Military readiness more important than congressional consent
When the moderator asked the four about Obama's decision to involve the U.S. military in the Libyan uprising without congressional consent, Jackson, Marshall and Radtke quickly denounced it roundly.
Allen, however, didn't pounce on Obama.
Instead, he recalled the gravity and anxiety of sending U.S. troops into Afghanistan after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist strikes. "In my estimation, it's the most solemn decision a president has to make," Allen said. "I have made that decision as far as
Iraq and Afghanistan."
"The concern I have is not whether we have a (congressional) authorization of force, it's whether or not our military is going to have the equipment, the armament, the up-to-date
technology that is paramount as they're trying to protect our freedoms," he said. "I'm really worried about the military readiness of our country."
More concerned with army's readiness than war authorization
The moderator asked whether the candidates supported the president sending troops overseas without a declaration of war from Congress. Radtke, Jackson & Marshall all were adamantly against it, but Allen instead attacked Obama for not supporting potential
government opposition in Iran.
"The concern I have is not whether you have an authorization of force," Allen said. "I really worry about the military readiness of our country, regardless of whether or not there's an authorization of the use of force."
Source: Washington Examiner on 2012 Virginia Senate debate
, May 25, 2012
Spending necessary to bolster the military, post-9-11
Radtke said that Allen "voted for every single spending bill, added $3 trillion to the national debt."
Allen said much of the federal spending during his Senate term was necessary to bolster the military after the 2001 terrorist attacks.
cannot believe we're going to blame $3 trillion in spending on war spending," Radtke shot back. "I don't remember Medicare Part D, and I don't remember No Child Left Behind, being a part of war spending. That is not why we had $3 trillion in debt."
Source: The Virginian-Pilot on 2012 Virginia Senate debate
, May 12, 2012
52,000 earmarks, but mostly for defense & security
Radtke said, "It's great to talk about the line-item veto. We could have maybe gotten rid of the 52,000 earmarks that George Allen voted for." Allen said the country's economic and fiscal climate is different than it was when he voted for debt
limit increases during his Senate term.
He said after the debate that much of the increased spending he supported from 2001 to 2006 was for important national defense and security purposes, including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Source: The Virginian-Pilot on 2012 Virginia Senate debate
, Apr 29, 2012
Continue terrorist interrogations but without torture
Q: How will you vote on the Warner-McCain-Graham bill about interrogating and prosecuting enemy combatants?
ALLEN: I’m going to make a determination once I get some more facts. The two key points I’m going to look at [are], number one, these
interrogations have helped protect American lives and not just here at home but also in the battlefield. Secondly, the Geneva Convention is very important, and I don’t want to set a precedent that we change the Geneva Convention [because I’m concerned]
if one of our troops or one of our CIA agents is caught or captured. Now, the key in all of this is I don’t want to stop these interrogations. I’m not for torture, I’m not for waterboarding, but some of these techniques have been very helpful to us,
whether they are sleep deprivation, or whether there’s loud music. And I need to be absolutely certain that what the interrogators are doing now-which is completely fine as far as I’m concerned, protecting Americans-will not be harmed by the proposal.
Wrong to bar women from VMI; did it to be gentlemanly
Q: From American Enterprise magazine, you wrote:
“If [Virginia Military Institute] admitted women, it wouldn’t be the VMI that we’ve known for 154 years. You just don’t treat women the way you treat fellow cadets. If you did, it would be
ungentlemanly, it would be improper.”
Men and women shouldn’t be treated the same at a military institution?
ALLEN: The regiment at VMI -the curriculum and the training would be ungentlemanly to treat women the way that they were doing it.
At Virginia Tech, we had women and opportunities for women to get military training in a co-ed approach. VMI and their board for many years felt that they should continue the way that they had in the past.
Q: But has women at VMI worked?
Yes, it has.
Q: So you were wrong?
ALLEN: We were wrong. The Supreme Court said we were wrong. We complied with that decision. What I said as governor, is I’m going to deplore anybody who demeans women.
Pointing out that America’s fighting forces are now struggling to meet existing threats, Allen called for an increase in funding to $350 billion annually by 2005 to restore readiness. Allen called for an end to the procurement holiday and a reinvestment
in defense to modernize all branches of the military with the technologically advanced equipment they will need to meet future threats. “We need to develop and deploy the new generation of aircraft carriers and the F-22 Raptor,” Allen said.
Supports spending on Missile Defense (“Star Wars”)
A strong advocate of a national missile defense system while a Member of Congress, Allen repeated his support for the project.
As soon as it is technologically feasible, we’ve got to deploy a system that will keep Americans safe from incoming missile attacks, whether from a major adversary or from a rogue nation, Allen said.
“Our national defense is eroding - weakening by the day,” Allen said. “Our military has been cut to near the bone and stretched to near its limit. Our men and women in uniform are underpaid. Our military itself is undermanned.”
THE GEORGE ALLEN DEFENSE AGENDA
Restore defense funding to a level adequate to respond to existing threats - to an annual level of $350 billion by 2005.
End the procurement holiday and modernize all branches of the military with the
technologically advanced equipment they need to meet new security threats.
Provide a strong, effective national missile defense system to protect the people of the United States.
Address recruitment and morale problems by ensuring that America’s
men and women in uniform are properly paid, housed and trained, and ready to protect our nation.
Keep our promises of quality health care and retirement benefits to those who honorably served.
Source: Web site Allen2000.com
, Sep 12, 2000
Voted NO on preserving habeas corpus for Guantanamo detainees.
Sen. Specter's amendment would strike the provision regarding habeas review. The underlying bill authorizes trial by military commission for violations of the law of war. Excerpts from the Senate floor debate:
Sen. GRAHAM [recommending NO]: The fundamental question for the Senate to answer when it comes to determining enemy combatant status is, Who should make that determination? Should that be a military decision or should it be a judicial decision? That is something our military should do.
Sen. SPECTER [recommending YES]: My amendment would retain the constitutional right of habeas corpus for people detained at Guantanamo. The right of habeas corpus was established in the Magna Carta in 1215 when, in England, there was action taken against King John to establish a procedure to prevent illegal detention. What the bill seeks to do is to set back basic rights by some 900 years. This amendment would strike that provision and make certain that the constitutional right of
habeas corpus is maintained.
GRAHAM: Do we really want enemy prisoners to bring every lawsuit known to man against the people fighting the war and protecting us? No enemy prisoner should have access to Federal courts--a noncitizen, enemy combatant terrorist--to bring a lawsuit against those fighting on our behalf. No judge should have the ability to make a decision that has been historically reserved to the military. That does not make us safer.
SPECTER: The US Constitution states that "Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it." We do not have either rebellion or invasion, so it is a little hard for me to see, as a basic principle of constitutional law, how the Congress can suspend the writ of habeas corpus.
GRAHAM: If the Supreme Court does say in the next round of legal appeals there is a constitutional right to habeas corpus by those detained at Guantanamo Bay, then Sen. Specter is absolutely right.
Voted NO on requiring CIA reports on detainees & interrogation methods.
Amendment to provide for congressional oversight of certain Central Intelligence Agency programs. The underlying bill S. 3930 authorizes trial by military commission for violations of the law of war. The amendment requires quarterly reports describing all CIA detention facilities; the name of each detainee; their suspected activities; & each interrogation technique authorized for use and guidelines on the use of each such technique.
Opponents recommend voting NO because:
I question the need for a very lengthy, detailed report every 3 months. We will probably see those reports leaked to the press.
This amendment would spread out for the world--and especially for al-Qaida and its related organizations--precisely what interrogation techniques are going to be used.
If we lay out, in an unclassified version, a description of the techniques by the Attorney General, that description will be in al-Qaida and Hezbollah and all of the other terrorist organizations' playbook. They will train their assets that: This is what you must be expected to do, and Allah wants you to resist these techniques.
We are passing this bill so that we can detain people. If we catch someone like Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, we have no way to hold him, no way to ask him the questions and get the information we need, because the uncertainty has brought the program to a close. It is vitally important to our security, and unfortunately this amendment would imperil it.
This vote reauthorizes the PATRIOT Act with some modifications (amendments). Voting YEA extends the PATRIOT Act, and voting NAY would phase it out. The official summary of the bill is:
A bill to clarify that individuals who receive FISA orders can challenge nondisclosure requirements, that individuals who receive national security letters are not required to disclose the name of their attorney, that libraries are not wire or electronic communication service providers unless they provide specific services, and for other purposes.
Opponents of the bill say to vote NAY because:
Some may see the vote we are about to have as relatively trivial. They are mistaken. While the bill we are voting on makes only minor cosmetic changes to the PATRIOT Act, it will allow supporting the PATRIOT Act conference report that was blocked in December. Cosmetic changes simply don't cut it when we are talking about protecting the rights and freedoms of
Americans from unnecessarily intrusive Government powers.
The White House has tried to make life uncomfortable for Senators. It has suggested they are soft on terrorism, that they don't understand the pressing threat facing this country, that they are stuck in a pre-9/11 mindset. Those attacks should be rejected.
We can fight terrorism aggressively without compromising our most fundamental freedoms against Government intrusion. The Government grabbed powers it should not have when it passed the original PATRIOT Act and we should not be ratifying that power grab today. The PATRIOT Act reauthorization conference report is flawed. S. 2271 pretends to fix it but I don't think anyone is fooled, least of all our constituents.
Because the Republican leadership obstructed efforts to improve the bill, the "police state" provisions regarding gag orders remain uncorrected. The Senate should get down to the serious business of legislating real fixes to the PATRIOT Act.
Voted YES on extending the PATRIOT Act's wiretap provision.
Vote to invoke cloture on a conference report that extends the authority of the FBI to conduct "roving wiretaps" and access business records. Voting YES would recommend, in effect, that the PATRIOT Act be extended through December 31, 2009, and would makes the provisions of the PATRIOT Act permanent. Voting NO would extend debate further, which would have the effect of NOT extending the PATRIOT Act's wiretap provision.
Reference: Motion for Cloture of PATRIOT Act;
Bill HR 3199
; vote number 2005-358
on Dec 16, 2005
Voted NO on restricting business with entities linked to terrorism.
Vote to adopt an amendment that makes US businesses and their subsidiaries liable to prosecution for dealing with foreign businesses which have links to terrorism or whose parent country supports terrorism. Voting YES would:
Empower the President under the Trading with the Enemy Act to prohibit US businesses and their subsidiaries from transacting with foreign businesses identified as having links to terrorism.
Forbid US businesses and their subsidiaries from engaging in transactions with any foreign business whose parent country has been identified as a supporter of international terrorism.
Require the President to publish a list of foreign businesses identified as having links to terrorism, and bans US ownership or control of foreign businesses engaged in transactions with such businesses.
Call for US businesses to disclose in their annual reports any ownership stake of at least 10% in a foreign business that is itself engaging in transactions with a proscribed foreign business.
Voted YES on restoring $565M for states' and ports' first responders.
Amendment intended to protect the American people from terrorist attacks by restoring $565 million in cuts to vital first-responder programs in the Department of Homeland Security, including the State Homeland Security Grant program, by providing $150 million for port security grants and by providing $140 million for 1,000 new border patrol agents.
Small business in developing homeland security technologies.
Allen co-sponsored a resolution on small businesses
Expresses the sense of the Senate that: (1) small business participation is vital to U.S. defense and should play an active role in assisting the military, Federal intelligence and law enforcement agencies, and State and local police to combat terrorism through the design and development of innovative products; and (2) Federal, State, and local governments should aggressively seek out and purchase innovative technologies and services from, and promote research opportunities for, American small businesses to help in homeland defense and the fight against terrorism. Passed/agreed to in Senate.
Source: Resolution sponsored by 26 Senators 02-SR264 on May 8, 2002
Rated 0% by SANE, indicating a pro-military voting record.
Allen scores 0% by SANE on peace issues
Peace Action, the merger of The Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy (SANE) and The Freeze, has effectively mobilized for peace and disarmament for over forty years. As the nation's largest grassroots peace group we get results: from the 1963 treaty to ban above ground nuclear testing, to the 1996 signing of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, from ending the war in Vietnam, to blocking weapons sales to human rights abusing countries. We are proof that ordinary people can change the world. At Peace Action we believe...
That every person has the right to live without the threat of nuclear weapons.
That war is not a suitable response to conflict.
That America has the resources to both protect and provide for its citizens.
As the Pentagon’s budget soars to $400 billion, 17% of American children live in poverty. For what the US will spend on Missile Defense in one year we could: put over a million children through Head Start OR provide healthcare for over 3.5 million children OR create over 100,000 units of affordable housing OR hire over 160,000 elementary school teachers. At Peace Action our priorities are clear.
The ratings are based on the votes the organization considered most important; the numbers reflect the percentage of time the representative voted the organization's preferred position.