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Kerry Bentivolio's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

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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.

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

Kerry Bentivolio submitted the 2020 Political Courage Test after the official deadline.

What is the Political Courage Test?

Michigan Congressional Election 2020 Political Courage Test

Pro-life Do you generally support pro-choice or pro-life legislation?
I strongly believe in protecting the sanctity of life, from conception till natural death. Every life is valuable and matters. As such, I am proud to have consistently been endorsed by Right to Life Michigan and am a life-long member. I stood up for the protection of unborn, bringing light to the horrors of Kermit Gosnell on the House floor. I support adoption and foster care programs, along with helping women in need through crisis pregnancy centers.
No In order to balance the budget, do you support an income tax increase on any tax bracket?
No Do you support expanding federal funding to support entitlement programs such as Social Security and Medicare?
I believe there are other approaches to addressing the problems within Social Security and Medicare beyond simply expanding government funding, which likely would only add to our national debt and/or tax burden. The Social Security Trust fund was estimated to be insolvent in 15 years and Medicare in roughly six. This more than likely has accelerated because of COVID-19 and decreased revenue. Yet, little has been done to resolve these issues. Our government is obligated to fulfill the promises they made for all generations.
Yes Do you support the regulation of indirect campaign contributions from corporations and unions?
I understand the principles behind the Citizens United ruling, namely that the First Amendment prohibits the government from restricting independent expenditure as a part of free speech. However, there is no denying that money quite often does unduly influence campaigns. The candidate who spends the most money usually wins and, generally speaking, candidates are spending more money than ever. I would be open to examining specific qualifications to limit undue influence from money in politics, but it would be an issue I would have to continue to explore, gauging the legality of any decision in context of the Constitution.
No Do you support increasing defense spending?
As a veteran myself, I am all for smart spending when it comes to defense. Our country's security needs are greater than ever and threats, both domestic and foreign, are continually evolving. By nature, this requires adaptation and investment; now, that being said, just because funds are allocated for something like defense, doesn't mean there cannot be government waste. As such, I believe any increased defense spending must be weighed on a case-by-case basis.
No Do you support federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth?
Yes Do you support lowering corporate taxes as a means of promoting economic growth?
Yes Do you support providing financial relief to businesses AND/OR corporations negatively impacted by the state of national emergency for COVID-19?
The Paycheck Protection Program and other financial support provided during COVID-19 helped keep many afloat, but were not without faults. Going forward, I believe that Congress should continue to look at realistic, strategic ways to support those negatively impacted by the pandemic. However, this ultimately means allowing small business owners and their employees to reopen. Once again reigniting America's economy and bringing down unemployment.
No Do you support requiring states to adopt federal education standards?
I fully believe that educational standards are a matter for state and local government. However, the federal government can play a role in providing block grant funds to the state and other areas.
No Do you support government funding for the development of renewable energy (e.g. solar, wind, geo-thermal)?
No Do you support the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions?
Preserving our environment is an important goal not only for those of us here now, but future generations. Therefore, I am not opposed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. However, I believe this can be better achieved through free market innovation, rather than heavy-handed federal regulation.
No Do you generally support gun-control legislation?
As a gun owner, military veteran, and outdoorsman, I strongly believe in the Second Amendment. I previously served as marksmanship instructor and master gunner for an artillery battalion of the Michigan National Guard. And, as your representative, I will defend our collective right to bear arms. As such, I am opposed to so-called "Red Flag Laws," but also do understand this fight will need to be had at the state and local levels. That being said, the government has no right to infringe upon your gun ownership without due process.
Yes Do you support repealing the 2010 Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare")?
No Do you support requiring businesses to provide paid medical leave during public health crises, such as COVID-19?
The COVID-19 pandemic is an exceptional situation. That being said, requiring already struggling businesses now to provide paid medical leave would only worsen the situation. However, a system through which crisis insurance could be provided in future pandemics or similar situations definitely is something worth exploring in a world where issues, like public health, are increasingly globalized.
Yes Do you support the construction of a wall along the Mexican border?
Yes Do you support requiring immigrants who are unlawfully present to return to their country of origin before they are eligible for citizenship?
Most Americans, myself included, are pro-legal immigration and gladly welcome those seeking a better life here in the United States, we simply want the same standards applied to those entering the country as it is with law-abiding citizens.
No Should the United States use military force to prevent governments hostile to the U.S. from possessing a weapon of mass destruction (for example: nuclear, biological, chemical)?
Yes Do you support reducing military intervention in Middle East conflicts?
When our interests are directly threatened, all options are to be considered, including military intervention. However, that does not mean recklessly involving ourselves in every conceivable matter. The limits of "nation building" are well known. That being said, we cannot simply isolate ourselves. So, I therefore believe that we should aim for a foreign policy that emphasizes a basic need, that of security, while cooperating with our allies. Existing relations can be strengthened and new ones created, because we are not alone in our desire for a more peaceful world, in which basic human rights and freedoms are protected.
Yes Do you generally support removing barriers to international trade (for example: tariffs, quotas, etc.)?
Free trade has brought countless benefits to people in the United States and elsewhere around the world. Now, global trade has not been a completely fair exchange and some countries have adopted policies that not only give their markets a competitive advantage, but also harm those of others. Therefore, I am not opposed to using tariffs and other policies to protect US interests. Still, we must acknowledge trade policy in a globalized economy is not a zero-sum game and that is why, above all, I support engagement to facilitate mutually beneficial trade deals.
Firstly, I will strive to protect our future by defending our Constitutional freedoms in Washington, that includes pushing back the advance of burdensome, costly regulations and government overreach. Secondly, I will work to restore Michigan businesses and bringing back manufacturing back to our great state. Third, I will advocate for fiscal responsibility in government. I have signed the "Taxpayer Freedom Pledge" and will, on behalf of the hard-working people of the 11th District, do my very best ensure our government does not add further burden and/or act irresponsibly.

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