Representative Leonard Lance's Political Positions

Office: U.S. House (NJ) - District 7, Republican
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Leonard Lance 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 Vote Smart.

Issue Positions

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.

Vote Smart's Research

  • Voted in favor of H.R. 1797 "Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act" (
  • Rated 0% by Planned Parenthood (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "[…] let's pass meaningful tax relief for individuals and businesses. This includes renewing the expiring Bush tax cuts. And we should pass additional relief for small businesses to expand and hire." (
  • Signed the ATR pledge stating to "oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rates for individuals and/or businesses […]." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • Signed a letter stating "It is time to move beyond recognition of the problem and actually treat opioid addiction as a disease and the national priority it is." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "A balanced budget amendment would be a major step in placing our Nation on a glide path toward fiscal restraint and bringing greater economic certainty to help create the jobs we so desperately need." (
  • "Every motorist and commuter in New Jersey knows the importance of a strong highway and mass transit system. The House took action today to move forward on projects that will get people to and from work quicker, goods efficiently shipped and lay the groundwork for the type of infrastructure that keeps our area running. This measure is fully-funded, provides long-term certainty vital to economic growth and will create new, good-paying jobs." (
  • "Lance has a record of reducing spending on legislative operations in Washington -- voting to slash congressional office budgets by $782 million (a 14 percent reduction), ban earmarks and prevent pay increases for members of Congress." (
  • Voted in favor of H.R.22 "Fixing America's Surface Transportation (FAST) Act" (

Vote Smart's Research

  • Cosponsored and voted in favor of H.R.1105 "Death Tax Repeal Act of 2015" (
  • "I believe I have a better plan for our economy. First, let's pass meaningful tax relief for individuals and businesses. This includes renewing the expiring Bush tax cuts. And we should pass additional relief for small businesses to expand and hire." (
  • "I want to work with the President to expand opportunity for all Americans, and that begins with more jobs, less taxation […]." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "[…] action by the U.S. House coupled with Senate-passed legislation puts us one step closer to enacting important reforms that give states, local governments and parents greater powers to determine how best to improve our schools." (
  • "This responsible legislation supports innovation and excellence in the classroom by restoring local control, empowering parents, rewarding successful teachers and eliminating unnecessary red tape and duplicative federal programs because education decisions are best made by state and local governments, not Washington bureaucrats." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • Voted in favor of S.1. "A Bill to Approve the Keystone XL Pipeline" (
  • "The project will create American jobs and American energy and reduce North America’s dependence on foreign oil. It has bipartisan support in Congress and the backing of labor and business alike. After enduring more than five years of review, red tape and delay, there is no reason left for the President not to approve this project immediately. It’s time to build the Keystone XL pipeline." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "In the end, it is my strong view that it is in the best interest of New Jersey's economy and our nation for Congress to enact a national program to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and promote the use of clean, renewable energy." (
  • "This important legislation will help protect our environment while moving us closer toward energy security and independence through investment in renewable energy." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "If we want to get serious about alternative energy we have got to rely more on clean, renewable energy sources like wind, solar and geothermal. In New Jersey, our state is leading the nation in supporting and investing in renewable energy programs. Establishing a federal renewable electricity standard will help other areas of the country to follow our lead." (
  • "New Jersey would be a big winner under cap and trade, because emission standards here already are very stringent, allowing state firms meeting them to sell carbon or ‘pollution’ credits to others out of state." (
  • 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' " (

Vote Smart's Research

  • Voted in favor of H.Amdt.1098 "Prohibits District of Columbia from Implementing Certain Firearm Laws" (
  • Rated 93% by the National Rifle Association (
  • "Rest assured, as your Congressman I will continue to work to protect and preserve our constitutional right to keep and bear arms." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Our current health care insurance system is badly broken, but the President's Affordable Care Act will only make it worse. It will lead to fewer jobs, more debt, higher taxes and reduced access to higher quality care." (
  • "Instead of making health care more affordable and accessible for all Americans, Obamacare is driving up costs and putting the government between patients and their doctors. Today the House has taken formal action to repeal the President’s health care law […] As a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee I look forward to being on the front-lines of this effort." (
  • Voted in favor of H.R.3762 "Restoring Americans' Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act of 2015" (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "I oppose granting amnesty to millions of illegal immigrants because it is unfair to those who have entered our country legally and an affront to the laws that we have established governing immigration and citizenship." (
  • "He supports stronger security on our borders, both north and south, and wants to hold those accountable who break our laws. Leonard vehemently opposes any plan for amnesty." (
  • Voted in favor of H.R.5759 "Preventing Executive Overreach on Immigration Act of 2014" (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Lance said he is against gay marriage and that marriage should be between a man and woman. But he said the issue should be decided by the states and not federal government." (
  • Rated 0% by the Human Rights Campaign (
  • Washington Post "Although Rep. Lance voted against DADT, he voted to expand the federal hate crimes law to cover sexual orientation, and sponsored the Employment Non-Discrimination Act to prohibit job discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Despite reservations and questions, in my judgment we must take action. The threat is real and ISIS must be confronted now." (

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Leonard Lance is committed to protecting Social Security for the future. He knows we need a bipartisan plan to protect the program for future generations. Leonard opposes increasing Social Security taxes, and he will fight to stop Congress from raiding Social Security and Medicare funds." (


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

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New Jersey State Legislative Election 2007 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) regarding abortion.

a) Abortions should always be illegal.
b) Abortions should always be legal.
c) Abortions should be legal only within the first trimester of pregnancy.
Xd) Abortions should be legal when the pregnancy resulted from incest or rape.
Xe) Abortions should be legal when the life of the woman is endangered.
f) Prohibit public funding of abortions and to organizations that advocate or perform abortions.
Xg) Require clinics to give parental notification before performing abortions on minors.
h) Other or expanded principles

State Budget: Indicate the funding levels (#1-6) you will support for the following general categories. Select one level per category.

Slightly Increasea) Education (Higher)
Slightly Increaseb) Education (K-12)
Slightly Increasec) Emergency preparedness
Slightly Increased) Environment
Slightly Increasee) Health care
Slightly Increasef) Law enforcement
Slightly Increaseg) Transportation and highway infrastructure
Greatly Decreaseh) Welfare
i) Other or expanded categories

State Taxes: Indicate the tax levels (#1-6) you will support. Select one level per tax.

Maintain Statusa) Alcohol taxes
Greatly Decreaseb) Capital gains taxes
Slightly Decreasec) Cigarette taxes
Greatly Decreased) Corporate taxes
Maintain Statuse) Gasoline taxes
Maintain Statusf) Income taxes (incomes below $75,000)
Greatly Decreaseg) Income taxes (incomes above $75,000)
Greatly Decreaseh) Property taxes
Slightly Decreasei) Sales taxes
Maintain Statusj) Vehicle taxes
k) Other or expanded categories
Nol) Should the state sales taxes be extended to Internet sales?
Nom) Should accounts such as a "rainy day" fund be used to balance the state budget?
Non) Should fee increases be used to balance the state budget?
Noo) Do you support leasing the New Jersey Turnpike to a private company to help reduce the state's debt?
p) Other or expanded principles

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

Yesa) Do you support the current limit of terms for New Jersey governors?
Nob) Do you support limiting the number of terms for New Jersey state senators and representatives?

c) Do you support limiting the following types of contributions to state legislative candidates?

Yes1) Individual
Yes2) PAC
Yes3) Corporate
Yes4) Political Parties
Yesd) Do you support requiring full and timely disclosure of campaign finance information?
Yese) Do you support imposing spending limits on state level political campaigns?
Yesf) Do you support adopting statewide standards for counting, verifying and ensuring accuracy of votes?
Yesg) Do you support prohibiting media exit polling of voters until all polling locations in New Jersey are closed?
Undecidedh) Should New Jersey continue to recognize civil unions between same-sex couples?
Noi) Should New Jersey recognize marriages between same-sex couples?
Undecidedj) Do you support a New Jersey constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman?
Nok) Do you support the New Jersey state government using eminent domain to seize private property for the purpose of private development?
l) Other or expanded principles

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

Xa) Increase state funds for construction of state prisons and hiring of additional prison staff.
Xb) Support the death penalty in New Jersey.
Xc) Support programs to provide prison inmates with vocational and job-related skills and job-placement assistance when released.
Xd) End parole for repeat violent offenders.
e) Implement penalties other than incarceration for certain non-violent offenders.
f) Decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana.
Xg) Strengthen penalties and sentences for drug-related crimes.
Xh) Minors accused of a violent crime should be prosecuted as adults.
Xi) Require that crimes based on race, ethnic background, religious belief, sex, age, disability, or sexual orientation be prosecuted as hate crimes.
Xj) Increase state funding for community centers and other social agencies in areas with at-risk youth.
Xk) Strengthen sex-offender laws.
Xl) Support the restriction of the sale of products used to make methamphetamine (e.g. tablets containing pseudophedrine, ephedrine and phenylpropanolamine).
m) Other or expanded principles

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

Xa) Support national standards and testing of public school students.
b) Provide parents with state-funded vouchers to send their children to any public school.
c) Provide parents with state-funded vouchers to send their children to any private or religious school.
Xd) Increase state funds for school capital improvements (e.g. buildings and infrastructure).
Xe) Increase funds for hiring additional teachers.
Xf) Support teacher testing and reward with merit pay.
g) Endorse voluntary prayer in public schools.
Xh) Support requiring public schools to administer high school exit exams.
Xi) Provide state funding to increase teacher salaries.
Xj) Increase funding for Head Start programs.
Xk) Provide state funding for tax incentives and financial aid to help make college more affordable.
l) Support sexual education programs that include information on abstinence, contraceptives, and HIV/STD prevention methods.
m) Support abstinence-only sexual education programs.
n) Other or expanded principles

I favor a voucher pilot program in an urban setting for any private or religious school; I favor permitting a minute of silence. The type of sexual education programs should be determined by local school boards.

Employment: Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding employment.

Xa) Increase funding for state job-training programs that retrain displaced workers and teach skills needed in today's job market.
Xb) Reduce state government regulations on the private sector in order to encourage investment and economic expansion.
Xc) Provide low interest loans and tax credits for starting, expanding, or relocating businesses.
Xd) Provide tax credits for businesses that provide child care for children in low-income working families.
e) Increase state funds to provide child care for children in low-income working families.
Xf) Support the inclusion of sexual orientation in New Jersey's anti-discrimination laws.
Xg) Increase the state minimum wage.
h) Other or expanded principles

The minimum wage increase should include a training wage, which would be lower, for teenagers.

Affirmative Action: Should race, ethnicity or gender be taken into account in state agencies' decisions on:

Noa) Public employment
Nob) State college and university admissions
Noc) State contracting
d) Other or expanded principles

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

Xa) Promote increased use of alternative fuel technology.
b) Support increased production of traditional domestic energy sources (e.g. coal, natural gas, and oil).
Xc) Use state funds to clean up former industrial and commercial sites that are contaminated, unused, or abandoned.
Xd) Increase funding for improvements to New Jersey's power generating and transmission facilities.
Xe) Support funding for open space preservation.
Xf) Enact environmental regulations even if they are stricter than federal law.
g) Other or expanded principles

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

Xa) Maintain and strengthen the enforcement of existing state restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
b) Ease state restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
c) Repeal state restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
d) Allow citizens to carry concealed guns.
e) Require background checks on gun sales between private citizens at gun shows.
Xf) Require a license for gun possession.
g) Other or expanded principles

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

Xa) Ensure that citizens have access to basic health care through managed care, insurance reforms, or state-funded care where necessary.
b) Transfer current Medicaid recipients into managed care programs.
c) Limit the amount of punitive damages that can be awarded in medical malpractice lawsuits.
d) Support patients' right to sue their HMOs.
e) Guaranteed medical care to all citizens is not a responsibility of state government.
f) Legalize physician assisted suicide in New Jersey.
g) Allow doctors to prescribe marijuana to their patients for medicinal purposes.
h) Other or expanded principles

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

Xa) Support increased work requirements for able-bodied welfare recipients.
Xb) Increase funding for employment and job training programs for welfare recipients.
c) Increase access to public transportation for welfare recipients who work.
Xd) Redirect welfare funding to faith-based and community-based private organizations.
Xe) Use federal TANF (Temporary Assistance to Needy Families) funds to extend health and child care subsidies to the working poor.
f) Support marriage promotion programs for welfare recipients.
g) Eliminate government-funded welfare programs.
h) Other or expanded principles
Please explain in a total of 75 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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