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Lisa Murkowski's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

Office: U.S. Senate (AK) - Sr, Republican

Key


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.

Lisa Murkowski 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.

  • "Yes, I believe abortions should be allowed in the case of rape, incest, or when the life of the mother is at risk. Congress has consistently provided such an exception in abortion related legislation. For example the Partial Birth Abortion Ban that is now law contains such an exception and the annual Hyde amendment that prohibits federal funds from being used to pay for abortions contains the same exception." (votesmart.org)
  • Rated 47% by Planned Parenthood (votesmart.org)
  • "Abortions should occur as infrequently as possible and federal funds should not be used to pay for an abortion. I supported passage of the Partial Birth Abortion Ban and a prohibition against human cloning. Last year, during debate of health care reform legislation, I offered an amendment that, if successful, would have clarified that abortion is not a preventative service." (votesmart.org)
  • "As we look for ways to grow our economy, we must also guard against Washington's natural tendency to increase taxes and impose excessive regulations that drive jobs away." (votesmart.org)
  • "Congress must also extend the tax relief provided in the 2001 and 2003 tax bills, which are set to expire at the end of this year, including the individual and corporate income taxes, the child tax credit and the death tax." (votesmart.org)
  • "To set the nation on a more stable financial path, Senator Murkowski believes it’s critical for Congress to set sustainable funding levels for the federal government, reduce overall spending levels, and enact comprehensive tax reform and mandatory spending changes. For too long, the U.S. government has been spending more than it takes in and then borrowing huge sums of money to make up the difference." (www.murkowski.senate.gov)
  • "The Obama administration clearly has no intention of ever helping this community, but we cannot simply leave the health and safety of nearly 1,000 Alaskans to chance. We need to end the needless pain and suffering caused by the status quo before an even greater tragedy occurs, and we can do that by approving this short, simple road." (votesmart.org)
  • "In many cases, the solution is new spending -- adding up to billions of dollars. It is important to remember that the vast majority of the nation's infrastructure is privately owned and sustained and improved by private investment. At the same time, I understand that advancing our energy infrastructure will require some federal funding even within constrained budgets. But federal spending is not all that matters." (votesmart.org)
  • Voted in favor of H.R.22 " Fixing America's Surface Transportation (FAST) Act" (votesmart.org)
  • "As we look for ways to grow our economy, we must also guard against Washington's natural tendency to increase taxes and impose excessive regulations that drive jobs away. We cannot spend our way out of the current recession. The only long-term solution is to spur job creation by creating an atmosphere that encourages private-sector investment." (votesmart.org)
  • "Allowing tax rates to rise back to their pre-2001 levels will have a direct impact on every tax payer's shrinking amount of disposable income, and will harm small business owners who account for 75 percent of new job creation" (votesmart.org)
  • Voted in favor of S.Amdt.2573 "Tax Hike Prevention Act of 2012" (votesmart.org)
  • "[...]I have a seat at the table at which NCLB will be amended. From this position, I have the opportunity to improve the law from the ground up. I am also in a position to oppose inadvisable, one-size-fits-all ideas, such as the administration's proposal to fire a struggling school's principal as the first resort [...]" (votesmart.org)
  • "I am more than pleased that the Every Student Succeeds Act will finally allow our States to judge our schools by more than just the test results and allow our teachers to do what they want to do to teach our kids and engage them in the art and love of learning and not just prepare for tests." (votesmart.org)
  • "In addition to authorizing more funding, the bill ( the Head Start for School Readiness Act) expands eligibility for Head Start to more children, maintains local control over Head Start programs, and provides additional, guaranteed support for Indian Head Start programs." (votesmart.org)
  • "U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, today applauded passage by the House of legislation approving construction of the Keystone XL[...]'Now that Congress has spoken overwhelmingly in favor of closer energy ties with Canada, it's time for President Obama to make a decision.'" (votesmart.org)
  • Voted in favor of S.1 "A Bill to Approve the Keystone XL Pipeline." (votesmart.org)
  • " With his veto of the Keystone XL pipeline, President Obama turned his back on hard-working Americans, hard-working families, and the businesses that grow our nation's economy. " (votesmart.org)
  • " […] we need to put in place policies that encourage investment in developing renewable energy and transformative technologies. Americans have always been leaders in innovation and I believe we can find workable solutions to our energy needs and the challenges presented by climate change if we commit ourselves as a nation." (votesmart.org)
  • "I support funding, research and tax and grant aid to make renewable and alternative energy truly economic. By reducing the cost of wind, geothermal, biomass, hydroelectric and ocean energy and helping further natural gas and nuclear power, we can make non-carbon emitting fuels economic, actually saving Alaskans money compared to diesel-generated power." (votesmart.org)
  • Cosponsored and 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" (votesmart.org)
  • "Putting aside the asserted merits of these various proposals, no one can dispute their far-reaching impacts; from effectively barring the construction of new coal-fired plants to raising the cost of gasoline by as much as 10 cents per gallon for the average consumer, even though our economy continues to sputter and unemployment remains high." (votesmart.org)
  • "We write to express our concerns with your proposed rule for existing power plants emissions of greenhouse gases. Our primary concern is that the rule as proposed will result in significant electricity rate increases and additional energy costs for consumers." (votesmart.org)
  • Rated 92% by National Rifle Association (votesmart.org)
  • Voted in favor of S,Amdt.719 "Authorizes Reciprocity for the Carrying of Certain Concealed Firearms" (votesmart.org)
  • Rated 0% by Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence (votesmart.org)
  • "I have long argued that the Second Amendment protects an individual right. The Supreme Court finally agreed with me in 2008, in the case of District of Columbia v. Heller." (votesmart.org)
  • "The Affordable Care Act has unfortunately become one of the most ironically named pieces of legislation for Alaska in history. Affordable for whom, exactly? Insurance costs here in Alaska continue to rise as Alaska's health care providers are struggling to work within the law for our high-cost, high risk state." (votesmart.org)
  • "In the 114th Congress, Senator Murkowski is continuing her work to repeal the Affordable Care Act." (www.murkowski.senate.gov)
  • Voted in favor of S.A. 13 "Repealing the Federal Health Care Law" (votesmart.org)
  • "I support the right of all Americans to marry the person they love and choose because I believe doing so promotes both values: it keeps politicians out of the most private and personal aspects of peoples’ lives – while also encouraging more families to form and more adults to make a lifetime commitment to one another." (www.politico.com)
  • Rated 100% by Human Rights Campaign (votesmart.org)
  • "While my support for same sex civil marriage is something I believe in, I am equally committed to guaranteeing that religious freedoms remain inviolate, so that churches and other religious institutions can continue to determine and practice their own definition of marriage. […] I support marriage equality and support the government getting out of the way to let that happen." (votesmart.org)
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.
X d) Abortions should be legal when the pregnancy resulted from incest or rape.
X e) Abortions should be legal when the life of the woman is endangered.
X f) Prohibit the dilation and extraction procedure, also known as "partial-birth" abortion.
g) Prohibit public funding of abortions and of organizations that advocate or perform abortions.
X h) Other or expanded principles
Public funding of abortion in the instance of rape, incest or where medically necessary for the health of the mother

Using the key, indicate what federal funding levels you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category.Budget Priorities

Maintain Status a) Agriculture
Maintain Status b) Arts
Slightly Increase c) Defense
Slightly Increase d) Education
Maintain Status e) Environment
Slightly Increase f) Homeland security
Maintain Status g) International aid
Slightly Increase h) Law enforcement
Slightly Increase i) Medical research
Maintain Status j) National parks
Slightly Increase k) Public health services
Maintain Status l) Scientific research
Slightly Decrease m) Space exploration programs
Slightly Increase n) Transportation and highway infrastructure
Maintain Status o) Welfare
p) Other or expanded categories

Defense Spending

Slightly Increase a) Armed Forces personnel training
Slightly Increase b) Intelligence operations
Maintain Status c) Military hardware
Slightly Increase d) Modernization of weaponry and equipment
Maintain Status e) National missile defense
Slightly Increase f) Pay for active duty personnel
Slightly Increase g) Programs to improve troop retention rates
Slightly Increase h) Research and development of new weapons
Slightly Increase i) Troop and equipment readiness
j) Other or expanded categories

Using the key above, indicate what federal tax levels you support for the following general categories. Select one number per category.TaxesIncome Taxes:Family IncomeRetiree IncomeOther Taxes:Deductions/Credits:

Slightly Decrease a) Less than $25,000
Slightly Decrease b) $25,000-$75,000
Maintain Status c) $75,000-$150,000
Maintain Status d) Over $150,000
e) Other or expanded categories
Slightly Decrease f) Over $40,000
g) Other or expanded categories
Maintain Status a) Alcohol taxes
Maintain Status b) Capital gains taxes
Slightly Increase c) Cigarette taxes
Maintain Status d) Corporate taxes
Maintain Status e) Gasoline taxes
Eliminate f) Inheritance taxes
g) Other or expanded categories
Slightly Increase a) Charitable contributions
Maintain Status b) Child tax credit
Slightly Increase c) Earned income tax credit
Slightly Increase d) Medical expense deduction
Maintain Status e) Mortgage deduction
Slightly Increase f) Student loan credit
g) Other or expanded categories
Yes 4) Do you support permanent repeal of the federal estate tax?
Yes 5) Do you support eliminating taxes on dividends paid to individual investors?
Yes 6) Should a married couple filing jointly pay the same taxes as if they were an unmarried couple filing separately?
7) Other or expanded principles

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

a) Support public taxpayer funding for federal candidates who comply with campaign spending limits.
b) Increase the amount individuals are permitted to contribute to federal campaigns.
c) Prohibit Political Action Committee (PAC) contributions to candidates for federal office.
d) Allow unregulated soft money campaign contributions to political parties or committees.
e) Allow ads paid for by soft money that support or attack a candidate for federal office.
f) Allow issue advocacy commercials by corporations, labor unions, and non-profit groups which appear within 60 days of a general election and within 30 days of a primary election.
g) Remove all contribution limits on federal campaigns and parties.
Undecided h) Do you support instant run-off voting (IRV)?
No i) Should Election Day be a national holiday?
j) Should same-sex couples be allowed to form civil unions?
Yes k) Should marriage be restricted to a union only between a man and a woman?
l) Other or expanded principles

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

a) Support the use of the death penalty for federal crimes.
b) Eliminate the use of the death penalty for federal crimes.
c) Impose "truth in sentencing" for violent criminals so they serve full sentences with no chance of parole.
X d) Support programs to provide prison inmates with vocational and job-related skills and job-placement assistance when released.
X e) Support programs to provide prison inmates with drug and alcohol addiction treatment.
f) Reduce prison sentences for those who commit non-violent crimes.
X g) Support additional criminal penalties if a fetus is killed in the commission of a federal crime against a pregnant woman.
h) Require that crimes based on gender, sexual orientation, and disability be prosecuted as federal hate crimes.
X i) Support programs that provide job training and placement services for at-risk youth.
X j) Impose stricter penalties for those convicted of white-collar crimes.
k) Enforcement of civil rights should primarily be the responsibility of the federal government.
l) Minors accused of a violent crime should be prosecuted as adults.
m) Other or expanded principles

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

a) Support mandatory jail sentences for selling illegal drugs.
X b) Expand federally sponsored drug education and drug treatment programs.
c) Decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana.
d) Allow doctors to prescribe marijuana to their patients for medicinal purposes.
X e) Increase border security to stop the flow of illegal drugs into the United States.
f) Eliminate federal funding for programs associated with the "war on drugs."
g) Other or expanded principles

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

a) Support national standards for and testing of public school students.
b) Allow parents to use vouchers (equal opportunity scholarships) to send their children to any public school.
c) Allow parents to use vouchers (equal opportunity scholarships) to send their children to any private or religious school.
d) Allow teachers and professionals to receive authorization and funding to establish charter schools.
e) Increase funding for block grants to states to aid in the hiring of additional teachers.
X f) Support teacher testing and reward teachers with merit pay.
X g) Increase funding for school capital improvements (e.g. buildings, infrastructure, technology).
h) Support granting states limited control over Head Start programs.
i) Support changing the mission of Head Start to emphasize improving the math and reading skills of disadvantaged children.
j) Providing education is not a responsibility of the federal government.
k) Support affirmative action in public college admissions.
X l) Increase funding of programs such as Pell grants and Stafford loans to help students pay for college.
X m) Support federal tax incentives to help families save for college.
n) Other or expanded principles

1) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding employment.2) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding affirmative action.

X a) Increase funding for national job-training programs that re-train displaced workers or teach skills needed in today's job market.
X b) Reduce government regulation of the private sector in order to encourage investment and economic expansion.
X c) Provide tax credits or grants to businesses that offer child care services to employees.
X d) Encourage employers to offer flex-time scheduling, comp-time, and unpaid leave for family emergencies.
e) Eliminate all federal programs designed to reduce unemployment.
f) Increase the federal minimum wage.
g) Support the right of workers to strike without fear of being permanently replaced.
X h) Allow workers to sell company stock and to diversify their company retirement funds into other investment options.
i) Other or expanded principles
X a) The federal government should consider race and gender in government contracting decisions.
b) The federal government should discontinue affirmative action programs.
c) The federal government should continue affirmative action programs.
X d) Include sexual orientation in federal anti-discrimination laws.
e) Other or expanded principles

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

a) Strengthen the regulation and enforcement of the Clean Water Act.
b) Strengthen the regulation and enforcement of the Clean Air Act.
X c) Require states to compensate citizens when environmental regulations limit uses of privately-owned land.
X d) Relax logging restrictions on federal lands.
X e) Relax standards on federal lands to allow increased recreational usage.
X f) Support increased development of traditional energy resources (e.g. coal, natural gas, oil).
X g) Strengthen emission controls and fuel efficiency standards on all gasoline and diesel-powered engines, including cars, trucks, and sport utility vehicles.
X h) Support opening a select portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil exploration.
X i) Encourage further development and use of alternative fuels to reduce pollution.
j) Support the use of ethanol as an alternative fuel.
X k) Allow energy producers to trade pollution credits.
l) Support the U.S. re-entering the Kyoto treaty process to limit global warming.
m) Other or expanded principles

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

a) Renew the ban on the sale or transfer of semi-automatic guns, except those used for hunting.
b) Maintain and strengthen the current level of enforcement of existing federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
X c) Ease federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
d) Repeal federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns.
X e) Allow citizens to carry concealed guns.
f) Require manufacturers to provide child-safety locks on guns.
g) Require background checks on gun sales between private citizens at gun shows.
h) Require a license for gun possession.
i) Establish a national database of ballistic "fingerprints" to track guns used in criminal activities.
X j) Support legislation that would protect manufacturers, distributors, dealers, and importers of firearms from civil lawsuits by crime victims.
k) Other or expanded principles

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

a) Providing health care is not a responsibility of the federal government.
b) Implement a universal health care program to guarantee coverage to all Americans regardless of income.
c) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights which includes appeal mechanisms when claims are denied.
d) Support a Patient's Bill of Rights which includes the right to sue when claims are denied.
X e) Expand eligibility for tax-free medical savings accounts.
X f) Establish limits on the amount of punitive damages awarded in medical malpractice lawsuits.
X g) Support expanding prescription drug coverage under Medicare.
h) Support expanding prescription drug coverage under private managed care plans.
X i) Offer tax credits to individuals and small businesses to offset the cost of insurance coverage.
j) Support automatic enrollment of children in federal health care programs such as CHIP and Medicaid.
k) Allow 55-65 year-olds to buy into Medicare.
X l) Support stem cell research on existing lines of stem cells.
m) Allow laboratories to create new lines of stem cells for additional research.
n) Other or expanded principles

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

a) Decrease the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country.
b) Establish English as the official national language.
c) Increase the number of visas issued for agricultural workers.
d) Relax restrictions barring legal immigrants from using social programs (e.g. public housing, food stamps).
e) Support amnesty for certain illegal immigrants who already reside in the United States.
f) Support the detention of asylum seekers from countries known to sponsor terrorism.
g) Other or expanded principles

International AidIndicate which principles you support (if any) regarding United States economic assistance.

X a) Aid should be granted to countries when extraordinary circumstances cause disaster and threaten civilian lives.
X b) Aid should be granted to countries when it is in the security interests of the United States.
c) Aid should be eliminated for any nation with documented human rights abuses.
d) Aid programs should be scaled back and eventually eliminated.
e) Other or expanded principles

International Policy1) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the Middle East.2) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding Central and East Asia.3) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the United Nations.

Yes a) Should the United States continue to provide leadership in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process?
Yes b) Should the United States support the creation of a Palestinian state?
No c) Should the United States withdraw its troops from Iraq?
d) Discuss your proposals for the reconstruction of Iraq. What funding sources would you use to implement these proposals? (75 words or less. Please use an attached page if the space below is not adequate.)
e) Other or expanded principles
Yes a) Should the United States use diplomatic and economic pressure to encourage North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons program?
No b) Should the United States use military force to destroy the North Korean nuclear weapons program?
No c) Should the United States remove the North Korean government from power?
Yes d) Should the United States increase financial support to Afghanistan?
Undecided e) Should the United States increase military support to Afghanistan?
f) Other or expanded principles
Yes a) Should the United States maintain its financial support of the United Nations?
No b) Should the United States decrease its financial support of the United Nations?
Yes c) Should the United States commit troops to United Nations peacekeeping missions?
d) Other or expanded principles
No 4) Should the United States lift the travel ban to Cuba?
Undecided 5) Should the United States increase its financial support to Colombia to combat "the war on drugs"?
6) Should aid to African nations for AIDS prevention programs fund distribution of contraceptives?
Yes 7) Should aid to African nations for AIDS prevention fund abstinence education?
8) Other or expanded principles

International TradeIndicate which principles you support (if any) regarding international trade.

Yes 1) Do you support the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)?
Yes 2) Do you support the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT)?
Undecided 3) Do you support continued U.S. membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO)?
Yes 4) Should a nation's human rights record affect its normal trade relations (most favored nation) status with the United States?
Yes 5) Do you support the trade embargo against Cuba?
Yes 6) Should trade agreements include provisions to address environmental concerns and to protect workers' rights?
7) Other or expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding national security.

Yes a) Do you support using military tribunals to try suspected terrorists when ordinary civilian courts are deemed inappropriate or impractical?
Yes b) Should the United States adopt stricter rules for student visa applications from nations known to sponsor terrorism?
No c) Should the United States grant law enforcement agencies greater discretion to read mail and email, tap phones, and conduct random searches to prevent future terrorist attacks?
Yes d) Should the United States hold foreign states accountable for terrorists who operate in their country?
Yes e) Should the federal government increase funding to states and cities for homeland security?
f) Do you support a policy of pre-emptive strikes against countries deemed to be a threat to national security?
g) Other or expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding Social Security.

X a) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts which they manage themselves.
X b) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts managed by private firms contracted by the government.
c) Invest a portion of Social Security assets collectively in stocks and bonds instead of United States Treasury securities.
d) Increase the payroll tax to better finance Social Security in its current form.
e) Lower the annual cost-of-living increases.
f) Raise the retirement age for when individuals are eligible to receive full Social Security benefits.
g) Other of expanded principles

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding technology and communication.

a) Collect taxes on commercial Internet transactions.
X b) Continue the moratorium on Internet taxation.
c) Implement regulation of Internet content.
d) Support government mandates to curtail violent and sexual content on television.
X e) Support strict penalties for Internet crimes (e.g. hacking, identity theft, worms/viruses).
X f) Support legislation to detail how personal information can be collected and used on the Internet.
g) Regulating the Internet is not a responsibility of the federal government.
X h) Impose regulations on "spam" emails.
i) Other or expanded principles

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

a) Require welfare recipients to spend at least 40 hours a week in a combination of work and training programs.
X b) Increase funding for child care programs.
X c) Continue to give states and local governments flexibility in and responsibility for welfare programs through federal block grants.
X d) Direct federal poverty aid through religious, community-based, or other non-profit organizations.
e) Abolish all federal welfare programs.
X f) Support housing assistance for low-income families.
g) Other or expanded principles
Economic development through reliable affordable energy, access to resources, and a trained and skilled workforce. I'll continue to push for responsible development in balance with the environment. Education at all levels that works in every corner of Alaska and improved medical access and health care - for seniors, veterans, and all Alaskans. And I will continue to press the federal government to make sure that promises made to Alaska are promises kept.

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