanded principles|
I support stiff penalties for drug dealers, and also believe that the Michigan state legislature needs to address the problems arising from "mandatory-minimum" sentencing. I am the co-author of the Drug Free Communities law which provides federal grants to community anti-drug coalitions. These coalitions help to bring together all segments of our communities to combat drug use at the grassroots level. I also have actively supported the establishment of Drug Courts, including securing federal funds to start a new drug court in Warren, MI. The goal of these drug courts is to intervene early with non-violent offenders and use a combination of carrots and sticks to press individuals to address their substance abuse problems.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning education.
|a) Support national standards and testing of public school students.|
|b) Allow parents to use vouchers (equal opportunity scholarships) to send their children to any publicly-funded school.|
|c) Allow parents to use vouchers (equal opportunity scholarships) to send their children to any participating school: public, private or religious.|
|X||d) Support charter schools where teachers and professionals receive authorization and funding to establish new schools.|
|X||e) Increase funding for block grants to states to help them hire additional teachers.|
|f) Support teacher testing and reward teachers with merit pay.|
|X||g) Increase funding for computers and computer training in public schools.|
|X||h) Increase funding for school capital improvements (e.g. buildings and infrastructure).|
|i) Eliminate restrictions on federal education funding, giving educators or local school districts more flexibility to design and implement their programs.|
|X||j) Increase funding of programs such as Pell grants and Stafford loans to help students pay for college.|
|X||k) Support federal tax incentives to help families save for college.|
|X||l) Other or expanded principles|
Congress and the Bush Administration must honor the promises made last year to significantly increase federal resources to elementary and secondary education in this country.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding employment and affirmative action.
|X||a) Increase funding for national job-training programs that re-train displaced workers or teach skills needed in today's job market.|
|b) Reduce government regulation of the private sector in order to encourage investment and economic expansion.|
|X||c) Establish empowerment zones in areas with large numbers of unemployed people.|
|d) Provide tax credits for businesses that provide child care for their employees.|
|X||e) Encourage employers to offer flex-time scheduling, comp-time, and unpaid leave for family emergencies.|
|f) Eliminate any federal programs designed to reduce unemployment.|
|X||g) Increase the federal minimum wage.|
|h) Considering race and gender in government contracting decisions is appropriate for the federal government.|
|X||i) Include sexual orientation in federal anti-discrimination laws.|
|X||j) Continue federal affirmative action programs.|
|k) Discontinue federal affirmative action programs.|
|X||l) Other or expanded principles|
Congress should take action to extend unemployment compensation benefits.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding America's environment and natural resources.
|X||a) Strengthen the regulation and enforcement of the Clean Water Act.|
|X||b) Strengthen the regulation and enforcement of the Clean Air Act.|
|c) Support opening a select portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil exploration.|
|X||d) Support the U.S. re-entering the current Kyoto treaty process to limit global warming.|
|e) Require states to fully compensate citizens when environmental regulations limit uses of privately owned land.|
|X||f) Promote increased use of alternative fuel technology.|
|g) Strengthen emission controls on all gasoline or diesel-powered engines, including cars, trucks, and sport utility vehicles.|
|h) Provide tax credits for state and local bonds to preserve open spaces, build parks, improve water quality and redevelop brownfields.|
|i) Support the National Forest Protection and Restoration Act prohibiting commercial logging in our national forests.|
|X||j) Provide states and local communities with more flexibility to address their respective environmental problems.|
|X||k) Other or expanded principles|
Congress should also prohibit logging in roadless areas of our national forests; ban oil drilling in the Great Lakes, and allow give states and allow local governments to limit or prohibit unwanted shipments of out-of-state garbage. With regard to international efforts to curb greenhouse gases, I do not believe the U.S. should agree to the Kyoto treaty in its present form. One key shortcoming of the Kyoto treaty is that it does not set any binding targets on developing nations such as China and India. With that said, most of the scientific community - and the Bush Administration itself - now accept the view that human activities are contributing to climate change. It would be prudent for the U.S. to take the lead in calling for new international negotiations on steps to deal with greenhouse emissions.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning gun issues.
|a) Ban the sale or transfer of semi-automatic guns, except those used for hunting.|
|X||b) Maintain and strengthen the 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.|
|e) Allow citizens to carry concealed guns.|
|X||f) Require manufacturers to provide child-safety locks on guns.|
|X||g) Require background checks on gun sales between private citizens at gun shows.|
|h) Require a license for gun possession.|
|i) Raise the minimum age for ownership of handguns from 18 to 21.|
|j) Other or expanded principles|
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding health issues.
|a) 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.|
|X||c) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights to define and enforce the rights of insured patients, including greater access to specialists and emergency rooms, wider choice of health care providers, and appeal mechanisms when claims are denied.|
|X||d) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights which includes the right to sue when claims are denied.|
|X||e) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights which includes the right to appeal to an administrative board of specialists when services are denied.|
|X||f) Support legislation to provide prescription drug coverage under Medicare.|
|X||g) Increase research funding of the human genome to find cures for diseases such as cancer, AIDS/HIV, Alzheimer's, and heart disease.|
|X||h) Increase federal funding for training health workers to recognize and respond to the release of biological agents.|
|X||i) Prohibit the procedure of cloning human embryos.|
|j) Other or expanded principles|
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding immigration.
|a) Decrease the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country.|
|b) Provide extra federal aid to states with higher numbers of immigrants for necessary medical and social services.|
|c) Prohibit states from passing laws that deny human services (medical care, education) to illegal immigrants or their children.|
|d) Increase the immigration quota for computer scientists and other information technology workers.|
|e) Establish English as the official U.S. language.|
|f) Collect fingerprint data from all U.S. visa applicants which would be accessible to all federal immigration-related agencies.|
|g) Allow legalization for certain illegal immigrants working in the U.S.|
|h) Other or expanded principles|
Indicate which principles (if any) you support regarding U. S. economic assistance.
|X||a) Aid should be granted to countries when extraordinary circumstances cause disaster and threaten civilian lives.|
|X||b) Aid should be granted to countries when it is in the security interests of the U. S.|
|X||c) Aid should be granted to countries that are close allies of the U. S. and in need of financial/military assistance.|
|d) Aid should be eliminated for any nation with documented human rights abuses.|
|e) Aid programs should be scaled back and eventually eliminated except for extraordinary circumstances.|
|X||f) Other or expanded principles|
I believe that a nation's human rights practices should be a major consideration in deciding whether or not to extend U.S. assistance. Obviously, it is not the only factor. Another factor is whether extending the assistance advances important U.S. interests.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the Middle East.
|a) The U.S. should take military action against Iraq only as part of an international effort.|
|b) The U.S. should end the economic embargo against Iraq.|
|c) The U.S. should not continue to play a prominent leadership role in the peace process between Israel and the Palestine Authority.|
|d) The U.S. should support the formation of a Palestinian state.|
|X||e) Other or expanded principles|
It's clear to most Americans that Saddam Hussein is not someone to be trusted. He has had a long history of attacking his neighbors and his own people as well. There is good reason to believe that Iraq retains some of its arsenal of chemical and biological weapons. The best option for dealing with this threat is for the Security Council to approve a strong resolution to require Iraq to allow arms inspectors to return promptly without any conditions or restrictions, and to provide for effective elimination of those weapons. At this writing, Congress will soon consider a resolution with respect to Iraq, although it is not yet clear what form this resolution will ultimately take.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the United States-United Nations relationship.
|X||a) The U.S. should participate in United Nations peacekeeping missions only when vital U.S. interests are involved.|
|b) The U.S. should not commit military troops to United Nations peacekeeping missions.|
|c) The U.S. should withdraw completely from the United Nations.|
|d) Other or expanded principles|
|No||3) Should the U.S. have full diplomatic relations with Cuba?|
|No||4) Should the U.S. recognize and extend full diplomatic relations to Taiwan?|
|No||5) Should the U.S. increase its financial support to Colombia for the "war on drugs?"|
|Yes||6) Do you support the cooperative threat reduction programs with Russia to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons? ___ Yes ___ No ___ Undecided|
|No||7) Do you support the recent withdrawal of the U.S. from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) treaty in order to deploy a national missile defense system?|
|Yes||8) Should the U.S. hold nations accountable for terrorists who operate from their country?|
|9) Other or expanded principles|
|No||1) Do you support the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)?|
|Yes||2) Do you support the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT)?|
|Yes||3) Do you support continued U.S. membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO)?|
|Yes||4) Do you support China becoming a member of the World Trade Organization?|
|5) Should a nation's human rights record affect its normal trade relations (most favored nation) trading status with the United States? ___ Yes ___ No ___ Undecided|
|No||6) Should the President have "fast-track" authority to negotiate trade agreements?|
|7) Do you support the trade embargo against Cuba?|
|X||8) Other or expanded principles|
I believe it is critical for any Fast Track to contain detailed, concrete negotiating objectives, address the issues of labor market and environmental standards and dramatically enhance the role of Congress in future negotiations. I have actively opposed Fast Track proposals, including those offered by the Republican Majority in the House, that have failed to live up to these principles.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding national security.
|1. Do you support the President using military tribunals to try terrorist suspects when the President deems ordinary civil courts to be inappropriate or impractical?|
|2. Should the U.S. adopt higher qualification rules for student visa applications from nations known to sponsor terrorism?|
|3. Should law enforcement agencies be granted greater discretion to read mail and email, tap phones, and conduct random searches to prevent future terrorist attacks?|
|Yes||4. Should federal law enforcement agencies share intelligence data with local law enforcement agencies?|
|Yes||5. Should the federal government provide states with funding for homeland security?|
|X||6. Other or expanded principles|
In the aftermath of the September 11 strikes on New York and Washington, there is a clear imperative for the federal government to take the steps necessary to provide for homeland defense and prevent further attacks. Over the last 12 months, Congress has provided the Justice Department with extensive new tools and resources to proactively detect and combat terrorism, as well as beef up information sharing between intelligence and law enforcement. At the same time, fundamental constitutional principles must not be sacrificed. At the end of the day, we have to balance the requirements of preventing terrorism and preserving individual liberties. In a number of areas, the Justice Department's actions have gone too far, particularly in cases where American citizens are being held without charge and without adequate access to legal counsel. I am also troubled by the Justice Department's across-the-board zeal for secrecy. Most Americans understand that there are times when the government cannot divulge certain information because doing so might damage national security, but in order for our democratic system of government to work, the government's actions have to remain subject to meaningful judicial review by the courts as well as legislative review by Congress. Meaningful oversight cannot take place when the Justice Department stonewalls the courts and Congress on providing answers to basic questions about how it is implementing the law.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding Social Security.
|a) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts which they manage themselves.|
|b) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts managed by private firms contracted by the government.|
|c) The federal government should invest a portion of Social Security's assets collectively in stocks and bonds instead of U.S. Treasury securities.|
|d) Increase the payroll tax to better finance Social Security in its current form.|
|e) Lower Social Security's annual cost-of-living increases.|
|X||f) Support a "lock box" measure, limiting Congress's ability to spend Social Security and Medicare surpluses on any other federal programs except Social Security and Medicare, until each program's long-term solvency is guaranteed.|
|X||g) Other or expanded principles|
I strongly oppose replacing the guarantee of Social Security with private investment accounts. Privatizing Social Security would mean that current and future benefits would depend upon the performance of private accounts subject to a variety of risks, including the ups and downs of the stock market. Privatization of Social Security would amount to playing roulette with people's retirement. Diversion of Social Security funds into private accounts would also undermine Social Security's financial solvency.
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding technology.
|X||a) Continue the moratorium on Internet sales taxes.|
|b) Implement regulation of Internet content by the federal government.|
|c) Regulation of the Internet should not be controlled by the federal government.|
|d) Support government mandates to curtail violent and sexual content on television.|
|e) Other or expanded principles|
Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding poverty and the welfare system.
|X||a) Support housing assistance for welfare recipients.|
|b) Provide homeless families with apartment vouchers they can use to defray the cost of an apartment.|
|X||c) Continue to give states and local governments responsibility for welfare programs through TANF block grants.|
|X||d) Maintain current welfare-to-work requirements in order for states to qualify for block grants.|
|X||e) Restore food stamp programs to legal immigrants.|
|f) Transfer homeless housing programs to states through block grants.|
|X||g) Provide continued Medicaid benefits for those welfare recipients who have moved from welfare to work.|
|h) Require states to return any unused welfare block grant funding to the federal government.|
|i) Direct federal poverty aid through religious, community-based, or other non-profit organizations.|
|X||j) Provide states with additional funding for Medicaid programs to alleviate increasing state budget deficits.|
|X||k) Other or expanded principles|
I believe we should maintain the current Welfare Reform law's requirement that welfare recipients participate in 30 hours a week of work or work preparation. Congress should also increase program flexibility and take additional steps to make sure people leaving welfare can get good jobs that move them up the economic ladder.
|In a total of seventy-five (75) words or less, please explain what your top two or three priorities will be if elected. Please explain how you would obtain any additional funding needed to implement these priorities.|