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Chris Coons on Homeland Security

 


Reduce spending on C-17, F-35, & eliminate other platforms

I would support reductions in defense acquisition that the Pentagon itself has already said they no longer need. The C-17 program for example, or the 2nd engine for the F-35. There's a variety of platforms & programs that I think we can simply do away with, as we invest in making our defense and our military more modern, more flexible, more responsive to the real threats we face in the modern world. And we can continue to achieve some savings through the BRAC program [base closings].
Source: CNN's Wolf Blitzer moderating 2010 Delaware Senate debate , Oct 13, 2010

Swiftly repeal discriminatory "don't ask, don't tell"

Q: What are you planning on the issue of "don't ask, don't tell" and its possible repeal?

COONS: I would move swiftly as a senator to repeal don't ask, don't tell. I think it is discrimination, plain and simple. I've met with and spoken to veterans here in Delaware who've served our nation honorably for decades, several with top-secret clearances, but who could do so only at the expense of denying who they were and the relationships that they wanted to have. In my view, we should be making progress in this country towards recognizing the full range of human experience, and repealing don't ask, don't tell to me is an important next step in the civil rights movement.

O'DONNELL: The military already regulates personal behavior because it feels that it is in the best interests of our military readiness. I don't think that Congress should be forcing a social agenda onto our military. I think we should leave that to the military to decide.

Source: CNN's Wolf Blitzer moderating 2010 Delaware Senate debate , Oct 13, 2010

Rejected debate hosted by "9-12 Patriots" issue groud

Chris Coons says he's not ducking anything, and he's ready for the tough the questions. "I'm looking forward to any debate that allows Christine O'Donnell and me to have Delaware's voters get a better understanding of our ideas."

Coons has agreed to eight debates before November 2nd. He says he rejected a debate hosted by the 9-12 Patriots for one reason only. "The 9-12 Patriots Group has endorsed her and is an issue group. We're looking for and have accepted opportunities for debates at independent venues like the University of Delaware, the Chamber of Commerce, the League of Women Voters."

And when it comes to Christine O'Donnell's decision to black out national media, Coons says she can do whatever she wants. "That's her choice. If my opponent decides to stop answering questions from the national media, I hope Delawareans will take that into account."

Source: WDEL 1150AM coverage of 2010 Delaware Senate debate , Sep 22, 2010

Link security with development and human rights

Chris Coons approaches military and foreign policy matters as a Truman Democrat. Our nation is best served by a robust, engaged foreign policy, based in diplomacy and strategic partnerships with other nations. We need a well-trained, sophisticated national security and intelligence capability, and policies and practices that recognize the link between our security and development, fair trade, and human rights.
Source: 2010 Senate campaign website, chriscoons.com, "Issues" , Jul 20, 2010

Voted YES on extending the PATRIOT Act's roving wiretaps.

Congressional Summary: A bill to extend expiring provisions of the USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 2005 and Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 relating to access to business records, individual terrorists as agents of foreign powers, and roving wiretaps until December 8, 2011.

Proponent's Argument for voting Yes:
[Rep. Smith, R-TX]: America is safe today not because terrorists and spies have given up their goal to destroy our freedoms and our way of life. We are safe today because the men and women of our Armed Forces, our intelligence community, and our law enforcement agencies work every single day to protect us. And Congress must ensure that they are equipped with the resources they need to counteract continuing terrorist threats. On Feb. 28, three important provisions of the USA PATRIOT Act will expire. These provisions give investigators in national security cases the authority to conduct "roving" wiretaps, to seek certain business records, and to gather intelligence on lone terrorists who are not affiliated with a known terrorist group. The Patriot Act works. It has proved effective in preventing terrorist attacks and protecting Americans. To let these provisions expire would leave every American less safe.

Opponent's Argument for voting No:
[Rep. Conyers, D-MI]: Section 215 of the Patriot Act allows a secret FISA court to authorize our government to collect business records or anything else, requiring that a person or business produce virtually any type record. We didn't think that that was right then. We don't think it's right now. This provision is contrary to traditional notions of search and seizure which require the government to show reasonable suspicion or probable cause before undertaking an investigation that infringes upon a person's privacy. And so I urge a "no" vote on the extension of these expiring provisions.
Status: Passed 86-12

Reference: FISA Sunsets Extension Act; Bill H.514 ; vote number 11-SV019 on Feb 17, 2011

Other candidates on Homeland Security: Chris Coons on other issues:
DE Gubernatorial:
Jack Markell
DE Senatorial:
Christine O`Donnell
Tom Carper

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Page last updated: Dec 21, 2013