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Michael D. Higgins’ Policies



Foreign Policy  ›  European Union

Should Ireland withdraw from the European Union?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

the Economy  ›  Equal Pay

Should employers be required to pay men and women the same salary for the same job?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, and businesses should be required to publish their salary ranges for each position

Social  ›  Abortion

What is your stance on abortion?

  Voting recordPro-choice

Social  ›  Gay Marriage

Do you support the legalisation of same sex marriage?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but allow churches the right to refuse same-sex ceremonies

Healthcare  ›  Mental Health

Should the government increase funding for mental health research and treatment?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, our mental healthcare system needs more funding to provide a higher quality of care and services

How similar are your political beliefs to Michael D. Higgins’ policies? Take the political quiz to find out.

Social  ›  LGBT Adoption Rights

Should gay couples have the same adoption rights as straight couples?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, as long as they pass the same background checks as straight couples

the Environment  ›  Environmental Regulation

Should the government increase environmental regulations on businesses to reduce carbon emissions?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, and provide more incentives for alternative energy production

the Environment  ›  Plastic Product Ban

Should disposable products (such as plastic cups, plates, and cutlery) that contain less than 50% of biodegradable material be banned?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, and ban all disposable products that are not made of at least 75% of biodegradable material

Foreign Policy  ›  Military Neutrality

Should Ireland end its traditional policy of military neutrality?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

Science  ›  Mandatory Vaccinations

Should the government require children to be vaccinated for preventable diseases?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, they are essential to protecting other children who are too young to be vaccinated

Transportation  ›  Public Transportation

Should the government increase spending on public transportation?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but only if the spending goes towards environmentally friendly solutions

Domestic Policy  ›  Government Surveillance

Should the government be able to monitor phone calls and emails?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, and enact legislation preventing government surveillance of citizen communications

the Economy  ›  Social Housing

Should funding for social housing be increased?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

the Economy  ›  Taxes

Should Ireland raise taxes on the rich?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseLower the income tax rate and remove all existing tax loopholes for large corporations

Healthcare  ›  NHS Healthcare System

Should Ireland adopt a public healthcare system similar to the NHS in Britain?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

the Economy  ›  Minimum Wage

Should the government raise the national minimum wage?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, and make it a living wage

Education  ›  Irish Language Curriculum

Should the Irish language remain a compulsory subject on the national curriculum?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but focus more on the ability to speak and understand the language instead of analysing poems, stories, and phrases

Social  ›  Euthanasia

Should terminally ill patients be allowed to end their lives via assisted suicide?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but only after a psychological examination to show they fully understand this choice

Education  ›  Tuition Fees

Should Ireland abolish university tuition fees?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

Social  ›  Death Penalty

Do you support the death penalty?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

Domestic Policy  ›  United Ireland

Do you support a united Ireland?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but only if both sides independently and overwhelmingly vote in favor of it

Foreign Policy  ›  Mandatory Military Service

Should every 18 year old citizen be required to provide at least one year of military service?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, service should be a choice instead of an obligation

Foreign Policy  ›  Foreign Elections

Should the government attempt to influence foreign elections?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, and we should not try to influence any other country’s elections or policy

Healthcare  ›  Healthcare Privatisation

Should there be more or less privatisation of hospital and healthcare services?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseLess, and there should be no privatization of the healthcare industry

Elections  ›  Retirement Age of Politicians

Should politicians be required to wait until the age of 65 to receive a pension?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, they should have the same entitlements as the citizens they represent

Foreign Policy  ›  United States of Europe

Should the EU evolve into the United States of Europe?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

Social  ›  Gender Workplace Diversity

Should businesses be required to have women on their board of directors?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, board members should be the most qualified regardless of gender

Foreign Policy  ›  Israel Boycott

Should it be illegal to join a boycott of Israel?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, this is a violation of free speech

Crime  ›  Drug Trafficking Penalties

Should drug traffickers receive the death penalty?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, I do not believe in the death penalty

Crime  ›  Private Prisons

Should the government hire private companies to run prisons?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, private prisons will sacrifice quality of care and rehabilitation services for profit

Domestic Policy  ›  Whistleblower Protection

Should the government pass laws which protect whistleblowers?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but only if the information was legally obtained

Social  ›  Women in Combat

Should the military allow women to serve in combat roles?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, preventing women from serving in combat roles is discriminatory

Immigration  ›  Immigration Ban

Should there be a temporary ban on all immigration into Ireland?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, but we should spend more to increase our border security

the Economy  ›  Corporate Tax

Should the government raise or lower the tax rate for corporations?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseRaise

Immigration  ›  Muslim Immigrants

Should Muslim immigrants be banned from entering the country until the government improves its ability to screen out potential terrorists?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, banning immigrants based on their religion is unconstitutional

Domestic Policy  ›  Drug Policy

Are you in favour of decriminalising drug use?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, and retroactively reduce sentences for those already serving time

the Environment  ›  Fox Hunting

Do you support the practice of hunting foxes with dogs?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, this is a cruel sport which should remain illegal

the Economy  ›  Welfare Drug Testing

Should social welfare recipients be tested for drugs?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, only if they have a criminal history related to drug abuse

Healthcare  ›  Safe Haven

Should cities open drug “safe havens” where people who are addicted to illegal drugs can use them under the supervision of medical professionals?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, drug abuse should be treated as a health issue, not a criminal issue

Education  ›  Niqāb

Should girls be allowed to wear the niqab or burka in Catholic Schools?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, we should respect all cultural and religious traditions

the Economy  ›  Water Charges

Should water charges be abolished?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

Healthcare  ›  Single-Payer Healthcare

Do you support a single-payer healthcare system?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, private companies should not be able to profit off of healthcare

Healthcare  ›  Marijuana

Do you support the legalisation of Marijuana?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but only for medical use

the Economy  ›  Bonus Cap

Should bankers’ bonuses be capped at 100% of their pay?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, and lower the cap to 50%

Social  ›  Transgender Athletes

Should transgender athletes be allowed to compete in athletic events?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but only if their hormone levels are equivalent to those in the gender category in which they compete

the Environment  ›  Fracking

Do you support the use of hydraulic fracking to extract oil and natural gas resources?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, we should pursue more sustainable energy resources instead

Foreign Policy  ›  Syrian Refugees

Should Ireland accept refugees from Syria?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

the Economy  ›  Inheritance Tax

Should the government abolish the inheritance tax?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, reform so the tax rate is based on the wealth of the recipient rather than the deceased

the Economy  ›  Government Spending

Should the government make cuts to public spending in order to reduce the national debt?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, cuts to public spending will negatively affect the economy

Foreign Policy  ›  EU Army

Do you support the creation of a European Army?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

Science  ›  Nuclear Energy

Do you support the use of nuclear energy?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, we should invest in cleaner alternatives such as wind, hydroelectric, thorium, and geothermal

Domestic Policy  ›  Social Media Regulation

Should the government regulate social media sites, as a means to prevent fake news and misinformation?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, the government should not determine what is fake or real news

Social  ›  Niqāb

Should women be allowed to wear a Niqāb, or face veil, to civic ceremonies?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, we should respect all cultural traditions

Elections  ›  Campaign Finance

Should corporations, unions, and non-profit organizations be allowed to donate to political parties?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, these types of donations just turn into bribes

Foreign Policy  ›  Backstop

Should the U.K. and Northern Ireland remain in the EU’s customs area after Brexit?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, keep the EU bloc’s single market and its customs union

the Economy  ›  Economic Stimulus

Should the government use economic stimulus to aid the country during times of recession?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, the government should intervene to boost a recovery

Immigration  ›  EU Migrant Quota

Should the EU impose a quota of migrants per country?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

Immigration  ›  Immigrant Welfare Benefits

Should the government provide social welfare benefits to foreigners?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, as long as they are working and paying taxes

Immigration  ›  Immigrant Assimilation

Should immigrants be required to learn English?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but the government should provide free language learning courses

Foreign Policy  ›  Hong Kong Fugitive Extradition

Should the Chinese government be able to extradite fugitives from Hong Kong?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

the Economy  ›  Universal Basic Income

Do you support a universal basic income program?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, everyone should receive an income to cover basic necessities including food and housing

the Economy  ›  Labor Unions

Do you believe labor unions help or hurt the economy?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseHelp, in theory but have recently become corrupt and should have their powers limited

Immigration  ›  Migrant Children

Should the children of migrants who live in French territories be allowed to join their families?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

Domestic Policy  ›  Political Advertising on Social Media

Should social media companies ban political advertising?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

National Security  ›  Foreign Assassination

Should Ireland assassinate suspected terrorists in foreign countries?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, they should be captured and given a fair trial

the Environment  ›  Genetically Modified Foods

Do you support the use of genetically engineered crops and foods?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but producers should not be able to patent seeds

Elections  ›  Criminal Politicians

Should a politician, who has been formerly convicted of a crime, be allowed to run for office?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, as long as they have finished serving their sentence

Immigration  ›  Citizenship Test

Should immigrants be required to pass a citizenship test to demonstrate a basic understanding of our country’s language, history, and government?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but it should only cover very basic and simple topics

the Economy  ›  Government Pensions

Should pension payments be increased for retired government workers?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but only for low-income pensioners

Immigration  ›  Dual Citizenship

Should immigrants to Ireland be allowed to hold dual citizenship status?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, unless they have committed a crime

Immigration  ›  Skilled Immigrants

Should the government increase or decrease the amount of temporary work visas given to high-skilled immigrant workers?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseIncrease, our economy relies on businesses hiring the highest skilled workers at the lowest cost

the Economy  ›  Domestic Jobs

Should the government provide tax incentives to private companies to keep jobs within the country?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, and drastically increase taxes and import tariffs on outsourcing businesses

Foreign Policy  ›  European Union Countries

Should the number of countries in the European Union be reduced to 15?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

Elections  ›  Minimum Voting Age

Should the minimum voting age be lowered?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, and voters should be required to pass a basic test demonstrating their understanding of politics in order to vote

Elections  ›  Voting Rights Abroad

Should Irish citizens, living abroad and in Northern Ireland, have the right to vote in presidential elections?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but only within the first five years of living abroad

Education  ›  Free Tuition Fees Scheme

Should the free tuition fees scheme be available to foreign students?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

Crime  ›  Free Legal Aid

Should repeat offenders be entitled to free legal aid?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but deny after three crimes

Foreign Policy  ›  European Commission

Should the European Commission be dismantled?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

Domestic Policy  ›  Seanad Éireann Electoral System

Should the Seanad be a wholly elected body?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

Domestic Policy  ›  Northern Ireland Power Sharing

Should the power-sharing provincial government be restored in Northern Ireland?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

Foreign Policy  ›  Post Brexit UK

Should the UK be allowed to access European Markets once they leave the EU?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

the Economy  ›  VAT Rates

Should VAT rates be increased or decreased?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseDecrease, but only on food and medicine

Elections  ›  Right of Foreigners to Vote

Should foreigners, currently residing in Ireland, have the right to vote?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, anyone who pays taxes should have the right to vote

Elections  ›  Seanad Éireann Referendum

Should the Seanad be abolished?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, but make it a body that is wholly elected by the people

Foreign Policy  ›  Military Spending

Should Ireland increase or decrease military spending?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseDecrease

Crime  ›  Criminal Voting Rights

Should convicted criminals have the right to vote?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but only after completing their sentences and parole/probation

Foreign Policy  ›  Central EU Agency

Should intelligence agencies be merged to create a central EU agency?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

Crime  ›  Prison Overcrowding

Should non-violent prisoners be released from jail in order to reduce overcrowding?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but they must perform community service on a daily basis

Elections  ›  Elected Representatives

Should the number of elected representatives be reduced?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, this would give too much political power to a small number of representatives

Foreign Policy  ›  EU Authoritarian Sanctions

Should the EU sanction member countries with authoritarian governments?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes

the Economy  ›  Tariffs

Should the government add or increase tariffs on products imported into the country?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, a global free trade system is better for our businesses and consumers

the Environment  ›  Corporate Subsidies

Should cities be allowed to offer private companies economic incentives to relocate?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, if the company promises to create new jobs by hiring local residents

Domestic Policy  ›  Flag Burning

Should it be illegal to burn the Irish flag?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, I don’t respect anyone who does but they should have the right to do so

Domestic Policy  ›  Dáil Participation

Should elected Members of Parliament in Northern Ireland be able to sit and participate in the Dáil?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

the Economy  ›  Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership

Do you support the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseYes, but more priority should be given to food safety and environmental protection

the Economy  ›  Tech Monopolies

Should the government break up Amazon, Facebook and Google?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

Domestic Policy  ›  Gambling

Should the government ban gambling?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo

the Economy  ›  Bitcoin

Should the government classify Bitcoin as a legal currency?

  Michael D. Higgins voterbaseNo, classify it as a commodity