Election 101: Where the GOP candidates stand on immigration, abortion and other social issues

Social policies are a defining issue in this, or any, Republican race. With the GOP electorate increasingly focused on social issues in recent decades, their leaders' views have shifted in kind. Take a look at where each of the candidates stand. 

2. Ron Paul

Jim Young/Reuters
U.S. Republican presidential candidate and Congressman Ron Paul listens to questions at a Town Hall meeting at the Ericson Public Library during a campaign stop in Boone, Iowa December 8, 2011.


Texas congressman voted against the DREAM Act, favors increased border security, and opposes amnesty or entitlements for undocumented workers. Also opposes the E-Verify check on employees’ immigration status, saying the national database endangers civil liberties. 


Called No Child Left Behind “disastrous.” Pledges to abolish the Department of Education and give tax credits to families who opt out of public schools, thereby encouraging homeschooling and private schooling. 


Is an OB/GYN who has delivered 4,000 babies and is vehemently antiabortion. Believes life starts at conception and wants to shift control of abortion legislation to states. 

Health care

Voted in January 2011 to repeal the Obama law. Wants to allow people to opt out of Medicare, allow sale of insurance across state lines, and expand access to Health Savings Accounts. Has floated idea of replacing Medicaid with pro bono medical care. 

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