2012 Republican Presidential Candidates Summary

Here is my compilation of what seem to be the basic beliefs of the 2012 Republican Presidential candidates. I divided this list up by the following five categories: abortion, the economy, health care, foreign policy, and marriage. This is by no means an exhaustive list.

The way chose things to list was to list only things about the candidates that differed from the other candidates. For example: repealing Obamacare. I do not say "would repeal Obamacare" because it's a given that Republican candidates would repeal Obamacare (or at least convince people they would). So I only mention repealing Obamacare if either 1) there was something unique about how/why a candidate would repeal Obamacare, or 2) if a candidate would NOT repeal Obamacare.

I gathered my information from various articles, debates, and the candidates' campaign website. If I did not list much about what a candidate believes under a certain topic, it isn't (usually) because I'm being lazy, but because I simply couldn't find anything unique or specific about that candidate under that certain topic...or I simply couldn't find much information. I also sometimes give links throughout the list that go to what I found very helpful/detailed articles about the candidate under that topic. Sometimes they are from candidates' websites, sometimes they aren't.

I did my best to not write biased, but I'm only human.

Michele Bachmann
            ~Would advocate “Personhood” amendment to Constitution, and then use 14th amendment to ban abortion
Mitt Romney
            ~Would not sign Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life Pledge
            ~Previously strongly pro-abortion, claiming pro-life conversion in 2004…the following done after he says he converted:
            ~Supported legalization of RU-486 (the abortion pill)
            ~Implemented “Romneycare” health care when Governor of Massachusetts, which funded abortion
            ~Supports embryonic cell research
            ~Repeatedly flip-flopped on whether he was pro-life or pro-choice, depending on where he was running.

Ron Paul
            ~Repeal Roe v. Wade
            ~Define personhood as from conception with “Sanctity of Life” act
            ~Wouldn’t support abortion as president, but believes banning it should be left up to the states
Rick Santorum
            ~Does not believe rape and incest should be an exception if abortion is made illegal
            ~“Rick was the author of legislation outlawing the heinous act known as partial-birth abortion and he championed the fight to pass the “Born Alive Infant Protection Act” and the “Unborn Victims of Violence Act.”
            ~Supports Federal banning of abortion
Jon Huntsman
            ~Would not sign Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life Pledge
            ~Believes abortion is acceptable in the cases of rape and incest
           ~ “He wasn’t a governor who was pushing, cheerleading those who were opposed to reproductive rights. He wasn’t a governor that spearheaded either an anti-choice or reproductive rights agenda.”—Karrie Galloway, executive director of Planned Parenthood of Utah
Rick Perry
            ~Signed legislation as Governor of Texas that de-funded Planned Parenthood
            ~Supports the creation of a “human life” amendment to the Constitution
Newt Gingrich
            ~Supports federal funding of abortion in cases of rape or incest
            ~Once stated that life begins at implantation (as opposed to conception), and then amended it later to conception

Michele Bachmann
            ~Repatriate corporate profits
            ~The most pushy candidate about repealing Obamacare
            ~Repeal unnecessary regulations and cut unnecessary taxes
            ~repeal Dodd-Frank
            ~Open up foreign trade
Mitt Romney
            ~Cut corporate income tax rate to 25%
            ~Implemented universal “Romneycare” when governor or Massachusetts, but says wouldn’t do that as president because it should be left up to the states
            ~Cutting non-security discretionary spending by 5%
            ~Give control of “retraining” programs back to the states
            ~Sanctioning China for unfair trade practices
            ~Cut and cap federal spending to 20% of the GDP
Ron Paul
            ~Very gung-ho about auditing the Fed
            ~Supports sound money
            ~Has plan for cutting 1 trillion of spending during 2013
            ~Cut five cabinet departments (Energy, HUD, Commerce, Interior, Education)
            ~End foreign wars
            ~End foreign aid
            ~Lower corporate tax rate to 15%
*Very good, easy-to-read plan summary, along with his exact plans for spending and budgeting (actual dollar amounts for different areas), and graphs: http://www.ronpaul2012.com/the-issues/ron-paul-plan-to-restore-america/ 
Rick Santorum
            ~Forget “green jobs” and start using our vast natural resources
            ~Cut corporate tax rates “in half”
            ~Return size of government to 18% (of GDP?)
            ~Balanced budget amendment
Jon Huntsman
            ~Reduce corporate tax rate to 25%
            ~Have a “tax holiday” (unsure what this means and how long it would last—his website does not specify)
            ~Enact comprehensive patent reform
            ~Privatize Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
Rick Perry
            ~Income flat tax of 20%
            ~Reduce corporate tax rate to 20%
            ~Full audit of every regulation passed since 2008
            ~Fix Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security—and allow people to opt out
            ~Cap federal spending at 18% GDP
            ~Balanced budget amendment
            ~Simplify tax code so that taxes can be paid using a bit of paper the size of a postcard
Newt Gingrich
            ~Reduce corporate tax rate to 12.5%
            ~Optional flat tax rate of 15%
            ~“Strengthen dollar by returning to Reagan-era monetary policies”

Michele Bachmann
~Opposes our Libyan involvement
~Supports sanctions on Iran
Mitt Romney
~ “In his first 100 days, put our Navy on the path to increase its shipbuilding rate from nine per year to approximately fifteen per year.”
~ “Maintain robust military capabilities in the Pacific.”
~ “Maintain robust military capabilities in the Pacific.”
~Supports sanctions on Iran, and other methods to make sure they don’t get a hold of a nuclear weapon
~Sanctions on North Korea
~Does not specify what he will do in Afghanistan
Ron Paul
~Make top priority securing our own borders
~ “Avoid long and expensive land wars that bankrupt our country by using constitutional means to capture or kill terrorist leaders who helped attack the U.S. and continue to plot further attacks.”
Rick Santorum
~Don’t call it “war on terror”…call it what it is! War on radical Islam!
~ “authored and passed the“Iran Freedom and Support Act” in the face of Democratic and Bush State Department opposition, which authorized Federal monies to support pro-democracy movements in Iran and keep the tyrannical dictator Mahmoud Ahmadinejad from obtaining a nuclear weapon”
~ Was on the Senate Armed Services Committee for eight years
~Does not support withdrawing from Afghanistan
~Not too concerned about foreign aid, since it’s “less than a half a percent” of the federal budget
~Supports military strike on Iran
Jon Huntsman
~ “Maintain” the best military
~ “Our foreign policy is only as good as our ability to project power”—fix economy, defend borders, etc.
~ “War on Terror” can’t be fought in any one country; we have to move around as the terrorists move around; be “quick on our feet” and able to deploy on a moment’s notice
Rick Perry
~ Would reset all of our foreign aid to all countries to zero—including Israel—and then build from there.
~Very gung-ho about putting up a fence along the boarder—did so in Texas
Newt Gingrich
~”Incentivize math and science education in America to ensure the men and women of our Armed Forces always have the most advanced and powerful weapons in the world at their disposal.”
~ “Understand our enemies and tell the truth about them.”
~Re-do the Visa program
~ “Allow foreigners who want to spend money, invest and create jobs in America to do so.”
~Should have an “earned citizenship”program for illegals

Michele Bachmann
            ~Most pushy candidate on repealing Obamacare
            ~Supports the Ryan Plan for Medicare reform
Mitt Romney
            ~Implemented similar-to-Obamacare (though less extreme) “Romneycare” when governor of Massachusetts
            ~Let states do whatever they want/decide what’s best for them
Ron Paul
            ~Give various tax credits, deductions, and exemptions for medical expenses and those with terminal illnesses.
            ~ “Ensure that those harmed during medical treatment receive fair compensation while reducing the burden of costly malpractice litigation on the health care system by providing a tax credit for “negative outcomes” insurance purchased before medical treatment."
Rick Santorum
            ~Supports Ryan Plan
            ~Once voted yes on expanding Medicare to help seniors afford prescription drugs; now says that vote was a mistake, because the money isn’t used effectively
Jon Huntsman
            ~Leave things up to the states
Rick Perry
            ~Reform Medicare and Medicaid
            ~ “the best way for the federal government to improve health care in the near term is to stimulate job creation so more Americans are covered by employer-sponsored health plans”
Newt Gingrich
            ~ “make health insurance more affordable and portable”
            ~ “Create more choices in Medicare”
            ~ “Reform Medicaid by giving states more freedom and flexibility”
            ~ “reward quality care”

Michele Bachmann
            ~Supports Constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman
Mitt Romney
            ~Supported gays serving openly in the military
            ~Supports federal amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman
Ron Paul
            ~Doesn’t personally support homosexuality, but believes the states should make their own laws, and the federal government should ignore the issue altogether.
Rick Santorum
            ~ Supports Constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman
Jon Huntsman
            ~Supports civil unions
            ~Believes choices about gay people should be left to states
            ~Thinks this country could “show a little more equality” when it comes to gays
Rick Perry
            ~ Supports Constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman
Newt Gingrich
            ~ "I certainly think that we have every right to defend traditional marriage...whether it's by passing a law or a constitutional amendment."
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