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Candidate positions for Minnesota - 4th Congressional District (2008)

Read the full responses from candidates below. “Answer option” is the choice given in the quiz, and “Candidate’s position” shows the candidate’s response to MPR News.

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Issue Question Position
Universal health care Do you favor or oppose universal health care? ANSWER OPTION
Congress should reinvigorate private, direct-pay health insurance markets so that all Americans can purchase affordable health coverage, while retaining the right to choose their own doctor.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
One's health is first and foremost a matter of personal responsibility. Congress should reinvigorate private, direct-pay health insurance markets so that all Americans can purchase affordable health coverage, while retaining the right to choose their own doctor. State governments should reduce or eliminate costly health-insurance mandates. In the meantime, Congress should pass legislation to allow consumers to purchase health insurance across state lines, in much the same way they presently purchase auto insurance. Congress should also pass tort reforms to eliminate frivolous lawsuits that drive up health care costs and drive good doctors from the profession. (More Info)
Stem cell research Should federal funding be used to expand embryonic stem cell research? ANSWER OPTION
I do not support federal funding for research on existing embryonic stem cell lines, but would support support federal funding to create lines of stem cells from new embryos.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
According to a VoteSmart.org Political Courage Test. (More Info)
Social Security Do you favor privatizing Social Security to any degree? ANSWER OPTION
Yes, I think we should allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts that they manage themselves.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
According to a VoteSmart.org Political Courage Test. (More Info)
Issue Question Position
Immigration What is your stance on immigration? ANSWER OPTION
We should decrease the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country and enact harsher financial punishments for those who knowingly employ illegal immigrants.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
According to a VoteSmart.org Political Courage Test. (More Info)
Same-sex marriage Do you favor or oppose a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman? ANSWER OPTION
I favor such an amendment and do not think same-sex couples should be allowed to marrry.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
According to a VoteSmart.org Political Courage Test. (More Info)
Abortion Do you favor or oppose legalized abortion? ANSWER OPTION
Abortions should always be illegal except when the life of the woman is endangered.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
According to a VoteSmart.org Political Courage Test. (More Info)
Issue Question Position
Capital punishment Do you favor or oppose capital punishment? ANSWER OPTION
I support the use of the death penalty for federal crimes.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
According to a VoteSmart.org Political Courage Test. (More Info)
Iraq War Do you favor or oppose a set date (timeline) for the removal of U.S. troops from Iraq? ANSWER OPTION
The "Surge" and related counterinsurgency operations have worked. We should continue to encourage the Iraqis to take responsibility for their own affairs, and build a stable nation in the Middle East, which is in our long-term strategic interest.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
The "Surge" and related counterinsurgency operations, implemented by the brave men and women of the U.S Armed Forces under General David Petraeus' leadership, have worked. Our military deserves our support, respect, and gratitude. We should continue to encourage the Iraqis to take responsibility for their own affairs, and build a stable nation in the Middle East, which is in our long-term strategic interest. I would encourage members of Congress to take time to understand the conditions on the ground before taking partisan stands on the conflict. (More Info)
Energy policy What is your plan for meeting future energy needs? ANSWER OPTION
It's time for more domestic exploration and production. Increased exploration and drilling for oil will cause oil prices to fall, thereby enhancing U.S. energy security.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
It's time for more domestic exploration and production. We have over 100 billion barrels of oil reserves (not including oil shale) that we should access to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. Unfortunately, Congress has restricted domestic exploration. Curtailed supplies have combined with rapid, world-wide energy demand to increase the price of oil. This provides leverage to foreign producers and threatens U.S. energy security. Increased exploration and drilling for oil will cause oil prices to fall, thereby enhancing U.S. energy security. The production potential from the 2,000 acre coastal plain of ANWR is estimated to be one million barrels per day. We currently import almost 10 million barrels per day, so ANWR production alone would reduce our dependence on foreign oil by more than 10%. (More Info)
Issue Question Position
Universal health care Do you favor or oppose universal health care? ANSWER OPTION
I support universal health care and propose a constitutional amendment that declares health care is a right.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
McCollum sponsoder H.J.RES.42, the Health Protection Amendment of 2007. It declares that, "Health care, including care to prevent and treat illness, is the right of all U.S. citizens and necessary to ensure the strength of the nation." (More Info)
Stem cell research Should federal funding be used to expand embryonic stem cell research? ANSWER OPTION
The federal government should subsidize the creation of new stem cell lines and scientists should pursue embryonic stem cell research.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
According to her voting record in Congress Betty voted YES on two bills favoring federal funding for stem cell research. (More Info)
Social Security Do you favor privatizing Social Security to any degree? ANSWER OPTION
This is not a gamble I am willing to take, and I oppose all attempts to privatize Social Security.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
Social Security is one of the most successful social programs in the history of our nation -- providing security for millions of Americans for over seventy years. Recently, there have been proposals from the White House to radically transform Social Security from a guaranteed benefit into a private investment scheme. The President has been relentless in misleading the American people about Social Security's future with exaggerated rhetoric describing a "crisis" that does not exist to advance his agenda. (More Info)
Issue Question Position
Immigration What is your stance on immigration? ANSWER OPTION
I support creating new avenues for current illegal immigrants to gain legal status.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
In 2005 McCollum voted against a bill that sought to clamp down on border security but did not include any new provisions for current illegal immigrants to gain legal status. She also voted YES on legislation that would extend the immigrant residency rules. (More Info)
Same-sex marriage Do you favor or oppose a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman? ANSWER OPTION
I oppose such an amendment and also oppose an amendment banning same-sex marriage.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
McCollum voted NO on both pieces of legislation proposed to Congress on these issues. (More Info)
Abortion Do you favor or oppose legalized abortion? ANSWER OPTION
Abortions should always be legal.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
McCollum has a consistent voting record against legislation that would restrict abortion. (More Info)
Issue Question Position
Capital punishment Do you favor or oppose capital punishment? ANSWER OPTION
I do not support capital punishment and propose an amendment to the Constitution of the United States prohibiting the penalty of death.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
McCollum proposed H.J.RES.80, legislation that would create a Constitutional Amendment that would prohibit the United States or any state from imposing or carrying out the death penalty. (More Info)
Iraq War Do you favor or oppose a set date (timeline) for the removal of U.S. troops from Iraq? ANSWER OPTION
I support setting benchmarks and a timetable for the withdrawal of troops from Iraq.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
McCollum voted YES on both H.R. 2956 (07/12/07) and H.R. 1591 (04/25/07) which set a timetable for withdrawal of troops from Iraq and approved funding while setting benchmarks and a timetable for the withdrawal of troops from Iraq. She voted against H.R. 2206 (5/24/07), a bill that provided funding without withdrawal deadlines for troops. (More Info)
Energy policy What is your plan for meeting future energy needs? ANSWER OPTION
We should roll back oil industry tax breaks while requiring oil companies to pay royalties already owed to taxpayers and also invest in alternative energy sources such as invest in wind, solar and natural gas.

CANDIDATE'S POSITION
The Comprehensive American Energy Security & Consumer Protection Act will roll back oil industry tax breaks in a time of record oil company profits and require oil companies to pay royalties already owed to taxpayers; invest in wind, solar and natural gas, 21st century energy sources to create Minnesota jobs; responsibly open up additional offshore areas for drilling with oil companies footing the bill instead of taxpayers; and release oil from the government's stockpile to bring down gas prices. (More Info)
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