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His positions are way too radical for South Dakota


Liberal Tom Daschle in Danger of Defeat

His positions are way too radical for South Dakota

Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) is seeking reelection this year to his fourth term in the Senate and is locked in a tough battle with former Rep. John Thune, who is once again ably carrying the Republican and conservative banner. Two years ago, Thune narrowly lost to Democrat Sen. Tim Johnson in a hotly contested race for South Dakota’s other Senate seat. Over the years, Daschle has proven himself to be one of the more effective liberal leaders in Washington, imposing gridlock on the Senate. Coupling a disarmingly beguiling manner with a mean partisan streak, he has done as much as anyone to define the Clinton (and post-Clinton) era Democratic Party on Capitol Hill. Through thick and thin, he has pulled many of the strings that have kept Senate Democrats united in such endeavors as brazenly defending Bill Clinton’s interests in the impeachment trial and ignoring Senate traditions to block Bush judges and energy legislation. On the surface, Daschle deftly cultivates an aura of smiling moderation, cooperation and bipartisanship. Underneath, maintaining a career-long left-wing philosophy and voting record, he is a hardened and persistent fighter for liberal causes. Similarly on the South Dakota campaign trail, Daschle cleverly communicates a message cloaked in quasi-conservative rhetoric that is clearly designed to disguise his stridently liberal record in Washington. Daschle’s campaign website introduces voters to a man who “believes the solutions to the problems facing the state lie not in Washington,” a man who is a “tireless fighter for families”; a man who has “insisted on fiscal discipline”; who is “a champion of veterans’ issues” and who “pushed fellow lawmakers to cut taxes for working families, pay down the national debt and shore up Social Security and Medicare for future generations.” Who is Tom Daschle? Just so we don’t forget, it is worth taking a quick trip down memory lane to recall a few of the biographical highlights and voting records that unmistakably place Daschle among Washington’s liberal elite. Biographical Highlights 1973-77

  • Legislative Aide to ultra-liberal Sen. James Abourezk (D.-S.D.). 1978
  • Defeated conservative Republican ex-POW Leo Thorsness by 139 votes in race for U.S. House seat. Reelected 1980, 1982, 1984. 1986
  • Defeated conservative Sen. Jim Abdnor (R-S.D.) 52% to 48% in the year Republicans lost Senate control. Reelected 1992, 1998. 1989
  • Appointed by Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell (D-Maine) to be co-chairman of the Senate Democratic Policy Committee. 1991
  • Voted against Gulf War 1994
  • Elected Senate minority leader, defeating Sen .Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) by one vote (24 to23), after the expected favorite, Sen. Jim Sasser (D.-Tenn.) was unexpectedly defeated by Republican Bill Frist (R.) in his bid for reelection. Controversial Liberal Positions 1995
  • Insured defeat of Balanced Budget Amendment by one vote in the Senate. After previously supporting such an amendment, he now argued that he only favored an alternative amendment that excluded Social Security. 1997
  • Actively supported constitutional amendment to limit campaign spending.
  • Offered alternative “ban” on partial-birth abortion that included a fig-leaf “health-of-the mother” exception, to give Democrats cover to oppose the real ban. After his version was defeated, Daschle voted for the ban when it fell three votes short of a veto-proof majority. 1998-99
  • Steadily defended Bill Clinton against impeachment and insisted on truncated Senate trial without witnesses. 2001
  • Attacked Bush tax cuts, saying it would give rich people enough to buy a “Lexus” and poor people only enough to buy a “muffler.”
  • Persuaded Jim Jeffords to make his party switch that changed Senate control from Republican to Democrat.
  • Pulled energy bill out of Democrat-controlled Energy committee to prevent passage of drilling in Alaska wildlife refuge, and instead write his own unpassable energy bill featuring ethanol development and measures to address global warming. 2001-02
  • Said the Bush tax cut was “a disaster” which “probably made the recession worse” and could bring about “the most dramatic fiscal deterioration in our nation’s history.” 2003
  • On the day President Bush issued the final ultimatum to Saddam Hussein before embarking on the Iraq war, Daschle said he was “saddened” that Bush had “failed so miserably at diplomacy,” and that “we have to give up one life because this President couldn’t create the kind of diplomatic effort that was so critical for our country.” Daschle has spent his entire career in government. As a member of the House from 1979-1986 and as a member of the Senate from 1987 to the present, he has compiled a thoroughly consistent liberal voting record, with a lifetime American Conservative Union rating of just 13. Here, year by year, are a handful of some key Daschle votes on issues of importance worth remembering:. Voting Record Highlights 1979
  • For creating the Department of Education
  • Against increasing defense spending
  • Against prohibiting price controls on gasoline
  • Against constitutional prohibition on school busing 1980
  • Against deleting Davis-Bacon prevailing wage requirements
  • For Carter’s “windfall profits tax” on energy
  • Against prohibiting federal funds for U.S.-Soviet trade
  • Against cutting Legal Services Corporation 1981
  • Against “Gramm-Latta” Reagan budget cuts
  • Against Reagan tax cuts
  • Against closing loophole to ensure sanctions against people who expose covert U.S. intelligence agents 1982
  • For reducing civil defense authorizations
  • Against assuring “nuclear freeze” would not put U.S. at disadvantage
  • Against restrictions on food stamp eligibility
  • Against prohibiting NIH experimentation on human fetuses
  • Against MX missile deployment 1983
  • For nuclear freeze
  • Against anti-satellite weapons
  • Against chemical weapons for deterrent
  • Against covert action to aid Nicaragua contras
  • Against MX missile 1984
  • Against military aid to El Salvador
  • Against aid for Nicaraguan contras
  • Against deployment of nuclear missiles in Europe
  • For allowing federal employee health insurance to cover abortions
  • Against penalties for state agencies that prevent voluntary school prayer
  • Against reduced funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting 1985
  • Against MX missile
  • Against military aide to Nicaraguan contras
  • Against non-military aid to Nicaraguan contras
  • Against aid to freedom fighters in Angola
  • Against ban on using federal funds to pay for abortions in D.C.
  • Against eliminating new programs, cutting spending and reducing federal salary increases 1986
  • Against aid to Nicaraguan contras
  • For cutting SDI funding
  • Against MX missile
  • For special trade privileges for communist Romania 1987
  • Against aid to Nicaraguan contras
  • For overriding Reagan veto of bloated highway bill
  • Against SDI testing and funding
  • Against Robert Bork Supreme Court nomination 1988
  • Against aid to Nicaraguan contras
  • Against deployment of nuclear-warhead (MIRV) missiles
  • For ban on nuclear testing
  • Against rapid deployment of missile defense
  • Against welfare reform work requirement
  • For increasing the minimum wage 1989
  • Against capping free mailing privileges of senators
  • Against John Tower nomination as Secretary of Defense
  • For expanding federal role in child care
  • Against aid to anti-Communist resistance fighters in Cambodia
  • Against MX missile
  • Against SDI missile defense
  • Against barring federal NEA funds for obscene and indecent artwork
  • Against sanctions on China to protest massacre of pro-democracy forces in Beijing
  • Against capital gains tax cut 1990
  • Against dedicating “peace dividend” to deficit reduction
  • For restricting implementation of the death penalty
  • Against allowing employers to transfer AIDS-infected employees to non-food handling positions.
  • Against flag protection amendment
  • For taxpayer funding of political campaigns
  • Against B-2 stealth bomber
  • Against space-based components of SDI
  • Against excluding organizations that perform abortions from direct federal funding
  • For overriding Bush veto of “civil rights” bill mandating quotas in hiring 1991
  • Against use of force in Iraq
  • For taxpayer funding of campaigns
  • For “Racial Justice Act” allowing challenges to death penalty based on race
  • For gun control seven-day waiting period
  • Against parental notification on abortion
  • Against SDI
  • Against Clarence Thomas Supreme Court nomination 1992
  • Against voluntary school prayer
  • Against school choice
  • For eliminating defense budget firewalls
  • For requiring bilingual balloting for certain minority populations
  • Against capital gains tax cut
  • Against product liability reform
  • For cutting SDI funding
  • For nuclear test ban
  • For override of Bush veto of “motor voter” bill
  • Against penalizing charities that withdraw support from Boy Scouts for barring homosexuals and atheists. 1993
  • For Clinton “family and medical leave” act
  • For Clinton “motor voter” bill
  • Against line item veto
  • For Clinton “stimulus” spending bill
  • For lesbian activist Roberta Achtenberg nomination to HUD Asst. Secretary. position
  • For taxpayer funding of campaigns
  • Against workfare requirements
  • For 4.3 cents per gallon gasoline tax increase
  • For Clinton tax increase
  • Against prohibiting retroactive tax increases
  • For publicly disclosing secret intelligence budgets
  • For Brady gun control bill 1994
  • Against school choice
  • For cuts in missile defense
  • For “Goals 2000” federal education mandates
  • For weak-on-crime Rosemary Barkett judicial nomination
  • For big labor strengthening “striker replacement” bill
  • For Clinton “crime” bill
  • For liberal campaign finance reform 1995
  • Against balanced budget amendment
  • Against product liability reform
  • Against tax cut package
  • Against habeas corpus reform to prevent death penalty delays
  • For Henry Foster nomination as Surgeon General
  • Against missile defense funding
  • For cuts in FBI funding
  • Against balanced budget act
  • Against flag protection amendment 1996
  • Against product liability reform
  • Against medical savings accounts
  • Against supermajority to raise taxes
  • Against defense budget firewalls
  • For cutting missile defense
  • For campaign finance reform
  • For $13 billion defense cut
  • Against small business exemption from minimum wage
  • Against landmark Welfare Reform bill
  • For gay rights-advancing Employment Non-Discrimination Act
  • Against override of Clinton veto of partial birth abortion ban 1997
  • Against balanced budget amendment
  • For constitutional amendment to limit campaign spending
  • For Chemical Weapons Treaty
  • Against Hyde amendment to prohibit federal funding of abortion
  • Against Coverdell education savings accounts
  • Against local control of federal education funds
  • Against Congressional checks on Clinton heritage rivers program
  • Against paycheck protection act requiring unions to gain voluntary authorization from members for political activities. 1998
  • For McCain Campaign Finance bill
  • Against education savings accounts
  • Against tax cuts
  • Against Social Security “personal retirement accounts”
  • For national education testing
  • Against national missile defense
  • For tobacco tax increase
  • Against ban on overseas military abortions
  • For handgun triggerlock mandate 1999
  • Not guilty on Clinton impeachment
  • For Gun show background checks
  • Against Republican Patients Bill of Rights
  • For reducing tax cut to pay for Medicare Rx drug bill
  • Against tax cut package
  • For Clinton’s 100,000 teachers hiring plan
  • For weak-on-crime Ronnie White judicial nomination
  • For Davis-Bacon prevailing wage requirements
  • For Nuclear Test Ban Treaty
  • For increase in minimum wage
  • For affirming Roe v. Wade decision on abortion 2000
  • Against tax cuts
  • Against marriage penalty tax relief
  • For transferring defense spending to domestic programs
  • For “hate crimes” legislation
  • Against repeal of OSHA ergonomics regulations
  • Against reducing tax on Social Security benefits
  • Against Congressional check on national monument designation 2001
  • Against inst John Ashcroft attorney general nomination
  • Against Bush tax cut
  • Against school choice demonstration project
  • Against supporting Boy Scouts against gay activists
  • Against Medical Savings Accounts
  • For taxpayer funding of gun turn-ins
  • For taxpayer funding of needle exchange programs
  • For International Criminal Court 2002
  • For federalizing election procedures with national voting procedure requirements
  • Against calling for hearings on judicial nominees within one year
  • Against controls on government spending
  • Against making death tax repeal permanent
  • Against President’s ability to waive labor protections for DHS employees for national security reasons 2003
  • For filibuster against Michael Estrada (and other) judicial nominations
  • For affirming 1973 Roe v.Wade decision legalizing abortion
  • Against accelerated repeal of death tax
  • Against phase-out of tax on dividend income
  • Against medical malpractice liability reform
  • For repealing Reagan’s “Mexico City” policy on abortion
  • For stricter CAFE (fuel economy) requirements
  • For forcing U.S. into compliance with unratified Kyoto treaty on global warming
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