Tim Kaine on Gun Control

Democratic Senate Challenger; previously Governor


Limit size of magazines and ammunition clips

Q: Are you in favor of an assault weapons ban?

KAINE: I have voted for it, but I think there's a better way to go at the problem. And that is limitations on the size of magazines and ammunition clips.

Q: Do you think an AR-15 should be sold?

KAINE: I had voted for it and I would likely vote for it again. But here's a practical problem that I think you're aware of. As soon as you define what an assault weapon is, you know, "you can't sell a weapon, and here's how we describe it," gun manufacturers just make one adjustment or two, and they say, "See, this isn't subject to the limitation." Whereas if you say, "You can't sell an ammunition clip or a magazine that would have more than ten or 12 rounds"--that is very straightforward.

Q: You believe ammunition is the way to go?

KAINE: I really think that's probably the way to tackle the problem more effectively.

Source: Meet the Press 2016 interviews of Veepstakes candidates , Jun 26, 2016

Gun violence causes unbearable pain; stand up to gun lobby

As Governor during the tragic shooting at Virginia Tech, Tim understands the unbearable pain gun violence causes in communities across the country. Tim has called on his colleagues in Congress to stand up to the gun lobby that no longer represents the views of gun owners in our country and finally pass reforms that the American people support to curb gun violence. This includes strengthened background checks, increased resources to enforce gun laws, and improved mental health treatment.

As Tim works to combat the epidemic of opioid addiction that is hurting Virginia, he has spoken with law enforcement across the state about spikes in crime related to drug abuse. Tim strongly supports providing communities with additional tools to prevent and treat drug addiction, including through education, drug courts, and resources for law enforcement. He also introduced legislation to help prevent opioid overdose deaths through increased access to the life-saving drug naloxone.

Source: Virginia 2012 Senate campaign website KaineForVA.com , Feb 29, 2012

Limit high-capacity clips to no more than ten bullets

Tim Kaine said that he supports measures to restrict the number of bullets that can be fired from a single magazine. "[The proposal by Carolyn McCarthy is the] kind of legislation that I've long supported," Kaine said, of legislation that would limit high-capacity clips to no more than ten bullets, "back from the days when there was an assault weapons ban, before it expired."

"I have long been a supporter of what I think are reasonable regulations, the kind of contemplated, frankly, by the Second Amendment, and I think those and others would be reasonable," Kaine said. "In Virginia we worked in the aftermath of Virginia Tech to do some important things on the databases of folks who have been adjudicated mentally ill and dangerous so that they couldn't purchase guns."

Kaine's backing of McCarthy's measure is not--at least in these times--necessarily surprising. Though he is a prominent supporter of the Second Amendment, other gun rights enthusiasts have said they are open to the idea as well

Source: Huffington Post report on "Political Capital with Al Hunt" , Jan 21, 2011

Instant background checks including mental health database

The shootings at Virginia Tech point out areas where change is needed. Both state and federal law prohibit a person who has been found by a court to be a danger to himself or others from buying a firearm. Until last April, there was no clear policy stating that a person ordered to involuntary outpatient treatment should be reported to the Central Criminal Records Exchange and kept from purchasing a weapon.

I issued an Executive Order to clarify that all who are determined mentally ill and dangerous should be included in the state database. This helped spur Congress to pass meaningful, bipartisan legislation to encourage the same result on a national level.

Since 1991, Virginia has required that anyone purchasing any type of firearm from a licensed dealer undergo a background check. I support 2nd Amendment rights, but if we are to enforce current law keeping guns out of the hands of dangerous individuals, we must require instant background checks for purchase of weapons at gun shows.

Source: 2008 State of the State address to Virginia Assembly , Jan 9, 2008

Strongly supports the Second Amendment

Tim Kaine strongly supports the Second Amendment. As the next Governor of Virginia, he will not propose any new gun laws. Instead Tim Kaine will guarantee strict enforcement of our existing criminal laws. He will also expand the use of such enforcement strategies as Project Exile that target criminals who use guns rather than law-abiding gun owners.
Source: 2005 Gubernatorial campaign website kaine2005.org, “Issues” , Nov 8, 2005

Voted YES on banning high-capacity magazines of over 10 bullets.

Congressional Summary:

Proponent's Argument for voting Yes: Sen. BLUMENTHAL: This amendment would ban high-capacity magazines which are used to kill more people more quickly and, in fact, have been used in more than half the mass shootings since 1982. I ask my colleagues to listen to law enforcement, their police, prosecutors who are outgunned by criminals who use these high-capacity magazines. I ask that my colleagues also listen to the families of those killed by people who used a high-capacity magazine.

Opponent's Argument for voting No: Sen. GRASSLEY. I oppose the amendment. In 2004, which is the last time we had the large-capacity magazine ban, a Department of Justice study found no evidence banning such magazines has led to a reduction in gun violence. The study also concluded it is not clear how often the outcomes of the gun attack depend on the ability of offenders to fire more than 10 shots without reloading. Secondly, there is no evidence banning these magazines has reduced the deaths from gun crimes. In fact, when the previous ban was in effect, a higher percentage of gun crime victims were killed or wounded than before it was adopted. Additionally, tens of millions of these magazines have been lawfully owned in this country for decades. They are in common use, not unusually dangerous, and used by law-abiding citizens in self-defense, as in the case of law enforcement.

Reference: Safe Communities, Safe Schools Act; Bill S.Amdt. 714 to S. 649 ; vote number 13-SV103 on Apr 17, 2013

Supports restricting the Second Amendment.

Kaine supports the CC Voters Guide question on the Second Amendment

Christian Coalition publishes a number of special voter educational materials including the Christian Coalition Voter Guides, which provide voters with critical information about where candidates stand on important faith and family issues. The Christian Coalition Voters Guide summarizes candidate stances on the following topic: "Further restrictions on the right to keep and bear arms"

Source: Christian Coalition Voter Guide 12-CC-q10 on Oct 31, 2012

Other governors on Gun Control: Tim Kaine on other issues:
VA Gubernatorial:
Bob McDonnell
Ken Cuccinelli
Robert Sarvis
Terry McAuliffe
VA Senatorial:
Ed Gillespie
James Webb
Mark Warner
Robert Sarvis

Gubernatorial Debates 2017:
NJ: Fulop(D) vs.Lesniak(D)
VA: Gillespie(R) vs.Wittman(R) vs.Northam(D)
Gubernatorial Debates 2016:
DE: Bonini(R) vs.Carney(D)
IN: Pence(R) vs.Gregg(D)
MO: Hanaway(R) vs.Brunner(R) vs.Kinder(R) vs.Greitens(R)
MT: Bullock(D) vs.Perea(R) vs.Johnson(R) vs.Gianforte(R) vs.McChesney(D)
NC: McCrory(R) vs.Cooper(D) vs.Spaulding(D)
ND: Dalrymple(R) vs.Stenehjem(R) vs.Becker(R) vs.Heitkamp(D) vs.Pomeroy(D)
NH: Hassan(D) vs.Bradley(R) vs.Sununu(R) vs.Lavoie(R) vs.Connolly(D) vs.Dextraze(I)
OR: Brown(D) vs.Bell(D) vs.Niemeyer(R) vs.Pierce(R)
UT: Herbert(R) vs.Johnson(R) vs.Cook(D)
VT: Shumlin(D) vs.Minter(D) vs.Dunne(D) vs.Scott(R) vs.Lisman(R) vs.Smith(D)
WA: Inslee(D) vs.Bryant(R)
WV: Kessler(R) vs.Cole(D)
Newly-elected governors (first seated in Jan. 2015):
AK-I: Bill Walker
AR-R: Asa Hutchinson
AZ-R: Doug Ducey
IL-R: Bruce Rauner
MA-R: Charlie Baker
MD-R: Larry Hogan
NE-R: Pete Ricketts
OR-D: Kate Brown
PA-D: Tom Wolf
RI-D: Gina Raimondo
TX-R: Greg Abbott

Lame ducks 2015-16:
DE-D: Jack Markell
(term-limited 2016)
KY-D: Steve Beshear
(term-limited 2015)
LA-R: Bobby Jindal
(term-limited 2015)
MO-D: Jay Nixon
(term-limited 2016)
VT-D: Peter Shumlin
(retiring 2016)
WV-D: Earl Ray Tomblin
(term-limited 2016)
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Page last updated: Jul 08, 2016