Presidential Election: Face to Face

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by numediaman, Apr 23, 2004.

  1. numediaman macrumors 6502a

    Jan 5, 2004
    Chicago (by way of SF)
    Here's another idea for a thread: a place where people can post the direct comparisons of the Presidential candidates positions.

    But, as usual, I think there should be rules to avoid falsely representing the candidates positions: The position post have to originate from direct quotes from the candidates or their web sites. No third party blogs allowed! (You can comment on your views of their positions, of course.)

    If this works we should be able to cover all the issues. If not, we'll let the thread die.

    To start off, here are the biographies of the two candidates from their own web sites. I have edited away all the material about what has happened since they were elected to their current positions -- Bush in 2000, Kerry in 1984.

    From the Bush for President web site:

    President Bush was born on July 6, 1946, in New Haven, Connecticut, and he grew up in Midland and Houston, Texas. He received a bachelor's degree from Yale University in 1968, then served as an F-102 fighter pilot in the Texas Air National Guard. President Bush received a Master of Business Administration from Harvard Business School in 1975. After graduating, he moved back to Midland and began a career in the energy business. After working on his father's successful 1988 presidential campaign, he assembled the group of partners that purchased the Texas Rangers baseball franchise in 1989.

    He served as managing general partner of the Texas Rangers until he was elected Governor on November 8, 1994, with 53.5 percent of the vote. He became the first Governor in Texas history to be elected to consecutive four-year terms when he was re-elected on November 3, 1998, with 68.6 percent of the vote.

    George W. Bush is the 43rd President of the United States. He was sworn into office January 20, 2001 . . .​


    John Kerry was born on December 11, 1943 at Fitzsimons Military Hospital in Denver, Colorado, where his father, Richard, who had volunteered to fly DC-3's in the Army Air Corps in World War II, was recovering from a bout with tuberculosis. Not long after Sen. Kerry's birth, his family returned home to Massachusetts. John Kerry was raised in the Catholic faith and continues to be an active member of the Catholic church.

    A graduate of Yale University, John Kerry entered the Navy after graduation, becoming a Swift Boat officer, serving on a gunboat in the Mekong Delta in Vietnam. He received a Silver Star, Bronze Star with Combat V, and three awards of the Purple Heart for his service in combat.

    By the time Senator Kerry returned home from Vietnam, he felt compelled to question decisions he believed were being made to protect those in positions of authority in Washington at the expense of the soldiers carrying on the fighting in Vietnam. Kerry was a co-founder of the Vietnam Veterans of America and became a spokesperson for the Vietnam Veterans Against the War -- Morley Safer would describe him as "a veteran whose articulate call to reason rather than anarchy seemed to bridge the gap between Abbie Hoffman and Mr. Agnew's so-called 'Silent Majority.'" In April 1971, testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, he asked the question of his fellow citizens, "How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?" Sen. Claiborne Pell, (D-R.I.) thanked Kerry, then 27, for testifying before the committee, expressing his hope that Kerry "might one day be a colleague of ours in this body."

    Fourteen years later, John Kerry would have the opportunity to fulfill those hopes - serving side by side with Sen. Pell as a Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. But in the intervening years, Kerry graduated from Boston College Law School and found different ways to fight for those things in which he believed.*Time and again, Kerry*fought to hold the political system accountable and to do what he believed was right. As a top prosecutor in Middlesex County, Kerry took on organized crime and put the Number Two mob boss in New England behind bars. He modernized the District Attorney's office, creating an innovative rape crisis crime unit, and as a lawyer in private practice he worked long and hard to prove the innocence of a man wrongly given a life sentence for a murder he did not commit.

    In 1984, after winning election as Lieutenant Governor in 1982, Kerry ran and was elected to serve in the United States Senate . . .​
  2. Lyle macrumors 68000


    Jun 11, 2003
    Madison, Alabama
    "On the Issues" Web Site

    In the course of trying to find information related to your suggestion(s), I came across this "On the Issues" web site. Let me be clear that I've just started looking at it and I don't yet know who's behind the web site; so if it turns out to be blatantly partisan or otherwise misleading, I apologize in advance. ;) But otherwise, it looks like it might be a good resource.
  3. Lyle macrumors 68000


    Jun 11, 2003
    Madison, Alabama
    Bush vs. Kerry on Abortion

    So, to get the ball rolling, here is some information about the two candidates' positions regarding abortion. The source for these summaries is this link from the previously mentioned "On the Issues" web site. The web site includes the sources for quotes from the candidates that back up these summaries.

    John Kerry's positions include:
    • Partial-birth abortion ban undermines women's right to choose. (Nov 2003)
    • No criminalization of a woman's right to choose. (Jun 2003)
    • Voted NO on maintaining ban on Military Base Abortions. (Jun 2000)
    • Voted NO on banning partial birth abortions. (Oct 1999)
    • Voted NO on disallowing overseas military abortions. (May 1999)
    George W. Bush's positions include:

    • Supports adult stem-cell research but limits on embryos. (Jun 2003)
    • No funds to international groups that offer abortion. (Jan 2001)
    • Accepts FDA approval of RU-486 but concerned about overuse. (Oct 2000)
    • Ban partial-birth abortions, and reduce abortions overall. (Oct 2000)
    • Approval of RU-486 is wrong. (Sep 2000)
    • Good people can disagree; but let’s value life. (Aug 2000)
    • Every child born and unborn ought to be protected. (Jun 2000)
    • Welcome all children; supports adoption tax credits. (Apr 2000)
    • Supports GOP abortion plank but disagrees on exceptions. (Feb 2000)
    • No Republican will allow partial-birth abortion. (Feb 2000)
    • Ideal: Value every life; but many steps to get there. (Jun 1999)
    • Supports Parental Notification Law for minor girls. (Jun 1999)
    • Ban partial-birth; ban taxpayer funding. (Mar 1999)
    • Encourage fewer abortions via adoption & abstinence. (Jul 1998)
  4. numediaman thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jan 5, 2004
    Chicago (by way of SF)
    I'll add to the abortion issue:


    Position Paper: Protect the Right to Choose

    John Kerry believes that women have the right to control their own bodies, their own lives, and their own destinies. He believes that the Constitution protects their right to choose and to make their own decisions in consultation with their doctor, their conscience, and their God. He will defend this right as President. He recently announced he will support only pro-choice judges to the Supreme Court. Kerry also believes that we should promote family planning and health plans should assure women contraceptive coverage.​


    The new US President, George W Bush, has signed an executive order cutting off federal funding to international agencies which support women seeking an abortion.

    The executive order was one of President Bush's first decisions since taking office on Saturday.

    "It is my conviction that taxpayer funds should not be used to pay for abortions or advocate or actively promote abortion, either here or abroad," Mr Bush wrote in his executive memorandum.

    Abortion is certainly an easy one. No Democrat could possibly get the nomination without coming out strongly for a woman's right to choose. Kerry is consistently on the record as being "personally" against abortion, but also pro-choice. While some may find this contradictory, it is also consistent with many Catholics who are pro-choice. (It is also my position, as well. I was born into a Catholic household, though religion has nothing to do with my own position.)

    Bush, of course, is pro-life, and I do not see any Republican that is pro-choice getting the nomination. During a debate with John McCain, Bush actually had a softer position (though I don't know if you could say this accurately reflects his position now):

    McCAIN [to Bush]: Do you believe in the exemption, in the case of abortion, for rape, incest, and life of the mother?
    BUSH: Yeah, I do.
    McCain: [But you] support the pro-life plank [in the Republican Party platform]?
    BUSH: I do.
    McCAIN: So, in other words, your position is that you believe there’s an exemption for rape, incest and the life of the mother, but you want the platform that you’re supposed to be leading to have no exemption. Help me out there, will you?
    BUSH: I will. The platform doesn’t talk about what specifically should be in the constitutional amendment. The platform speaks about a constitutional amendment. It doesn’t refer to how that constitutional amendment ought to be defined.
    McCAIN: If you read the platform, it has no exceptions.
    BUSH: John, I think we need to keep the platform the way it is. This is a pro-life party.
    McCAIN: Then you are contradicting your platform.

    Source: GOP Debate on the Larry King Show Feb 15, 2000​
  5. numediaman thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jan 5, 2004
    Chicago (by way of SF)
    The Environment

    Issue #2 -- the environment

    Both Bush and Kerry's web sites devote an enormous amount of space to this issue. Bush, surprisingly, does not want to give Kerry this issue -- probably because this issue is considered important to women.

    Preserving the Beauty and Quality of Our Environment

    President Bush believes that good stewardship of the environment is not just a personal responsibility, it is a public value. Americans are united in the belief that it is important to preserve our natural heritage and safeguard the land around us.

    The President has launched initiatives that express this same commitment. His Administration has acted in a comprehensive way to achieve impressive results. By almost every indicator, environmental quality in the United States is improving with cleaner air, water, and land, and improved public health.

    The President believes that the federal government has an important role to play in protecting our environment and he has introduced new and innovative policies to achieve these goals. The President favors common-sense approaches to improving the environment while protecting the quality of American life. Over the past two-and-a-half years, the Administration has introduced initiatives that have already begun to deliver significant environmental results for all Americans.

    Hydrogen Fuel – A Clean and Secure Energy Future

    In his State of the Union address, President Bush announced a $1.2 billion hydrogen fuel initiative to reverse the nation’s growing dependence on foreign oil by developing the technology for hydrogen-powered fuel cells to power cars, trucks, homes and businesses with no pollution or greenhouse gases . . .

    Clear Skies – Clean Air for the 21st Century

    Clear Skies, President Bush’s initiative to improve the nation’s air quality, is the most aggressive initiative in American history to cut power plant emissions, as well as a bold new strategy for addressing global climate change. Clear Skies would dramatically improve air quality by cutting power plant emissions of three critical pollutants – sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and mercury – by 70 percent, more than any other presidential clean air initiative. These reductions would be mandatory and would achieve 35 million more tons of reductions from Clear Skies in the next decade than what we could get under business as usual with the current Clean Air Act. . .

    Brownfields Cleanup - Revitalizing Abandoned Sites in Our Cities and Towns

    American cities have many such eyesores -- anywhere from 500,000 to a million brownfields are across our nation. These areas once supported manufacturing and commerce, and now lie empty -- adding nothing of value to the community, and sometimes only causing problems. Fulfilling an important campaign pledge, the President signed historic bipartisan brownfields reform legislation in January 2002. President Bush is committed to accelerating the cleanup and redevelopment of contaminated, underutilized industrial sites. The revitalization of brownfields serves to improve the environment, protect public health, create jobs, and revitalize communities. The President’s FY04 budget proposal provides $211 million – almost 130 percent more than when President Bush took office – for EPA’s brownfields cleanup program.​


    Reduce our Dependence on Foreign Oil

    John Kerry has outlined a comprehensive energy plan that will tap America’s initiative and ingenuity to strengthen our national security, grow our economy, and protect our environment.*Kerry’s plan will increase and enhance domestic energy sources and provide incentives to help Americans use energy more cleanly and efficiently. When sixty-five percent of the world’s oil reserves lie beneath the Persian Gulf states and only 3 percent lie beneath America, we cannot drill our way to independence. We can, however, develop and deploy clean energy technologies that will make us more efficient and allow us to capitalize on domestic and renewable sources of energy. John Kerry’s plan for a renewable energy trust fund to invest in the development of renewable energy will reduce our oil dependence by more than 2 million barrels of oil a day – about the same amount we import from the Persian Gulf. Kerry’s plan will also create 500,000 new jobs over the next decade and work toward producing 20 percent of US energy from renewable fuels by 2020.

    Fighting for Environmental Justice

    For too long, low income and minority communities have borne a disproportionate burden of air pollution, water pollution and other environmental hazards. John Kerry will make environmental justice a national priority. He will create Environmental Empowerment Zones to ensure that environmental justice is considered in decisions that affect these communities and, more importantly, to empower communities from the ground up for positive change. He will also create a national health

    Reassert US Leadership in Global Environmental Progress

    John Kerry understands that some of our most serious environmental challenges – and opportunities – are taking place on an international stage and that they require American leadership in the international community. Unlike the Bush Administration, John Kerry will not abdicate this responsibility and opportunity. When John Kerry is president, the U.S. will reengage in the development of an international climate change strategy to address global warming, and identify workable responses that provide opportunities for American technology and know-how. ​

    There is quite a bit more on both web sites.

    Anyone care to argue who would be the better president for the environment?
  6. Neserk macrumors 6502a


    Jan 1, 2004

    That is a joke. How can someone claim to be prolife who is responisble for the deaths of over 10,700 people?

    He pretends to be anti-abortion. Someone posted a political advertisement from and independant or Republican candidate who actually realizes that Bush isn't even anti-aboriton.

    He is a wolf in sheeps clothing; or a sheep in wolves clothing depending on your own personal view point ;) He pretends to be anti-abortion in order to get the vote of people like my mom who are one issue voters :rolleyes: If he was truly pro-life or even anti-abortion I would have more respect for him. But pretending to be something you are not to get a nomination is low... no matter what side of the issue you are on...

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