Republican candidates on the issues

By Calvin Woodward

Associated Press

Published: Monday, Nov. 7 2011 2:01 a.m. MST

Gay Marriage: Supports same-sex civil unions, with many of the rights of marriage, and says states should decide their own policies.

Environment: End the EPA's "regulatory reign of terror." Acknowledges the scientific evidence that humans contribute to global warming. As governor, supported regional cap-and-trade program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and urged Congress to cap them. "I will break down barriers to the continued, safe use of fracking," an environmentally risky technique for extracting natural gas.

Health Care: "Let the states experiment." Says government should "absolutely not" require anyone to have health insurance, although he once said a mandate would be necessary for any comprehensive change to succeed. Open to restricting Medicare benefits for the wealthy. Seek repeal of Obama health care law.

Immigration: Unrealistic to deport all illegal immigrants. Says a fence is probably a necessary step to securing the border even though "the thought of a fence to some extent repulses me, because it is not consistent with the image that we projected to the rest of the world." In Utah, threatened to veto a bill to repeal cheaper in-state college tuition rates for children of illegal immigrants.

Social Security: Open to raising the retirement age to qualify for full benefits and to restricting benefits for the wealthy.

Taxes: Favors lower income tax rates coupled with the elimination of deductions and loopholes. Cut corporate tax to 25 percent from a maximum 35 percent, and phase out all subsidies.

Terrorism: Said Homeland Security Department has been heavy-handed, conveying a "fortress security mentality that is not American."

Wars: Proposes scaling back U.S. involvement in international conflicts and, in contrast with most rivals, says Pentagon budget should be cut. Opposes U.S. military assistance of new Libyan government. Opposed U.S. military intervention in Libya absent congressional approval. In June, said the pace of withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan was too slow, and questioned whether the battle against the Taliban and other anti-government insurgents served U.S. interests any longer. Says to end nation building abroad "when this nation needs to be built."

PAUL:

Abortion: Says federal government should have no authority either to legalize or ban abortion. Yet signed pledge to advance only anti-abortion appointees for relevant administration jobs, cut off federal dollars for clinics that perform or finance abortions, and support a ban on abortions after the fetus reaches a certain stage in development

Debt: Would eviscerate federal government, slashing nearly half its spending, shut five Cabinet-level agencies, end spending on existing conflicts and on foreign aid.

Economy: Return to the gold standard, eliminate the Federal Reserve, let gold and silver be used as legal tender, eliminate most federal regulations.

Education: Abolish the Education Department and end the federal role in education.

Energy: Remove restrictions on drilling, coal and nuclear power, eliminate gasoline tax, provide tax credits for alternative fuel technology.

Environment: In 2008, said "human activity probably does play a role" in global warming and part of the solution should be to stop subsidizing the oil industry and let prices rise until the free market turns to alternate energy sources. Now calls the science on manmade global warming a "hoax." Says emission standards should be set by states or regions, not Washington.

Gay Marriage: Says decisions on legalizing or prohibiting should be left to states. Supports federal law allowing one state to refuse to recognize the same-sex marriages of another state.

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