The following topics are related to the issue of individual rights—a primary issue covered by presidential candidates. The stances of the candidates were determined by presidential-candidates.insidegov.com based on speeches, press releases and public statements by each candidate. Individual rights pertain to individuals’ rights to act, work, think and behave without organization or government interference.

Abortion
Strongly Oppose—Candidate believes that abortion is immoral because it kills human beings. They don’t believe it should be tolerated in any case and that Roe v. Wade should be overturned.

Oppose—Candidate believes the fetus is a human being who has individual rights dependent of the mother’s. This person is “pro-life”, although they believe abortion may be tolerated under certain circumstances.

No stance—Candidate has not issued an official statement regarding this issue.

Favors—Candidate believes that restricting partial-birth abortions or other specific procedures is reasonable. This person is “pro-choice”, but believes some restrictions, such as partial-birth abortions, are acceptable.

Strongly favors—Candidate believes the right to abortion empowers women and is important part of their rights. They are strongly “pro-choice” and believe that abortion rights include the right to a government subsidy for poor women who want an abortion.

 

Legally require hiring women & minorities
Strongly Oppose—Candidate believes affirmative action is actually reverse discrimination. They say quotas based on race and gender are wrong and that under-represented groups should fend for themselves without government intervention.

Oppose—Candidate believes affirmative action is a good idea, but the government should not enforce it.

No stance—Candidate has not issued an official statement regarding this issue.

Favors—Candidate believes women and minorities should be favored, but that formal quotas go too far. The government should still prosecute companies who display discrimination.

Strongly favors—Candidate believes affirmative action makes up for past injustices and that society should help women and minorities get into the upper classes of the economy. They say the government should actively enforce affirmative action laws in private companies.

 

Comfort with same-sex marriage
Strongly Opposes—Candidate believes homosexuality is immoral and that legalizing same-sex marriage is seeking to normalize homosexual activity.

Oppose—Candidate believes homosexuality is a lifestyle choice, but that marriage between men and women is a central institution of the United States.

No stance—Candidate has not issued an official statement regarding this issue.

Favors—Candidate believes homosexuals should be treated equally, but that same-sex marriage should use the term civil union rather than marriage.

Strongly favors—Candidate believes homosexuals should be treated equally and receive the same status as heterosexual partners.

Keep God in the Public Sphere
Strongly Oppose—Candidate believes in separation of church and state and says that allowing religion in public schools, organizations or places is a violation of the Constitution.

Oppose—Candidate believes faith-based organizations and prayer in public schools is inappropriate.

No stance—Candidate has not issued an official statement regarding this issue.

Favors—Candidate believes religious values need to be taught in schools because the exposure will help children be better off.

Strongly favors—Candidate believes Judeo-Christian values are American values and that believing in God is what American was founded upon. They say tax-funding religious organizations and school prayer doesn’t violate separation of church and state and that the Pledge of Allegiance should continue to include the phrase “Under God”.

 

EPA regulations are too restrictive
Strongly Oppose—Candidate believes animals and nature have inherent value.

Oppose—Candidate believes we should balance animal rights with human needs.

No stance—Candidate has not issued an official statement regarding this issue.

Favors—Candidate believes human needs come first, but that we should pay attention to environmental needs after humans are taken care of.

Strongly favors—Candidate believes that humans can do with the earth as they see fit.

Campaigning
Strongly Oppose—Candidate believes campaign donations are free speech and should not be limited.

Oppose—Candidate believes politicians will always find loopholes in campaign finance reform and that the best approach is to monitor campaigns for legal conflicts. They say better reporting of donations would be useful.

No stance—Candidate has not issued an official statement regarding this issue.

Favors—Candidate believes campaign finance reforms are needed to reduce monetary influence. Reforms may include personal donation restrictions, Political Action Committee activity restrictions, and restrictions on corporate, labor union or PAC donations.

Strongly favors—Candidate believes public funds should be used for campaigns and that the best way to reduce monetary influence is to remove as much money as possible from campaigning. They say free television time would be a good start.

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