Politics

Another Republican Senate Candidate Plagiarized His Issues Page From Justin Amash

This time in New Mexico. A “regret” the Clements campaign says.

David Clements, a Republican candidate for Senate in New Mexico appears to have plagiarized several of his campaign’s “on the issues” pages directly from Republican Michigan Rep. Justin Amash. In some instances, the order of the sentences is changed, but most often it’s a direct copy-and-paste job.

Clements and Allen Weh, an Albuquerque businessman, are both on the June 3 Republican primary ballot. Clements trailed Weh by 6%, 53-47, in votes among party delegates at a March convention to appear on the June ballot.

Clements trails incumbent Democratic Sen. Tom Udall, 55-33 according to a March Public Policy Polling poll.

BuzzFeed reported Thursday that Dr. Greg Brannon, a leading Republican candidate for the nomination to take on incumbent Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan in North Carolina, also plagiarized his “on the issues” page from Amash.

“Our stance on the issues will always be close to liberty-minded conservatives like Justin Amash,” Isaac Kight, Clements’ campaign manager told BuzzFeed. “We won’t apologize for our position on any issue, but we regret any actions taken resulting in closely related content between our website and that of Congressman Amash.”

On the environment:

Here’s Clements:

The best way to protect the environment is through strong enforcement of property rights and pursuit of sound economic policy. Wealthier nations have cleaner environments because their citizens can afford to pay for it voluntarily. Imposing environmental standards through federal mandate is not a practical substitute. No matter what the government requires, Americans won’t buy clean technologies or follow environmental policies if they can’t afford to do so.

Government should punish businesses and individuals that pollute the land, water or air of their neighbors, but it should not micromanage environmental protection through payouts, tax breaks or subsidies, which discourage innovation and mostly benefit the politically connected.

And here’s Amash:

The best way to protect the environment is through strong enforcement of property rights and pursuit of sound economic policy. Wealthier nations have cleaner environments because their citizens can afford to pay for it voluntarily. Imposing environmental standards through federal government mandate is not a practical substitute. No matter what the government requires, Americans can’t buy clean technologies or follow environmental policies they can’t afford.

Government should punish businesses and individuals that pollute the land, water, or air of their neighbors, but it should not micromanage environmental protection through payouts, tax breaks, or subsidies, which discourage innovation and mostly benefit the politically connected.

Here’s Clements:

Obamacare has created a hopelessly complicated medical system that benefits insurance companies and special interests, not patients. To make matters worse, our leaders in Washington exempt themselves from the system they created. New Mexico businesses are suffering as they face higher premiums and less certainty about the future. We need reforms that will reduce the real costs of health care, not regulations that reduce the 40 hour work week, or the incentive to hire more workers.

I believe in free market solutions, including the ability to sell policies across state lines. This would improve care and reduce costs by aligning the interests of patients, doctors, and hospitals. We should also give consumers the freedom to transition away from the employer-based health care system. By allowing coverage to be tied to an individual, and not an employer, workers can keep their insurance in the event they change or lose their job. As your senator, I will advocate for a sustainable health care system that allows patients and doctors to consider the costs and benefits of each decision. Together, we can restore America’s health care system to again being the best in the world.

And here’s Amash:

As a Member of Congress, I have voted to repeal the President’s plan to force families and individuals to purchase government-approved health insurance. Heavy-handed government regulation has created a hopelessly complicated medical system that benefits mostly insurance companies and lawyers. In this system, both patients and their doctors are disempowered and prevented from making reasonable choices about the matters they know best. Small businesses are suffering as they face higher premiums and less certainty about the future.

We need reforms that will reduce the real costs of health care, not force participation in a government system. A sustainable health care system requires that patients and doctors consider the costs and benefits of each decision, and work together to choose the right treatment. Insurance companies should face nationwide competition for customers. I support allowing insurance companies to sell health care policies across state lines and innovative programs, like health savings accounts, that improve care and reduce costs by aligning the incentives of patients, doctors, and hospitals.

On social security and medicare:

Here’s Clements:

We must keep our promises to seniors and not change benefits for those who are currently receiving or soon will receive Social Security or Medicare. Individuals who have paid into these programs for much of their lives have made decisions based on promised benefits, and those promises should be kept. For younger people, such as those in their 20s, 30s, and 40s, these mandatory programs are unsustainable and unreliable. We must begin to phase in significant reforms for the benefit of future generations.

And here’s Amash:

We must keep our promises to seniors and not change benefits for those who are currently receiving or soon will receive Social Security or Medicare. Individuals who have paid into these programs for much of their lives have made decisions based on promised benefits, and those promises should be kept. For younger people, such as those in their 20s, 30s, and 40s, these mandatory spending programs are unsustainable and unreliable. We must begin to phase in significant reforms for the benefit of future generations.

Here’s Clements:

Washington’s bureaucratic regulations, bailouts, corporate subsidies and excessive taxation have made it virtually impossible for the market to produce new forms of cheap and clean energy. I will support a free market energy policy that will lower costs, promote technological innovation, and reduce our dependence on foreign sources. Energy subsidies for oil, wind, electric or otherwise make little sense. Energy sources that truly meet the demands of consumers will thrive in the marketplace over time and do not need government handouts to be viable. The Obama administration and Senator Tom Udall have a long record of sending government subsidies to failed programs like Solyndra and Abound Solar; programs that have cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars and have rewarded businesses with federal bailouts for inferior products. The current approach leads to higher taxes, locks in old technologies and unfairly punishes entrepreneurs and inventors without friends in government.

I will vote to cut taxes and lift regulations on all of our energy producers, including those that are developing new sources of energy. Our energy crisis today stems from a long history of government intervention. The solution is to allow real competition in the marketplace and discontinue the government practice of picking winners and losers in the energy industry.

And here’s Amash:

Our country is blessed with many options for producing energy. All forms of energy production should be allowed, and none should be given special benefits. Energy subsidies—whether for oil, wind, electric, or otherwise—make no sense. Subsidizing inefficient energy production in the hope that it will become efficient in the future is wasteful and ineffective. It requires higher taxes, locks in old technologies, and unfairly punishes entrepreneurs and inventors who do not have friends in government. Energy sources that truly meet the demands of consumers will thrive in the marketplace over time and do not need government handouts to be viable.

Education:

Here’s Clements:

Critical decisions should be made locally. This would allow parents, teachers and community leaders, instead of out-of-touch Washington bureaucrats, to determine the most efficient use of resources.

And here’s Amash:

Critical decisions should be made locally. This would allow parents, teachers and community leaders, instead of out-of-touch Washington bureaucrats, to determine the most efficient use of resources.

Here’s Clements:

Whether it’s our world famous green chile, thriving pecan industry, dairies or cattle ranches, New Mexico has one of the most diverse agricultural economies in the country. Our state’s farmers and ranchers represent the best in innovation, entrepreneurship and stewardship.

The future success of New Mexico farmers and ranchers are endangered, however, when the government seeks to take over agricultural production with needless, uninformed and often overly burdensome regulations.

Similarly, the government must respect the private property rights of farmers and ranchers and empower them to make decisions about the most productive use of their principal asset, which is their land. Decisions about how to run farms and ranches should not be made by out-of-touch bureaucrats in Washington.

And here’s Amash:

Michigan has one of the most diverse agricultural economies in the country. Our state’s farmers represent the best in innovation, entrepreneurship, and stewardship. The future success of Michigan farmers is endangered, however, when the government seeks to take over farm production with needless, uninformed, and often overly burdensome regulations.

Similarly, the government must respect the private property rights of farmers and empower them to make decisions about the most productive use of their principal asset—the land. As a Member of Congress, I consistently vote to protect private property rights and leave decisions about how to run farms to farmers.

Gun rights:

Here’s Clements:

The right of the people to keep and bear arms is the best way to protect all of our other rights; it helps keep us safe and it can also be a great source of recreation. We must take the Second Amendment just as seriously as the rest of our rights as Americans. Congress must stop practices which hurt these rights, including restrictions on the ability to purchase, transport, store, or possess arms on public lands or on an individual’s private property.

And here’s Amash:

As the Founders recognized, the right of the people to keep and bear arms is the surest safeguard against violations of our liberty. We must defend the Second Amendment just as vigorously as we defend the rest of the United States Constitution. Congress must halt the unconstitutional practice of restricting a person’s ability to purchase, transport, store, or possess arms on public lands or on that individual’s private property under the guise of regulating interstate commerce.

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