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Shelley Capito's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)



Official Position: Candidate addressed this issue directly by taking the Political Courage Test.

Inferred Position: Candidate refused to address this issue, but Vote Smart inferred this issue based on the candidate's public record, including statements, voting record, and special interest group endorsements.

Unknown Position: Candidate refused to address this issue, or we could not infer an answer for this candidate despite exhaustive research of their public record.

Additional Information: Click on this icon to reveal more information about this candidate's position, from their answers or Vote Smart's research.

Other or Expanded Principles & Legislative Priorities are entered exactly as candidates submit them. Vote Smart does not edit for misspelled words, punctuation or grammar.

Shelley Capito has failed to provide voters with positions on key issues covered by the 2020 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 2020.

  • "Tax reform is making a difference all across our country. But don’t just take my word for it: listen to what a difference the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has had on these West Virginia families. #TaxDay" (
  • "Capito has worked hard to ensure job-killing tax increases won't hit American individuals, families, and small businesses." (
  • Voted in favor of HR 1 - Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. (
  • "She has also opposed President Bush's proposal to privatize Social Security." (
  • "Congresswoman Capito believes that strengthening Social Security and Medicare for future generations is an important part of providing economic security both for our nation and for future seniors. As Congress discusses proposals related to these programs, protecting current seniors from any reduction in benefits is paramount." (
  • "ÒMedicare for AllÓ would eliminate choice, substantially raise your taxes, and mean longer wait times to see a doctor. We have serious health care challenges, but blowing up the system is no way to fix it." (
  • Rated 0% by Alliance for Retired Americans. (
  • "To be clear, there are some significant differences between the JUSTICE Act and the Democrat alternative as well. For example, the JUSTICE Act does not include Democrat proposal that would have eliminated qualified immunity for police officers. But, an amendment process on the Senate floor has a way of spurring compromise." (
  • "I’m proud to support police. Looking at reforms, it’s important to remember many officers have dedicated their lives to protecting their communities. At the same time, good law enforcement cannot exist w/o accountability & justice." (
  • "Ready to vote ‘yes’ on this year’s #NDAA and give our service members their biggest pay raise in a decade!" (
  • "One of the most important responsibilities of Congress is ensuring our nation's defense. This important legislation ensures much-needed funding for our national defense and provides for our troops with a 1.8 percent pay increase." (
  • Rated 87% by Center for Security Policy. (
  • "The Congresswoman believes that terrorism continues to pose a grave threat to all Americans we need to give our military the resources they need to carry out this critical mission." (
  • "Rebuilding, modernizing, and improving America's infrastructure is an important goal that extends across party lines and a need that is recognized across the country. From repairing and finishing our roads and bridges to improving access to rural broadband, infrastructure reform provides us an opportunity to better connect our communities, encourage new investments, and make it easier to continue building and growing our country." (
  • "Broadband should be easily available and affordable for all West Virginians. This will require creative solutions to accommodate broadband users across all sectors, including schools, businesses, and private citizens. Through innovative thinking and implementation, West Virginia will achieve the connectivity that will help boost our economy." (
  • "This legislation will help improve the roads, highways, and bridges Americans count on to travel safely within their communities and across the country; facilitate commerce and encourage economic growth; and provide the certainty states and other stakeholders need to complete critical projects. It includes many programs and provisions that I think will appeal to members on both sides of the aisle--not to mention all of the individuals and families it will benefit in West Virginia and across the country--and I look forward to continuing to champion the bill as it moves to the Senate floor." (
  • "The current system of U.S. taxation is too complex and difficult to administer and comprehensive tax reform will strengthen our economy by making the tax code fairer, simpler, and flatter. A system that spurs greater investment, innovation, and job creation will make West Virginia workers and businesses more competitive." (
  • "As of These investments will impact nearly every county in the state, and they will create over thousands of jobs, while retaining many more. The investments have funded infrastructure improvements, workforce training programs, manufacturing programs, manufacturing expansions, and efforts that support entrepreneurs." (
  • "Congresswoman Capito has long been a supporter of pro-growth economic policies that stimulate the economy and create jobs. She believes in a low-rate tax system which fosters an environment for growth and brings certainty to the marketplace." (
  • Voted in favor of HR 1 - Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. (
  • Voted in favor of HR 748 - Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. (
  • Rated 0% by National Education Association. (
  • "The Every Child Achieves Act puts States and local officials back in control of our local schools. As we heard from the Senator from Kansas, Mr. Roberts, his hard work on this bill also stops the Department of Education from conditioning Federal funding on the adoption of national standards like Common Core." (
  • Rated 100% by American Energy Alliance. (
  • "This Executive Order shows @POTUS is serious about cutting anti-coal regs & reducing unnecessary obstacles for jobs & energy production." (
  • "Supporting an all of the above energy policy that includes West Virginia coal and natural gas, oil produced in North America, together with renewable energy, is one of Congresswoman Capito's most important legislative initiatives." (
  • Rated 7% by League of Conservation Voters. (
  • "At it again... Washington Dems won't rest until they've killed, not only coal, but gas too! The latest Green New Deal has a cool $16 trillion price tag just for climate change. They say ‘there ain’t no middle ground’ let's tell them where we stand!" (
  • "Coal should be part of an all-of-the-above energy strategy, and I am disappointed in the president for lobbying once again for his new, burdensome greenhouse gas regulations." (
  • "Shelley Moore Capito is 100 percent pro-Second Amendment." (
  • "Just voted to protect the #SecondAmendment rights of law-abiding Americans" (
  • "Our state's traditions are dear to my heart and I will always continue fighting for the right of law-abiding West Virginians to bear arms." (
  • Rated 0% by Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. (
  • "Repealing, replacing Obamacare is the best solution for West Virginia. Read more in my weekly newsletter" (
  • "By repealing ObamaCare, we can revisit the problems caused by the health care law and the problems that existed before, replace them with reforms that work, and protect those whose coverage has been disrupted." (
  • "Congresswoman Capito will continue to support efforts to improve the quality and accessibility of health care through patient centered reform, rather than a government takeover of our health care system." (
  • Rated 17% by American Public Health Association. (
  • Despite exhaustive research, Vote Smart was unable to find information about this candidate's position.
  • Rated 81% by NumbersUSA. (
  • "ICYMI: Today the Appropriations Committee APPROVED my bill to fully fund @realDonaldTrump’s border wall system." (
  • "The combination of technology and personnel Ñ both at our ports of entry and along the border Ñalong with the border wall system will enhance our security and choke off a major source of the heroin and fentanyl that has devastated families in West Virginia and across the country." (
  • "The president doesn't have the constitutional authority to grant amnesty to millions who have broken the law by entering the U.S. illegally." (
  • "Capito opposes amnesty for the estimated 7 million illegal immigrants working in the United States." (
  • Rated 81% by NumbersUSA. (
  • Voted in favor of HR 5759 - Preventing Executive Overreach on Immigration Act of 2014. (
  • "Today I voted to extend Iran sanctions, an essential tool to prevent nuclear proliferation and keep Americans safe" (
  • "Iran continues to be a serious threat to the security of the United States and our allies," said Senator Capito. "These sanctions are an essential tool to prevent nuclear proliferation by the world's largest state sponsor of terror, and it is critical that we keep them in place in order to protect the American people. I urge the president to swiftly sign this bill into law." (
  • Rated 87% by Center for Security Policy. (
  • Signed a letter stating: "None of us desires military conflict, but as you yourself have acknowledged, we must keep all options on the table to prevent this dangerous regime from acquiring nuclear weapons." (
  • "Moving forward with free trade negotiations will facilitate new opportunities for workers at current West Virginia employers and help attract new business investment. Without today's bill, the potential economic benefits from trade agreements with allies like Japan will be lost." (
  • Rated 19% by Public Citizen. (
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.
Pro-choice a) Do you consider yourself pro-choice or pro-life?
b) Should abortion be legal only within the first trimester of pregnancy?
Yes c) Should abortion be legal when the pregnancy resulted from incest or rape?
Yes d) Should abortion be legal when the life of the woman is endangered?
Yes e) Should federal subsidies be prohibited from being used for abortion procedures?
f) Other or expanded principles

1) SpendingIndicate what federal funding levels (#1-6) you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category- you can use a number more than once.2) TaxesIndicate 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.

Maintain Status a) Agriculture
Maintain Status b) Arts
Maintain Status c) Defense
Maintain Status 1) Intelligence operations
Maintain Status 2) Military hardware
Maintain Status 3) National missile defense
Slightly Increase 4) Salary and benefits for active duty personnel
Maintain Status 5) Programs to improve troop retention rates
Maintain Status 6) Research and development of new weapons
Maintain Status d) Education
Maintain Status e) Environment
Maintain Status f) Homeland security
Slightly Decrease g) International aid
Maintain Status h) Medical research
Maintain Status i) Scientific research
Slightly Decrease j) Space exploration
Greatly Decrease k) United Nations
Maintain Status l) Welfare
m) Other or expanded categories
Maintain Status a) Alcohol taxes
Slightly Decrease b) Capital gains taxes
Maintain Status c) Cigarette taxes
Maintain Status d) Corporate taxes
Maintain Status e) Gasoline taxes
Slightly Decrease f) Income taxes (low-income families)
Slightly Decrease g) Income taxes (middle-income families)
Slightly Decrease h) Income taxes (high-income families)
i) Other or expanded categories
Yes 3) Do you support the elimination of the federal estate tax?
Yes 4) Do you support requiring the federal budget to be balanced each year?
No 5) Do you support using government funds in an effort to stimulate and improve the economy?
6) Other or expanded principles
No a) Do you support privatizing elements of Social Security?
Yes b) Do you support reducing government regulations on the private sector?
Yes c) Do you support increasing the federal minimum wage?
d) Do you support the ability of workers to unionize?
Yes e) Do you support federal funding for job-training programs that retrain displaced workers?
f) Other or expanded principles
Yes a) Do you support increasing the amount individuals are permitted to contribute to federal campaigns?
b) Should Congress regulate indirect campaign contributions from corporations and unions?
No c) Do you support removing all contribution limits on federal campaigns?
d) Should candidates for federal office be encouraged to meet voluntary spending limits?
Yes e) Do you support giving the President the power of the line item veto for items concerning appropriations?
No f) Do you support limiting the President's ability to define how legislation is applied through the use of signing statements?
g) Other or expanded principles
Yes a) Do you support capital punishment for certain crimes?
Yes b) Do you support programs that provide prison inmates with vocational and job-related training and job-placement assistance when released?
Yes c) Do you support programs that provide prison inmates with substance abuse treatment?
No d) Do you support reduced prison sentences for non-violent offenders?
Yes e) Do you support mandatory prison sentences for selling illegal drugs?
f) Other or expanded principles
Yes a) Do you support federal education standards and testing requirements for K-12 students?
Yes b) Do you support federal funding for universal pre-K programs?
Yes c) Do you support federal funding for charter schools?
d) Do you support federal funding for K-12 school vouchers?
Yes e) Do you support the federal government providing college students with financial aid?
f) Other or expanded principles
No a) Do you support enacting environmental regulations aimed at reducing the effects of climate change?
No b) Do you support international emissions targets aimed at reducing the effects of climate change?
No c) Do you support allowing energy producers to trade carbon credits under a "cap and trade" system?
Yes d) Do you support strengthening fuel efficiency standards on all gasoline and diesel-powered engines, including cars, trucks, and sport utility vehicles?
Yes e) Do you support domestic oil exploration in federally-protected areas?
Yes f) Do you support federal funding for the development of alternative energy?
Yes g) Do you support the development of nuclear reactors?
h) Other or expanded principles
No a) Do you support restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns?
Yes b) Do you believe that the Second Amendment guarantees the right of individual citizens to own guns?
Yes c) Do you support allowing individuals to carry concealed guns?
No d) Do you support a ban on assault rifles?
e) Other or expanded principles
No a) Do you support a publicly-administered health insurance option?
Yes b) Do you support expanding access to health care through commercial health insurance reform?
Yes c) Should the federal government expand eligibility for tax-free medical savings accounts?
Yes d) Do you support monetary limits on damages that can be collected in malpractice lawsuits?
Yes e) Do you support relaxing regulations on the importation of prescription drugs?
f) Other or expanded principles
No a) Do you support a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants?
No b) Do you support decreasing the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country?
Yes c) Do you support establishing English as the official national language?
Yes d) Do you support the enforcement of federal immigration laws by state and local police?
e) Other or expanded principles
Yes a) Do you support United States military action in Afghanistan?
Yes b) Do you support increasing military assistance for Afghanistan?
Yes c) Do you support increasing economic development assistance for Afghanistan?
Yes d) Should the United States continue to strike suspected terrorist targets in Pakistan?
Yes e) Do you support granting aid to countries when it is in the security interests of the United States?
f) Should the United States support the creation of a Palestinian state?
Yes g) Do you support increasing sanctions on Iran if it continues to defy United Nations mandates?
h) Do you support the withdrawal of United States troops from Iraq?
i) Do you support the United States' involvement in free trade agreements?
j) Other or expanded principles
Yes a) Should marriage only be between one man and one woman?
No b) Do you support allowing openly-gay men and women to serve in the United States military?
Yes c) Do you support federal funding for embryonic stem cell research?
d) Should the federal government end affirmative action programs?
e) Other or expanded principles
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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