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Sam Brownback on Principles & Values

Republican Sr Senator (KS)


Start with the basics: faith, family, and freedom

I’ve found in these fights over the years, the only way we lose is by not fighting for what we believe in. We’ve got to stand and fight. We’ve got to stand and fight for life. We’ve got to stand and fight for the family. We’ve got to stand and fight for our values--cheerily, merrily, happily, but we’ve got to stand and fight, and we lose when we keep backing up.

And so, I really appreciate the people that are here, and the fights that we’ve all been in together, and we’re working, but we’ve got to win ‘em now, and we’ve got to win ‘em in this presidency.

But to whom much is given, much is required, and I believe fundamentally that the heart of our greatness is our goodness. If we ever lose that good heart, if we ever lose that goodness, we will most certainly lose our greatness. And that’s why I come back to where I started, on the basics. Faith, family, freedom. That’s where you get the goodness to build for the greatness, to move us on forward.

Source: 2007 GOP Values Voter Presidential Debate Sep 17, 2007

Voted with Republican Party 90.0% of 201 votes.

Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS), was scored by the Washington Post on the percentage of votes on which a lawmaker agrees with the position taken by a majority of his or her party members. The scores do not include missed votes. Their summary:
Voted with Republican Party 90.0% of 201 votes.
Overall, Democrats voted with their party 88.4% of the time, and Republicans voted with their party 81.7% of the time (votes Jan. 8 through Sept. 8, 2007).
Source: Washington Post, “US Congress Votes Database” Sep 8, 2007

Bush has over-relied on Cheney’s experience

Q: What authority would you delegate to the office of vice president?

A: I wouldn’t delegate things to the vice president. But I would involve the vice president in a lot of things. But I think there’s a key point here to look at. One is that Dick Cheney came in with a lot of experience. He came in with a lot of experience on defense, foreign policy issues. And I think the president over-relied on that. I think Dick Cheney has done an admirable job. I think the president’s over-relied upon that. I think you need somebody coming into the presidency that’s had foreign policy experience, that’s worked on these national and global issues, so that they don’t have to depend on the vice president as much. I think you should have a highly competent person as vice president that can step in at any time and can provide you high-quality information, reflection, wisdom that’s needed in that job, but not somebody that takes over the job.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate Aug 5, 2007

A Kemp-Bennett Republican: pro-growth & pro-cultural renewal

Republican, pro-growth & pro-cultural renewal. Jack had the economic issues, and Bill had the family issues, and between those two, that was a key set of domestic agenda items for me.

Empower America has done some great work on cultural issues such as song lyrics and the impact of popular culture on young people. Bill Bennett was dealing with that from a conservative perspective, which was not so much legislative as talking to the culture and saying, “Look what we’re doing.”

Source: From Power to Purpose, by Sam Brownback, p.104 Jul 3, 2007

Ex-presidents should not weigh in on policy

Q: How would you use George W. Bush in your administration?

A: Well, I would ask him about it. His father’s been a wonderful ambassador in situations like the tsunami. I think that’s the right role for an ex-president. Pres. Clinton has not assumed the right role of an ex-president, where he’s injected himself a lot more on policy issues that haven’t been appropriate, and he really should defer more to the person that’s in the job. There’s one person that’s president at a time.

Source: 2007 GOP debate at Saint Anselm College Jun 3, 2007

Invite faith into the public square and celebrate it

We’ve had 50 years now of trying to run faith out of the public square. We’re a nation of faith. As my colleague, Sen. Lieberman, a Jew, says, “America is a faith-based experiment as a country.” We should celebrate and invite faith. our motto is, “In God we trust.” This isn’t something that divides. This is something that pulls together and lifts us up. And it’s key, and it’s important. We shouldn’t be trying to run it out of the public square. We should invite it in and celebrate it.
Source: 2007 GOP primary debate, at Reagan library, hosted by MSNBC May 3, 2007

Our society has grown meaner, ruder, & more alienated

In many ways, it is the best of times. Over the past several decades we have made extraordinary progress. Medical advances have lengthened our lives. New doors of opportunity have been opened to those historically denied entrance. Economic growth is exceeded only by investor optimism. The cold war is over, and communism has fallen.

And yet, the last few decades have also ushered in a vague sense of unease, a belief that, as a society, we have lost ground morally, spiritually, and culturally. Horrific crimes are committed by children still in grade school. Neighborhood ties are growing thinner and fraying. Our popular culture is awash in violence and vulgarity, with movies, television programming, music, and games that glamorize killing garnering both commercial success and critical acclaim. Civic participation is falling and public cynicism toward government rising. There is a sense that our society has grown meaner, ruder, and more alienated.

Source: Building a Healthy Culture, Don Eberly, ed., p. xi Jun 3, 2001

Our nation is on the wrong track morally and culturally

Poll after poll show both an optimism in America’s economy & an anxiety over its moral direction. A large majority of Americans believe that our nation is on the wrong track culturally--& that the state of our society is the most important issue we face. Having triumphed over so many great external challenges, America’s great challenge for the new century is internal: the renewal & reinvigoration of its cultural institutions.

We are at a cultural crossroads: the weight of the academic, aesthetic, social & civil institutions that have sunk into relativism is approaching critical mass. The traditional guardians of the true, the good, and the beautiful have abandoned their posts.

This is not to suggest that all of America’s cultural institutions are corrupt. Far from it. It does mean, however, that the ideas promoted through many of our most influential cultural-shaping institutions are themselves inimical to a healthy culture and a civil society--and, ultimately, to democratic governance.

Source: Building a Healthy Culture, Don Eberly, ed., p. xi-xii Jun 3, 2001

To renew our culture, restore culture-shaping institutions

If we are to renew our culture, we must restore our culture-shaping, value-making institutions. Clearly, we have a lot of work to do. Building a Healthy Culture: Strategies for an American Renaissance helps us get started with this work. It is a practical manual, as well as a strategic guide, for renewing, revitalizing, and reclaiming the culture-shaping institutions that mold and influence our lives. It takes up this task in several ways.

First, it provides a dispassionate analysis of the state of our culture-forming institutions, and of their impact, influence, and function. Second, it spotlights innovative and effective emerging social movements that are now in the process of working their way through various institutions. It is important to identify and recognize these social entrepreneurs and movements, not only to celebrate them, but to bring them to attention so that others may replicate them.

Source: Building a Healthy Culture, Don Eberly, ed., p. xiii-xiv Jun 3, 2001

Voted NO on confirming of Sonia Sotomayor to Supreme Court.

Yesterday, the Senate Judiciary Committee kicked off the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court Nominee, Judge Sonia Sotomayor. In her opening statement, Judge Sotomayor pledged a "fidelity to the law:"
"In the past month, many Senators have asked me about my judicial philosophy. It is simple: fidelity to the law. The task of a judge is not to make the law--it is to apply the law. And it is clear, I believe, that my record in two courts reflects my rigorous commitment to interpreting the Constitution according to its terms; interpreting statutes according to their terms and Congress's intent; and hewing faithfully to precedents established by the Supreme Court and my Circuit Court. In each case I have heard, I have applied the law to the facts at hand."
Reference: Supreme Court Nomination; Bill PN506 ; vote number 2009-S262 on Aug 6, 2009

Voted YES on confirming Samuel Alito as Supreme Court Justice.

Vote on the Nomination -- a YES vote would to confirm Samuel A. Alito, Jr., of New Jersey, to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.
Reference: Alito Nomination; Bill PN 1059 ; vote number 2006-002 on Jan 31, 2006

Voted YES on confirming John Roberts for Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.

Vote on the Nomination (Confirmation John G. Roberts, Jr., of Maryland, to be Chief Justice of the United States )
Reference: Supreme Court Nomination of John Roberts; Bill PN 801 ; vote number 2005-245 on Sep 27, 2005

Religious affiliation: Methodist.

Brownback : religious affiliation:

The Adherents.com website is an independent project and is not supported by or affiliated with any organization (academic, religious, or otherwise).

What’s an adherent?

The most common definition used in broad compilations of statistical data is somebody who claims to belong to or worship in a religion. This is the self-identification method of determining who is an adherent of what religion, and it is the method used in most national surveys and polls.

Such factors as religious service attendance, belief, practice, familiarity with doctrine, belief in certain creeds, etc., may be important to sociologists, religious leaders, and others. But these are measures of religiosity and are usually not used academically to define a person’s membership in a particular religion. It is important to recognize there are various levels of adherence, or membership within religious traditions or religious bodies. There’s no single definition, and sources of adherent statistics do not always make it clear what definition they are using.

Source: Adherents.com web site 00-ADH7 on Nov 7, 2000

Rated 0% by the AU, indicating opposition to church-state separation.

Brownback scores 0% by the AU on church-state separation

OnTheIssues.org interprets the 2006 AU scores as follows:

About the AU (from their website, www.au.org):

Americans United for Separation of Church and State (AU) is a religious liberty watchdog group based in Washington, D.C. Founded in 1947, the organization educates Americans about the importance of church-state separation in safeguarding religious freedom. AU is a nonpartisan organization dedicated to preserving the constitutional principle of church-state separation as the only way to ensure religious freedom for all Americans.

Americans United is a national organization with members in all 50 states. We are headquartered in Washington, D.C., and led by the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director. AU has more than 75,000 members from all over the country. They include people from all walks of life and from various faith communities, as well as those who profess no particular faith. We are funded by donations from our members and others who support church-state separation. We do not seek, nor would we accept, government funding.

Source: AU website 06n-AU on Dec 31, 2006

Fund the 50 States Commemorative Coin Program.

Brownback co-sponsored the 50 States Commemorative Coin Program Act

Corresponding House bill is H.R.2414. Became Public Law No: 105-124.
Source: Bill sponsored by 28 Senators and 1 Rep 97-S1228 on Sep 26, 1997

Other candidates on Principles & Values: Sam Brownback on other issues:
KS Gubernatorial:
Mark Parkinson
KS Senatorial:
Jerry Moran
Joe Bellis
Lisa Johnston
Pat Roberts
Todd Tiahrt

Newly appointed in 2009;
special election in 2010:

DE:Kaufman (D)
CO:Bennet (D)
IL:Burris (D)
MA:Brown (R)
NY:Gillibrand (D)

Announced retirement as of 2010:
CT:Dodd(D)
DE:Kaufman(D)
FL:Martinez (R)
FL:LeMieux(R)
IL:Burris(D)
IN:Bayh(D)
KS:Brownback(R)
KY:Bunning(R)
MO:Bond(R)
ND:Dorgan(D)
NH:Gregg(R)
OH:Voinovich(R)
PA:Specter(R)
UT:Bennett(R)
WV:Byrd(D)
WV:Goodwin(D)


Senate races in 2010:
AK:Miller(R) vs.McAdams(D) vs.Murkowski(I)
AL:Shelby(R) vs.Barnes(D)
AR:Lincoln(D) vs.Boozman(R)
AZ:McCain(R) vs.Glassman(D)
CA:Boxer(D) vs.Fiorina(R) vs.Lightfoot(L)
CO:Bennet(D) vs.Buck(R)
CT:Blumenthal(D) vs.McMahon(R)
DE:Coons(D) vs.O`Donnell(R)
FL:Rubio(R) vs.Crist(I) vs.Meek(D) vs.DeCastro(C) vs.Snitker(L)
GA:Isakson(R) vs.Thurmond(D)
HI:Inouye(D) vs.Cavasso(R)
IA:Grassley(R) vs.Conlin(D)
ID:Crapo(R) vs.Sullivan(D)
IL:Giannoulias(D) vs.Kirk(R)
IN:Ellsworth(D) vs.Coats(R)
KS:Johnston(D) vs.Moran(R) vs.Bellis(Rfm)
KY:Conway(D) vs.Paul(R)
LA:Vitter(R) vs.Melancon(D)
MD:Mikulski(D) vs.Wargotz(R)
MO:Carnahan(R) vs.Blunt(D)
NC:Burr(R) vs.Marshall(D)
ND:Potter(D) vs.Hoeven(R)
NH:Ayotte(R) vs.Hodes(D)
NV:Reid(D) vs.Angle(R)
NY6:Schumer(D) vs.Townsend(R)
NY2:Gillibrand(D) vs.DioGuardi(R)
OH:Fisher(R) vs.Portman(D) vs.Deaton(C)
OK:Coburn(R) vs.Myles(D)
OR:Wyden(D) vs.Huffman(R)
PA:Toomey(R) vs.Sestak(D)
SC:DeMint(R) vs.Greene(D)
SD:Thune(R) unopposed
UT:Lee(R) vs.Granato(D)
VT:Leahy(D) vs.Britton(R) vs.Freilich(I)
WA:Murray(D) vs.Rossi(R)
WI:Feingold(D) vs.Johnson(D)
WV:Manchin(D) vs.Raese(R)
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Page last updated: Oct 29, 2010