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Dem VP Wackadoo Tim Kaine on Gun Control: This Is My Issue


In May 2000, Tim Kaine, then-may­or of Rich­mond, Va., used more than $6,000 in pub­lic funds to char­ter eight bus­es. The bus­es were used to trans­port city res­i­dents from Rich­mond to the anti-gun, and inac­cu­rate­ly named, Mil­lion Mom March in Wash­ing­ton, D.C. 

The Mil­lion Mom March was spon­sored and orga­nized by extrem­ist gun con­trol orga­ni­za­tion the Bell Cam­paign, which was lat­er renamed the Mil­lion Mom March Foun­da­tion. The Bell Cam­paign sup­port­ed a litany of gun con­trol mea­sures, includ­ing gun rationing, a ban on the pos­ses­sion of com­mon­ly-owned semi-auto­mat­ic firearms and their mag­a­zines, firearm own­er licens­ing, and gun reg­is­tra­tion. In regards to the right to keep and bear arms, the Bell Cam­paign con­tend­ed, “The Sec­ond Amend­ment does not, and nev­er did, pro­tect the pri­vate own­er­ship of guns for pri­vate pur­pos­es.”

Fol­low­ing a pub­lic out­cry over the use of pub­lic funds for polit­i­cal pur­pos­es, includ­ing crit­i­cism from Rich­mond City Coun­cil mem­bers, Kaine was forced to seek pri­vate funds to reim­burse the city. Despite the dis­ap­proval of cit­i­zens and his fel­low pub­lic offi­cials, Kaine was reluc­tant to admit wrong­do­ing, with the Rich­mond Times-Dis­patch not­ing, “Kaine defend­ed the sub­sidy on the ground that Rich­mond always has sup­port­ed stricter gun laws.” At the time, the Times-Dis­patch also report­ed that in regard to gun con­trol, Kaine said, “I can’t think of an issue I’d rather be aligned with than this.”

This gross mis­use of tax­pay­er dol­lars to advo­cate for extreme gun con­trols is indica­tive of Kaine’s 20 year pub­lic career, dur­ing which he has cease­less­ly attacked the rights of law-abid­ing gun own­ers. In choos­ing Kaine as her run­ning mate, Hillary Clin­ton has cho­sen one of the rare politi­cians that comes close to match­ing her zeal for restrict­ing gun rights.

Even before his anti-gun pil­fer­ing of the pub­lic cof­fer, Kaine was hard at work tar­get­ing Vir­ginia gun own­ers. In 1997, as a Rich­mond City Coun­cil­man, Kaine sug­gest­ed that the Vir­ginia cities of Rich­mond, Fair­fax, and Roanoke should team up to push a gun con­trol agen­da in the Vir­ginia Gen­er­al Assem­bly. On June 1, 1999, then-May­or Kaine was a not­ed guest at the White House Rose Gar­den for speech­es by Pres­i­dent Bill Clin­ton and First Lady Hillary Clin­ton. A pri­ma­ry top­ic of both Clin­tons’ remarks was gun con­trol, with the pres­i­dent specif­i­cal­ly advo­cat­ing for leg­is­la­tion that would elim­i­nate tra­di­tion­al gun shows, and for fur­ther restric­tions on stan­dard capac­i­ty mag­a­zines.

In 2001, Kaine ran for Lieu­tenant Gov­er­nor of Vir­ginia. Dur­ing the cam­paign, Kaine staked out sev­er­al anti-gun posi­tions. On Octo­ber 29, 2001, the anti-gun Wash­ing­ton Post endorsed Kaine, cit­ing his sup­port for Virginia’s one-hand­gun-a-month rationing law and restric­tions on the Right-to-Car­ry in restau­rants that serve alco­hol. Kaine also earned the endorse­ment of the Brady Cam­paign, who called him the “clear choice,” not­ing, “As May­or of Rich­mond, Kaine was a strong sup­port­er of enforc­ing and strength­en­ing Vir­ginia gun laws…”

Demo­c­ra­t­ic guber­na­to­r­i­al can­di­date Mark Warn­er sought to dif­fer­en­ti­ate between his views and Kaine’s extreme anti-gun posi­tions. A June 14, 2001 Asso­ci­at­ed Press item report­ed, “Warn­er, who does not favor addi­tion­al firearms restric­tions, already is try­ing to dis­tance him­self from his tick­et­mate on gun con­trol. He acknowl­edged at a news con­fer­ence Wednes­day that he dis­agrees with lieu­tenant gov­er­nor nom­i­nee Tim Kaine… on the issue.”

In 2005, Kaine ran for Gov­er­nor of Vir­ginia. Dur­ing the race, Kaine worked to dis­guise his anti-gun pol­i­tics. Doing his best John Ker­ry impres­sion, Kaine posed as a sports­man at a skeet shoot­ing event, shot­gun in hand.

For this race, Kaine staked out a curi­ous posi­tion on guns by con­tend­ing that he was not for fur­ther gun con­trol, while open­ly advo­cat­ing for fur­ther gun con­trol. The Roanoke Times fell vic­tim to Kaine’s ruse when on August 27, 2005 they sum­ma­rized the candidate’s incon­gru­ent posi­tion by not­ing, “Kaine said he doesn’t favor the cre­ation of more gun con­trol laws, but does believe the ones that exist should be enforced — and indi­cat­ed he would back an exten­sion of instant back­ground checks at gun shows for all sell­ers, not just licensed ones.” Kaine’s mis­lead­ing gun stance led Rich­mond Times-Dis­patch com­men­ta­tor A. Bar­ton Hin­kle to write, “He isn’t fool­ing any­one — so why does he con­tin­ue to try?”

Once gov­er­nor, Kaine pur­sued his anti-gun agen­da at every oppor­tu­ni­ty. In April 2006, Kaine vetoed leg­is­la­tion that would have per­mit­ted law-abid­ing gun own­ers to store a firearm in a locked con­tain­er with­in a vehi­cle with­out obtain­ing Right-to-Car­ry per­mit.

In April 2007, in the after­math of the trag­ic shoot­ing at Vir­ginia Tech, Kaine wast­ed no time in push­ing for gun con­trol. The Roanoke Times report­ed that on April 26, 2007, only 10 days after the shoot­ing, the oppor­tunis­tic Kaine “said he thought the time might be right to press the Gen­er­al Assem­bly to address the gun-show loop­hole.” On Jan­u­ary 8, 2008 Kaine con­tin­ued his push to elim­i­nate tra­di­tion­al gun shows, stat­ing, “Now more than ever in the after­math of April 16th, Vir­gini­ans under­stand that this is a pub­lic safe­ty issue.” Typ­i­cal of gun con­trol efforts, the leg­is­la­tion Kaine sought to enact could not have pre­vent­ed the tragedy he cit­ed to advance it. The per­pe­tra­tor of the Vir­ginia Tech shoot­ing did not pur­chase the two firearms used in the attack at a gun show. Kaine’s gun show leg­is­la­tion was reject­ed in com­mit­tee in 2008, and reject­ed by the Sen­ate again in 2009.

In March 2008, Kaine again vetoed leg­is­la­tion that would have per­mit­ted law-abid­ing indi­vid­u­als to pos­sess a firearm in a locked con­tain­er with­in their car with­out obtain­ing a Right-to-Car­ry per­mit. Kaine also vetoed leg­is­la­tion that would have allowed Right-to-Car­ry per­mit hold­ers to car­ry con­cealed in restau­rants that serves alco­hol.

In March 2009, Kaine once again vetoed vehi­cle and restau­rant car­ry leg­is­la­tion. Kaine also vetoed sep­a­rate leg­is­la­tion that would have mere­ly per­mit­ted retired law enforce­ment offi­cers to exer­cise their Right-to-Car­ry in restau­rants that serve alco­hol. Fur­ther, Kaine reject­ed leg­is­la­tion that would have made it eas­i­er to obtain a Right-to-Car­ry per­mit, by allow­ing appli­cants to com­plete the req­ui­site train­ing online.  He also reject­ed leg­is­la­tion exempt­ing active-duty ser­vice mem­bers from Virginia’s one-hand­gun-a-month law.

Over­lap­ping with his term as gov­er­nor of Vir­ginia, Kaine served as chair­man of the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Nation­al Com­mit­tee from Jan­u­ary 2009 to April 2011. In this role, Kaine advo­cat­ed for fed­er­al gun con­trol leg­is­la­tion offered by Rep. Car­olyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.) that would have banned mag­a­zines with a capac­i­ty greater than 10 rounds. As point­ed out by the Huff­in­g­ton Post, dur­ing an appear­ance on Polit­i­cal Cap­i­tal with Al Hunt in Jan­u­ary 2011, Kaine expressed his sup­port for McCarthy’s bill, stat­ing that it was the “kind of leg­is­la­tion that I’ve long sup­port­ed.”

Since Jan­u­ary 2013, Kaine has served as the junior sen­a­tor from Vir­ginia, and has con­tin­u­al­ly used his seat to advance an anti-gun agen­da. 

In the wake of the Decem­ber 2012 shoot­ing in New­town, Conn. gun con­trol advo­cates forced votes on sev­er­al pieces of gun con­trol leg­is­la­tion on April 17, 2013. The cen­ter­piece of the gun con­trol effort was the Manchin amend­ment, which would have banned the pri­vate trans­fer of firearms at gun shows and in trans­ac­tions pur­suant to an online or print pub­li­ca­tion. Kaine vot­ed in favor of the restric­tions.

That same day, Kaine vot­ed in favor Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s (D-Calif.) amend­ment to ban com­mon­ly-owned semi-auto­mat­ic firearms and mag­a­zines with a capac­i­ty greater than 10 rounds. Worse than the 1994 Clin­ton ban, the Fein­stein amend­ment would have banned semi-auto­mat­ic firearms that accept a detach­able mag­a­zine and have only one dis­qual­i­fy­ing fea­ture, such as a pis­tol grip or tele­scop­ing stock. Sim­i­lar­ly, Kaine vot­ed for Sen. Joe Lautenberg’s (D-N.J.) amend­ment to ban mag­a­zines with a capac­i­ty greater than 10 rounds.

When pre­sent­ed the oppor­tu­ni­ty to vote to pro­tect the rights of law-abid­ing gun own­ers, Kaine declined to do so. Kaine vot­ed against a NRA-sup­port­ed Right-to-Car­ry reci­procity amend­ment that would have ensured that Right-to-Car­ry per­mits grant­ed in one state would be hon­ored in all oth­ers. Kaine also opposed an NRA-sup­port­ed amend­ment that would have improved the avail­abil­i­ty of dis­qual­i­fy­ing men­tal health infor­ma­tion for NICS, clar­i­fied the def­i­n­i­tion of “adju­di­cat­ed as a men­tal defec­tive” to pro­tect due process rights, required more robust pros­e­cu­tions of fed­er­al firearm laws includ­ing straw pur­chas­es, restrict­ed the unlaw­ful prac­tice of mul­ti­ple sales report­ing for cer­tain types of semi-auto­mat­ic long-guns, and per­mit­ted inter­state hand­gun sales.

Incred­i­bly, despite rep­re­sent­ing a state with one of the largest per capi­ta pop­u­la­tions of vet­er­ans, Kaine opposed an NRA-sup­port­ed amend­ment to ensure that vet­er­ans’ Sec­ond Amend­ment rights would not be stripped with­out due process of law. The amend­ment was craft­ed to address an ongo­ing Vet­er­ans Admin­is­tra­tion prac­tice where a veteran’s Sec­ond Amend­ment rights are removed fol­low­ing some­thing as cur­so­ry as the agency’s deci­sion to assign the vet­er­an a fidu­cia­ry to man­age their VA ben­e­fits.

On Decem­ber 3, 2015, Kaine made it clear to all that he val­ues the Fifth Amend­ment no more than the Sec­ond, when he vot­ed in favor of ter­ror watch list gun con­trol leg­is­la­tion offered by Sen. Fein­stein. The leg­is­la­tion would have ille­git­i­mate­ly empow­ered the fed­er­al gov­ern­ment to strip the Sec­ond Amend­ment rights of an indi­vid­ual on a secret gov­ern­ment watch list absent the due process guar­an­teed by the Fifth Amend­ment.

On June 20, 2016, Kaine again vot­ed an iter­a­tion of Sen. Feinstein’s ter­ror watch list gun con­trol leg­is­la­tion. Fur­ther, Kaine sup­port­ed leg­is­la­tion offered by Sen. Chris Mur­phy (D-Conn.) that would have required near­ly all firearms trans­fers to be con­duct­ed pur­suant to a back­ground check and through a Fed­er­al Firearms Licensee. The leg­is­la­tion also attacked gun own­er pri­va­cy by plac­ing a bur­den on gun own­ers to report lost or stolen firearms to the fed­er­al gov­ern­ment with­in 48 hours.

In addi­tion to his objec­tion­able vot­ing record, Kaine has spon­sored or co-spon­sored a host of anti-gun leg­is­la­tion in the 114th Con­gress. Kaine is a cospon­sor for the lat­est iter­a­tion of Sen. Charles Schumer’s “Fix Gun Checks Act,” which would pro­hib­it near­ly all pri­vate trans­fers of firearms. Sen. Richard Blu­men­thal (D-Conn.) gained Kaine’s sup­port for a bill to elim­i­nate the three-day safe­ty valve for NICS checks, which would empow­er the FBI to severe­ly delay firearms trans­fers. Kaine also signed on to Robert Menendez’s (D-N.J.) leg­is­la­tion that would ban mag­a­zines capa­ble of hold­ing more than 10 rounds.

In Sep­tem­ber 2015, Kaine intro­duced his, “Respon­si­ble Trans­fer of Firearms Act.” The leg­is­la­tion would hold deal­ers liable for trans­fer­ring a firearm to a pro­hib­it­ed per­son, unless they had “tak­en rea­son­able steps to deter­mine that the recip­i­ent [was] not legal­ly barred from pos­sess­ing firearms or ammu­ni­tion…” This ambigu­ous bur­den is pre­sum­ably in addi­tion to the back­ground checks deal­ers are already required to con­duct on their cus­tomers. In a fur­ther attack on the firearms indus­try and its cus­tomers, in Jan­u­ary 2016, Kaine cospon­sored leg­is­la­tion to repeal the Pro­tec­tion of Law­ful Com­merce in Arms Act.

Of all the gun con­trols Kaine has sup­port­ed dur­ing his time in the Sen­ate, his sup­port for one par­tic­u­lar anti-gun mea­sure seems most fit­ting. In June 2016, Kaine announced his sup­port for efforts to repeal the pro­hi­bi­tion on the Cen­ters for Dis­ease Control’s use of pub­lic funds to advo­cate for gun con­trol.

More than 15-years after being rebuked for squan­der­ing tax­pay­er dol­lars on gun con­trol advo­ca­cy as may­or of Rich­mond, Kaine is still eager to attack gun own own­ers’ rights by any means at his dis­pos­al, and he still isn’t above loot­ing the pub­lic trea­sury to do it. 

It doesn’t appear, over this 20 year career, that Kaine has ever seen a type of gun con­trol that he wasn’t in favor of.  Clin­ton, based on her com­mit­ment to destroy­ing the Sec­ond Amend­ment rights of law-abid­ing Amer­i­cans, couldn’t have cho­sen a more suit­able run­ning mate.

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ER1C ☠

ER1C ☠

Dedicated Second Amendment Advocate, At-Home Gunsmith, Designer, Blogger, Video Guy, Author, Business Owner & ReloadOne Member.

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