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Nancy Pelosi's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)


On The Ballot: Running, Democratic for U.S. House (CA) - District 11


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.

Nancy Pelosi did not provide voters with positions on key issues covered by the 2022 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 2022.

  • Voted in favor of HR 3755 "Women's Health Protection Act." (
  • "Forty-six years ago, the Supreme Court ruled that the Constitution defends a women's right to choose and to receive the full information necessary to make decisions for herself and her family. Today, we stand firm in our obligation to ensure that every woman has the right to make her own health decisions in consultation with her family, her physician and her faith, and without the interference of politicians or employers." (
  • Rated 100% by Planned Parenthood Action Fund. (
  • "Unfortunately, over the last several years, the rights protected by Roe v. Wade have been under assault by Congressional Republicans. Republicans have waged war on a woman's fundamental right to choose and have attempted to insert themselves into the most personal and private health decisions." (
  • "Social Security and Medicare are solemn pledges to our seniors--a promise of a safe and secure source of retirement income and health care for Americans. Protecting Social Security and Medicare is among my top priorities." (
  • "The Social Security Trust Fund has a current surplus of $2.7 trillion. While Congress must address the long-term funding challenges to Social Security, any reforms must be focused on ensuring its long-term stability. We cannot turn our backs on the 55 million Americans who receive Social Security benefits." (
  • Rated 100% by Alliance for Retired Americans. (
  • "We will fight against Republican attempts to privatize #Medicare. We will not go down that path." (
  • "The American people are confronted with one of the most compromised, corrupt Administrations in history," said House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi. "Instead of delivering on his promise to drain the swamp, the President Trump has become the swamp. Meanwhile, Republicans in the White House and Congress are cravenly beholden to big money special interests, and the American people are paying the price. It gives me pride to stand with Congressman Cicilline, Senator Whitehouse and Democrats to support the DISCLOSE ACT: bold legislation to fix our broken political system and put the power back in the hands of the people. Democrats will continue to fight the Republican special interest agenda, and restore a government of the people, by the people and for the people." (
  • "We must repair our broken campaign system. Democrats have a solution. We issue our D.A.R.E: we will work to Disclose those behind the endless money in our politics; Amend the Constitution to right the Citizens United verdict; Reform the current campaign finance system we find ourselves in, and Empower our people to participate in our democracy by voting. To continue taking on special interest money, Democrats will arm the American people with the necessary tools via the Government by the People Act." (
  • Voted in favor of HR 1 "For the People Act of 2021." (
  • "Our Founders laid the expectation that our government would work For The People - not special interests. Gerrymandering, voter suppression & dark money continue to silence Americans - Congress must put power back in the hands of the people by passing the #ForThePeopleAct." (
  • "The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act fundamentally transforms the culture of policing with strong, unprecedented reform. This legislation will not erase centuries of systemic racism and excessive policing in America. It will not bring back George Floyd, Breonna Taylor--say her name, Breonna Taylor--Ahmaud Arbery, or the countless other men and women who died or were senselessly injured. But it will take a tremendous step forward to stop the violence, stem the suffering, and start to build a healthier and better relationship between law enforcement and communities that they protect." (
  • "Led by the Congressional Black Caucus, Democrats are advancing the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act: bold, unprecedented reforms to curb police brutality, end racial profiling and end the court-created doctrine of qualified immunity for law enforcement to hold police accountable. This legislation will transform the culture of policing to address systemic racism by holding police accountable and increasing transparency." (
  • Voted in favor of HR 1280 "George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2021." (
  • "The House, under the leadership of Chairman Adam Smith, has passed a strong, bipartisan defense bill that will keep America safe, defend our servicemembers and their families and advance our nation's leadership in the world. For our military heroes, our legislation provides our men and women in uniform with a well-deserved pay increase and supports their financial security and health with greater access to child care, education and housing. Also for our security, we are fortifying our military's technological advantage, combating our adversaries, investing in our alliances and supporting our partners, including Ukraine. We are particularly proud that this legislation, thanks to Congresswoman Jackie Speier, contains historic and sweeping reforms to combat sexual assault in the military, including removing the Commander from key decisions related to sexual assault and related crimes and criminalizing sexual harassment under the Uniform Code of Military Justice." (
  • "I think everyone in the Congress has that as the highest priority. The fact though, is that we have this challenge on the budget that is holding up some of that money to protect and defend. We support the initiatives that the Republicans have put forth for increasing our defense spending. What is the mission? What are your needs? We want to be there. There isn't question about that." (
  • Rated 0% by Center for Security Policy. (
  • Voted in favor of HR 6395 "National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021." (
  • Voted in favor of HR 3684 "Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act." (
  • "Addressing America's crumbling infrastructure goes beyond fixing our roads and bridges. Reforming our transportation system will improve Americans quality of life. Cleaner air & water is crucial for improving public health. We must take this opportunity & act! #PostLive" (
  • "Today, the House voted for the #BuildBackBetter Act, which delivers good-paying jobs, cuts middle class taxes and lowers the costs that weigh heaviest on working families -- fully paid for by asking the wealthiest few and biggest corporations to pay their fair share." (
  • Voted in favor of HR 5376 "Build Back Better Act." (
  • "The Trump Admin must do much more to prevent well-connected corporations from crowding out the truly small businesses on Main Street that need PPP assistance the most. #FamiliesFirst." (
  • "The #CARESAct is nothing short of an act of legislative jujitsu. Republicans presented a corporate-focused plan, and Democrats flipped it around and delivered expansions to unemployment insurance, support for small businesses, and so much more. #FamiliesFirst #TRMS." (
  • "The scale of economic devastation caused by COVID-19 is staggering. House Democrats passed the PPP Flexibility Act to protect workers & small businesses. With my signature, it goes to the White House. The President must put #FamiliesFirst and sign it into law immediately." (
  • "While the President has made clear he will ignore oversight provisions in the #CARESAct, Acting IG Fine must exercise his full oversight authority to ensure that the Admin uses this relief package to help workers, not to pad the pockets of corporations & the wealthiest few." (
  • Voted in favor of HR 9 "Climate Action Now Act." (
  • "Despite what is happening in Washington now, I am ever hopeful, because then, working with Republicans, we passed the Energy Independence and Security Act, signed by President Bush: charting a new path to clean energy, reducing emissions, increasing the use of renewables and holding polluters accountable for environmental disasters, among other key priorities." (
  • "Republicans need to set aside special interests and join Democrats to provide more certainty to rural and farm communities, whether it's robust investments in renewable energy or passing a bipartisan, balanced Farm Bill." (
  • Signed a letter stating "Thank you for your leadership in responding to the serious challenge of climate change. We applaud and support your Climate Action Plan, the joint announcement with China establishing ambitious carbon pollution reduction targets, and the national commitment to the Green Climate Fund. These actions are critical to protect Americans from the most dangerous effects of climate change." (
  • "Just how far will the Trump Admin go to undercut efforts to protect our environment & help consumers save money? They just blocked rules that would promote energy efficient light bulbs, which lower electrical bills & reduce greenhouse gas pollution." (
  • Voted against HR 1119 "SENSE Act." (
  • "Today, the Supreme Court affirmed commonsense gun violence prevention laws that save lives. Domestic abusers have no business buying deadly weapons, and we must act to expand and strengthen the background checks that keep guns out of the wrong hands." (
  • "It has been over 200 days since the House passed life-saving background checks legislation. 100 people die every day from gun violence -- 47 of them children & teenagers. How many more must perish before @SenateMajLdr will take action? #EndGunViolence" (
  • Rated 100% by Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. (
  • Voted in favor of HR 1446 "Enhanced Background Checks Act of 2021." (
  • "Today, two Fifth Circuit judges decided to continue to block the President's Immigration Accountability Executive Actions and defer the dreams of hard-working immigrant families across America. Their decision represents a disappointing delay of a clear outcome." (
  • "For 6 years, #DACA has allowed hundreds of thousands of young patriotic men & women to get jobs, pursue higher education, strengthen our country's future & pursue the American dream. We must protect them & continue our fight against the Trump Administration's deportation agenda." (
  • "Our young DREAMers strive to build on that legacy by pursuing their future in the only land they've ever known as home. Our American values, our faith and our basic human decency demand that we prevent the senseless deportation of these patriotic young men and women. Democrats will continue to press Republicans to bring the DREAM Act to a swift vote, so we can ensure these young patriots achieve their rightful place in our country." (
  • Signed a letter stating "We believe it is undeniable that detention in a secure facility is detrimental to mothers and children and is not reflective of our values as a Nation. Children require special protections and should not be laced in jail-like settings." (
  • "@realDonaldTrump's threat to place tariffs on Mexico is not rooted in wise trade policy but has more to do with bad immigration policy on his part." (
  • "America must take strong, smart & strategic action against China's brazenly unfair trade policies. Today's action is merely a start, the Trump Admin must do more to fight for American workers & products." (
  • "Any trade agreement proposal must be judged by whether it improves the wages, working conditions and well-being of America's workers and farmers. Fixing NAFTA means increasing the paychecks of American workers, delivering real, enforceable labor standards, ensuring fairness for American agriculture, and recognizing the connection between economic growth and environmental protections." (
  • Voted in favor of HR 5430 "United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement Implementation Act." (
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) concerning abortion.

X a) Abortions should always be legally available.
b) Abortions should be legal only within the first trimester of pregnancy.
c) Abortions should be legal only when the pregnancy resulted from incest, rape, or when the life of the woman is endangered.
d) Abortions should be legal only when the life of the woman is endangered.
e) Abortions should always be illegal.
f) Abortions should be limited by waiting periods and notification requirements as decided by each state government.
g) Prohibit the late-term abortion procedure known as "partial-birth" abortion.
h) Prohibit public funding of abortions and public funding of organizations that advocate or perform abortions.
i) Other

1) Indicate what levels of federal funding you support for the following categories. Select one number (level) only.2) Indicate what levels of federal funding you support for the following defense-related categories. Select one number (level) only.4) Indicate how you would apply the expected federal budget surplus.

Greatly Increase a) AIDS programs
b) Arts funding
Greatly Increase c) Education (K-12)
d) Environmental programs
e) Foreign aid
Greatly Increase f) Housing projects
Greatly Increase g) Job training programs
h) Law enforcement
Greatly Increase i) Medicaid
Greatly Increase j) Medicare
l) Student loan programs
Greatly Increase m) Welfare
n) Other
o) Other
p) Other
a) Armed Forces personnel training
b) CIA appropriations
c) Defense plant conversion
d) Development of new weapons
e) Military hardware
f) Military space shuttle missions
g) National Missile Defense Program
h) Pay for active duty personnel
i) Other
No 3) Do you support amending the U.S. Constitution to require an annual balanced federal budget?
X a) Social Security
X b) Medicare
c) Tax cuts
d) Federal debt reduction
e) Other

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

a) Remove all legislative limits on campaign financing.
b) Establish spending limits on congressional campaigns.
c) Provide public funding for federal candidates who comply with campaign spending limits.
d) Support legislation that would increase the federal limits on individual contributions.
X e) Strengthen and enforce legislation that encourages full and timely disclosure of campaign finance information.
X f) Prohibit Political Action Committee (PAC) contributions to candidates for federal office.
X g) Provide free or low-cost television advertising to candidates who agree to voluntary campaign spending limits.
X h) Ban the unregulated campaign contributions known as soft money.
X i) Pass legislation banning issue advocacy commercials by outside groups within 60 days of an election.
j) Prohibit non-U.S. citizens from making contributions to federal campaigns.
k) Other

Indicate which principles you support (if any) to address crime.

a) Broaden use of the death penalty for federal crimes.
b) Increase spending to build more federal prisons.
c) Impose "truth in sentencing" for violent criminals so they serve full sentences with no chance of parole.
X d) Fund programs to provide prison inmates with vocational and job-related skills and job-placement assistance when released.
X e) Expand funding for community policing programs.
X f) Increase penalties for the possession of any illegal firearms.
g) Prosecute youths accused of a felony as adults.
X h) Increase funding for local Boys & Girls Clubs and other independent organizations in communities with at-risk youth.
i) Reduce prison sentences for those who commit non-violent crimes.
j) Deport all permanent resident aliens convicted of a felony.
k) Other

Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning illegal drugs.

a) Increase penalties for selling illegal drugs.
b) Impose mandatory jail sentences for selling illegal drugs.
c) Impose capital punishment for convicted international drug traffickers.
d) Strengthen current laws dealing with non-controlled substances, including inhalants and commercially available pills.
X e) Increase funding of federally-sponsored drug education and drug treatment programs.
X f) Decriminalize the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes.
g) Increase funding for border security to stop the flow of illegal drugs into the U.S.
h) Other

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

X a) Provide tax credits for companies that move job-creating industries into areas with high unemployment.
X b) Increase funding for national job-training programs that re-train displaced workers or teach skills needed in today's job market.
c) Reduce government regulations on the private sector in order to encourage investment and economic expansion.
X d) Establish empowerment zones in areas with large numbers of unemployed people.
e) Eliminate any federal programs designed to reduce unemployment.
X f) Increase the minimum wage.
X g) Pass legislation that encourages employers to offer their employees the options of flex-time scheduling, comp-time and unpaid leave to attend to their family responsibilities.
X h) Provide tax credits for businesses that provide on-site child care.
a) The federal government should consider race and sex in making government contracting decisions.
b) The federal government should continue affirmative action programs only if such programs do not include quotas.
c) The federal government should discontinue affirmative action programs.
X d) The federal government should prosecute cases of discrimination in the public sector.
X e) The federal government should prosecute cases of discrimination in the private sector.
X f) The federal government should include sexual orientation in its anti-discrimination laws.
g) Other

1) Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning education.

X a) Support national standards and testing in reading and math.
b) Allow parents to use vouchers to send their children to any publicly funded school.
c) Allow parents to use vouchers to send their children to any participating school: public, private or religious.
d) Allow parents to use tax-free savings accounts to send their children to any publicly funded school.
e) Allow parents to use tax-free savings accounts to send their children to any participating school: public, private or religious.
X f) Support creation of more charter schools where teachers and professionals receive authorization and funding to establish new schools.
g) Give all federal education funding to states in the form of block grants and allow them to spend it as they see fit.
h) Support voluntary teacher testing and reward teachers with merit pay.
i) Increase funding for block grants to states to help them hire additional teachers.
j) Other
No 2) Do you support amending the U.S. Constitution to guarantee the right to religious expression and voluntary prayer in public places, including schools?

Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding America's environment and natural resources.

X a) Require the state to fully compensate citizens when environmental regulations limit uses on privately owned land.
X b) Strengthen the Clean Water Act.
c) Change the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to limit the number of habitats eligible to be designated as endangered.
X d) Increase fees charged to ranchers who graze cattle on federal lands.
X e) Revise the 1872 mining law to increase the fees charged to mining companies using federal lands.
X f) Encourage development of alternative fuels to reduce pollution.
X g) Strengthen emission controls on all gasoline or diesel powered engines, including cars and trucks.
h) Increase federal taxes on gasoline and diesel fuels to promote conservation and alternative fuel development.
i) Promote the selling of pollution credits between nations to encourage industries to decrease pollution levels.
X j) Impose stricter national air quality standards.
X k) Adhere to the United Nations treaty regarding global climate change.
X l) Strengthen the restrictions on clear-cutting on federal lands.
m) Other

Indicate which level of government that should have primary responsibility for the following services. Select one level only.

Federal a) Border security
Federal b) Civil rights enforcement
Local c) Education
Federal d) Environmental cleanup
Local e) Job training
Local f) Law enforcement
Local g) Low-income housing
State h) Medicaid
Federal i) Medicare
State j) Transportation infrastructure (highways, roads, bridges)
State k) Welfare
l) Other

1) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding Bosnia/former Yugoslavia.2) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the Middle East.3) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding the United States-United Nations relationship.

a) The U.S. should lift the arms embargo against Bosnia-Herzegovina.
b) The U.S. should maintain a military presence in Bosnia-Herzegovina with a certain deadline for withdrawal.
c) The U.S. should maintain a military presence in Bosnia-Herzegovina without a certain deadline for withdrawal.
X d) Other
X a) The U.S. should resolve future disputes with Iraq through diplomatic means.
b) The U.S. should take unilateral military action if Iraq does not comply with all accepted UN resolutions.
c) The U.S. should take military action against Iraq only as part of an international effort.
d) The U.S. should not continue to play a prominent leadership role in the peace process between Israel and Palestine.
e) Other
a) The U.S. should contribute more funding and troops to United Nations peacekeeping missions.
b) The U.S. should contribute less funding and troops to United Nations peacekeeping missions.
c) The U.S. should participate in UN peacekeeping missions only when vital U.S. interests are involved.
d) The U.S. should not commit military troops to UN peacekeeping missions.
e) The U.S. should withdraw from the UN completely.
X f) The U.S. should pay its debt to the United Nations.
g) Other
Yes 4) Should the U.S. have diplomatic and trade relations with Cuba?
5) Should the U.S. recognize and extend full diplomatic relations to Taiwan?
Maintain military presence in Bosnia-Herzegovina as long as necessary to foster climate of peace

Indicate which principles you support (if any) concerning gun issues.

X a) Ban the sale or transfer of all forms of semi-automatic weapons.
X b) Increase federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of firearms.
c) Maintain federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of firearms.
d) Ease federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of firearms.
e) Repeal federal restrictions on the purchase and possession of firearms by law-abiding citizens.
f) Favor allowing citizens to carry concealed firearms.
X g) Require manufacturers to provide child-safety locks with firearms.
h) Other

1) Indicate which principles you support (if any) regarding health issues in America.

a) The federal government has no responsibility in providing health care.
X b) Implement a universal health care program to guarantee coverage to all Americans regardless of income.
X c) Implement a government-financed, single-payer national health care system similar to that of Canada.
X d) Support health care strategies focused on prevention, including health education and natural medicines and remedies.
X e) Support legislation to define and enforce the rights of insured patients, including greater access to specialists and emergency rooms, wider choice of health care providers, and appeal mechanisms when claims are denied.
X f) Allow small business owners, the self-employed and workers whose employers do not provide health insurance to have the same deductibility for health costs as corporations and large employers.
g) Expand eligibility for tax-free medical savings accounts, which would be taxed if used for any purpose other than medical costs.
h) Establish limits on the amount of damages awarded in medical malpractice lawsuits.
X i) Allow states and local communities to use federal funds for needle-exchange programs to combat the spread of HIV.
j) Classify nicotine as a drug and cigarettes as drug delivery devices, which should be regulated by the Federal Food and Drug Administration.
X k) Provide citizens age 55-65 the option of purchasing Medicare health coverage.

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

a) Decrease the number of immigrants allowed into the country.
X b) Increase the eligibility of legal immigrants for certain social programs (i.e. HUD housing, food stamps).
X c) Require the Immigration and Naturalization Service to reduce to six months the time between applying for citizenship and taking the oath of allegiance.
X d) Provide extra federal aid to states with higher numbers of immigrants for necessary medical and social services.
X e) Prohibit states from passing laws that deny human services (medical care, education) to illegal immigrants or their children.
f) Children of illegal immigrants, born in the United States, should not automatically receive U.S. citizenship.
g) Increase the immigration quota for computer scientists and other information technology workers.
h) Establish English as the official and recognized language of the United States government.
i) Other
The American people have consistently mentioned the decline of morals and ethics in America as a major problem facing the country. On an attached page, in fifty words or less, explain what you will do as a member of Congress to address this concern.

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

a) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts which they manage.
b) Allow workers to invest a portion of their payroll tax in private accounts which are managed by the government.
c) Invest Social Security's assets collectively in stocks and bonds instead of U.S. Treasury securities.
d) Increase the payroll tax to finance the program in its current form.
X e) Invest a portion of the budget surplus into the Social Security trust fund.
f) Increase the minimum age that determines when retirees are able to receive full Social Security benefits.
g) Lower Social Security's annual cost-of-living increases.
h) Limit Social Security benefits based on recipients' other income and assets.
i) Require individuals to pay the Social Security tax on income above $68,400, which is currently exempt.
j) Other

1) Indicate the levels you support concerning taxes in the following categories. Select one number (level) only.Income Taxes:Other Tax Issues:

a) Retiree income over $40,000
b) Family income less than $25,000
c) Family income $25-75,000
d) Family income $75-150,000
e) Family income over $150,000
f) Alcohol taxes
g) Capital gains taxes
h) Charitable deductions
i) Child tax credit
Greatly Increase j) Cigarette taxes
k) Corporate income taxes
Greatly Increase l) Earned Income Tax Credit
m) Estate taxes
n) Medical expense deductions
o) Mortgage deductions
p) Other
q) Other
No 2) Do you support replacing the U.S. income tax structure with a flat income tax?
No 3) Do you support eliminating the Internal Revenue Service?
No 4) Do you support instituting a national sales tax?
No 5) Should a married couple filing jointly pay the same taxes as if they were an unmarried couple filing separately?
No 6) Do you support requiring a super-majority vote in both houses of Congress to raise taxes?
7) Other

If you support term limits, how many terms should each serve?

No 1) Do you support amending the Constitution to limit the number of terms which members of Congress can serve?
Senator (# of 6 yr. terms)
Representatives (# of 2 yr. terms)
Yes 1) Do you support the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)?
2) Do you support broadening NAFTA to include other countries in the western hemisphere?
Yes 3) Do you support the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT)?
Yes 4) Do you support the World Trade Organization (WTO)?
5) Do you support imposing tariffs on products imported from nations that maintain restrictive trade barriers on American products?
Yes 6) Should a nation's human rights record affect its "most favored nation" trading status with the United States?
No 7) Do you support granting the President "fast-track" authority?

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

X a) Provide tax incentives for companies to hire and train homeless people who want to work.
X b) Increase funding of homeless shelters and low income housing projects.
X c) Increase funds for housing assistance for welfare recipients who need housing to get or keep a job.
X d) Provide homeless families with apartment vouchers they can use to supplement the cost of an apartment.
e) Continue to give states and local governments responsibility for welfare programs through block grants.
f) Eliminate federal funds for welfare programs at the federal, state or local levels.
g) Maintain current welfare-to-work requirements in order for states to qualify for block grants.
h) Convert government-funded low-income housing projects into private housing, managed and owned by the residents.
i) Require that unwed teenage mothers live with a parent or guardian (if possible) and attend school to receive benefits.
j) Other
Please explain what your two main legislative priorities will be if elected. Please explain how you would obtain any additional government funding needed to implement these priorities.

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