Although press reports have begun to explore some of Dick Cheney’s right-wing congressional votes, it is important to note that his overall voting record places him to the right even of Newt Gingrich. On reproductive rights, civil rights, gun control and the environment, there is virtually no difference between the voting records of Dick Cheney and ultra conservative Senator Jesse Helms. A few highlights of the Cheney record:
Cheney’s voting record on civil rights earned him an average 9 percent rating from the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights from 1979-1989.
voted against the 1980 Fair Housing Amendments Act
one of 32 House members to vote against the 1984 Civil Rights Restoration Act, which would have prohibited federal funding of discrimination against women, people with disabilities, older Americans, and racial minorities
voted against the Equal Rights Amendment (1983)
repeatedly voted against sanctions against the apartheid regime in South Africa
voted against resolution calling for Nelson Mandela to be freed from prison (1986)
one of only 29 House members to vote against the Hate Crimes Statistics Act of 1988; he supported an amendment adding anti-gay language to the bill
one of only 13 House members to vote against the AIDS Federal Policy Act of 1988, the first major bill to fund HIV/AIDS counseling and testing (even Tom DeLay and Dick Armey supported this measure)
voted against funding the Older Americans Act, which includes nutrition and other support services (1984, 1987)
From 1981 to 1986, the National Education Association gave Cheney a zero rating.
voted against creating the Department of Education (1985)
voted against subsidizing lunches for poor children (1985)
voted repeatedly against reauthorizing and funding Head Start
voted against bill to reauthorize college student aid (1985, 1987)
The National Right to Life Committee responded to Cheney’s selection with a proclamation that he is “100 % pro-life.” His voting record is entirely anti-choice:
over ten years, voted anti-choice on 26 key abortion and reproductive rights issues (1979 – 1988)
voted to ban Medicaid coverage for abortion services even in cases where the woman’s life is in danger or cases of rape and incest (1979); voted to ban District of Columbia from spending funds for abortion services under any circumstances (1985, 1987, 1988)
opposed any federal support for family planning services (1985)
supports a Human Life Amendment to the Constitution, which would overturn Roe v. Wade and ban all abortion under any circumstances
The League of Conservation Voters gives Cheney a lifetime rating of 13 percent.
one of only eight members of the House to vote against reauthorization of the Clean Water Act (1987)
voted to postpone sanctions against clear air violators (1987)
cosponsored a bill to permit oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (1987)
voted against legislation to require oil, chemical and other industries to report pollutants and emissions to local communities (1985)
voted against the right of citizens harmed by waste to sue polluters (1985)
one of 21 members of the House to vote against refunding the Safe Water Drinking Act (1986)
one of 16 members of the House to vote against reauthorizing the Endangered Species Act (1987)
Cheney is even more opposed to any form of sensible gun control than the NRA.
one of only 4 members of the House to vote against legislation to ban plastic guns that could pass through airport security, a bill that even the National Rifle Association supported (1988)
one of only 21 members of the House to vote against legislation to restrict cop-killer bullets designed to penetrate bullet proof vests (1985)
voted against a waiting period for handgun purchases (1988)