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Mick Mulvaney's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

Office: Director of the Office of Management & Budget, Republican
Mick Mulvaney has refused to provide voters with positions on key issues covered by the 2016 Political Courage Test, despite repeated requests from Vote Smart and voters like you.

What is the Political Courage Test?

Issue Positions

For Presidential and Congressional candidates who refuse to provide voters with their positions, Vote Smart has researched their public records to determine their likely responses. These issue positions are from 2016.

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

Vote Smart's Research

  • "I believe strongly in the sanctity of human life. Any attempt to harm an innocent child is wrong, and I am committed to promoting legislation that will protect the unborn." (
  • "I believe that life begins at conception. […] Once you see what we saw, and lived what we lived, being pro-life is not about politics it is about, well, life." (
  • Rated 100% by National Right to Life Committee in 2014 (
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

  • "As the tax reform discussion ripens, it is imperative we as lawmakers create a level playing field for all businesses, including 'pass-through entities' – which make up approximately 90% of all U.S. businesses." (
  • "Enact Fundamental Tax Reform: Adopt a simple and fair single-rate tax system by scrapping the internal revenue code and replacing it with one that is no longer than 4,543 words--the length of the original Constitution." (
  • Signed a pledge stating "I, Michael Mulvaney, pledge to the taxpayers of the state of South Carolina, and to the American people that I will: ONE, oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rates for individuals and/or businesses; and TWO, oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates." (
Unknown Position Unknown Answer Crime: Do you support mandatory minimum sentences for non-violent drug offenders? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Despite exhaustive research, Vote Smart was unable to find information about this candidate's position.
No Inferred Answer Economy: Do you support federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "I am committed to taking the necessary steps to get our financial house in order. At a time when millions of Americans must tighten their collective belts, Congress needs to do the same. The actions we've taken so far are only a start – we must continue working to ensure our country's financial books are in order in the short term and for future generations as well." (
  • "I voted for the omnibus appropriations bill today. It was far from perfect. But it marks a dramatic change in Washington. The base spending levels we approved today are $100 billion lower than those in 2008. I will say that again: when adjusted for inflation, the federal government will spend less on basic, discretionary spending this year than it did six years ago." (
Yes Inferred Answer Economy: Do you support lowering taxes as a means of promoting economic growth? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "I’ll continue to stand up and fight to cut taxes for Americans!" (
  • "Stop the tax hikes. Permanently repeal all tax hikes, including those to the income, capital gains, and death taxes, currently scheduled to begin in 2011." (
No Inferred Answer Education: Do you generally support requiring states to adopt federal education standards? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "By moving to a per-pupil funding system, we will dramatically increase the dollars going directly to teachers in the classroom, give local districts the flexibility they need, and eliminate layers of needless bureaucracy in Columbia." (
  • Cosponsored "H. Res. 476, which denounces the use of federal coercion to lure states into adopting Common Core academic standards." (
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 (
  • "A veto for the Keystone XL Pipeline is a veto for American jobs. [...]" (
No 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

  • "We hear a lot of good things about alternative/renewable/green technologies, such as solar, wind, tidal, and methane-recapture. And rightly so, as these technologies offer tremendous opportunities for the future. However, I have never seen, nor read, nor heard any reputable expert or organization contend that any of the new technologies will be readily and economically available within the necessary timeline." (
  • "Growth in wind energy is not driven by market demand, but instead by a combination of state mandates and a federal tax credit that is now more valuable than the actual market price of the electricity these plants generate. According to recent articles and reports, these very same market distortions that are driving wind energy expansion have also led to higher electricity costs for American families." (
  • "Pass an 'All-of-the-Above' Energy Policy. Authorize the exploration of proven energy reserves to reduce our dependence on foreign energy sources from unstable countries and reduce regulatory barriers to all other forms of energy creation, lowering prices and creating competition and jobs." (
No Inferred Answer Environment: Do you support the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Signed a letter stating "[…] we believe that the authority to limit carbon emissions, even if that were actually a necessity, rests neither in the Constitution nor in the Clean Air Act but in the true free market of individual choices by the American people." (
  • Signed a letter stating "[…] we believe this carbon dioxide regulation – whose implementation is legally questionable at best – would do untold harm to the American people and our economy for decades to come." (
No Inferred Answer Guns: Do you generally support gun-control legislation? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "I am a firm advocate for the individual right to keep and bear arms." (
  • "Mick Mulvaney has a record of standing up for gun rights against extremists who don’t support our right to bear arms. We must stand together and send a message that the 2nd Amendment is not negotiable." (
Yes Inferred Answer Health Care: Do you support repealing the 2010 Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare")? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "I’ll continue to fight to repeal and replace Obamacare because the American people deserve laws that actually work!" (
  • "Does the health care system need some reforms? Absolutely. But a government takeover is absolutely not the answer. Everyone agrees that many aspects of our health care system need to be reformed. There are millions of Americans who cannot afford to purchase health insurance and many that are unhappy with their existing coverage. However, many of the solutions can be found – as they so often are — in more personal control, free-market competition, common-sense reforms and a crackdown on frivolous malpractice lawsuits." (
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

  • "If the last 30 years have taught us anything about dealing with illegal immigrants, it is that it is simply not possible to deport 12 million people. Some folks will yell and scream that we should – and that that should be the end of the discussion – but the truth of the matter is that we are not going to do that." (
  • "This bill, which I supported, will empower governors to deploy the National Guard, revises laws that illegal immigrants (and this administration) are exploiting to their advantage, and reduces the time that it takes to process and return people to their home countries." (
  • "Anyway, a few of us in the House tried to stop what has come to be known as 'executive amnesty' back in December, by using the power of the purse to deny the President funding to carry out his orders. However, for various reasons, not the least of which was the fact that the Senate at that time was still controlled by Democrats, the so-called 'Mulvaney Amendment' died in committee." (
No Inferred Answer Marriage: Do you support same-sex marriage? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "DOMA makes clear that for purposes of the federal government, marriage is defined as between one man and one woman. The use of federal property or federal employees to perform anything but opposite-sex ceremonies is a clear contravention of the law." (
  • Rated 0% by the Human Rights Campaign (
  • Signed a letter stating "As you know, the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was passed by Congress with bipartisan support and signed into law by President Clinton in 1996. The law of the land is the federal government defines marriage as between one man and one woman. Unfortunately, the Department of Defense seems intent on circumventing this law." (
No Inferred Answer National Security: Do you support increased American intervention in Iraq and Syria beyond air support? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • "Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R., S.C.) pulled off a rare feat Wednesday, winning broad support to 'sunset' a cybersecurity bill after seven years despite opposition from the powerful chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence." (
  • "No one here is talking about tying the government's hands when it has specific and credible information regarding crime or terror. The Constitution itself contemplates searches and seizures under certain conditions. And in the interest of securing life and liberty, we respect those conditions. But we cannot permit our government to abuse its authority - because when that happens, our government loses its moral authority." (
No Inferred 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

  • "Some politicians, like Mr. Spratt, have favored privatizing social security. I disagree with that approach as a cure-all. Instead, I look forward to working to find a comprehensive solution that keeps social security both solvent and sustainable." (
  • "We continue to ignore the real cause of our debt: non-discretionary spending, which includes Social Security and Medicare." (


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: 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. Vote Smart does not edit for misspelled words, punctuation or grammar.

Vote Smart does not permit the use of its name or programs in any campaign activity, including advertising, debates, and speeches.
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