The List: Where They Stand in the Races That Matter
With control of the U.S. Congress hanging in the balance in one of the most hotly contested midterms in recent memory, foreign-policy issues are taking center stage. In this week’s List, FP takes a look at the races that will decide the future of the U.S. Senate. From immigration to the world’s nuclear crises, here’s how the candidates stack up.
Incumbent: Jim Talent (R)
Incumbent: Jim Talent (R)
Iraq: Voted for the war, having referred to Saddam Husseins Iraq as a developing North Korea in the Middle East. He has said that the Iraqi government must step up to combat sectarian violence and has refrained from calling for Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfelds resignation.
Homeland Security: Supports President Bushs increases in defense spending, calling national defense the United States primary responsibility. He voted to renew the Patriot Act and supports warrantless wiretapping.
Iran/North Korea: Has said the United States will absolutely not take part in talks with North Korea over its nuclear program. He backs sanctions against Iran until it gives up its program, but would keep military action on the table, if necessary.
Immigration: In favor of increased border control measures, largely to halt the flow of drugs into the United States. He does not favor a guest worker program.
Trade: Voted for fast-track authority for trade agreements, the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA), and for normalizing trade relations with China.
Challenger: Claire McCaskill (D)
Iraq: Supports a redeployment of U.S. troops, preferably to Afghanistan, within two years and has called for Rumsfelds resignation. She considers Iraq to be in the midst of civil war.
Homeland Security: Opposes President Bushs terrorist surveillance program.
Iran/North Korea: Advocates talking with the North Koreans in the hope of renouncing their nuclear proliferation. She supports economic sanctions against Iran and possible military action, but believes air strikes as a first resort are a grave mistake.
Immigration: Opposes a guest worker program and amnesty for illegal immigrants.
Trade: Supports fair trade policies over free trade and opposes outsourcing.
Incumbent: Robert Menendez (D)
Iraq: Voted against the war and considers it a distraction from Afghanistan, where he says the administration has left the job of defeating the Taliban unfinished. He voted to establish a timetable to exit Iraq by July 2007.
Homeland Security: Chaired the Democratic Task Force on Homeland Security and advocated the creation of the Department of Homeland Security. He calls for homeland security funding based on risk and supports the recommendations made by the 9/11 Commission and wants greater security for ports, chemical plants, and mass transit systems.
Iran/North Korea: Supports the U.N. Security Council resolution threatening Iran with international sanctions. He considers the crisis in North Korea a result of the United States diversion in Iraq and has called for an Office of Non-Proliferation Programs in the Executive Office of the President to prevent terrorist access to WMDs.
Immigration: Voted in favor of establishing a guest worker program and increased border security and enforcement. He also voted in favor of illegal immigrants participation in Social Security programs.
Trade: Voted against CAFTA and fast-track authority.
Challenger: Thomas H. Kean Jr. (R)
Iraq: Doesnt support a timetable for U.S. troops to exit Iraq, but acknowledges that serious mistakes have been made there. He says that cutting and running would embolden U.S. enemies and signify an admission of defeat. He has called for Rumsfelds resignation.
Homeland Security: Wants to see Homeland Security grants going to high-risk areas, such as New Jersey. He supports greater interaction between the National Counterterrorism Center and state and local authorities over timely, authentic terrorist threats, as well as heightened security at ports and rails.
Iran/North Korea: On Iran, supports a consistent policy of economic sanctions and international restrictions. On North Korea, he advocates the deployment of a missile-defense system and aggressive diplomatic efforts that would include China, Japan, Russia, and South Korea.
Immigration: Strongly opposes President Bushs immigration plan and amnesty for illegal immigrants. He champions heightened border security.
Trade: Supports free flow of international trade and free trade agreements.
Candidate: Bob Corker (R)
Iraq: Supports staying the course in Iraq but would like to see a different strategy that would focus on areas where violence is more prevalent than others, such as Baghdad.
Homeland Security: Supports increased intelligence-gathering powers by U.S. authorities.
Iran/North Korea: Has called for moderate Middle Eastern countries to play a larger role in dissolving the Iran nuclear situation.
Immigration: Supports stepping up border patrols in high-traffic areas and opposes amnesty for illegal immigrants.
Trade: Supports free trade agreements in general.
Candidate: Harold Ford Jr. (D)
Iraq: Supports a strategy wherein Sunnis, Shiites, and Kurds would have regional autonomy but would be structured under a central government. As a congressman, he voted for the war, but has spoken out against its execution and President Bushs declaration of the end of major combat operations.
Homeland Security: Opposes warrantless wiretaps and supported the creation of the Director of National Intelligence position. He voted against the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission and the Patriot Act.
Iran/North Korea: Supports missile defense for the United States.
Immigration: Supports visas for skilled workers and voted for the Sensenbrenner bill, which restricts asylum for illegal immigrants.
Trade: Voted against CAFTA and in favor of normalizing trade relations with China. He also voted for fast-track authority for trade agreements.
Incumbent: George Allen (R)
Iraq: Supported the war, but now calls for adjustments to be made on the ground in light of increased violence. He would like to see the Iraqis taking more control of security on the ground, but doesnt support a timetable for withdrawal.
Homeland Security: Voted for the Patriot Act and its renewal, and he has said that al Qaeda can be fought in Iraq.
Iran/North Korea: Has redoubled support of missile defense in light of nuclear developments in Iran and North Korea.
Immigration: Opposes a guest worker program or a path to citizenship. He voted against allowing illegal immigrants to pay into Social Security.
Trade: Voted for CAFTA and supports free trade agreements in most circumstances.
Challenger: Jim Webb (D)
Iraq: Opposed the war in Iraq and has called it a war of choice that undermines Middle East peace. He opposes a deadline for the withdrawal of U.S. troops.
Homeland Security: Has said that defeating terrorism ought to be the primary focus of the country. He supports the Geneva Conventions guidelines for interrogating prisoners and opposes warrantless wiretaps.
Iran/North Korea: Blames the Iran crisis on the Bush administration, maintaining that the presidents 2002 axis of evil speech inflamed the Iranians.
Immigration: Believes in increased border security, arguing that only then will other immigration issues will be determined. He supports a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants.
Trade: Supports fair trade mechanisms and the enforcement of trade agreements on the books, while taking a hard line on outsourcing.
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