Presidential Candidate Issues Grid - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Below you will find a grid outlining each 2016 presidential candidate's positions on three of the issues that are most important to South Carolina voters: gun control, off-shore drilling and energy policy, and funding for interstate projects like I-73.

Republicans Gun Control - for or against new laws Offshore Drilling/Energy - for or against I-73/Transportation - for/against federal spending

Donald Trump

Against new restrictions

"The Second Amendment guarantees a fundamental right that belongs to all law-abiding Americans. The Constitution doesn’t create that right – it ensures that the government can’t take it away. Our Founding Fathers knew, and our Supreme Court has upheld, that the Second Amendment’s purpose is to guarantee our right to defend ourselves and our families. This is about self-defense, plain and simple." - Donald Trump, campaign website

Supports offshore drilling

"I think it's incredible that we're going slow on drilling. I think it's beyond anything I've ever seen that we're going slow on drilling. There are always going to be problems. You're going to have an oil spill. You clean it up and you fix it up and it'll be fine." -Donald Trump -  Source: Devonia Smith Political Transcripts Examiner , Mar 16, 2011, via OnTheIssues.org

Supports transportation spending

"[As president I'd] rebuild the country's infrastructure. Nobody can do that like me. Believe me. It will be done on time, on budget, way below cost, way below what anyone ever thought. I look at the roads being built all over the country, and I say I can build those things for one-third. What they do is unbelievable, how bad." -Donald Trump, 2015 announcement speeches of 2016 presidential hopefuls , Jun 16, 2015, via OnTheIssues.org

Jeb Bush

Against new restrictions

"We are a peaceful people, because we choose to be. However, we will fight for our freedom and liberty, and we will fight for others who yearn to be free. The sound of our guns is the sound of freedom!" -Jeb Bush, 2003 NRA Annual Meeting

Supports offshore drilling

"Washington should generally defer to the will of states and tribes. Their citizens and leaders are best able to weigh the benefits and costs of oil and gas development." - Bush Campaign Website

Increased state transportation spending

Increased state transportation budget by 96% over 8 years, according to OnTheIssues.org

Ben Carson

Against new restrictions

"I believe the Second Amendment is one of the cornerstones of the U.S. Constitution. Without the right to bear arms, American citizens would be unable to stand against a tyrannical government or foreign invader." -Dr. Ben Carson, Campaign website

Supports offshore drilling

"In the United States, we are blessed to have enormous amounts of oil, coal, and natural gas beneath our feet and the ability to extract those fuels. While we carefully tap these resources, we must pursue all energy sources for the future. " - Dr. Ben Carson campaign website

Against federal transportation spending

"Many Americans would not be surprised to discover that our country's infrastructure is in a state of decline. Misused federal funds siphoned-off for other unrelated uses have depleted the funding intended to sustain our roads, bridges and electric grid. Fixing the U.S. infrastructure would become an urgent priority of a Carson presidency." - Dr. Ben Carson campaign website

Chris Christie

Against new restrictions

"Let's do some tough things on mental health, let's make involuntary commitment of people who speak violently easier for doctors. I think that makes sense. But let's remember something else, in many of the places around this country where they have the toughest gun laws, they have the highest violent crime rates. " -Chris Christie,  ABC This Week 2015 interview by Martha Raddatz , Oct 4, 2015

Against offshore drilling

Stressing the importance of shore protection to the vitality of the state's $35 billion tourism industry, its coastal communities and overall quality of life, Governor Chris Christie said, "New Jersey's beach resources and shore towns are what make the Jersey shore the unique destination it is, and are the reason thousands of visitors return year after year. As stewards of the environment, it is incumbent that we take all necessary measures to protect these treasures and to sustain our coastal communities and the diverse economies they support." -2011 gubernatorial press release, "Shore Protection" , Aug 11, 2011, via OnTheIssues.org

Opposed transportation spending

Opposed increasing state gas tax to fund the Transportation Trust Fund in New Jersey, which pays for road and rail projects and will run out of money in July for any construction - February 15 news story on NJ.com

Ted Cruz

Against new restrictions

"Ted Cruz is one of our nation's lading defenders of the Second Amendment" -Wayne LaPierre, via Ted Cruz campaign site

Supports offshore drilling

"We need an all-of-the-above energy approach that embraces the bountiful resources in this land — from oil to natural gas to ethanol." - Cruz Campaign Website

Opposed federal transportation spending

Voted Nay on "Fixing America's Surface Transportation" Act in 2015, Nay on "Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2014," Yea on "Transportation Empowerment Act" - via VoteSmart.org

Carly Fiorina

Against new restrictions

"I believe the Second Amendment protects the individual rights of gun-owners like my husband and me because it is our God-given right and our Constitutional right." - Carly Fiorina, via campaign website.

Supports offshore drilling

"As President, I will ensure that the United States is the global energy powerhouse of the 21st century. That means reinstating the Keystone XL Pipeline that President Obama rejected. It also means rolling back the regulations from this administration that limit our ability to find resources by imposing regulations on hydraulic fracturing and our ability to be energy independent by regulating drilling on federal lands. As President, I will make America an energy leader through technology and innovation." - Carly Fiorina, via campaign website.

Supports transportation spending

Fiorina highlighted small businesses and the tax codes she says are crippling them at a town hall in Pawleys Island in December. She also believes current politicians are holding local projects back. “They're doing all this stuff, but somehow they can't get the I-73 built..." she said. From story on WMBFNews.com.

Mike Huckabee

Against new restrictions

"The Second Amendment is the last line of defense against tyranny and must be protected. I was the first governor in America to have a concealed handgun license, and I’m a lifetime member of the NRA.  As President, I will: Defend the 2nd Amendment - Oppose new gun control laws - Protect the rights of gun owners from Big Government - Oppose new gun restrictions, registrations, regulations & mandates." -Mike Huckabee, via campaign website

Supports offshore drilling

"Partisan politics has kept us from Arctic exploration, energy opportunities along the Outer Continental Shelf, building the Keystone pipeline, and new sources of natural gas. Wind, solar, and renewable energy have great potential, occur naturally, and flow from inexhaustible sources. We should explore and exploit all forms of domestically produced energy — oil, gas, wind, solar, bio-fuels, hydro-electric, nuclear, coal — anything and everything." - Mike Huckabee, via campaign website.

Supported state transportation spending

"Known as the "highway governor," he led the campaign for a 1999 bond issue to rehabilitate the state's system of crumbling interstate highways." -Excerpt from a biography of Mike Huckabee from the National Gorvernors Association website

John Kasich

Against new restrictions

"Gov. John R. Kasich continues to be a strong supporter of the right to bear arms and, as governor, has enacted sensible legislation to defend this basic, constitutional right. John Kasich is a gun-owner himself, and in his 2014 reelection was endorsed by the National Rifle Association for his support of the Second Amendment as an inviolate part of our Constitution." From Kasich campaign website

Supports offshore drilling

"The former congressman also wants to approve the Keystone XL oil pipeline, allow oil exports, increase oil and gas drilling on 'non-sensitive' public lands and boost alternative and renewable energy, although the fact sheet does not identify how he would do that." October 2015 article from TheHill.com

Opposes federal transportation spending

"Instead of sending our gas tax money to Washington, where federal bureaucrats skim some off the top to pay for their own agencies, Congress should dramatically cut the 18.4 cents-per-gallon federal gas tax to just a few cents per gallon — just enough to pay for interstate connectivity and other safety concerns. States would then be free to set their own gas tax rates, aligned to their own needs as identified by their own residents, communities, and leaders." -John Kasich in a July 2015 TIME Editorial

Rand Paul

Against new restrictions

"I will not support any proposed gun control law which would limit the right to gun ownership by those who are responsible, law-abiding citizens. In the White House, I will remain vigilant in the fight against infringements on our Second Amendment rights." - Rand Paul, campaign website

Supports offshore drilling

"I support the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline and I have repeatedly voted to allow this project to proceed. The Obama Administration's hostile approach to traditional energy development must be stopped. As your President, I will be committed to developing a sound, innovative, and safe energy policy." -Rand Paul, campaign website

Supports transportation spending

"The interstate highway system is of vital importance to our economy. All across the country, bridges, and roads are deficient and in need of replacement.
We can help fund new construction and repair by lowering the repatriation rate and bringing money held by U.S. companies back home. This would mean no new taxes, but more revenue, and it is a solution that should win support from both political parties." - Rand Paul Facebook post, July 2014

Marco Rubio

Against new restrictions

"As President, Marco will continue to stand up for the rights of law-abiding gun owners, sportsmen, and hunters. And on Day One, Marco will repeal President Obama’s unconstitutional executive orders that infringe on the Second Amendment." - Rubio campaign site

Supports offshore drilling

"Mr. Rubio said he would immediately allow construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline to go forward, which Mr. Obama has yet to commit to. Mr. Rubio would also permit more offshore oil and gas drilling, which the president has already expanded, and effectively nullify an international climate change accord the administration is pursuing." -New York Times article, October 16, 2015

Opposes federal transportation spending

"We successfully built a national highway system in the last century, but now we need local flexibility to address our diverse nation’s many different needs and problems. The federal gas tax feeds Washington’s overspending. Transportation dollars are taken from the states and funnelled through a Highway Trust Fund that is pillaged every year by Washington special interests. And decades-old federal red tape adds cost and stands in the way of innovative solutions." - Rubio campaign site

Rick Santorum

Against new restrictions

"This was during the Clinton administration, where I voted against the gun ban, voted against the assault weapons ban, voted 100% with the NRA. And this was a piece of legislation that was crafted that the NRA endorsed, they supported, and worked with me to make sure that we'd not have something far worse pass. And so sometimes you have to pass something that can get enough votes to be able to satisfy folks that they won't pass something that's much worse. And so that's what you have to do to make sure that rights aren't taken away. I have a lifetime A-plus record with the NRA. They came to me repeatedly when I was in the Senate to help them and sponsor legislation and work toward making sure in ensuring gun rights." - Source: Fox News debate on MLK Day in Myrtle Beach, SC Jan 16, 2012, via OnTheIssues.org

Supports offshore drilling

"On October 13, 2015, Rick Santorum released his Economic Freedom Agenda, which included provisions to approve the Keystone XL Pipeline; open up market access to all forms of domestic fuel production; and give states the freedom to choose where they want to explore for oil and natural gas and to set their own regulations for hydrofracking." Source: Ballotpedia.org

Opposes federal transportation spending

"We need to get the federal government out of this infrastructure business, other than vital economic highways. It has been said that if we cut the gas tax to 3 to 5 cents and send the rest back to the states, and just take care of the federal infrastructure that's vital for our economy. We don't need the federal government and the road business that it is today. Source: 2015 Fox Business/WSJ Second Tier GOP debate , Nov 10, 2015, via OnTheIssues.org

Democrats Gun Control - for or against new laws Offshore Drilling/Energy - for or against I-73/Transportation - for/against federal spending

Hillary Clinton

Favors more gun control laws

"While gun ownership is part of the fabric of many law-abiding communities, too many families in America have suffered from gun violence. About 33,000 Americans are killed by guns each year. That is unacceptable. It is a rebuke to this nation we love. That’s why Hillary supports sensible action to address gun violence, including comprehensive background checks, cracking down on illegal gun traffickers, holding dealers and manufacturers accountable when they endanger Americans, and keeping guns out of the hands of domestic abusers and stalkers." - Clinton campaign website

Against offshore drilling

"'I am very sceptical about the need or desire for us to pursue offshore drilling off the coast of South Carolina, and frankly off the coast of other southeast states,' Clinton told South Carolina radio station WGCV-AM." From December 2015 article in The Guardian

Supports federal transportation spending

"Clinton would increase federal infrastructure funding by $275 billion over a five-year period, fully paying for these investments through business tax reform. Of these funds, she would allocate $250 billion to direct public investment. She would allocate the other $25 billion to a national infrastructure bank, dedicated to advancing our competitive advantage for the 21st century economy." From "Hillary Clinton’s Infrastructure Plan: Building Tomorrow’s Economy Today"

Bernie Sanders

Favors more gun control laws

"I come from a state that has virtually no gun control. And yet, at political peril, I voted for an instant background check, which I want to see strengthened and expanded. I voted to ban certain types of assault weapons, which are designed only to kill people. I voted to end the so-called gun show loophole. What I think there needs to be is a dialogue. And here's what I do believe: I believe what I call common sense gun reform." Bernie Sanders, Source: Meet the Press 2015 interview moderated by Chuck Todd , Oct 11, 2015 via OnTheIssues.org

Against offshore drilling

"Bernie Sanders announced on Wednesday afternoon his support for a new climate bill that would ban all new fossil fuel development on US federal lands and terminate current leases that aren't producing. The bill, called the "Keep It In The Ground Act," would also ban offshore drilling for oil and gas in the Arctic and the Atlantic and would stop new leases for offshore drilling in the Pacific and the Gulf of Mexico." Source: Nov. 2015 article from MotherJones.

Supports federal transportation spending

"Sander’s so-called 'Rebuild America Act' is meant to supplement the existing federal highway program, with annual expenditures of about $148 billion on top of the current $50 billion a year in highway spending." Source: Business Insider, July 2015

Martin O'Malley

Favors more gun control laws

As a nation, it is time for sensible gun safety laws that save lives. That is why Governor O’Malley has set a national goal of cutting deaths from gun violence in half within 10 years.  -O'Malley campaign site

Against offshore drilling

"To allow drilling off the Atlantic Coast is to willfully forget Deepwater’s awful lesson even as the economic, environmental and public health consequences continue to reverberate in communities along the gulf. If a disaster of Deepwater’s scale occurred off the Chesapeake Bay, it would stretch from Richmond to Atlantic City, with states and communities with no say in drilling decisions bearing the consequences." -Martin O'Malley, Feb. 2015 New York Times editorial

Supports federal transportation spending

"Today I am pleased to announce a supplemental to our FY2016 budget that will increase Highway User Revenues by $25 million and give counties and municipalities the most money for road improvements that they have received since FY 2009.
Further, we are committed to increasing the local share of Highway User Revenues from 10% today to its original high point of 30% over the next 8 years." -Martin O'Malley,  State of the State address to 2015 Maryland Legislature , Feb 4, 2015 via OnTheIssues.org

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