Sunday, November 24, 2013

Better know a politician: Robert J. Bentley

Name: Robert J. Bentley

Political Party: Republican (R)

Current position: Governor

State: Alabama

Tenure: 2011-present

Previous position: Member, Alabama House of Representatives 2003-2011

Future position: Bentley is running for re-election for Governor in 2014.

Previous election:
Robert Bentley (R): 57.9%
Ron Sparks (D): 42.1%

Future election: Bentley will likely be primaried by Stacy Lee George and others for the Republican nomination in Alabama.  If Bentley wins the primary, he will be the Republican nominee for Governor in Alabama for the 2014 election.

Issues/Positions/Accomplishments

Abortion

  • Only believes in abortion if the mother's life is in danger
  • Signed a bill into law that would make it a felony to perform an abortion in Alabama after 20 weeks except in the case where the mother's life is in danger
  • Signed a bill into law that would require physicians to report each abortion to a state database to compile an annual report on abortions
Budget/Economy/Taxes
  • Goal was to create a balanced, "conservative" budget without federal help. Alabama receives 38.2% of its revenue from the federal government 
  • Asked for $9.4 million from the federal government to deal with Hurricane Isaac
  • Would like to cut spending by 15-45%, except for essential services
  • Supports flat tax structure for state income taxes
  • Stated that job creation was his number one priority; The Business Journal ranked him as 36 (tied) with the 45 governors, they ranked in terms of job creation
Civil Rights
  • Does not support same sex marriage or civil unions
  • Would like to end affirmative action for colleges and state contracts
Crime
  • Wanted to expand the budget for police, including teaching them Spanish
  • Would like to expand the use of the death penalty
  • Would like to end parole for violent offenders
Drugs
  • Strengthen penalties for drug related offenses
  • Changed mind on that to help rehabilitate non-violent offenders and to not "throw away the key"
Education
  • Supports charter schools
  • Supports education cuts but stresses that teachers will not lose jobs
  • Wants a federal-state-private partnership with schools
  • Wants to give school boards more power to make decisions
  • Supports teacher spanking law
Energy/Environment
  • Stated that forests primary benefit was economic benefit
  • Supports offshore drilling
Government reform
  • Supports the idea of NO campaign spending limits
Gun Control
  • Thinks we should respond to active shooters but respect the 2nd Amendment
  • Wants to protect the right to carry, own, purchase, and use firearms
Health Care
  • Rejected the Affordable Care Act, stating that it would cost jobs
  • Thinks the 10th Amendment allows Alabama to reject Obamacare
  • Rejected expanding Medicaid as part of Obamacare
  • Rejected setting up a state-run health insurance exchange; despite stating that state regulators should ensure compliance with the Affordable Care Act
  • Stated that Alabama would be one of six states that would not help enforce provisions of the Affordable Care Act
  • About 1/3 of people in Alabama reported not having health insurance at some point in the last two years
Immigration
  • Signed HB 56 which is an anti-illegal immigration bill stricter than SB 1070 in Arizona
  • Wants to fine companies that employ undocumented immigrants and deny benefits to undocumented immigrants



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