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Robert Pittenger's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

Office: U.S. House (NC) - District 9, Republican
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Robert Pittenger has provided voters with clear stances on key issues by responding to the 2016 Political Courage Test.

What is the Political Courage Test?

North Carolina 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 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
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
YesDo 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

I support drug courts with mandatory treatment and accountability to the court

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?
YesDo you support providing tax incentives to businesses for the purpose of job creation?
Other or expanded principles

prefer tax reform and lower rates for everyone. Incentives only in proper tax environment.

NoInferred Answer Do you generally support requiring states to adopt federal education standards? View Citations
  • "[...] on the state level, we need to fund classroom teaching that works, not more overhead. It's common sense [...]" (
  • "Federal policies, including No Child Left Behind and Race to the Top, have destroyed the ability of teachers, parents, and local school administrators to implement the best curriculum for their local schools. Classroom teachers know their students the best, so why is someone in Washington making the decisions? The one-size-fits-all approach is preparing our students for an end-of-grade test, but not for the future." (
Other or expanded principles

Prefer local autonomy

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

Idividual states should regulate fracking

NoDo 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

1. To human activity question- I believe humans have a minimal contribution to climate change

2. Not with current standards proposed by EPA.

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
Unknown PositionInferred 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
  • "[...] it is critical we carefully consider the options and avoid unintended consequences. For example, amnesty would only encourage additional illegal immigration, making the problem worse." (
  • "America does not punish children for the mistakes of their parents, so it's only fair we provide a pathway to citizenship for those illegally brought into our country as children. We should also consider citizenship for undocumented immigrants who earn advanced degrees and those who bravely serve our country in the military." (
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
  • "I support the President's use of targeted airstrikes and urge him to act decisively to support the Iraqi army in defense of their country and to bring stability to the region." (
  • "ISIS receives over $1 million each day from the illegal sale of stolen oil […] This oil must be shipped out in trucks. Why aren't we bombing these convoys?" (
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.
Slightly Decreasea) Agriculture
Slightly Decreaseb) Arts
Greatly Increasec) Defense
Slightly Decreased) Education
Greatly Decreasee) Environment
Greatly Increasef) Homeland Security
Slightly Decreaseg) International aid
Slightly Increaseh) Medical Research
Maintain Statusi) Scientific Research
Maintain Statusj) Space exploration
Slightly 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.
Greatly 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)
Greatly Decreasei) Income taxes (high-income families)
Eliminatej) Inheritance taxes
Maintain Statusk) Payroll taxes
l) Other or expanded categories

Support a 17% flat tax

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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