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Topics in the News: Nuclear Energy & Weapons


Gloria La Riva on Energy & Oil : Aug 15, 2020
Use sustainable energy, stop fossil fuel pollution

Global warming, pollution, acidified and depleted oceans, fracking, critical drought, plastics choking the seas, nuclear weapons and waste--it is clear that capitalism and production for profit are destroying the planet and threatening all life. The crisis is already here, with the most vulnerable and oppressed areas bearing the brunt. Using truly sustainable energy and seizing the oil and coal companies to stop fossil fuel pollution, are urgent steps needed to reverse climate change.
Click for Gloria La Riva on other issues.   Source: 2020 Presidential campaign website˙LaRiva2020.org

Gloria La Riva on Foreign Policy : Jul 15, 2020
Demands an end of U.S. aid to the state of Israel

I strongly condemn Israel's planned annexation of much of the West Bank and I demand an end to U.S. aid to the state of Israel. I also call for an immediate end to the annual gift of $3.8 billion in military aid to Israel, a highly militarized state, the only one in the Middle East that possesses nuclear weapons. The U.S. government also provides Israel with billions more in loan guarantees and assistance.
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Howie Hawkins on Energy & Oil : Jul 12, 2020
End nuclear power, offshore drilling, & fracking

Click for Howie Hawkins on other issues.   Source: Green Party Platform adopted by 2020 presidential hopeful

Howie Hawkins on Homeland Security : Jul 12, 2020
Abolish nuclear weapons, WMDs, and land mines

Click for Howie Hawkins on other issues.   Source: Green Party Platform adopted by 2020 presidential hopeful

Howie Hawkins on War & Peace : Jul 12, 2020
Supports 2015 Iran nuclear deal

The Green Party supports the "joint comprehensive plan of action" signed in July, 2015 which confirms Iran's status as a zone free of nuclear weapons. The Green Party supports the swift elimination of economic sanctions on Iran and looks to the normalization of relations between Iran and the United States. The Green Party also calls on Israel to dismantle its nuclear weapons program and sign on to the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty.
Click for Howie Hawkins on other issues.   Source: Green Party Platform adopted by 2020 presidential hopeful

Don Blankenship on Energy & Oil : May 2, 2020
Reject man-made global warning, refuted by scientists

We call attention to the continuing need of the United States for a sufficient supply of energy for national security and for the immediate adoption of a policy of free market solutions to achieve energy independence for the United States. We call for abolishing the Department of Energy. The federal government should not interfere with the development of potential energy sources, including natural gas, hydroelectric power, solar energy, wind generators, and nuclear energy.

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Elizabeth Warren on Foreign Policy : Feb 5, 2020
Will follow Obama's policy on Iran, in a word, diplomacy

Iran is a bad actor. An Iran with nuclear weapons is a whole lot more dangerous than an Iran without nuclear weapons. President Obama realized this. The rest of the world realized this. So, President Obama worked with our allies and said, "Let's tell Iran they need to stop their nuclear program. We're going to put economic pressure on them until they do it." It showed that you can make diplomacy work.
Click for Elizabeth Warren on other issues.   Source: CNN N. H. Town Hall on eve of 2020 N. H. primary

Pete Buttigieg on War & Peace : Jan 14, 2020
No Iranian nukes, via reinstating joint nuclear deal

Q: President Trump said, "As long as I am president, Iran will never be allowed to have a nuclear weapon." Would a President Buttigieg make that same promise?

BUTTIGIEG: Ensuring that Iran does not develop nuclear weapons will, of course, be a priority, because it's such an important part of keeping America safe. But unfortunately, President Trump has made it much harder for the next president to achieve that goal. By gutting the Iran nuclear deal--one that, by the way, the Trump administration itself admitted was working, certified that it was preventing progress toward a nuclear Iran--by gutting that, they have made the region more dangerous & set off the chain of events that we are now dealing with as it escalates even closer to the brink of outright war. We've got to work with our partners. The Iran nuclear deal, the technical term for it was the JCPOA. That first letter "J" stood for "Joint." We can't do this alone, even less so now after everything that has happened.

Click for Pete Buttigieg on other issues.   Source: 7th Democrat primary debate, on eve of Iowa caucus

Amy Klobuchar on War & Peace : Jan 14, 2020
No Iranian nukes, via reinstating joint nuclear deal

Q: President Trump said, "As long as I am president, Iran will never be allowed to have a nuclear weapon." Would you?

Mayor Pete BUTTIGIEG: Ensuring that Iran does not develop nuclear weapons will be a priority,

KLOBUCHAR: I would not allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon. I think there are changes you can make to the agreement, some changes to the inspections, but overall, that is what we should do.

Q: How would you prevent Iran from gaining a nuclear weapon?

KLOBUCHAR: I would start negotiations again [on the JCPOA Iran nuclear deal]. Because of the actions of Donald Trump, we are in a situation where Iran is starting to enrich uranium again in violation of the original agreement. So what I would do is negotiate. I would bring people together, just as President Obama did years ago, and I think that we can get this done. But you have to have a president that sees this as a number-one goal.

Click for Amy Klobuchar on other issues.   Source: 7th Democrat primary debate, on eve of Iowa caucus

Kamala Harris on Foreign Policy : Nov 20, 2019
Trump got punked by North Korea

Q: North Korea is threatening to cancel any future summits if President Trump does not make concessions on nuclear weapons. Would you make concessions to Kim Jong-un?

HARRIS: With all due deference to the fact that this is presidential debate, Donald Trump got punked. He has conducted foreign policy out of a very fragile ego that fails to understand that one of the most important responsibilities of the commander-in-chief is to concern herself with the security of our nation and homeland. And to do it in a way that understands that part of the strength of who we are as a nation is not only that we have a vibrant military, but that we are respected because we keep to our word, we are consistent, we speak truth, and we are loyal.

Q: But would you make concessions to North Korea to keep talks going?

HARRIS: Not at this point. There are no concessions to be made. Trump has traded a photo-op for nothing. Trump has compromised our ability to have a check on North Korea's nuclear program.

Click for Kamala Harris on other issues.   Source: November Democratic primary debate in Atlanta

Tom Steyer on Environment : Nov 7, 2019
Nuclear energy is risky & not cost competitive

Nuclear energy is risky and not cost competitive. It has suffered from massive cost overruns and has required massive government bailouts. We should certainly not have any new power plants at this time. There are three key aspects to nuclear energy we should be concerned with: waste disposal, safety, and cost. Renewable energy like wind and solar are the least costly forms of energy to produce.
Click for Tom Steyer on other issues.   Source: USA Today on 2019 Democratic primary

Julian Castro on Foreign Policy : Oct 15, 2019
North Korea won't work with US after ditching Iran nuke deal

If you're Kim Jong Un why in the world would you believe anything that this President says to contain your nuclear weapons program when he tore up an Iran nuclear agreement that we just signed four years ago, which was the strongest agreement to contain Iran's nuclear weapons program, and now he's abandoned the very people that we gave our word to?
Click for Julian Castro on other issues.   Source: October Democratic CNN/NYTimes Primary debate

Bill Weld on War & Peace : Oct 3, 2019
Withdrawing from Iran nuke deal was a colossal blunder

Q: Would you rejoin the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action [JCPOA, the Iranian nuclear deal by 7 countries and the EU]? What changes would you require before agreeing to rejoin the accord?

A: I thought that Mr. Trump's withdrawal from the 2015 JCPOA was a colossal blunder. We had a ten-year period during which Iran would not advance its nuclear weapons program, and they were in compliance. I would rejoin the JCPOA without changes to the written agreement.

Click for Bill Weld on other issues.   Source: Council on Foreign Relations on 2020 presidential hopefuls

Bill Weld on War & Peace : Oct 3, 2019
Partial sanction relief for partial Korean denuclearization

Q: Would you sign an agreement with North Korea that entailed partial sanctions relief in exchange for some dismantling of its nuclear weapons program but not full denuclearization?

A: "Partial" and "some" imply matters of degree, but yes, I think a partial dismantling of North Korea's nuclear weapons program is a development worth promoting, and of course such an agreement might prove to be the first step to a fuller resolution.

Click for Bill Weld on other issues.   Source: Council on Foreign Relations on 2020 presidential hopefuls

Andrew Yang on Energy & Oil : Sep 4, 2019
Nuclear needs to be on table; new reactors use thorium

Nuclear energy needs to be on the table in a transition to a more renewable economy, because our society consumes a great deal of energy. We are working on these new generation nuclear reactors that use thorium, instead of uranium. Thorium is not natively fissile or radioactive. It's much safer to dispose of. It produces much more energy. Trying to get rid of all the nuclear power plants that produce 20% of the nation's energy is not going to help us accomplish our goals.
Click for Andrew Yang on other issues.   Source: Climate Crisis Town Hall (CNN 2019 Democratic primary)

Cory Booker on Energy & Oil : Sep 4, 2019
Zero carbon by 2030 requires nuclear as part of the blend

Q: You say nuclear energy is key to fighting climate change. The fact is there are currently no safe ways or permanent ways to dispose of the most dangerous radioactive waste.

BOOKER: So this is where study and science is really important. So let's deal with the facts and the data. When I was mayor of the city of Newark, I used to have strong people come in with strong opinions & strong emotions. I used to say, "in God we trust, but everybody else bring me data." And we need to look at the numbers right now. So my plan says that we need to be at a zero carbon electricity by 2030. That's 10 years from the time that I will win the presidency of the United States of America. And right now, nuclear is more than 50% of our non-carbon causing energy. So people who think that we can get there without nuclear being part of the blend just aren't looking at the facts.

Click for Cory Booker on other issues.   Source: CNN Climate Crisis Town Hall marathon (10 Democrats)

Elizabeth Warren on Energy & Oil : Sep 4, 2019
No more nuclear plants; get off nuclear energy by 2035

Q: Would you push for a carbon tax as an efficient way to reduce carbon emissions?

WARREN: If you're going to be spewing carbon into the air, it's your responsibility to clean it up. But I actually have a more aggressive plan: By 2028, we don't have any more new building that has any carbon footprint. By 2030, we do the same thing on vehicles, on our cars and light-duty trucks. And by 2035, we do the same thing on electric generation. That will cut 70% of the carbon that we are curren into the air.

Q: What about nuclear energy to help replace fossil fuels?

WARREN: It's not carbon-based, but the problem is it's got a lot of risks associated with it, particularly the risks associated with the spent fuel rods that nobody can figure out how we're going to store these things for the next bazillion years. In my administration, we're not going to build any new nuclear power plants and are going to start weaning ourselves off nuclear energy and replacing it with renewable

Click for Elizabeth Warren on other issues.   Source: Climate Crisis Town Hall (CNN 2019 Democratic primary)

Kamala Harris on Environment : Sep 4, 2019
Figure out what to do with nuclear waste--not Yucca Mountain

Q: What about the new and smarter generation of nuclear power technologies?

HARRIS: The biggest issue we face in terms of nuclear energy is the waste and what are we going to do with that. Yucca Mountain--that's a nonstarter for me. The kind of disposal that has happened at Yucca Mountain--and also taking away that state's ability to make decisions--this administration was, in the middle of the night, carting waste in to Yucca Mountain without the authority and the permission of the leaders of the state of Nevada.

Q: Senator Bernie Sanders now says he wants to phase it out, get rid of nuclear power. Do you agree?

HARRIS: We have to figure out what we're going to do about the waste. My bottom-line is that I'm not going to allow the federal government to go in and impose its priorities on any state--it's going to have to be those states who make that decision.

Click for Kamala Harris on other issues.   Source: CNN Climate Crisis Town Hall marathon (10 Democrats)

Bernie Sanders on Environment : Sep 4, 2019
Deal with existing nuclear waste before creating any more

Q: In your Green New Deal plan, you argue that nuclear energy is "a false solution" to the climate crisis. Why?

SANDERS: We got a heck of a lot of nuclear waste, which is going to stay around for many thousands of years. We don't know how to get rid of it right now. It doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me to add more dangerous waste when we don't know how to get rid of what we have right now. Number two, it costs a lot more to build a new nuclear power plant today than it does to go to solar or to go to wind. So I think that it is safer and more cost effective to move to sustainable energies like wind, solar, and geothermal, and not nuclear.

Q: Can you go carbon neutral without nuclear in the short term?

SANDERS: I think you can. And I think the scientists tell us, in fact, that we can. And I think if you talk to the people in Japan in terms of what happened at Fukushima, talk to the people in Russia what happened in Chernobyl, they may not feel so comfortable with nuclear power.

Click for Bernie Sanders on other issues.   Source: CNN Climate Crisis Town Hall marathon (10 Democrats)

Cory Booker on Environment : Sep 4, 2019
Next-generation nuclear power is safe with little waste

Q: You support nuclear power, but you know there are inherent risks in that, and that's a possibility of disasters like Fukushima, like Chernobyl, like Three Mile Island. What would you do to help mitigate those dangers?

BOOKER: The disasters--from Chernobyl to Japan--trust me, when you live in a community as New Jersey does with nuclear plants--and my mom who lives in Nevada and all the righteous fights to protect what they plan to do at Yucca Mountain, I'm very aware of these things. And so I decided, I'm going to read everything I can about nuclear, I'm going to visit with nuclear scientists, and this is the exciting thing. Next generation nuclear, where the science is going, is to me, at first it sounded like science fiction. Where the science is going right now is "new nuclear": where you have no risk of the kind of meltdowns we're seeing, where they eat spent fuel rods. We actually can go to the kind of innovations that make nuclear safer or safe.

Click for Cory Booker on other issues.   Source: CNN Climate Crisis Town Hall marathon (10 Democrats)

Marianne Williamson on War & Peace : Aug 16, 2019
North Korea: Partial sanction relief for some disarming

Sanctions are a form of economic warfare with a high rate of failure. We can achieve superior outcomes with clear-eyed respect and steps towards thawing the ice. This could help improve our relationship with Kim Jong Un and de-escalate threats from North Korea. Action might include partial sanctions relief in exchange for some serious dismantling of their nuclear weapons program, as steps towards de-escalation and improved relations.
Click for Marianne Williamson on other issues.   Source: Council on Foreign Relations on 2020 presidential primary

Elizabeth Warren on Homeland Security : Jul 30, 2019
No-first-use nuclear policy makes world safer

Q: You want to make it U.S. policy that the U.S. will never use a nuclear weapon unless another country uses one first. Now, President Obama reportedly considered that policy, but ultimately decided against it. Why should the U.S. tie its own hands with that policy?

WARREN: Because it makes the world safer. The US is not going to use nuclear weapons preemptively, and we need to say so to the entire world. It reduces the likelihood that someone miscalculates, someone misunderstands. Donald Trump keeps expanding the different ways that we have nuclear weapons, the different ways that they could be used puts us all at risk. You know, our military is the best on Earth. But we should not be asking our military to take on jobs that do not have a military solution. We need to use our diplomatic tools, our economic tools, and if we're going to send someone into war, we better have a plan for how we're going to get them out on the other end.

Click for Elizabeth Warren on other issues.   Source: July Democratic Primary debate (first night in Detroit)

Steve Bullock on Homeland Security : Jul 30, 2019
Keep first use of nuclear weapons on the table

Q [to Sen. Elizabeth Warren]: You want to make it U.S. policy that the U.S. will never use a nuclear weapon unless another country uses one first. Now, President Obama reportedly considered that policy, but ultimately decided against it. Why should the U.S. tie its own hands with that policy?

WARREN: Because it makes the world safer. The US is not going to use nuclear weapons preemptively, and we need to say so to the entire world. It reduces the likelihood that someone miscalculates, someone misunderstands.

BULLOCK: I wouldn't want to take that off the table. Never, I hope, certainly in my term or anyone else's, would we really even get close to pulling that trigger. But going from the position of strength, we should be negotiating down so there aren't nuclear weapons. But drawing those lines in the sand, at this point I wouldn't do.

Click for Steve Bullock on other issues.   Source: July Democratic Primary debate (first night in Detroit)

Elizabeth Warren on War & Peace : Jul 30, 2019
Negotiate for nuclear non-proliferation, including Iran

Gov. Steve BULLOCK [to Warren]: I wouldn't want to take [first use of nuclear weapons] off the table. Never, I hope, would we really even get close to pulling that trigger. But going from the position of strength, we should be negotiating down so there aren't nuclear weapons. But drawing those lines in the sand, at this point I wouldn't do.

WARREN: Look, we don't expand trust around the world by saying, "You know, we might be the first ones to use a nuclear weapon." That puts the entire world at risk and puts us at risk, right in the middle of this. At a time when Donald Trump is pulling out of our nuclear negotiations, expanding the opportunities for nuclear proliferation around the world, has pulled us out of the deal in Iran, and Iran is now working on its nuclear weapon, the world gets closer and closer to nuclear warfare. We have to have an announced policy that is one the entire world can live with. We need to make that clear. We will respond if someone else does, but not first.

Click for Elizabeth Warren on other issues.   Source: July Democratic Primary debate (first night in Detroit)

Joe Sestak on War & Peace : Jul 30, 2019
North Korean denuclearization will be incremental

We must maintain the goal of complete denuclearization, but that does not mean I think we will be able to quickly reach an agreement. Negotiations will likely lead to some sort of preliminary agreement involving partial sanctions relief in exchange for some dismantling of the North's nuclear weapons program. The eventual success of that initial deal should lay the groundwork for total denuclearization, along with some improvements to North Korea's human rights standards.
Click for Joe Sestak on other issues.   Source: Council on Foreign Relations on 2020 presidential primary

Amy Klobuchar on Foreign Policy : Jun 30, 2019
Talking to North Korea good, working with allies better

We want to see a denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, a reduction in these missiles. But it is not as easy as just going and bringing a hot dish over the fence to the dictator next door. You have to have clear focus and a clear mission and clear goals. It is always good to talk to people when you're dealing with something so important as nuclear weapons. But then we have no clear path and nothing comes out of it. I would think working with our allies would make it better.
Click for Amy Klobuchar on other issues.   Source: CNN State of the Union 2019 interview

Beto O`Rourke on Foreign Policy : Jun 30, 2019
Would talk to North Korea, but only if it gets results

I would continue diplomacy contingent on progress that keeps this country and our allies safe. Despite three years of almost bizarre foreign policy from this President, this country is no safer when it comes to North Korea. They have removed none of their nuclear weapons. We've added legitimacy to Kim Jong-un. I want to make sure that we pursue diplomatic, peaceful, nonviolent negotiations to resolve the challenges that we face on the Korean Peninsula and ensure that we denuclearize that area.
Click for Beto O`Rourke on other issues.   Source: CBS Face the Nation 2019 interview

Joe Sestak on Homeland Security : Jun 23, 2019
More funding for veterans and for cyberspace

Click for Joe Sestak on other issues.   Source: 2020 presidential campaign website JoeSestak.com

Donald Trump on War & Peace : Jun 23, 2019
Willing talk to Iran but they can't have nuclear weapons

Here's what I want, anything that gets you to the result. They cannot have a nuclear weapon. It's not about the straits. You know, a lot of people covered it incorrectly. They're never mentioned. They cannot have a nuclear weapon. They'd use it. And they're not going to have a nuclear weapon. And it's not about the oil.
Click for Donald Trump on other issues.   Source: NBC News Meet the Press 2019 interview

Mike Pence on War & Peace : Jun 23, 2019
Iran will not be allowed to obtain nuclear weapons

The president's message to Iran is very clear, that we're not going to allow Iran to obtain a nuclear weapon, and we're not going to stand by while Iran continues to sow malign influence across the region. Iran is the leading state sponsor of terrorism in the world.
Click for Mike Pence on other issues.   Source: CNN State of the Union 2019 interview

Howie Hawkins on War & Peace : May 28, 2019
Goal: complete global nuclear disarmament

We demand the US honor its treaty obligations and restore the Intermediate Nuclear Force treaty and the Iran nuclear deal, that the US take its nuclear weapons off hair-trigger alert, adopt a No First Use policy, and unilaterally disarm to a minimum credible nuclear deterrent. The US should then follow up with urgent negotiations for complete global nuclear disarmament as provided for in the 1970 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and demanded by the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.
Click for Howie Hawkins on other issues.   Source: Declaration of Candidacy for the Green Party Nomination

Marianne Williamson on Energy & Oil : Apr 20, 2019
Nuclear energy may be part of "green" mix

"Nuclear energy is not ideal, by any stretch," said Williamson, one of those with reservations. "But it is still head and shoulders above coal and natural gas."
Click for Marianne Williamson on other issues.   Source: Mother Jones magazine on "2020 Dems on Climate Change"

Tulsi Gabbard on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
No, no, no to nuclear energy & nuclear waste

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the U.S.'s decarbonizing toolbox? Do you support the construction of new nuclear energy plants? Providing federal support to keep existing ones online?

Tulsi Gabbard: "No. No. No. Concerns over nuclear waste, and investments should go into renewable energy infrastructure and creating new jobs in a truly green energy economy."

Click for Tulsi Gabbard on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

Eric Swalwell on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
Opposes existing nuclear power plants; but research fusion

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the U.S.'s decarbonizing toolbox? Do you support the construction of new nuclear energy plants? Providing federal support to keep existing ones online?

Swalwell: "I don't support nuclear energy in its current form, though I do favor more research into fusion energy. We need to look forward, not back."

Click for Eric Swalwell on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

Tim Ryan on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
Nuclear power needs to be part of the future for us

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the U.S.'s decarbonizing toolbox? Do you support the construction of new nuclear energy plants? Providing federal support to keep existing ones online?

Ryan: "It is a tougher area, but I do think nuclear power needs to be part of the future for us. I do. And there's these new ways of doing nuclear, which again will take research and development, but nuclear needs to be there."

Click for Tim Ryan on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

Bernie Sanders on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
Opposes new nuclear power plant development

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the U.S.'s decarbonizing toolbox? Do you support the construction of new nuclear energy plants? Providing federal support to keep existing ones online?

A: Sanders's campaign said he opposed nuclear development but did not provide an on-the-record quote.

Click for Bernie Sanders on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

Cory Booker on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
Support next-generation advanced nuclear reactors

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the US's decarbonizing toolbox? Do you support the construction of new nuclear energy plants?

Booker: "Nuclear energy should be part of the decarbonization toolbox. Currently in the US, nuclear energy provides 60% of all carbon-free electricity. Next-generation advanced nuclear reactors currently being developed have the potential to play an important role in helping us decarbonize at the speed and scale that scientists are telling us is necessary to avoid the worst impacts from climate change."

Q: Do you support increasing federal funding for clean-energy research? How much money?

Booker: "In order to accelerate the development of technologies that can help us quickly decarbonize, I believe we should at least double federal funding for clean energy research. One research area in particular that we should fund is battery storage, which has a critical role to play as we continue to add exponentially more wind and solar power."

Click for Cory Booker on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

Jay Inslee on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
Explore next-generation advanced nuclear technologies

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the U.S.'s decarbonizing toolbox? Do you support the construction of new nuclear energy plants? Providing federal support to keep existing ones online?

Inslee: We must move to a carbon-free power sector, so I would not take any zero-emission sources of power generation off the table. But my focus would be first and foremost on investing in the expansion of renewables, efficiency, smart grid and energy storage technologies. We should continue to explore next-generation advanced nuclear technologies. But safety is of paramount importance, as is a stable long-term plan for dealing with waste. And new nuclear plants have also proven to be very costly, so we must not allow utilities and corporate project-developers to stick ratepayers with any expensive cost overruns associated with such projects.

Click for Jay Inslee on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

Wayne Messam on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
Nuclear energy falls short; no new nuke plants

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the U.S.'s decarbonizing toolbox?

Messam: As president, I will work to make the United States a global leader in renewable energy. While nuclear energy may seem like an option, in many ways it falls short of the type of energy we need to truly address climate change. I would not support the construction of new nuclear plants and would rally the American people to invest in truly renewable [energy]."

Click for Wayne Messam on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

John Delaney on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
Nuclear energy should be part of our portfolio

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the U.S.'s decarbonizing toolbox? Do you support the construction of new nuclear energy plants? Providing federal support to keep existing ones online?

Delaney: "Nuclear energy should be part of our portfolio, and I believe we need to support new development of advanced nuclear technology, but not at the expense of developing renewables."

Click for John Delaney on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

Andrew Yang on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
Thorium-based nuclear plants are safe and reliable

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the U.S.'s decarbonizing toolbox? Do you support the construction of new nuclear energy plants? Providing federal support to keep existing ones online?

Yang: "Yes. Nuclear energy has been shown to be very environmentally friendly and cheap. Any realistic plan to decarbonize needs to include nuclear power. Most people think of Homer Simpson when they think of nuclear power, but the truth is that we have much safer nuclear technology that doesn't result in unmanageable nuclear waste or a significant threat of meltdown. These thorium-based nuclear plants use an abundant natural element that could provide hundreds of years of power to the United States with little environmental impact."

Click for Andrew Yang on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

Marianne Williamson on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
Opposes nuclear power; phase out existing reactors

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the U.S.'s decarbonizing toolbox?

Williamson: "I'm opposed to nuclear power, as it provides risks and wastes that are dangerous and life-threatening. That said, nuclear power currently is responsible for about 20 percent of U.S. electricity and 50 percent of its carbon-free electricity. We may not be able to replace this carbon-free production in time if we close these plants too soon. Germany initially set out to close all of its nuclear reactors by 2022, but as a result, they are now likely to miss their emissions reduction targets. And France is now considering options to extend the life of many of its older nuclear power plants. Nuclear energy is not ideal, by any stretch. But it is still head and shoulders above coal and natural gas, and until we have solar, hydro and wind plants up and running to pick up the slack, we need to keep certain options open."

Click for Marianne Williamson on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

Julian Castro on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
We still need to find a long-term solution for nuclear waste

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the U.S.'s decarbonizing toolbox?

Castro: Nuclear power has a number of challenges that have not yet been solved. For example, we still need to find a long-term solution for the safe disposal of nuclear waste. I support greater investment into technologies and techniques to address these issues. Approximately 20 percent of our nation's energy comes from nuclear power. We should work towards reducing our reliance on nuclear power with investments in renewable energy.

Q: Do you support increasing federal funding for clean-energy research?

Castro: Yes. I support expanding federal funding for clean-energy research through our public and private universities and through government institutions. We must expand the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Energy (ARPA-E), including through funding from priced carbon.

Click for Julian Castro on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

John Hickenlooper on Environment : Apr 18, 2019
Solve problem of disposal of high-level radioactive waste

Q: Do you think nuclear energy should be part of the U.S.'s decarbonizing toolbox? Do you support the construction of new nuclear energy plants? Providing federal support to keep existing ones online?

Hickenlooper: Yes, but there has to be a stronger effort to solve the problem of disposal of high-level radioactive waste.

Click for John Hickenlooper on other issues.   Source: 2019 "Meet the Candidates" (NY Times.com)

Mike Pence on War & Peace : Apr 17, 2019
North Korea must abandon its nuclear ambitions

"But the era of strategic patience is over," he declared. "President Trump has made it clear that the patience of the United States and our allies in this region has run out and we want to see change. We want to see North Korea abandon its reckless path of the development of nuclear weapons, and also its continual use and testing of ballistic missiles is unacceptable."
Click for Mike Pence on other issues.   Source: PBS Newshour "North Korea," on 2020 presidential hopefuls

Jay Inslee on Energy & Oil : Apr 14, 2019
Keep options open, including research on nuclear energy

We're moving forward. We built a $6 billion wind turbine industry. We are electrifying our transportation system. We've got one of the highest uses of electric cars in the country and electric buses. We hope to build an electric ferry boat. We just passed a 100% clean electrical grid where we will not have fossil fuels on the grid.

I'm open to doing research and development to find out whether nuclear energy could become cost effective, could be safe and could deal with the waste stream. Those things would have to be resolved before it would become part of the mix. But I don't think we should shut off research into those options, given the urgency.

Click for Jay Inslee on other issues.   Source: Meet the Press 2019 interview of 2020 presidential hopefuls

Jay Inslee on Energy & Oil : Apr 10, 2019
Research nuclear energy; many problems unsolved

On the Green New Deal: Number one, it's got people talking about climate change. Number two, it has also raised people's ambition as to the scope of the challenge.

I believe that the urgency is so great and the time period so short to decarbonize our economy that we need to be open to any low-cost or low-carbon or zero-carbon technology. That includes nuclear. But there would have to be four things happen before nuclear power would be able to become a major part of our portfolio. It would have to become cost-effective, which it is not. It would have to be much safer with passive safety systems, which have not yet been developed. It would have to solve the waste problem with the waste stream. And it would have to win public acceptance. My view is it is appropriate to make R&D investments to determine whether any of those or all of those can be surmounted.

Click for Jay Inslee on other issues.   Source: CNN Town Hall: 2020 presidential hopefuls

Mike Gravel on Homeland Security : Apr 9, 2019
America will be safer without nukes: end "nuclear deterrent"

The United States' policy of stockpiling nuclear weapons is a disaster in waiting. The United States must not only seek a world without nuclear weapons, but work actively to make that a reality. America will be a safer not with a powerful "nuclear deterrent," but instead with a world free from this grievous threat. Rapid denuclearization is the only path forward.
Click for Mike Gravel on other issues.   Source: 2020 Presidential campaign website MikeGravel.com

Andrew Yang on Environment : Mar 29, 2019
Nuclear isn't perfect, but it's a solid solution for now

Nuclear energy is a relatively low-impact option for generating electricity. While the mining and enrichment of uranium has environmental impacts, and the storing of nuclear waste isn't easy, it is overall an efficient way to generate energy. With modern safety standards, it's also a safe way to generate electricity. The Nuclear Regulatory Committee standards require that a risk assessment shows there less than a one-in-a-million chance of any radioactivity to be released to the environment. Nuclear isn't a perfect solution, but it's a solid solution for now, and a technology we should invest in as we move to a future powered primarily by renewable energy. Nuclear power is one of the most efficient and environmentally friendly paths forward to a more sustainable future.

As President, I will work to make it easier for new nuclear plants to open up in appropriate areas to increase the amount of nuclear energy America uses.

Click for Andrew Yang on other issues.   Source: 2020 presidential campaign website Yang2020.com

Joe Biden on War & Peace : Mar 27, 2019
Supported wars in Iraq & Afghanistan, but not Iran

Click for Joe Biden on other issues.   Source: Truthout.org, "War and Peace," on 2020 presidential hopefuls

Donald Trump on War & Peace : Feb 5, 2019
Iran is a terrorist regime, so withdrew from nuclear deal

My Administration has acted decisively to confront the world's leading state sponsor of terror: the radical regime in Iran. To ensure this corrupt dictatorship never acquires nuclear weapons, I withdrew the United States from the disastrous Iran nuclear deal. And last fall, we put in place the toughest sanctions ever imposed on a country. We will not avert our eyes from a regime that chants death to America and threatens genocide against the Jewish people.
Click for Donald Trump on other issues.   Source: 2019 State of the Union address to United States Congress

Beto O`Rourke on War & Peace : Oct 9, 2018
Nuclear treaty was best path to prevent Iranian nukes

Q: Iran: Support Trump's withdrawal from treaty that limits Iran's nuclear capability in return for lifting economic sanctions?

Ted Cruz (R): Yes. Applauded withdrawal, saying agreement didn't sufficiently rein in Iran's nuclear program.

Beto O'Rourke (D): No. Agreement, while imperfect, was "best path to keep Iran from having nuclear weapons."

Click for Beto O`Rourke on other issues.   Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Texas Senate race

John Kasich on Homeland Security : Jun 6, 2018
Prioritize nuclear agreements like START and INF

As a child of the Cold War, I remember well the schoolroom "duck and cover" exercises, an ever-present reminder of the risk of nuclear war. No threat holds greater consequences for all of humanity than that of the accidental or deliberate use of nuclear weapons. Containing that risk has to remain our top priority.

U.S.-Russian agreements such as the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty and the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) were designed to achieve greater stability and security when it comes to nuclear weapons, and that goal should not be abandoned lightly. With New START expiring in 2021 and the INF Treaty on the verge of being fatally undermined by Russia's noncompliance, we need to think long and hard about walking away from them. Unless we are convinced that they are unsalvageable, agreements that by and large have worked for the two states holding more than 90% of the world's nuclear weapons should not be allowed to fall apart.

Click for John Kasich on other issues.   Source: 2020 presidential hopeful Kasich column in Foreign Affairs

John Kasich on War & Peace : Jun 6, 2018
Keep up pressure on North Korea to give up nukes

North Korea's acquisition of nuclear weapons remains another major concern. Until we have a definitive, verifiable treaty that formally ends the Korean War and denuclearizes the Korean Peninsula, we will need to keep up the pressure on Pyongyang to relinquish its nuclear weapons. Additional sanctions can and should be put in place. That includes sanctions on large Chinese companies that enable North Korea's nuclear weapons program. North Koreans who are working overseas to earn the regime the hard currency that funds that program should be sent home on an expedited basis. The US & its allies should also put in place a much tighter counterproliferation regime on shipments going into or out of North Korea. Ultimately, however, it will take peaceful regime change in Pyongyang to resolve the nuclear threat North Korea poses in Northeast Asia. The country best positioned to facilitate such a change is China, provided it can be sure that the US, South Korea, and Japan will not exploit the situation.
Click for John Kasich on other issues.   Source: 2020 presidential hopeful Kasich column in Foreign Affairs

Joe Biden on Foreign Policy : Oct 24, 2017
2008: Pakistan is the world's most dangerous country

[The 2008 debate moderator] asked the candidates to name the most dangerous country in the world.

"Iran," said Obama.

"Iran," said Clinton.

Then it was Biden's turn. "Pakistan." The room did a double-take. As [Biden's long-time aide Ted] Kaufman explains, "Well, if Iran is a real problem because they MAY have nuclear weapons, Pakistan is a problem because they ALREADY HAVE nuclear weapons."

Plenty of national security experts agreed with Biden. As recently as 2017, the former CIA station chief of Islamabad said, "With a failing economy, rampant terrorism, the fastest growing nuclear arsenal, the sixth largest population, and one of the highest birthrates in the world, Pakistan is of grave concern. It probably is the most dangerous country in the world."

Kaufman concluded, "I absolutely think that the reason why Obama picked him for vice president was because of watching him on the Foreign Relations Committee, and going through the debates with him."

Click for Joe Biden on other issues.   Source: The Book of Joe, by Jeff Wilser, p.123

Donald Trump on Homeland Security : Dec 22, 2016
Expand US nuclear capability; we're falling behind

President-elect Donald Trump called for the US to expand its nuclear arsenal, after Russian President Vladimir Putin said his country's nuclear potential needs fortifying, raising the specter of a new arms race that would reverse decades of efforts to reduce the number and size of the two countries' nuclear weapons.

In a tweet that offered no details, Trump said, "The United States must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes."

During the campaign, Trump talked in one debate about the need to modernize the country's infrastructure of nuclear weaponry, saying the US is falling behind.

Trump's tweet came shortly after Putin, during a defense ministry meeting, said, "We need to strengthen the military potential of strategic nuclear forces, especially with missile complexes that can reliably penetrate any existing and prospective missile defense systems."

Click for Donald Trump on other issues.   Source: Washington Post on Trump Transition promises & actions

Donald Trump on War & Peace : Oct 19, 2016
Iran is taking over Iraq

TRUMP: Iran should write us a letter of thank you, the stupidest deal of all time, a deal that's going to give Iran absolutely nuclear weapons. Iran should write us yet another letter saying thank you very much, because Iran, as I said many years ago, Iran is taking over Iraq, something they've wanted to do forever, but we've made it so easy for them.
Click for Donald Trump on other issues.   Source: Third 2016 Presidential Debate moderated by Fox News

Bill Weld on Foreign Policy : Oct 4, 2016
No alliances for intelligence: We have to do it ourselves!

[In response to Pence saying] "More taxes, more spending," under the Democrats, he is probably right about that.

[In response to Kaine's comment on the Iran nuclear deal]: Kaine not convincing re "safer or more dangerous" question. Trump's proposals are worse. (Nuclear weapons, Putin, abandon allies)

Kaine says the secret to intelligence work is "alliances." As a former federal prosecutor, I would disagree. We have to do it ourselves!

Click for Bill Weld on other issues.   Source: Twitter posts on 2016 Vice-Presidential Debate

Hillary Clinton on Foreign Policy : Sep 26, 2016
For long-term US policy against nuclear proliferation

Trump: I agree with her on one thing. The single greatest problem the world has is nuclear weapons.

Clinton: Donald has said he didn't care if other nations got nuclear weapons, Japan, South Korea, even Saudi Arabia. It has been the policy of the US to do everything we could to reduce the proliferation of nuclear weapons. His cavalier attitude about nuclear weapons is deeply troubling. That is the number-one threat we face. It becomes particularly threatening if terrorists ever get their hands on any nuclear material. A man who can be provoked by a tweet should not have his fingers anywhere near the nuclear codes.

Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: First 2016 Presidential Debate at Hofstra University

Bill Weld on Foreign Policy : Jul 7, 2016
Focus on nuclear proliferation & the Sunni-Shia schism

Q: You've said the Islamic State is not a existential threat to the U.S.so what are the top three things you worry about?

JOHNSON: Well, that ISIS is a very real threat, but I think their days are numbered, they are regional.

WELD: My #1 would be nuclear proliferation, which is why I think it's unbelievable that Donald Trump has suggested that the South Koreans and the Japanese perhaps should have access to nuclear weapons. Religious sectarianism, the Sunni-Shia schism around the world is pretty high on the list, as well. We don't think about it here every day, but, you know, when you're considering actions like Iraq, actions that we've taken in the Middle East and North Africa, you've got to think about things like that as well that have rippling effects in a number of different countries, all across the top of Africa, for example.

Click for Bill Weld on other issues.   Source: Washington Post interview of Johnson & Weld on 2016 election

Bill Weld on Homeland Security : Jun 22, 2016
Nuclear proliferation is #1 threat to world security

[Trump's hard line on immigration] is not the limit of the really unreasonable foreign policy proposals by the presumptive Republican nominee. The notion of having Japan and South Korea have access to nuclear weapons is crazy in a world where nuclear proliferation is the number-one threat to the security of the world. The notion that he is going to impose huge penalties on Mexico and China at will violates our obligations under treaties and international agreements like the World Trade Organization.
Click for Bill Weld on other issues.   Source: CNN Libertarian Town Hall: joint interview of Johnson & Weld

Mike Pence on Foreign Policy : Apr 26, 2016
Against agreement with Iran; keep all sanctions

Pence joined 14 other GOP governors in a letter to President Obama opposing the Iran nuclear deal: "I am opposed to this agreement because it will not make the US or our most cherished ally, Israel, safer. Instead, it promises Iran a lifting of US nuclea related sanctions for an agreement on Iran's nuclear weapons program that will only halt its ambitions temporarily, rather than permanently dismantle its nuclear desires," Pence wrote.

The letter asserted: "This agreement would lead to the lifting of sanctions on Iran without any guarantee that Iran's drive toward obtaining a nuclear weapon will be halted or even slowed. Iran is a state sponsor of terrorism, and it should not be permitted any pathway toward obtaining a nuclear weapon, now or ever. The lifting of federal sanctions that would only result in Iran having more money available to fund terrorist groups and attacks. We intend to ensure that the various state-level sanctions that are now in effect remain in effect.

Click for Mike Pence on other issues.   Source: Indianapolis Star on 2016 Indiana gubernatorial race

Donald Trump on Foreign Policy : Apr 1, 2016
Develop nukes in South Korea & Japan to counter North Korea

At the Nuclear Security Summit, the president was asked for his reaction to Trump's suggestion that US allies Japan and South Korea manufacture their own nuclear weapons as a defense against North Korean aggression. Obama said the comments "tell us the person who made the statements doesn't know much about nuclear policy, or the Korean Peninsula or the world generally." White House aides pointed out that Trump's policy would reverse decades of bipartisan US foreign policy and would increase nuclear proliferation.

Trump has argued that allowing Japan and South Korea to get the weapons would relieve the US of defending their East Asia allies. Foreign leaders from both countries have dismissed the idea. "You have so many countries already--China, Pakistan, you have so many countries, Russia--you have so many countries right now that have them," Trump said during a CNN town hall. "Now, wouldn't you rather, in a certain sense, have Japan have nuclear weapons when North Korea has nuclear weapons?"

Click for Donald Trump on other issues.   Source: NBC News, "Nuclear Weapons," by Andrew Rafferty

Bernie Sanders on Foreign Policy : Feb 4, 2016
North Korea is run by nuclear-armed paranoid dictator

North Korea is an isolated country run by a handful of dictators, or maybe just one, who seems to be somewhat paranoid. And, who had nuclear weapons. Our goal there is to work and lean strongly on China to put pressure. China is one of the few major countries in the world that has significant support for North Korea, and we got to do everything we can to put pressure on China. I worry about an isolated, paranoid country with atomic bombs.
Click for Bernie Sanders on other issues.   Source: MSNBC Democratic primary debate in New Hampshire

Bernie Sanders on Foreign Policy : Feb 4, 2016
I worry about Putin in Crimea but worry more about N. Korea

Q: Secretary of Defence Ash Carter said Russia is the most important national security threat. Do you agree?

SANDERS: No I don't. I worry about Putin and his military adventurism in the Crimea, but I worry more about an isolated country. Russia lives in the world. China lives in the world. North Korea is a strange country because it is so isolated, and I do feel that a nation with nuclear weapons, they have got to be dealt with.

Click for Bernie Sanders on other issues.   Source: MSNBC Democratic primary debate in New Hampshire

Gloria La Riva on Environment : Feb 3, 2016
Environmental racism pollutes our neighborhoods

Global warming, environmental racism polluting our neighborhoods, acidified and depleted oceans, fracking, critical drought, plastics choking the seas, nuclear weapons and waste -- it is clear that capitalism and production for profit are destroying the planet and threatening all life. Harnessing the earth's renewable resources of sea, wind and solar power to create sustainable energy, seizing the oil and coal companies to stop their fossil- fuel pollution, stopping nuclear weapons production, organizing production of food and goods to meet people's needs rather than the bottom line of corporations who produce regardless of the cost to the environment -- these are the most urgent steps needed to reverse climate change. But this requires making people's right to survive above the rights of the capitalists to make a profit.
Click for Gloria La Riva on other issues.   Source: 2016 presidential campaign website http://www.votepsl.org/

Hillary Clinton on War & Peace : Jan 25, 2016
Iranian nukes would have destabilized whole region

When I became secretary of state, Pres. Obama and I found that the Iranians were on their way to a nuclear weapons program. They had mastered the nuclear fuel cycle. They had built covert facilities. And they had stocked them with centrifuges that were rapidly whirling along trying to create enough highly enriched uranium to have a weapon.

Now our choices were, just fulminate about it, or turn our backs and just figure out that somebody else is going to do something, or try to get up a new strategy. We chose the third. We said, "look, we've got to get the world behind us to force them to the negotiating table." So I spent 18 months putting together the coalition that imposed international sanctions on the Iranians that forced them, finally, to begin negotiating with us to get an end to their nuclear weapons program, to put a lid on it.

[In 2008], Iran was on the way to a nuclear weapon, which would have destabilized the entire Middle East, created an arms race the likes of which we have never seen

Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: 2016 CNN Town Hall Democratic presidential primary debate

Bernie Sanders on Homeland Security : Nov 14, 2015
We spend billions on nuclear weapons & only 10% on terrorism

Sen. SANDERS: This nation is the most powerful military in the world. We're spending over $600 billion a year on the military and yet, significantly less than 10% of that money is used to be fighting international terrorism. We are spending hundreds of billions of dollars maintaining 5,000 nuclear weapons. I think we need major reform in the military, making it more cost effective, but also focusing on the real crisis that faces us. The Cold War is over. And our focus has got to be on intelligence, increased manpower, fighting international targets.

Gov. O'MALLEY: The nature of warfare has changed. This is a new era of conflict where traditional ways of huge standing armies do not serve our purposes as well as special ops & better intelligence.

Secretary CLINTON: We do have to take a hard look at the defense budget and we do have to figure out how we get ready to fight the adversaries of the future, not the past. But we have to also be very clear that we do have some continuing challenges.

Click for Bernie Sanders on other issues.   Source: 2015 CBS Democratic primary debate in Iowa

Donald Trump on Homeland Security : Nov 10, 2015
We worry about Iranian nukes but why not North Korean nukes?

It's not only Russia [that we're having trouble with]. We have problems with North Korea where they actually have nuclear weapons. You know, nobody talks about it, we talk about Iran, and that's one of the worst deals ever made. One of the worst contracts ever signed, ever, in anything, and it's a disgrace. But, we have somebody over there, a madman, who already has nuclear weapons we don't talk about that.
Click for Donald Trump on other issues.   Source: Fox Business/WSJ First Tier debate

Donald Trump on Foreign Policy : Sep 16, 2015
We must deal with the maniac in North Korea with nukes

[With regards to the Iranian nuclear deal]: Nobody ever mentions North Korea where you have this maniac sitting there and he actually has nuclear weapons and somebody better start thinking about North Korea and perhaps a couple of other places. You have somebody right now in North Korea who has got nuclear weapons and who is saying almost every other week, "I'm ready to use them." And we don't even mention it.
Click for Donald Trump on other issues.   Source: 2015 Republican two-tiered primary debate on CNN

Bernie Sanders on Homeland Security : Sep 5, 2015
Reduce nuclear budget by $100B; end proliferation worldwide

Bernie has stated unequivocally that we must limit nuclear proliferation and work towards a safer world free of nuclear weapons: "I strongly agree with President Obama's call for 'a world without nuclear weapons.' As has been made apparent by recent provocative actions by North Korea and Iran, the threat of nuclear weapons is a present threat to the security of America and the world. We must limit nuclear proliferation, now and in the future. We must end the production of weapons-grade uranium. And we must heed what President Obama has called our 'moral responsibility' to lead the way toward reducing, and eventually eliminating, nuclear weapons."

It is with this vision in mind that Bernie supports the Iran nuclear pact. Similarly, Bernie has been working to reduce nuclear weapons stockpiles around the world. In 2015, Bernie co-sponsored the Smarter Approach to Nuclear Expenditures Act, which would reduce the nuclear weapons budget by $100 billion over the next ten years.

Click for Bernie Sanders on other issues.   Source: 2016 grassroots campaign website FeelTheBern.org, "Issues"

Donald Trump on Foreign Policy : Sep 1, 2015
Stop sending aid to countries that hate us

Devex compiled a list of quotes from Trump that provide a window into his view on foreign aid:
Click for Donald Trump on other issues.   Source: Devex global development blog, "Trump on foreign aid"

Hillary Clinton on Foreign Policy : Jun 10, 2014
Get China involved with North Korea diplomacy

Many of North Korea's 25 million people live in abject poverty. Yet the regime devotes most of its limited resources to supporting its military, developing nuclear weapons, and antagonizing its neighbors.

In my public remarks [in Feb. 2009] in Seoul I extended an invitation to the North Koreans. If they would completely and verifiably eliminate their nuclear weapons program, we would be willing to normalize relations, and assist in meeting the economic and humanitarian needs of the North Korean people. If not, the regime's isolation would continue. It was an opening gambit that was not one I thought likely to succeed. But we started off with the offer of engagement knowing it would be easier to get other nations to pressure North Korea if and when the offer was rejected. It was particularly important for China, a longtime patron and protector of the regime in Pyongyang, to be part of a united international front. [The opening failed, as have numerous others since then].

Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: Hard Choices, by Hillary Clinton, p. 53-4

Eric Swalwell on War & Peace : Nov 6, 2012
Don't let Iran get one step closer to nukes

The danger posed by Iran to the Mid-east region seems to escalate daily. My top priority on the issue of Iran is to ensure that the US does whatever is necessary to prevent Iran from having the capability to produce a nuclear weapon. Unfortunately, today, Iran has already developed infrastructure that has only one purpose: to create nuclear weapons. We can't let them get one step closer to their stated goal. I support strong sanctions against Iran, including the Central Bank of Iran until they can prove they are not developing nuclear weapons. We must also diligently identify and sanction any domestic or foreign company that assists Iran, in any way, in its effort to obtain and/or develop nuclear weapons. We must more directly address countries that support Iran yet look the other way when it comes to Iran's flagrant violations of mandatory UN Security Council resolutions.
Click for Eric Swalwell on other issues.   Source: 2012 House campaign website, swalwellforcongress.com

Joe Biden on War & Peace : Oct 12, 2012
Iran has some fissile material, but no nuclear weapons

Relieved. That's how the Democrats must have felt watching Vice President Joe Biden debate Republican vice presidential candidate Rep. Paul Ryan. Time and time again the public saw why, in spite of a proclivity for putting his foot in his mouth, Biden was put on the ticket in the first place. He talks the way real people talk. Right out of the box he told Ryan that his views on Iran's nuclear weapon were "a bunch of stuff." Iran may be making fissile material (the stuff that sustains nuclear explosions) but "they don't have a weapon to put it in."

His attack on Ryan's Medicare plan was one of the strongest points in the evening. Unlike his boss he brought up the infamous 47 percent remark [in which Mitt Romney asserted that 47% of the American public accepted entitlements from the federal government in excess of their taxes] and pointed out that not only were his Mom and Dad in the 47%, so were the soldiers in Afghanistan (soldiers in combat don't pay income taxes.)

Click for Joe Biden on other issues.   Source: Kennedy School's E. Kamarck on 2012 Vice Presidential Debate

Joe Biden on War & Peace : Oct 11, 2012
Iran Sanctions are most crippling in history

Q: Last week former Defense Secretary Bob Gates said a strike on Iran's facilities would not work and "could prove catastrophic, haunting us for generations." How effective would a military strike against Iran be, to prevent nuclear development?

RYAN: We cannot allow Iran to gain a nuclear weapons capability. This administration watered down sanctions, delayed sanctions, tried to stop us from putting the tough sanctions in place. Now we have them in place because of Congress.

BIDEN: Incredible. These are the most crippling sanctions in the history of sanctions, period. Look, imagine had we let the Republican Congress work out the sanctions. You think there's any possibility the entire world would have joined us, Russia and China, all of our allies? These are the most crippling sanctions in the history of sanctions, period, period. You're talking about doing more; are you going to go to war? Is that you want to do now?

RYAN: We want to prevent war!

Click for Joe Biden on other issues.   Source: 2012 Vice Presidential debate

Joe Biden on War & Peace : Oct 11, 2012
Iran is not close to nuclear weapons; stop the bluster

RYAN: When Barack Obama was elected, Iran had enough fissile material to make one bomb. Now they have enough for five. They're racing toward a nuclear weapon. They're four years closer toward a nuclear weapons capability.

BIDEN: We feel quite confident we could deal a serious blow to the Iranians. But #2, the Israelis and the US--our intelligence communities are absolutely the same exact place in terms of how close the Iranians are to getting a nuclear weapon. They are a good way away. When [Ryan] talks about fissile material, they have to take this highly enriched uranium, get it from 20% up. Then they have to be able to have something to put it in. There is no weapon that the Iranians have at this point. Both the Israelis and we know we'll know if they start the process of building a weapon. So all this bluster I keep hearing--Let's all calm down a little bit here. Iran is more isolated today than when we took office. It was on the ascendancy when we took office. It is totally isolated.

Click for Joe Biden on other issues.   Source: 2012 Vice Presidential debate

Donald Trump on Energy & Oil : Mar 15, 2011
We need nuclear energy, and we need a lot of it fast

Q: What about the Japan nuclear crisis resulting from the earthquake & tsunami?

A: Ultimately what could happen to nuclear energy in terms of a worldwide feeling, is not a good thing.

Q: Are we overreacting? Germany sidelining some nuclear reactors?

A: When you see what's going on in Japan, certainly you can't say overreacting, but, look, nuclear is a way that we get what we have to get, which is energy. I think that probably there's not an overreaction, but we have to be very, very careful. I worry about terrorists. I worry about other things beyond just that. I'm very strongly in favor of nuclear energy. You know, it's sort of interesting. If a plane goes down, people keep flying. If you get into an auto crash, people keep driving. There are problems in life. Not everything is so perfect. You have to look very carefully, though, at really taking care; having the best people in terms of safeguards for nuclear energy. But we do need nuclear energy, and we need a lot of it fast.

Click for Donald Trump on other issues.   Source: Interview on Your World with Neil Cavuto

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Jan 27, 2011
OpEd: Selectively assassinated Iranian nuclear scientists

[Obama says], "Because of diplomatic effort to insist that Iran meet its obligations, the Iranian government now faces tougher sanctions, tighter sanctions than ever before. And on the Korean Peninsula, we stand with our ally South Korea, and insist that North Korea keeps its commitment to abandon nuclear weapons."

The president, as I observed, did not mention a single word about the selective assassination of Iranian scientists by the intelligence agencies of the US and its allies, about which he was well informed.

Instead, he expanded on his remarks saying: "This is just a part of how we're sharing a world that favors peace and prosperity. With our European allies, we revitalized NATO and increased our cooperation on everything from counterterrorism to missile defense."

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: Castro on 2011 State of the Union, in "Obama & Empire" p.144

Barack Obama on Energy & Oil : Jan 26, 2011
FactCheck: clean coal isn't ready; nuke waste is unresolved

The president set a goal of obtaining 80% of our electricity from renewable sources, plus nuclear, natural gas and "clean" coal, by 2035. That'll take some work, but with three nonrenewable sources in the mix, the goal isn't unreachable.

The biggest conundrum is coal. Coal fuels 44% of electricity production. But "clean" coal, which usually refers to coal burned in a way that allows its carbon dioxide emissions to be captured and stored underground, is far from ready to step in and provide such a large share of the mix. The first large-scale "clean" coal plant is still under development. That means renewables like wind, solar and hydro will need to continue to expand their shares of the pie, as well as natural gas.

Obama also counts nuclear plants as "clean"--but that's a point that environmentalists debate, particularly since the question of what to do with the resulting highly radioactive waste has yet to be resolved.

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: FactCheck.org on 2011 State of the Union speech

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Jan 25, 2011
New START treaty: more secure & fewer nuclear weapons

American leadership can be seen in the effort to secure the worst weapons of war. Because Republicans and Democrats approved the New START treaty, far fewer nuclear weapons and launchers will be deployed. Because we rallied the world, nuclear materials are being locked down on every continent so they never fall into the hands of terrorists.

With our European allies, we revitalized NATO and increased our cooperation on everything from counterterrorism to missile defense.

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: 2011 State of the Union speech

Barack Obama on Foreign Policy : Jan 27, 2010
Iran is more isolated and will face growing consequences

Diplomatic efforts have strengthened our hand in dealing with those nations that insist on violating international agreements in pursuit of nuclear weapons. That's why North Korea now faces increased isolation, and stronger sanctions--sanctions that are being vigorously enforced. That's why the international community is more united, and the Islamic Republic of Iran is more isolated. And as Iran's leaders continue to ignore their obligations: They, too, will face growing consequences.
Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: 2010 State of the Union Address

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Jan 27, 2010
Secure all world's nuclear materials by international treaty

Now, even as we prosecute two wars, we're also confronting perhaps the greatest danger to the American people--the threat of nuclear weapons. I've embraced the vision of John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan through a strategy that reverses the spread of these weapons and seeks a world without them. To reduce our stockpiles and launchers, while ensuring our deterrent, the United States and Russia are completing negotiations on the farthest-reaching arms control treaty in nearly two decades. And at April's Nuclear Security Summit, we will bring 44 nations together here in Washington, D.C. behind a clear goal: securing all vulnerable nuclear materials around the world in four years, so that they never fall into the hands of terrorists.
Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: 2010 State of the Union Address

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Dec 10, 2009
Reduce US nuclear stockpile & prevent spread of nukes

One urgent example [of alternatives to violence] is the effort to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons, and to seek a world without them. In the middle of the last century, nations agreed to be bound by a treaty whose bargain is clear: all will have access to peaceful nuclear power; those without nuclear weapons will forsake them; and those with nuclear weapons will work toward disarmament. I am committed to upholding this treaty. It is a centerpiece of my foreign policy. And I am working with President Medvedev to reduce America and Russia's nuclear stockpiles.

But it is also incumbent upon all of us to insist that nations like Iran and North Korea do not game the system. Those who claim to respect international law cannot avert their eyes when those laws are flouted. Those who seek peace cannot stand idly by as nations arm themselves for nuclear war.

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech in Oslo, Norway

Barack Obama on Foreign Policy : Aug 4, 2009
2007: Raids into Pakistan to kill high-value terrorists

On August 8, 2007 in Chicago, the day after the fifth debate, hosted by the AFL-CIO, Obama had come under fire for his foreign policy statements over the last three weeks, beginning with the CNN-YouTube debate in South Carolina. In a speech, he had made an implied threat to mount cross-border raids into Pakistan by U.S. soldiers if actionable intelligence showed there was a chance to capture or kill "High-value terrorist targets." He stumbled over considering nuclear weapons to fight terrorism there. In Chicago, his opponents were instantly on the attack. Chris Dodd called Obama "highly irresponsible." Clinton said it was "a very big mistake to telegraph that and destabilize" the Pakistani government.

Obama fired back, but clearly he and his campaign had been put on the defensive. The exchanges bolstered the continuing story line. He wasn't seasoned enough to be president.

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: The Battle for America 2008, by Balz & Johnson, p. 89

Barack Obama on Energy & Oil : Oct 7, 2008
FactCheck: Reluctant on nuclear power in past; now favors it

Obama flatly said he favored nuclear energy--embracing it more warmly than in the past. Obama said, “Contrary to what Sen. McCain keeps on saying, I favor nuclear power as one component of our overall energy mix.”

Previously Obama has been more hesitant. He said at a town hall meeting in Newton, Iowa, on Dec. 30, 2007, when asked if he was “truly comfortable” with the safety of nuclear power, “I start off with the premise that nuclear energy is not optimal. I am not a nuclear energy proponent.“ He then went on to say later in the same response that he has ”not ruled out nuclear ... but only so far as it is clean and safe.“

The energy plan Obama released in October 2007 only grudgingly conceded that more nuclear power is probably needed to reduce carbon emissions: ”It is unlikely that we can meet our aggressive climate goals if we eliminate nuclear power from the table.“

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: FactCheck.org on 2008 second presidential debate

Joe Biden on Homeland Security : Oct 2, 2008
Obama worked with Republicans to reduce nuclear weapons

BIDEN: John McCain voted against a Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty that every Republican has supported. John McCain has opposed amending the Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty with an amendment to allow for inspections. Barack Obama, first thing he did when he came to the United States Senate, reached across the aisle to my colleague, Dick Lugar, a Republican, and said, “We’ve got to do something about keeping nuclear weapons out of the hands of terrorists.”
Click for Joe Biden on other issues.   Source: 2008 Vice Presidential debate against Sarah Palin

Joe Biden on Homeland Security : Oct 2, 2008
Greatest security threat is from al Qaeda in Pakistan

Q: What’s the greater threat, a nuclear Iran or an unstable Pakistan?

BIDEN: Pakistan already has nuclear weapons. Iran getting a nuclear weapon would be destabilizing, but they are not close to getting a nuclear weapon that’s able to be deployed. John continues to tell us that the central war on terror is in Iraq. I promise you, if an attack comes in the homeland, it’s going to come from al Qaeda in the hills of Pakistan. We need to support that democracy by helping them with their economic well-being.

PALIN: Both are extremely dangerous. And as for who coined that central war on terror being in Iraq, it was the Gen. Petraeus and al Qaeda, and it’s probably the only thing that they’re ever going to agree on. An armed, nuclear Iran is so extremely dangerous. Israel is in jeopardy when we’re dealing with Iran. Others who are dangerous dictators are ones that Barack Obama has said he would be willing to meet with without preconditions. And that goes beyond naivete and poor judgment.

Click for Joe Biden on other issues.   Source: 2008 Vice Presidential debate against Sarah Palin

Hillary Clinton on War & Peace : Oct 1, 2008
2002: Saddam gave aid to Al Qaeda terrorists

"Almost no one disagrees with these basic facts. That he has weapons of mass destruction and that he is doing everything in his power to get nuclear weapons."
--Sen. John Edwards, Sept. 12, 2002

"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al-Qaeda members."
--Sen. Hillary Clinton, Oct. 10, 2002

"Saddam Hussein certainly has chemical and biological weapons. There's no question about that."
--Rep. Nancy Pelosi, Nov. 17, 2002

"We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction."
--Sen. Edward Kennedy, Sept. 27, 2003

"If we wait for the danger to become clear, it could be too late."
--Sen. Joseph Biden, Sept. 4, 2002

Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: The War in Quotes, by G.B. Trudeau, p. 28-29

Joe Biden on War & Peace : Oct 1, 2008
2002: Waiting to be sure of Saddam danger could be too late

"Almost no one disagrees with these basic facts. That he has weapons of mass destruction and that he is doing everything in his power to get nuclear weapons."
--Sen. John Edwards, Sept. 12, 2002

"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al-Qaeda members."
--Sen. Hillary Clinton, Oct. 10, 2002

"Saddam Hussein certainly has chemical and biological weapons. There's no question about that."
--Rep. Nancy Pelosi, Nov. 17, 2002

"We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction."
--Sen. Edward Kennedy, Sept. 27, 2003

"If we wait for the danger to become clear, it could be too late."
--Sen. Joseph Biden, Sept. 4, 2002

Click for Joe Biden on other issues.   Source: The War in Quotes, by G.B. Trudeau, p. 28-29

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Aug 1, 2008
Goal is a world without nuclear weapons

Without any introduction, Obama begins, "I am the only major candidate to oppose this war from the beginning and, as president, I will end it.

"Second," he continues, "I will cut tens of billions of dollars in wasteful spending. I will cut investments in unproven missile defense systems. I will not weaponize space. I will slow our development of future combat systems and I will institute an independent defense priorities board to ensure that the quadrennial defense review is not used to justify unnecessary spending.

"Third," he says, without pausing, "I will set a goal of a world without nuclear weapons. To seek that goal, I will not develop new nuclear weapons. I will seek a ban on the production of fissile materials. And I will negotiate with Russia to take ICBMs off hair-trigger alert and to achieve deep cuts in our nuclear arsenals."

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: Obama Nation, by Jerome Corsi, p. 1-2

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Aug 1, 2008
A New Beginning: seek world with no nuclear weapons

On Oct. 2, 2007, Obama declared, "A New Beginning," announcing, "America seeks a world in which there are no nuclear weapons." Obama made clear he did not intend to pursue unilateral disarmament. He promised to work with Russia "to take US & Russian ballistic missiles off hair-trigger alert."

"We'll start by seeking a global ban on the production of fissile material for weapons." Obama stated we would set a goal to expand the US-Russian ban on intermediate-range missiles so the agreement is global

Obama argued, "We'll be in a better position to lead the world in enforcing the rules of the road if we firmly abide by those rules." This is truly the crux of Obama's argument: because we do not demonstrate moral leadership, other nations have no choice but to proliferate nuclear weapons. At the base of the argument, Obama is saying a world with nuclear weapons is our fault. "It's time to stop giving countries like Iran and North Korea an excuse," he said. "It's time for America to lead."

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: Obama Nation, by Jerome Corsi, p.261-262

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Jul 24, 2008
Seek the peace of a world without nuclear weapons

This is the moment when we must renew the goal of a world without nuclear weapons. The Cold War superpowers came too close too often to destroying all we have built and all that we love. With that wall gone, we need not stand idly by and watch the furthe spread of the deadly atom. It is time to secure all loose nuclear materials; to stop the spread of nuclear weapons; and to reduce the arsenals from another era. This is the moment to begin the work of seeking the peace of a world without nuclear weapons.
Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: Speech in Berlin, in Change We Can Believe In, p.267-8

Barack Obama on Energy & Oil : Jun 26, 2008
GovWatch: Opposes Yucca Mountain for nuclear waste storage

McCain portrays Obama as saying “no to clean, safe, nuclear energy.” That’s false. But there’s no question that McCain is a much bigger advocate of nuclear power than Obama, who has taken a more guarded position. McCain has said that he’d work to bring 45 new nuclear power plants online by 2030, with the eventual goal of building 100 new nuclear plants. Obama has criticized that, highlighting his opposition to long-term storage of nuclear waste at the federal government’s Yucca Mountain site in Nevada. “He wants to build 45 new nuclear reactors when they don’t have a plan to store the waste anywhere besides right here,” Obama said on June 25. McCain supports going ahead with the Yucca Mountain plan.

Obama’s 2007 plan promised that he “will also lead federal efforts to look for a safe, long-term disposal solution based on objective, scientific analysis.” It’s inaccurate to cast Obama as an opponent, and McCain goes too far when he portrays Obama as saying “no” to nuclear.

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: GovWatch on 2008: Washington Post analysis on 2008 election

Mike Gravel on Homeland Security : May 2, 2008
Reagan’s SDI set stage for Bush’s trashing the ABM treaty

Nuclear weapons, both offensive and defensive (ABMs) were among the most lucrative Cold War projects. Reagan hawked nukes like he had borax soap. While many Americans allowed themselves to be scared by this two-bit pitchman, many other Americans didn’t. The mass movement who had mobilized against the Vietnam War found a new target: nuclear weapons.

Reagan responded with a move designed to appear as a step toward nuclear disarmament. It was clearly a new cash cow for the military industries: the Strategic Defense Initiative or Star Wars. Portrayed as a defensive weapon, the Soviets pointed out that a defensive shield in space could easily be used offensively. Besides, it violated the ABM Treaty.

That set the tone in government for Bush’s later trashing of the ABM Treaty and other international laws. Reagan’s Star Wars gambit paid off--it dampened the mass movement against nuclear weapons, while SDI and other military spending delivered the biggest budget deficit in US history.

Click for Mike Gravel on other issues.   Source: A Political Odyssey, by Mike Gravel, p.209-210

Barack Obama on War & Peace : Apr 16, 2008
Take no options off the table if Iran attacks Israel

Q: Iran continues to pursue a nuclear option that poses a threat to Israel. Should it be US policy to treat an Iranian attack on Israel as if it were an attack on the US?

OBAMA: Our first step should be to keep nuclear weapons out of the hands of the Iranians. I will take no options off the table when it comes to preventing them from using nuclear weapons, &that would include any threats directed at Israel or any of our allies in the region.

Q: So you would extend our deterrent to Israel?

OBAMA: It is very important that Iran understands that an attack on Israel is an attack on our strongest ally in the region, one that we would consider unacceptable, and the US would take appropriate action.

Q: Sen. Clinton, would you?

CLINTON: We should be looking to create an umbrella of deterrence that goes much further than just Israel. I would make it clear to the Iranians that an attack on Israel would incur massive retaliation from the US, but I would do the same with other countries in the region.

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: 2008 Philadelphia primary debate, on eve of PA primary

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Feb 2, 2008
Pursue goal of a world without nuclear weapons

Obama will set a goal of a world without nuclear weapons, and pursue it. Obama will always maintain a strong deterrent as long as nuclear weapons exist. But he will take several steps down the long road toward eliminating nuclear weapons. He will stop th development of new nuclear weapons; work with Russia to take ballistic missiles off hair trigger alert; seek dramatic reductions in stockpiles of nuclear weapons and material; and expand globally the US-Russian ban on intermediate-range missiles.
Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: Campaign booklet, “Blueprint for Change”, p. 50-55

Barack Obama on Environment : Jan 15, 2008
Will end the notion of Yucca Mountain nuclear storage

I will end the notion of Yucca Mountain because it has not been based on the sort of sound science that can assure people that they’re going to be safe. That was a mistake. You hate to see billions of dollars having already been spent, but I don’t want to spend additional billions of dollars and potentially create a situation that is not safe. I’ve been clear from the start that Yucca was a misconceived project. I want to get the best experts and make a determination on the best science available.
Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: 2008 Democratic debate in Las Vegas

Hillary Clinton on Environment : Jan 15, 2008
Voted against and consistently opposed to Yucca Mountain

I voted against Yucca Mountain in 2001. I have been consistently against Yucca Mountain, looking at all the reasons why Yucca Mountain is not workable. The science does not support it. We do have to figure out what to do with nuclear waste. I have consistently and persistently been against Yucca Mountain, and I will make sure it does not come into effect when I’m president.
Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: 2008 Democratic debate in Las Vegas

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Jan 6, 2008
Rebuild a nuclear nonproliferation strategy

I’ve worked on nuclear proliferation in the Senate, to improve interdiction of potentially nuclear materials. It is important for us to rebuild a nuclear nonproliferation strategy, something that this administration has ignored, and has made us less safe as a consequence. It would not cost us that much, for example, and would take about four years for us to lock down the loose nuclear weapons that are still floating out there, and we have not done the job.
Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: 2008 Facebook/WMUR-NH Democratic primary debate

Hillary Clinton on Foreign Policy : Dec 13, 2007
Establish leadership & moral authority via multilateralism

Q: When future historians write of your administration’s foreign policy pursuits, what will be noted as your doctrine and the vision you cast for U.S. diplomatic relations?

A: It will be a doctrine of restoring America’s leadership and moral authority through multilateral organizations, through attempts to come to agreements on issues ranging from global warming to stopping the proliferation of nuclear weapons and other dangerous weapons. It will be a doctrine that demonstrates that the United States is not afraid to cooperate; that through cooperation in our interdependent world, we actually can build a stronger country and a stronger world that will be more reflective of our values.

Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: 2007 Des Moines Register Democratic debate

Joe Biden on Homeland Security : Oct 30, 2007
Talks about nations acquiring uranium are more complicated

Q: Would you pledge that Iran will not develop a nuclear bomb while you are president?

A: I would pledge to keep us safe. This is complicated stuff. We talk about this in isolation. The Iranians may get 2.6 kilograms of highly-enriched uranium. But the Pakistanis have thousands of kilograms of highly-enriched uranium. If by attacking Iran to stop them from getting 2.6 kilograms of highly-enriched uranium, the government in Pakistan falls, who has missiles already deployed with nuclear weapons on them that can already reach Israel, already reach India, then that’s a bad bargain. Presidents make wise decisions informed not by a vacuum in which they operate, by the situation they find themselves in the world. I will do all in my power to stop Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, but I will never take my eye off the ball. What is the greatest threat to the US: 2.6 kilograms of highly enriched uranium in Tehran or an out-of-control Pakistan? It’s not close.

Click for Joe Biden on other issues.   Source: 2007 Democratic debate at Drexel University

Barack Obama on War & Peace : Oct 30, 2007
Committed to Iran not having nuclear weapons

Q: Would you pledge that Iran will not develop a nuclear bomb while you are president?

A: We are committed to Iran not having nuclear weapons. We have been governed by fear for the last 6 years. Bush has used the fear of terrorism to launch a war that should have never been authorized. We are seeing the same pattern now. It is very important for us to draw a clear line and say, “We are not going to be governed by fear. We will take threats seriously and take action to make sure that the US is secure.”

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: 2007 Democratic debate at Drexel University

Barack Obama on War & Peace : Oct 30, 2007
Iran military resolution sends the region a wrong signal

That is a continuation of the kinds of foreign policy that rejects diplomacy and sees military action as the only tool available to us to influence the region. What we should be doing is reaching out aggressively to our allies, talking to our enemies and focusing on those areas where we do not accept their actions, whether it be terrorism or developing nuclear weapons, and talking to Iran directly about the potential carrots that we can provide in terms of them being involved in the World Trade Organization, or beginning to look at the possibilities of diplomatic relations being normalized. We have not made those serious attempts. This kind of resolution does not send the right signal to the region. It doesn’t send the right signal to our allie or our enemies. As a consequence, over the long term, it weakens our capacity to influence Iran. There may come a point where those measures have been exhausted & Iran is on the verge of obtaining a nuclear weapon, where we have to consider other options
Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: 2007 Democratic debate at Drexel University

Hillary Clinton on Energy & Oil : Sep 6, 2007
Opposes Yucca Mountain; earthquake fault goes under it

Q: Would you rule out expanding nuclear power?

A: No, but it would not be one of the options that I favor, unless, number one, the cost can get down for the construction and operation; number two, that we have a viable solution for the nuclear waste. I voted against Yucca Mountain. I’ve spoken out against Yucca Mountain. I think that recently the discovery--there’s an earthquake fault going under the proposed site at Yucca Mountain--certainly validates my opposition. So there are a lot of very difficult questions. But we’re going to have to look at the entire energy profile, in order to determine how we’re going to move away from our dependence upon carbon-based fuels. And I will look at everything, but there are some tough questions you’d have to answer with respect to nuclear.

Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: 2007 Democratic primary debate at Dartmouth College

Mike Gravel on Homeland Security : Aug 19, 2007
We are STILL expanding our nuclear capability

Q: [to Edwards]: Is Obama right or wrong to rule out nukes against Al Qaeda?

EDWARDS: As president, I would not talk about hypotheticals in nuclear weapons. I think that effectively limits your options. What I would do as president, is to lead an international effort over time to eliminate nuclear weapons from the planet. That’s the way to make the planet more secure.

GRAVEL: That’s very good but, under the last 25 years, this nation has continued to expand its nuclear capability.

Click for Mike Gravel on other issues.   Source: 2007 Democratic primary debate on “This Week”

Barack Obama on War & Peace : Aug 19, 2007
Deal with al Qaeda on Pakistan border, but not with nukes

Q: [to Clinton]: You criticized Sen. Obama for ruling out the use of nuclear weapons against Al Qaida in Pakistan, yet you said the same against Bush’s use of tactical nuclear weapons in Iran, saying: “I would certainly take nuclear weapons off the table.” What’s the difference there?

CLINTON: I was asked specifically about the Bush-Cheney administration’s policy to drum up support for military action against Iran. Combine that with their continuing effort to try to get “bunker-buster” nuclear bombs that could penetrate into the earth to go after deeply buried nuclear sites. This was not a hypothetical, this was a brushback against this administration which has been reckless and provocative.

Q: Do you accept that distinction?

OBAMA: There was no difference. It is not hypothetical that Al Qaida has established base camps in the hills between Afghanistan and Pakistan. No military expert would advise that we use nuclear weapons to deal with them, but we do have to deal with that problem.

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: 2007 Democratic primary debate on “This Week”

Hillary Clinton on War & Peace : Aug 19, 2007
Rule out nukes against Iran

Q: You criticized Sen. Obama for ruling out the use of nuclear weapons against Al Qaida in Pakistan, yet you said the same against Bush’s use of tactical nuclear weapons in Iran:
Clinton on videotape:
“I would certainly take nuclear weapons off the table. And this administration has been very willing to talk about using nuclear weapons in a way we haven’t seen since the dawn of the nuclear age. I think that’s a terrible mistake.”
Q: What’s the principal difference there?

CLINTON: I was asked specifically about the Bush-Cheney administration’s policy to drum up support for military action against Iran. Combine that with their continuing effort to try to get what are called bunker-buster bombs, nuclear bombs that could penetrate into the earth to go after deeply buried nuclear sites. This was not a hypothetical, this was a brushback against this administration which has been reckless and provocative.

OBAMA: There’s no difference [in our policies].

Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: 2007 Democratic primary debate on “This Week”

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Aug 14, 2007
2005: Passed bill to reduce conventional weapon stockpiles

Obama’s greatest legislative success was teaming with Republican Senator Richard Lugar of Indiana on a bill that expanded US cooperation to reduce stockpiles of conventional weapons and expanded the State Department’s ability to interdict weapons and materials of mass destruction. In the spring of 2005, Obama had traveled to Russia with Lugar to inspect nuclear weapons stockpiles.
Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: From Promise to Power, by David Mendell, p.313

Mike Gravel on Energy & Oil : Apr 26, 2007
I started the nuclear critique in this country

Q: With the French system as the model, is the US woefully behind in its use of nuclear energy?

A: No, not at all. I think there had to be a maturation process. And I’m the one that started the nuclear critique in this country. And I’m also the one that brought about the Alaska pipeline by one vote in the Congress. So when you ask about the energy issues, let me just tell you....

Click for Mike Gravel on other issues.   Source: 2007 South Carolina Democratic primary debate, on MSNBC

Mike Gravel on Homeland Security : Apr 26, 2007
US is the greatest violator of the non-proliferation treaty

OBAMA: I think it would be a profound mistake for us to initiate a war with Iran. But, have no doubt, Iran possessing nuclear weapons will be a major threat to us and to the region.

GRAVEL: With respect to Iran, we’ve sanctioned them for 26 years. We scared the bejesus out of them when the president says, “They’re evil.” Well, you know something? These things don’t work. They don’t work. We need to recognize them. And you know something? Who is the greatest violator of the non-proliferation treaty The United States of America. We signed a pledge that we would begin to disarm, and we’re not doing it. We’re expanding our nukes. Who the hell are we going to nuke? Tell me, Barack. Barack, who do you want to nuke?

OBAMA: I’m not planning to nuke anybody right now, Mike, I promise.

GRAVEL: Good. Good. We’re safe then, for a while.

Click for Mike Gravel on other issues.   Source: 2007 South Carolina Democratic primary debate, on MSNBC

Barack Obama on War & Peace : Apr 26, 2007
Iran with nuclear weapons is a profound security threat

KUCINICH: You previously said that all options are on the table with respect to Iran. That means you’re setting the stage for another war. We’re in Iraq for oil. We’re looking at attacking Iran for oil.

OBAMA: I think it would be a profound mistake for us to initiate a war with Iran. But, have no doubt, Iran possessing nuclear weapons will be a major threat to us and to the region. They’re in the process of developing it. And I don’t think that’s disputed by any expert. They are the largest state sponsor of terrorism, of Hezbollah and Hamas.

KUCINICH: It is disputed.

OBAMA: There is no contradiction between us taking seriously the need, as you do, to want to strengthen our alliances around the world--but I think it is important for us to also recognize that if we have nuclear proliferators around the world that potentially can place a nuclear weapon into the hands of terrorists, that is a profound security threat for America and one that we have to take seriously.

Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: 2007 South Carolina Democratic primary debate, on MSNBC

Howie Hawkins on Foreign Policy : Nov 1, 2006
Support the UN; oppose the Cuban embargo

Q: Should the United States maintain its financial support of the United Nations?

A: Yes.

Q: Should the United States commit troops to United Nations peacekeeping missions?

A: Yes.

Q: Should the United States lift the travel ban to Cuba?

A: Yes.

Hawkins adds, "Stop exporting and encouraging nuclear power, which leads to nuclear weapons. Push for complete global nuclear disarmament through US unilateral initiatives to set the example. Stop 'Star Wars' militarization of space."

Click for Howie Hawkins on other issues.   Source: 2006 Congressional National Political Awareness

Howie Hawkins on Enviroment : Jul 31, 2006
Shut down nuclear energy

Shut down nuclear energy. Implement solar-based renewable energy. Phase out fossil fuels.
Click for Howie Hawkins on other issues.   Source: 2006 Senate campaign website, hawkinsforsenate.org, “Issues”

Hillary Clinton on Homeland Security : Jan 6, 2006
Marshal resources against proliferation of nuclear weapons

We should have a very high level of commitment from the White House, including a person responsible in our government for marshaling our resources against the proliferation of nuclear weapons. There has to be a better organizing effort to make sure that every part of the government is working together. I don’t think we’ve done what we need to do on homeland defense. We haven’t done enough on port security. We have not made the kind of commitment necessary to protect us.
Click for Hillary Clinton on other issues.   Source: 2008 Facebook/WMUR-NH Democratic primary debate

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Jan 6, 2006
Rebuild the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty

We would obviously have to retaliate against anybody who struck American soil, whether it was nuclear or not. It would be a much more profound issue if it were nuclear weapons. That’s why it’s so important for us to rebuild the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty that has fallen apart under this administration. We have not made a commitment to work with the Russians to reduce our own nuclear stockpiles. That has weakened our capacity to pressure other countries to give up nuclear technology. We have not locked down the loose nuclear weapons that are out there right now. These are all things that we should be taking leadership on. Part of what we need to do in changing our foreign policy is not just end the war in Iraq; we have to change the mindset that ignores long-term threats and engages in the sorts of actions that are not making us safe over the long term.
Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: 2008 Facebook/WMUR-NH Democratic primary debate

Barack Obama on Homeland Security : Jul 12, 2004
Increase funding to decommission Russian nukes

More than a decade after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Russia still has more nearly 20,000 nuclear weapons and enough nuclear material to produce 50,000 more. At the current rate of spending, it will take 13 years to secure all the potential bomb material from the old Soviet Republic. We should increase funding to do it in four years. We must also strengthen the existing Non-Proliferation Treaty, and lead in the efforts to prevent countries with the proven capability to build WMDs from doing so.
Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: Press Release, “Renewal of American Leadership ”

Barack Obama on War & Peace : Jul 12, 2004
Engage North Korea in 6-party talks

[We should] address the threat posed by North Korea. By refusing to negotiate with North Korea for three and half years, experts believe that North Korea may now be close to having six to eight nuclear weapons. We must immediately insist on complete and verifiable elimination of North Korea’s nuclear capability, engage in Six-Party bilateral talks, and facilitate a reform agenda that is broader than denuclearization to address humanitarian concerns.
Click for Barack Obama on other issues.   Source: Press Release, “Renewal of American Leadership ”

John Kasich on Energy & Oil : Mar 22, 2000
Opposed Yucca Mountain nuclear waste facility

Bill S 1287: Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act:

Legislative outcome: Passed House 253-167 (Democrats: 53-149; Republicans: 199-18); Rep. Kasich voted NAY; Veto Override Failed in Senate, May 2, 2000.

OnTheIssues explanation:Yucca Mountain is the country's only long-term nuclear waste facility. A similar bill did pass in 2002, but was overturned under Obama in 2009, over radiation safety concerns for storage as well as transport. Currently, all nuclear waste is stored on-site at each facility.

Click for John Kasich on other issues.   Source: Voting history of 2020 presidential hopefuls

John Kasich on Foreign Policy : Mar 22, 1999
Focus on terrorism, oil, & nuclear development

The US needs to develop a clear, consistent foreign policy that places the country’s interests first, Kasich said. The US should stay out of the Kosovo conflict and concentrate on preventing terrorist bomb and biological weapons attacks. [US involvement should be based on] national interests. In the 1992 Gulf War, this country had a stake, he said: “Whether we like it or not, the US depends on oil.” [Other interests include] the development of nuclear weapons and whether there’s an achievable goal.
Click for John Kasich on other issues.   Source: The Concord (NH) Monitor, “Kasich Taps In”, 3/22/99

Bernie Sanders on Homeland Security : Jun 17, 1997
End nuclear weapons and B-2 bomber production

And these are only SOME of the savings that I, and other members of the Progressive Caucus, came up with. There was no question that we could move this country forward to a balanced budget without decimating the safety net on which tens of millions of Americans depend.
Click for Bernie Sanders on other issues.   Source: Outsider in the House, by Bernie Sanders, p. 207-10

Mike Gravel on Energy & Oil : Jan 1, 1972
Nuclear energy is unwise because of nuclear waste

Coal supplies may last years, but the problems of strip-mining and CO2 pollution are serious. We had better develop other sources of energy or face the prospect of lights that go out or pollution which threatens life.

Our government is pursuing nuclear power. It seems to me we are not thinking about the long-range environmental hazards as we plunge ahead.

It is folly to force us down a road that holds grave potential for contaminating our entire planet. The by-product of this process is not a “little” harmful radio-activity from “burning” atomic fuel as the AEC would have us believe. The amount of radioactive waste, which is small only if measured by the space it fills, is already enormous if measured by the billions of people it could kill

No one knows what will result from all the radioactive waste that has been dumped in the oceans and is still being dumped by other nuclear powers. And that is the point: we will not find out until it is too late--after the radioactivity has escaped.

Click for Mike Gravel on other issues.   Source: Citizen Power, by Sen. Mike Gravel, p.177-179

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