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THE ISSUES / DICK GEPHARDT
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About Dick Gephardt:
Former House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt launched his presidential campaign on February 19, 2003, only to end it 11 months later after a disappointing fourth-place finish in the Iowa Democratic caucuses. A 14-term congressman from Missouri, Gephardt won the caucuses in 1988 during his first unsuccessful bid for the Democratic presidential nomination. In his second campaign, Gephardt stressed worker's rights and health care, but his campaign suffered from a lack of money. His poor showing in Iowa caused him to pull out of the race a day after the January 19, 2004, caucuses.
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Editor's note: This chart features brief summaries of candidates' viewpoints on some issues, based on their statements and records. Most candidates have offered more comprehensive explanations of their positions on these and other issues. More information may be found on their campaign Web sites.
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TOPIC
POSITION
Affirmative Action
Supports affirmative action programs
Gay marriage
Backs civil unions, full benefits, but not marriage for GLBT
Gays in the military
Favors allowing gay men, women to serve openly in military
Gay adoption
Supports adoption by gay men, women
Hate crime legislation
Sponsored past laws; expand federal role over hate crimes
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TOPIC
POSITION
National Missile Defense
Opposes NMD; wants funds diverted to anti-terrorism fight
Increase size of Army
Promises world's "best-equipped, best-trained" fighting force
Program budgets
Gives priority to giving U.S. service members a pay raise
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TOPIC
POSITION
Drilling in ANWR
Opposes oil exploration in Arctic refuge, offshore drilling
Alternative fuels
Mandate use of renewable energy (wind, solar, biomass, etc.)
Energy policy
Spur U.S. energy independence, domestic oil, gas production
Gas mileage requirements
Fuel efficiency incentives; move to hybrid cars, hydrogen fuel
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TOPIC
POSITION
Drug costs
Bring low-cost generic drugs to market sooner
Medicare solvency
Protect patients; amend reimbursement rates for doctors
Prescription drugs benefit
For Medicare benefit that does not rely on private insurers
Nationalized health care
Tax credits to employers; expand public and private entities
Sue HMOs
Fully supports patients to sue negligent insurance providers
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TOPIC
POSITION
Enemy combatants
No public position; backed 2001 anti-terror legislation
Patriot Act
Backed 2001 Act; favors checks on AG; against new measures
Immigration
Let tax-paying immigrants of 5 years become legal residents
Intelligence agencies
Improve intelligence capabilities; fairly assess information
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TOPIC
POSITION
War in Iraq
Supported war, but believes Bush wrong for skirting U.N.
Iraqi reconstruction
Seek U.N., NATO assistance securing Iraq peace, stability
Pre-emption policy
Opposes pre-emption; for securing dangerous materials worldwide
Afghanistan
Backed war against Taliban; says U.S. must follow through
Middle East
Supports economic, military aid to, solidarity with Israel
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TOPIC
POSITION
Abortion
Supports a woman's right to an abortion
Death penalty
Supports death penalty and reforms assuring accused's rights
Drug policy
Beef up border patrols to curb drug imports into U.S.
Gun control
Ban assault weapons; test backgrounds; fix gun show loophole
Education reform
Create ROTC-modeled teacher corps, preschool at all schools
Supreme Court
Pledges diversity, center-left beliefs in judge ap- pointments
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TOPIC
POSITION
Social Security
Create universal, tax-free pensions for everyone at birth
State fiscal crisis
Reimburse states $53 billion+ for new health care costs
Tax cuts
Repeal Bush cuts; keep per-child credit, marriage relief
Budget deficits
Past advocate of deficit reduction; opposes Bush policies
Job creation
Fuel economy with health care plan; aid small businesses
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NOTE
• AG: Attorney General; ANWR: Arctic National Wildlife Refuge; CAFÉ: Standards that provide tax and other incentives for consumers to purchase and alternative fuel vehicles; COPS: Community Oriented Policing Program; DOMA: Defense of Marriage Act; GLBT: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered; NCLB: No Child Left Behind; NMD: National Missile Defense.
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