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              Executive   |   Legislative   |   Judicial
Former Democratic Representative (TN-9, 1997-2007):
Harold Ford on the Issues

Harold Ford on Abortion

  • Pro-life; education before pregnancy to reduce abortions. (Oct 2006)
  • Supports stem cell research of all types. (Oct 2006)
  • Voted YES on allowing human embryonic stem cell research. (May 2005)
  • Voted YES on restricting interstate transport of minors to get abortions. (Apr 2005)
  • Voted NO on making it a crime to harm a fetus during another crime. (Feb 2004)
  • Voted YES on banning partial-birth abortion except to save mother’s life. (Oct 2003)
  • Voted NO on funding for health providers who don't provide abortion info. (Sep 2002)
  • Voted NO on banning Family Planning funding in US aid abroad. (May 2001)
  • Voted NO on federal crime to harm fetus while committing other crimes. (Apr 2001)
  • Voted YES on banning partial-birth abortions. (Apr 2000)
  • Voted YES on barring transporting minors to get an abortion. (Jun 1999)
  • Rated 30% by NARAL, indicating a pro-life voting record. (Dec 2003)
  • Protect the reproductive rights of women. (Jan 1993)

Harold Ford on Budget & Economy

  • Fight $2 trillion debt by balancing budget & ending pork. (Oct 2006)
  • Voted YES on restricting bankruptcy rules. (Jan 2004)
  • Retire half the public debt by 2006. (May 2001)
  • Get minorities into home ownership & global marketplace. (Jan 2001)

Harold Ford on Civil Rights

  • Voted YES on Constitutionally defining marriage as one-man-one-woman. (Jul 2006)
  • Voted NO on making the PATRIOT Act permanent. (Dec 2005)
  • Voted YES on Constitutional Amendment banning same-sex marriage. (Sep 2004)
  • Voted YES on protecting the Pledge of Allegiance. (Sep 2004)
  • Voted YES on constitutional amendment prohibiting flag desecration. (Jun 2003)
  • Voted NO on banning gay adoptions in DC. (Jul 1999)
  • Voted NO on ending preferential treatment by race in college admissions. (May 1998)
  • Shift from group preferences to economic empowerment of all. (Aug 2000)
  • Ending racial profiling is part of fight for justice. (Jan 2001)
  • Constitutional Amendment for equal rights by gender. (Mar 2001)
  • Rated 60% by the ACLU, indicating a mixed civil rights voting record. (Dec 2002)
  • Issue a commemorative postage stamp of Rosa Parks. (Dec 2005)

Harold Ford on Corporations

  • Voted YES on replacing illegal export tax breaks with $140B in new breaks. (Jun 2004)
  • Voted YES on Bankruptcy Overhaul requiring partial debt repayment. (Mar 2001)
  • Rated 48% by the US COC, indicating a mixed business voting record. (Dec 2003)

Harold Ford on Crime

  • Voted YES on funding for alternative sentencing instead of more prisons. (Jun 2000)
  • Voted NO on more prosecution and sentencing for juvenile crime. (Jun 1999)
  • Voted YES on maintaining right of habeas corpus in Death Penalty Appeals. (Mar 1996)
  • Voted NO on making federal death penalty appeals harder. (Feb 1995)
  • Voted YES on replacing death penalty with life imprisonment. (Apr 1994)
  • Rated 78% by CURE, indicating pro-rehabilitation crime votes. (Dec 2000)
  • Moratorium on death penalty; more DNA testing. (Mar 2001)
  • More funding and stricter sentencing for hate crimes. (Apr 2001)
  • Require DNA testing for all federal executions. (Mar 2001)

Harold Ford on Drugs

  • Voted NO on military border patrols to battle drugs & terrorism. (Sep 2001)
  • Voted NO on prohibiting needle exchange & medical marijuana in DC. (Oct 1999)
  • Voted NO on subjecting federal employees to random drug tests. (Sep 1998)

Harold Ford on Education

  • Education needs equivalent of Interstate highway system. (Oct 2006)
  • Keep words “Under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance. (Jan 2006)
  • Voted NO on allowing Courts to decide on "God" in Pledge of Allegiance. (Jul 2006)
  • Voted YES on $84 million in grants for Black and Hispanic colleges. (Mar 2006)
  • Voted YES on allowing school prayer during the War on Terror. (Nov 2001)
  • Voted YES on requiring states to test students. (May 2001)
  • Voted NO on allowing vouchers in DC schools. (Aug 1998)
  • Voted NO on vouchers for private & parochial schools. (Nov 1997)
  • Voted NO on giving federal aid only to schools allowing voluntary prayer. (Mar 1994)
  • Offer every parent Charter Schools and public school choice. (Aug 2000)
  • Reduce class size to 18 children in grades 1 to 3. (Mar 2001)
  • Rated 91% by the NEA, indicating pro-public education votes. (Dec 2003)
  • Make employee educational assistance tax-deductible. (Jan 1993)

Harold Ford on Energy & Oil

  • Grow our way to energy independence, while drilling Alaska. (Oct 2006)
  • We need an energy policy that reduces Mideast oil. (Jan 2006)
  • Voted NO on authorizing construction of new oil refineries. (Oct 2005)
  • Voted NO on passage of the Bush Administration national energy policy. (Jun 2004)
  • Voted NO on implementing Bush-Cheney national energy policy. (Nov 2003)
  • Voted NO on raising CAFE standards; incentives for alternative fuels. (Aug 2001)
  • Voted YES on prohibiting oil drilling & development in ANWR. (Aug 2001)
  • Voted YES on starting implementation of Kyoto Protocol. (Jun 2000)
  • Supports tradable emissions permits for greenhouse gases. (Aug 2000)
  • Balance fossil fuels and viable renewable energy. (Jul 2001)
  • Preserve Alaska's ANWR instead of drilling it. (Feb 2001)
  • Establish greenhouse gas tradeable allowances. (Feb 2005)

Harold Ford on Environment

  • Voted YES on increasing AMTRAK funding by adding $214M to $900M. (Jun 2006)
  • Voted NO on barring website promoting Yucca Mountain nuclear waste dump. (May 2006)
  • Voted YES on deauthorizing "critical habitat" for endangered species. (Sep 2005)
  • Voted YES on speeding up approval of forest thinning projects. (Nov 2003)
  • Prohibits commercial logging on Federal public lands. (Apr 2001)
  • Rated 90% by the LCV, indicating pro-environment votes. (Dec 2003)
  • Regulating 15 more contaminants under Clean Water Act. (Oct 1993)

Harold Ford on Families & Children

  • Voted YES on establishing nationwide AMBER alert system for missing kids. (Apr 2003)
  • Voted YES on reducing Marriage Tax by $399B over 10 years. (Mar 2001)
  • Give parents tools to balance work and family. (Aug 2000)
  • Rated 33% by the Christian Coalition: an anti-family voting record. (Dec 2003)

Harold Ford on Foreign Policy

  • Voted YES on deterring foreign arms transfers to China. (Jul 2005)
  • Voted NO on reforming the UN by restricting US funding. (Jun 2005)
  • Voted YES on keeping Cuba travel ban until political prisoners released. (Jul 2001)
  • Voted NO on withholding $244M in UN Back Payments until US seat restored. (May 2001)
  • Voted YES on $156M to IMF for 3rd-world debt reduction. (Jul 2000)
  • Voted YES on Permanent Normal Trade Relations with China. (May 2000)
  • Voted YES on $15.2 billion for foreign operations. (Nov 1999)
  • Progressive Internationalism: globalize with US pre-eminence. (Aug 2000)
  • Allow Americans to travel to Cuba. (May 2000)
  • Multi-year commitment to Africa for food & medicine. (Apr 2001)
  • Double funding for the Peace Corps to $550M. (Mar 2002)

Harold Ford on Free Trade

  • Voted NO on implementing CAFTA, Central America Free Trade. (Jul 2005)
  • Voted YES on implementing US-Australia Free Trade Agreement. (Jul 2004)
  • Voted YES on implementing US-Singapore free trade agreement. (Jul 2003)
  • Voted YES on implementing free trade agreement with Chile. (Jul 2003)
  • Voted NO on withdrawing from the WTO. (Jun 2000)
  • Voted YES on 'Fast Track' authority for trade agreements. (Sep 1998)
  • Build a rule-based global trading system. (Aug 2000)
  • Rated 33% by CATO, indicating a mixed record on trade issues. (Dec 2002)

Harold Ford on Government Reform

  • Missed votes while campaigning, but voted 93% of the time. (Oct 2006)
  • Voted NO on requiring photo ID for voting in federal elections. (Sep 2006)
  • Voted NO on restricting independent grassroots political committees. (Apr 2006)
  • Voted YES on prohibiting lawsuits about obesity against food providers. (Oct 2005)
  • Voted YES on limiting attorney's fees in class action lawsuits. (Feb 2005)
  • Voted NO on restricting frivolous lawsuits. (Sep 2004)
  • Voted YES on campaign finance reform banning soft-money contributions. (Feb 2002)
  • Voted NO on banning soft money donations to national political parties. (Jul 2001)
  • Voted YES on banning soft money and issue ads. (Sep 1999)
  • Voluntary public financing for all general elections. (Aug 2000)
  • Supports Shays-Meehan Campaign Finance Reform. (Jul 2001)
  • Election reform is #1 priority to prevent disenfranchisement. (Jan 2001)
  • Prohibit non-legislated earmarks. (Jul 2005)

Harold Ford on Gun Control

  • Supports Second Amendment rights. (Jan 2006)
  • Voted YES on prohibiting product misuse lawsuits on gun manufacturers. (Oct 2005)
  • Voted YES on prohibiting suing gunmakers & sellers for gun misuse. (Apr 2003)
  • Voted NO on decreasing gun waiting period from 3 days to 1. (Jun 1999)
  • Prevent unauthorized firearm use with "smart gun" technology. (Aug 2000)
  • Rated F by the NRA, indicating a pro-gun control voting record. (Dec 2003)

Harold Ford on Health Care

  • Let Medicare negotiate prescription drug prices. (Sep 2006)
  • Voted NO on denying non-emergency treatment for lack of Medicare co-pay. (Feb 2006)
  • Voted NO on limiting medical malpractice lawsuits to $250,000 damages. (May 2004)
  • Voted NO on limited prescription drug benefit for Medicare recipients. (Nov 2003)
  • Voted NO on small business associations for buying health insurance. (Jun 2003)
  • Voted NO on capping damages & setting time limits in medical lawsuits. (Mar 2003)
  • Voted NO on allowing suing HMOs, but under federal rules & limited award. (Aug 2001)
  • Voted NO on subsidizing private insurance for Medicare Rx drug coverage. (Jun 2000)
  • Voted NO on banning physician-assisted suicide. (Oct 1999)
  • Voted NO on establishing tax-exempt Medical Savings Accounts. (Oct 1999)
  • Better and immediate funding for Medicare & Medicaid. (Dec 2000)
  • Prescription drug benefit within Medicare. (Jun 2000)
  • Establish "report cards" on HMO quality of care. (Aug 2000)
  • Increase funding for AIDS treatment & prevention. (Jan 2001)
  • More funding for Rx benefits, community health, CHIPs. (Jan 2001)
  • Rated 86% by APHA, indicating a pro-public health record. (Dec 2003)
  • Collect data on birth defects and present to the public. (Apr 1998)

Harold Ford on Homeland Security

  • Bush’s illegal wiretaps are unnecessary & wrong. (Jan 2006)
  • Voted YES on allowing electronic surveillance without a warrant. (Sep 2006)
  • Voted YES on federalizing rules for driver licenses to hinder terrorists. (Feb 2005)
  • Voted YES on supporting new position of Director of National Intelligence. (Dec 2004)
  • Voted NO on adopting the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission. (Oct 2004)
  • Voted YES on emergency $78B for war in Iraq & Afghanistan. (Apr 2003)
  • Voted YES on permitting commercial airline pilots to carry guns. (Jul 2002)
  • Voted YES on $266 billion Defense Appropriations bill. (Jul 1999)
  • Voted YES on deploying SDI. (Mar 1999)
  • Federalize aviation security. (Nov 2001)
  • Rated 89% by SANE, indicating a pro-peace voting record. (Dec 2003)

Harold Ford on Immigration

  • Claims Corker hired four illegal immigrants. (Oct 2006)
  • Voted YES on building a fence along the Mexican border. (Sep 2006)
  • Voted YES on preventing tipping off Mexicans about Minuteman Project. (Jun 2006)
  • Voted NO on reporting illegal aliens who receive hospital treatment. (May 2004)
  • Voted YES on extending Immigrant Residency rules. (May 2001)
  • Voted YES on more immigrant visas for skilled workers. (Sep 1998)
  • Rated 0% by FAIR, indicating a voting record loosening immigration. (Dec 2003)

Harold Ford on Jobs

  • Consistently supports minimum wage increase. (Oct 2006)
  • Voted YES on end offshore tax havens and promote small business. (Oct 2004)
  • Voted YES on $167B over 10 years for farm price supports. (Oct 2001)
  • Voted NO on zero-funding OSHA's Ergonomics Rules instead of $4.5B. (Mar 2001)
  • Rated 86% by the AFL-CIO, indicating a pro-union voting record. (Dec 2003)
  • Allow an Air Traffic Controller's Union. (Jan 2006)

Harold Ford on Principles & Values

  • Attended law school but failed bar exam due to campaigning. (Oct 2006)
  • Campaign should be about ideas, not family political machine. (Oct 2006)
  • This race is about whether we want a rubber stamp for Bush. (Oct 2006)
  • Religious affiliation: Baptist. (Nov 2000)
  • Member of the "Blue Dog" Coalition of conservative Democrats. (Nov 2000)
  • Supports Hyde Park Declaration of "Third Way" centrism. (Aug 2000)
  • Member of Congressional Black Caucus. (Jan 2001)
  • Reject Bush's Florida electors due to election fraud. (Jan 2001)
  • New Democrat: "Third Way" instead of left-right debate. (Nov 2000)
  • Member of the "Blue Dog" Coalition of conservative Democrats. (Nov 2007)
  • Member of Democratic Leadership Council. (Nov 2007)

Harold Ford on Social Security

  • Privatization will not enhance solvency. (Sep 2006)
  • Voted YES on raising 401(k) limits & making pension plans more portable. (May 2001)
  • Voted NO on reducing tax payments on Social Security benefits. (Jul 2000)
  • Voted YES on strengthening the Social Security Lockbox. (May 1999)
  • Create Retirement Savings Accounts. (Aug 2000)
  • Strengthen Trust Funds and take them off-budget. (May 2001)
  • Changing Social Security disproportionately affects women. (May 2001)
  • Rated 88% by the ARA, indicating a pro-senior voting record. (Dec 2003)

Harold Ford on Tax Reform

  • Voted NO on retaining reduced taxes on capital gains & dividends. (Dec 2005)
  • Voted YES on providing tax relief and simplification. (Sep 2004)
  • Voted YES on making permanent an increase in the child tax credit. (May 2004)
  • Voted YES on permanently eliminating the marriage penalty. (Apr 2004)
  • Voted NO on making the Bush tax cuts permanent. (Apr 2002)
  • Voted NO on $99 B economic stimulus: capital gains & income tax cuts. (Oct 2001)
  • Voted NO on Tax cut package of $958 B over 10 years. (May 2001)
  • Voted YES on eliminating the Estate Tax ("death tax"). (Apr 2001)
  • Voted NO on eliminating the "marriage penalty". (Jul 2000)
  • Voted NO on $46 billion in tax cuts for small business. (Mar 2000)
  • 50-25-25 budget formula for debt-tax cuts-spending. (Feb 2001)
  • Phaseout the death tax. (Mar 2001)
  • Rated 23% by NTU, indicating a "Big Spender" on tax votes. (Dec 2003)

Harold Ford on War & Peace

  • Divide up Iraq into Sunni, Shia & Kurd regions. (Oct 2006)
  • If you want to stay the course, I’m not your guy. (Oct 2006)
  • Bush failed to define serious long-term nature of Iraq. (Jan 2006)
  • Voted NO on declaring Iraq part of War on Terror with no exit date. (Jun 2006)
  • Voted YES on approving removal of Saddam & valiant service of US troops. (Mar 2004)
  • Voted YES on authorizing military force in Iraq. (Oct 2002)
  • Voted NO on disallowing the invasion of Kosovo. (May 1999)
  • Condemns anti-Muslim bigotry in name of anti-terrorism. (Oct 2001)

Harold Ford on Welfare & Poverty

  • Voted YES on providing $70 million for Section 8 Housing vouchers. (Jun 2006)
  • Voted NO on promoting work and marriage among TANF recipients. (Feb 2003)
  • Voted NO on treating religious organizations equally for tax breaks. (Jul 2001)
  • Voted YES on responsible fatherhood via faith-based organizations. (Nov 1999)
  • Finish welfare reform by moving able recipients into jobs. (Aug 2000)