Tim Kaine and Gun Violence Prevention

Senator Kaine, Hillary Clinton’s nominee for Vice President, is a true gun sense champion. As Virginia’s Governor and US Senator, Kaine has been an outspoken leader on gun violence prevention, leading efforts to keep guns away from dangerous people and urging other elected officials to take action. The NRA has worked tirelessly—but unsuccessfully—to defeat him, spending nearly $750,000 against him.


As a Senator, Kaine Has Been A Strong Advocate of Commonsense Gun Legislation


  • Kaine has consistently supported legislation to require background checks on all gun sales. [Vote 104, 6/20/16; Vote 321, 12/3/15; Vote 97, 4/17/13.]
  • Kaine has consistently supported legislation to close the Terror Gap to help prevent dangerous people on federal terror watch lists from getting firearms. [Vote 106, 6/20/16; Vote 319, 12/3/15]
  • Kaine repeatedly voted against the extreme Grassley amendments that falsely claimed to address background checks, but in realty would have weakened gun safety protections by making it harder to add dangerously mentally ill individuals to the NICS system. [Vote 103, 6/20/16; Vote 320, 12/3/15; Vote 98, 4/17/13]
  • Kaine repeatedly voted against the extreme Cornyn amendments that failed to close the Terror Gap. [Vote 105, 6/20/16; Vote 318, 12/3/15]
  • Kaine voted against national concealed carry reciprocity—the NRA’s top federal policy priority—which would require every state to recognize concealed carry permits from every other state and allow dangerous people, including certain violent criminals, sex offenders, and people who have never had any safety training, to carry hidden, loaded guns in public, all over the country. [Vote 100, 4/17/13]
  • Kaine participated in two historic events—the filibuster in the Senate and the sit-in in the House of Representatives—to highlight the outrage and urgency that Americans are feeling around the country. [CNN, 7/14/16]
  • Kaine strongly supported President Obama’s Executive Actions to reduce gun violence. [Office of Sen. Tim Kaine, Press Release, 1/5/16]

As a Governor, Kaine Led the Fight to Reduce Gun Violence After Virginia Tech

  • In the aftermath of the Virginia Tech shooting, Kaine led efforts to keep guns out of the hands of felons and the dangerously mentally ill. [Shenandoah Valley-Herald, 12/21/12]
  • Kaine fought in Virginia to require criminal background checks for all gun sales at gun shows. [San Angelo Standard-Times, 4/3/13; The Roanoke Times, 4/8/09]
  • Governor Tim Kaine provided $42 million in additional funding to Virginia’s mental health system. [WTVR, 12/18/12]

The Gun Lobby Has Worked Tirelessly To Defeat Kaine, Spending Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars Against Him

  • The NRA has spent $713,155 against Kaine during his career in the US Senate. [Center for Responsive Politics, accessed 6/13/16]
  • Kaine received an ‘F’ from the NRA in 2005 and 2012. [NRA-PVF, 2012, 2005]
  • Kaine received a grade of 17% from the Gun Owners Of America in 2012, and a grade of 10% from GOA in 2013 and 2015 [Vote Smart, accessed 6/21/16]

On the campaign trail, Kaine continues to be a champion for gun sense by taking on the gun lobby and pushing back against Trump’s vitriolic and incendiary language.

  • "The NRA, I know these guys, because they’re headquartered in Virginia, and when I run, they run against me, every time," Kaine said. "And I’m 8-0 in races – they’ve never beaten me. [Washington Post, 8/11/16]
  • "The NRA doesn’t even speak for members anymore. They’re just a shill for gun manufacturers," Kaine said. "And gun manufacturers have one goal: Sell as many, whenever, wherever, to whomever. That’s their only goal." [Washington Post, 8/11/16]
  • Kaine attacked Trump for making comments that incite violence after he called for the disarming of Clinton's secret service detail. "And this is a pattern that has been repeated over and over again." [The Huffington Post, 9/18/16]
  • Kaine said on Facebook that he was "proud to serve on a ticket with a presidential candidate who understands the importance of passing common sense gun reform laws and expanding access to quality, affordable mental health care. Hillary has a plan to integrate our country’s physical and mental health care systems—and that's just the beginning." [Facebook, 8/29/16]