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Tim Kaine's Issue Positions (Political Courage Test)

Office: U.S. Senate (VA) - Jr, Democratic
Project Vote Smart does not permit the use of its name or programs in any campaign activity, including advertising, debates, and speeches.
Tim Kaine refused to tell citizens where he stands on any of the issues addressed in the 2012 Political Courage Test, despite repeated requests from Vote Smart, national media, and prominent political leaders.

What is the Political Courage Test?

Issue Positions

In response to the increasing unwillingness of candidates to answer issue questions, Project Vote Smart has researched Presidential and Congressional candidates' public records to determine candidates' likely responses on certain key issues. These issue positions, from the year 2012, are provided below as a courtesy to voters.

Pro-choice Inferred Answer Abortion: Do you generally support pro-choice or pro-life legislation? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Jennifer Parker. ABC News: Kaine: Keep Roe, Hussein Needed to Go. 31 July 2008. "Roe vs. Wade is ultimately about saying that there is a realm of personal liberty for people to make this decision." (
  • Timothy Kaine. NBC Meet the Press. 17 May 2009. "But, American people, I think, recognize that we would want to reduce unintended pregnancies and abortions, you just don't have to criminalize women's health care choices to do so." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Issue Position: Individual Rights. 1 January 2012. "I strongly support the right of women to make their own health and reproductive decisions and, for that reason, will oppose efforts to weaken or subvert the basic holding of Roe v. Wade. We all share the goal of reducing unwanted pregnancies and abortions. The right way to do this is through education and access to health care and contraception rather than criminalizing women's reproductive decisions." (
  • Cameron Joseph. The Hill: Tim Kaine dodges questions on gay marriage. 8 May 2012. "He reiterated [¦] that he is personally against abortion but that 'government ought not to make people's moral decisions for them.'" (
No Inferred Answer Afghanistan: Do you support United States' combat operations in Afghanistan? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Timothy Kaine. Issue Position: Foreign Policy. 1 January 2012. "The main mission in Afghanistan--destroying Al Qaeda--is nearly complete and we should bring our troops home as quickly as we can, consistent with the need to make sure that Afghanistan poses no danger in the broader region." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Larry King Live. Interview with DNC Chairman Tim Kaine. 6 July 2010. "Well, I think, again, the -- you look at Afghanistan much like you look at what you look at what the president has done in Iraq. The wars were for very different motives. I think the president was right that Iraq was a wrong choice and I applaud the way he has brought the troop strength down. He has laid out a plan going forward that calls for a reduction of battle troop strength in Afghanistan beginning in 2011. He has accomplished what he said would do in Iraq and I think the American people are going to see that he will accomplish what he said he would do in Afghanistan." (
Yes Inferred Answer Budget: In order to balance the budget, do you support reducing defense spending? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Karen Goff. Kaine Talks Rail, Economy and Bipartisanship. 17 May 2012. "We still have thousands of troops in Europe," he said. "That reflects an old reality. Let's scale back, and let's use technology and innovation to reduce some manpower needs." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Foreign Policy/Military and Veterans. 14 February 2012. "In a time of economic challenge, we have to make important budget cuts but Virginia needs people at the table who care passionately about strong national defense and understand its impact upon the Commonwealth. As Governor, I worked with our Senators and Congressional delegation to oppose the transfer of an aircraft carrier from Norfolk Naval Base and thus far we have been successful in preventing this ill-advised move. As Senator, I will continue to fight this move because it is the wrong move at the wrong time in terms of national security and prudent fiscal management. Those who propose to deal with our deficit issues purely through cuts will hurt this nation's security and the Commonwealth's economy. As a Harry Truman Democrat, I will always support the right investments to keep our country strong and safe." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Balanced Budgets, Balanced Politics. 2 August 2012. "In defense, we need to examine a Cold War-era base structure that still has tens of thousands of American troops in Europe, more positioned to fight past wars than to handle security challenges of today and tomorrow. Just as the new Ford Class aircraft carriers being built at the shipyard in Newport News will operate with fewer sailors due to technology advances, we need to look at wise technology investments that will reduce personnel needs." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Virginia Public Radio: Tim Kaine, Candidate for U.S. Senate. 7 December 2011. "What I hope to do as my second issue in the Senate is really focus on defense ¦ issues, to make sure were strong, to make sure in the time of budget cutting we dont do things that are unwise, that hurt our ability to protect national security." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Issue Position: Fiscal Responsibility. 1 January 2012. "America's two biggest areas of expenditure are defense and health care. We have to find savings in each area, but the priorities are important, so the cuts have to be carefully made. Our inventory of military bases around the world -- largely established during the Cold War -- should be reduced. And new technologies -- from Predator drones to new, Virginia-built aircraft carriers that can be operated by fewer sailors -- will use American know-how to keep us safe and save money at the same time." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Tim Kaine Lays Out Path to Avoid Harmful Defense Cuts, Calls on Congress to Take Action. 30 July 2012. "There's been a lot of grandstanding around the impending defense cuts and the time spent grandstanding should be productively used right now to find a path forward to avoid them," said Kaine. "Whether it's my opponent running an ad suggesting I'm pro-defense cuts, or whether people are more focused on doing press events to talk about the defense cuts instead of working to find a solution that might avoid them, there are too many who are still sussing out the politics of this instead of finding solutions to the challenge." (
Yes Inferred Answer Budget: In order to balance the budget, do you support an income tax increase on any tax bracket? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Timothy Kaine. Issue Position: Fiscal Responsibility. 1 January 2012. "There is no reason why we should be giving tax subsidies to major oil companies -- particularly when they are making record profits. And, the Bush tax cuts, made temporary specifically because of worries about the deficit, should be allowed to expire as planned for those making $500,000 a year or more." (
  • Steve Contorno. Washington Examiner. 4 April 2012. "Kaine also said he would let the top tier of President Bush-era tax cuts expire to help reduce the national debt. He proposed $2 or $3 in budget cuts for every $1 in new revenues, some of which can be achieved by closing tax loopholes. 'There's no way to close this just through spending cuts' without sacrificing programs like grants for college students and Medicaid, he said." (
  • Michael McAuliff. Huffington Post: Tim Kaine: Buffett Rule is Not Enough. 12 April 2012. "If you let the Bush tax cuts expire over 500,000 [dollars in annual income], that's more than $500 billion of deficit reduction." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Tim Kaine Lays Out Path to Avoid Harmful Defense Cuts, Calls on Congress to Take Action. 30 July 2012. "We cannot afford the all-cuts approach. We have to approach the cuts in a very straightforward line-item by line-item way. I have a lot of experience in doing that as governor, I've got a track record, I know how to make cuts, but you can't cut your way to prosperity. So we've got to deal with the Bush tax cuts, and then we have to embrace the notion of finding the right cuts to make, not the wrong cuts." (
Yes Inferred Answer Economy: Do you support federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Timothy Kaine. Statement on Tonight's Primary Results. 12 June 2012. "As Lt. Governor and Governor during the same years that Allen served in the Senate, I worked to strengthen Virginia's economy. I worked across the aisle to balance Virginia's budget, cut $5 billion in state spending including my own pay, and recruit new businesses and industries to the Commonwealth." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Statement on May Job Growth. 1 June 2012. "On the campaign trail, I have shared the Virginia economic lessons I want to take to Washington. In Virginia, we balanced our budget by cutting more than $5 billion in spending with targeted reductions rather than across-the-board cuts. That's what our nation needs to do." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Issue Position: Education. 1 January 2012. "Despite a tough economy, my administration made education investments a priority because we knew the positive effect an educated workforce can have on an economy [¦] Virginia has shown that investments in education pay dividends, and that is a lesson that I will take to Washington." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Issues: Job Creation and Economic Growth. 1 January 2012. "We cannot succeed without investing. Too many in public life make cuts to taxes and spending their only philosophy [¦] As Lieutenant Governor and Governor, I played leadership roles in two bond campaigns to expand our college facilities by over $2 billion despite the need to cut the state budget by billions due to the recession. At the national level, we have to expand educational opportunities and commit to rebuilding American infrastructure. These investments have a cost, but an unwillingness to invest will consign our children and grandchildren to diminished opportunity." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Fox News Channel Interview. 25 February 2009. "But most economists agree, Jon, and the Republican governors that I was with over the weekend, three quarters of them agree that if we did not do something to stimulate this economy right now we could be going into a period of such steep declines in GDP and economic growth that the deficit issues will be much, much worse down the road." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Governor Kaine Announces 5,900 Jobs Created or Retained by Recovery Act Spending. 30 October 2009. President Obama's Recovery Act was intended to get the economy moving again and in Virginia we are beginning to see that occur," Governor Kaine said. "These funds have allowed us to begin construction on infrastructure projects that we would not have been able to build, keep our Medicaid plan funded, improve our schools and in some cases build new ones, and expand unemployment benefits to those most affected by the economic crisis." (
  • Timothy Kaine. FOX News Sunday “ Transcript. 24 February 2008. "That's some of the discussion that we're having. I think from our standpoint, stimulus that would focus upon infrastructure would be both great for jobs but also would really speak to a need that we're seeing around the country, transportation infrastructure and others. And so those are some of the points that we'll be talking about here over the next couple of days." (
Yes Inferred Answer Economy: Do you support providing tax incentives to businesses for the purpose of job creation? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Timothy Kaine. Issue Position: Job Creation & the Economy. 1 January 2012. "Third, we need to make sure that taxes and regulation are low, fair and business friendly. Virginia has a strong track record of maintaining a business-friendly environment. Both as a local official and as Governor, I have lowered or eliminated taxes that put us in a non-competitive posture with other states or communities. Regulations have to protect the public, but give wide latitude for entrepreneurs to innovate and succeed." (
  • Timothy Kaine. MSNBC: "Hardball with Chris Matthews." 8 September 2008. "Lower taxes for folks in the middle and small businesses [¦] Small businesses are the backbone of the economy." (
  • Timothy Kaine. KAINE DISCUSSES ECONOMY, TALENT AT BRISTOL MANUFACTURING COMPANY. 10 August 2012. "As senator, Kaine will continue to support small businesses by making the Research and Development Tax Credit permanent, which would help businesses like The Williams Company innovate and grow [¦] 'If elected to the Senate, I really want to focus on ways to help level the playing field for small businesses. A lot of small businesses pay a higher percentage in taxes than big businesses, which is why I advocate comprehensive tax reform. On export policies, we need to do more to help small businesses take advantage of markets across the globe. So whether it's tax policy or exports or access to capital, leveling the playing field for small businesses is an important part of what I'm going to do if I go into the Senate.'" (
  • Timothy Kaine. Grow Business, Grow Jobs: Level the Playing Field for Small Businesses. "Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy and responsible for the creation of most new jobs. [¦] I will support extending the current accelerated depreciation deduction for small businesses to provide continued incentives for capital investments to help businesses grow." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Fox News: Fox News Channel Interview. 3 March 2009. "I think one of the hopes with the tax cut portion of the bill, which was sizable is that reducing taxes to everyday American families will increase spending in some way, they spend for paying bills or taking care of necessities and that, in and of itself, will generate some economic activity that should benefit business owners out in the communities across the United States." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Fairfax News: Kaine Tours State to Tout His Economic Plan. 5 April 2012. "As the global competition increases, we must act now to equip businesses with the tools they need to create jobs, develop a strong and talented workforce, and address our fiscal challenges by finding common ground." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Tim Kaine Tours Mount Vernon Area Small Businesses. 18 July 2012. "Kaine also outlined his Virginia-based approach to level the playing field for small businesses through investments in infrastructure and reforming and simplifying the tax code." (
Unknown Position Unknown Answer Education: Do you support requiring states to implement education reforms in order to be eligible for competitive federal grants? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Timothy Kaine. Competence to Excellence: Building on the Standards of Learning Successes. 26 April 2006. "I also believe that schools and school divisions should be recognized and rewarded for making measurable progress in the journey to excellence. The commonwealth's vision of educational excellence must combine SOL competency requirements with incentives that recognize and reward higher levels of achievement and progress on multiple indicators of school and student performance. We need a formal process to recognize and reward schools and school divisions on an annual basis that far exceed the standards for state accreditation and adequate yearly progress under NCLB. Let's begin a conversation now about how such a process would work and how it would fit with the Standards of Accreditation [¦] Like you, I believe that the success of Virginia's public schools under the SOL program makes the case for increased flexibility from Washington in the implementation of No Child Left Behind. I share the Board's view that many of the provisions of NCLB complement the SOL program. We will never close the achievement gap unless we hold schools accountable for the achievement of student subgroups and all children deserve to be taught by highly qualified teachers." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Video: WSLS: Tim Kaine discusses the 'talent economy' in Roanoke. 18 January 2012. "We can fix everything else, but if we don't fix that [education] were not going to have the kind of economic prospects we want. The more skills that people have, the stronger the economy is and the more likely you are to have a job that pays well." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Issue Position: Job Creation. 1 January 2012. "America needs to commit to being the best in the world in educational opportunities [¦] Among developed nations, we are now 12th, and more nations are poised to pass us by. We have to look at reforms -- broader early childhood education, more rigorous K-12 curriculums, renewed attention to career and technical education, dramatic efforts to make college more affordable -- to return America to tops in the world in educating our population." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Issue Position: Education. 1 January 2012. "Despite a tough economy, my administration made education investments a priority because we knew the positive effect an educated workforce can have on an economy [¦] Virginia has shown that investments in education pay dividends, and that is a lesson that I will take to Washington." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Education. 15 August 2012. "As Governor, I invested in every aspect of Virginia's education system. I worked with the legislature to expand the number of children in pre-K by nearly 40%. I also championed and won passage of a $2 billion higher-ed bond package that is giving colleges and universities across the state the facilities they need to attract the best students and faculty. Our investments are paying off." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Competence to Excellence: Building On the Standards of Living Successes. 26 April 2006. "No child should be left to languish in a school that is either unable or unwilling to make the changes necessary to raise achievement and attain full accreditation [¦] We must encourage and reward significant progress in closing the achievement gap while raising the achievement of all students. In addition, we must increase graduation rates, particularly among our minority populations, and place greater attention on career and technical education. And we must continue to encourage our high school students to strive for excellence by successfully completing college-level courses and acquiring the skills necessary for personal success in the 21st century." (
Yes Inferred Answer Energy: Do you support reducing restrictions on offshore energy production? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Timothy Kaine. Tim Kaine Statement on Legislation to Open Virginia to Offshore Energy Exploration. 24 February 2012. "I've long supported exploration for offshore energy options as a bridge while we move America toward a low-carbon energy future. The legislation introduced by Senators Webb and Warner is a reasonable extension of the policy I signed in 2006 as Governor and I applaud them for their leadership on this issue." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Energy. 15 August 2012. "I was the first Governor to put in place a state energy plan for Virginia. The plan calls for use of all Virginia energy sources -- coal, natural gas, oil, nuclear, hydropower, biodiesel, wind and solar -- and would reduce Virginia's rate of growth in energy use by 40 percent, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent, and seeks to increase in-state energy production by 20 percent. The plan also approved exploratory drilling for natural gas off the coast of Virginia." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Environmental Virginia Symposium Address. 20 April 2006. "I proposed a common-sense approach to offshore natural gas resources, limiting the discussion to natural gas only, and making an effort to determine what the extent of the resource is before making other decisions on whether, or how, to allow extraction." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Fox News: Fox & Friends Interview. 12 August 2008. "Senator Obama is very open to offshore drilling and that's been our policy in Virginia as well. But the emphasis needs to be primarily on development of alternative energy sources. We're not going to drill our way out of the long-term energy crisis facing this nation and the world. And you know, just like your stockbroker or whoever tells you to diversify your portfolio, we ought to diversify our portfolio. We can't keep relying -- over relying on oil." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Stateent on "Open Act," Bipartisan Bill to Allow Offshore Energy Development in Virginia. 25 July 2012. "As I meet with Virginians throughout the state, one of the chief complaints I hear is that we need more people in Washington who know how to work across the aisle and get things done. The OPEN Act shows that when our leaders commit to it, they can still find common ground in the Senate. This bipartisan agreement will correct a mistake made by the Department of Interior when they omitted Virginia from their five-year lease plan despite strong support from the people of Virginia and a bipartisan coalition of elected leaders. If it can be done safely, and if revenues are fairly shared between the state and federal government, Virginia should have the opportunity to pursue development of our offshore resources. Doing so would create jobs in Virginia, generate revenue, and increase our nation's energy security." (
Yes Inferred Answer Environment: Do you support the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • League of Conservation Voters. Project Vote Smart: Interest Group Endorsements. 04/18/2012. League of Conservation Voters endorsed Timothy Kaine in the 2012 general election. (
  • Timothy Kaine. Energy. 14 February 2012. "I was the first Governor to put in place a state energy plan for Virginia. The plan calls for use of all Virginia energy sources -- coal, natural gas, oil, nuclear, hydropower, biodiesel, wind and solar -- and would reduce Virginia's rate of growth in energy use by 40 percent, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent, and seeks to increase in-state energy production by 20 percent. The plan also approved exploratory drilling for natural gas off the coast of Virginia. As Governor, I promoted next-generation cleaner coal technology during the permitting of a state-of-the-art coal-fired plant in Wise County. Finally, I proposed a change to state policy that created state incentives for utilities to use renewable fuels and invest in energy conservation.." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Statement of Governor Kaine on Climate Security Act. 4 June 2008. "Global warming is one of the most critical issues of our time, and it will have serious consequences for Virginia if it remains unchecked [¦] The bipartisan legislation sponsored by Senators Warner, Lieberman and Boxer uses a market-based approach to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It is a strong bill that will, over time and with complementary state and local actions, achieve the level of reductions that scientists say are needed to prevent the worst consequences of global warming." (
  • Timothy Kaine. State of the Commonwealth Address to the Joint Assembly. 14 January 2009. "Whether it's changing old light bulbs for new fluorescent ones, adding insulation to reduce heating costs, turning computers off when we leave the office, or using public transit, each of us can do the little things that together make a tremendous difference. There's no question that energy is the next great challenge of our generation. If we are to protect our environment, reduce climate change, and find lasting sources of sustainable energy, it will take all of our collective efforts." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Governor Kaine Signs On to Climate Registry. 22 May 2007. "There is mounting scientific evidence that global warming is real and over time will bring about negative economic, environmental, and ecological impacts [¦] If states are to play a leadership role in developing science-based approaches to reducing the nation's overall greenhouse gas emissions, we must have a multi-state emissions reporting and accounting system that is commonly used, efficient, transparent, and verifiable." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Governor Kaine Announces 40 Million in Recovery Funds for State Energy Plan. 6 October 2009. "Energy efficiency and conservation-along with renewable and alternative energy production-will lower utility bills for consumers, decrease our dependence on foreign energy sources, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and provide a safer and cleaner environment for Virginians to live, work and play." (
Yes Inferred Answer Guns: Do you support restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Timothy Kaine. Individual Rights. 15 February 2012. "I am strong supporter of the Second Amendment, and I served as legal counsel to the effort to guarantee Virginians the right to hunt and fish. I was responsible for common sense reforms to gun laws in the aftermath of the Virginia Tech tragedy, and I am committed to making sure felons and the dangerously mentally ill cannot improperly purchase weapons." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Twitter: TimKaine. 28 February 2012. "Repeal of VA's one gun a month law is a setback for public safety & a needless distraction from our focus on rebuilding the economy." (
  • Timothy Kaine. State of the Commonwealth Address to the Joint Assembly. 9 January 2008. "I support 2nd Amendment rights, and I believe that Virginia's laws generally strike the right balance of protecting that right consistent with public safety. 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." (
  • Timothy Kaine. OnTheIssues: Tim Kaine on Gun Control. 8 November 2005. "[...] 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." (
  • Sam Stein. Huffington Post: Kaine Throws Support Behind Gun Control Measure as White House Remains Silent. 21 January 2011. "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 [¦] In Virginia we worked in the aftermath of Virginia Tech to do some important things here and nationally on the databases of folks who have been adjudicated mentally ill and dangerous so that they couldn't purchase guns." (
No Inferred Answer Health Care: Do you support repealing the 2010 Affordable Care Act? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Timothy Kaine. Health Care. 14 February 2012. "I support the Affordable Care Act as a first step to put patients in charge of their health care decisions and put the brakes on runaway health care costs that were crippling patients and businesses." (
  • Timothy Kainel. Letter to Congressional Leaders Pelosi, Reid, McConnell and Boehner. 2 October 2009. "Sky-rocketing health care costs hurt families, force businesses to cut or drop health benefits and cause already strained state budget deficits to significantly grow. We believe reform can relieve these burdens by reining in costs and making coverage more affordable, both for our citizens and our state budgets." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Video: Kaine: Repealing Health Care "Unwise." 28 March 2010. "They [Republicans] may want to push for it on a repeal of health care ¦ I think they'd be unwise to do it, and I think the American public will reject it." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Statement of Governor Kaine on Senate Healthcare Reform Legislation Vote. 21 December 2009. "In the Commonwealth, the passage of comprehensive healthcare reform would ensure access to quality, affordable health care for 1.2 million uninsured Virginians, bring security to the millions of people who are already insured, and bring down the cost of health care for all of us." (
  • Timothy Kaine. MSNBC The Rachel Maddow Show. 29 July 2009. "All the polling I've seen says the overwhelming majority of the American public wants to see significant reform to health insurance. They support the basic principles of lowering costs for families and businesses, preserving choices, and actually expanding choice with a public option and then finding a way to cover all Americans [¦] We're going to have to take the various bills and then make them into a workable plan." (
No Inferred Answer Immigration: Do you support requiring illegal immigrants to return to their country of origin before they are eligible for citizenship? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Timothy Kaine. Immigration. 14 February 2012. "In order to move our nation forward on this issue, we must require the millions of undocumented persons in the United States to admit to a violation of immigration laws and pay an appropriate penalty. Only in the event of full acceptance of responsibility and payment of appropriate fines should we allow individuals to seek lawful adjustment of their immigration status." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Twitter: TimKaine. 18 December 2010. "Republican objection to DREAM Act is partisan; it harms countless young immigrants & hurts America's economy & security." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Video: Former Virginia Governor Tim Kaine on immigration. 27 February 2012. "We need to do comprehensive immigration reform [¦] I would require those who are here illegally to sort of, you know, raise their hands and say, 'we broke the law'. By admitting that you're breaking the law, you're gonna have that as a criminal violation, as a legal violation. And you're gonna have to pay a penalty, and it's gonna be a significant penalty that you will pay over a period of time [...] We would take that money that was being paid, from those who have come here unlawfully, and we would use it to increase border security [¦] America's not going to deport 12 million people. If somebody's here unlawfully and they commit a crime [...] we ought to deport them." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Tim Kaine Statement on Supreme Court Decision on Immigration. 25 June 2012. "I have always believed that truly comprehensive immigration reform will require all sides to come together to strike a balance to secure our borders and retain and attract the best and brightest talent to contribute to our economy and our communities. Unfortunately, while today's ruling by the Supreme Court struck down many of the troubling provisions of the Arizona law, it also encourages a patchwork system of local policies that will not address our national immigration challenges. I continue to support comprehensive immigration reform at the federal level as well as the DREAM Act." (
  • Timothy Kaine. The Associated Press: Democratic Response to Bush's State of the Union Address. 31 January 2006. "The failure of the federal government to implement and enforce a rational immigration policy has resulted in a confusing patchwork of state and local efforts. Of course, we should welcome those who seek to lawfully join and contribute to our American family. And we must. At the same time, we must ensure that our homeland defense efforts begin with consistent federal action to protect our borders." (
  • Timothy Kaine. State of the Commonwealth Address to the Joint Assembly. 9 January 2008. "We are a nation of laws. It is our obligation to enforce those laws, and we should continually assess the consequences of illegal immigration. It is equally important to recognize the many positive benefits of legal immigration. [¦] Virginia law already prohibits any person who is not legally in the country from receiving state or locally funded benefits, with only a few exceptions, like education, emergency health care and care for contagious diseases." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Kaine Discusses Economic Vision with Latino Business Leaders in Manassas. 27 June 2012. "Throughout the 90-minute bilingual discussion, Kaine laid out his vision for developing a talent economy that allows all Virginians to fully utilize their abilities. Kaine expressed his support for the DREAM Act and advocated comprehensive immigration reform that secures the borders while allowing skilled workers to create jobs and succeed in the United States." (
Yes Inferred Answer Marriage: Do you support same-sex marriage? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Catelyn Polantz. PBS: Gay Marriage Debate: Tim Kaine Wants "Relationship Equality" in Democratic Platform. 8 May 2012. "Just say I'm for relationship equality [¦] The labels get in the way of the issue." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Governor Kaine Announces Action on Additional Legislation. 10 April 2006. "'I believe that marriage is between one man and one woman, and current Virginia law makes that abundantly clear [¦] but I am concerned that the broad wording of the proposed constitutional amendment goes much further than that, threatening the constitutional rights of individuals to enter into private contracts, and also threatening the discretion of employers to extend certain benefits, such as health care coverage, to unmarried couples'." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Allen gets clergy support, reaffirms opposition to gay marriage. 24 July 2012. "Democratic candidate Tim Kaine favors "relationship equality" that would effectively give same-sex couples the same legal rights as married couples. But Kaine also maintains that churches should remain free to decide what unions they will recognize for religious purposes, a spokeswoman said. Kaine also supports repealing the federal Defense of Marriage Act.' (
  • Cameron Joseph. The Hill: Tim Kaine dodges questions on gay marriage. 8 May 2012. "Just as we do now, churches would be able to make their own decisions about which relationships they'd want to celebrate " that wouldn't change " but as a matter of law I do fundamentally believe that couples should be treated equally." (
  • Caitlin Huey-Burns. Tim Kaine Skirts Same-Sex Marriage Questions. 8 May 2012. "I believe in the legal equality of relationships [¦] The debate about, is it marriage? Is it civil union? Is it domestic partnership? I kind of let that one go and just say the legal issue is: Should committed couples be treated the same by law? And I think the answer is yes." (
  • Ben Pershing. Washington Post. Tim Kaine pressed on gay marriage stance. 8 May 2012. "There should be a license that would entitle a committed couple to the same rights as a married couple." (
Unknown Position Unknown Answer National Security: Do you support targeting suspected terrorists outside of official theaters of conflict? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Timothy Kaine. The Associated Press: Democratic Response to Bush's State of the Union Address. 31 January 2006. "The president called again tonight for our commitment to win the war on terror and to support our troops. All Americans embrace those goals. We can, and we must, defeat those who attack and kill innocent people. While the images of the World Trade Center are seared in the minds of all Americans, so too are the memories of those who died on sacred ground in Virginia in the attack on the Pentagon." (
No Inferred Answer Social Security: Do you support allowing individuals to divert a portion of their Social Security taxes into personal retirement accounts? View Citations

Vote Smart's Research

  • Timothy Kaine. Protecting Medicaid, Medicare, and Social Security. 14 February 2012. "But I oppose efforts to privatize Medicare and Social Security because they would leave our seniors vulnerable to volatile markets, and many such proposals would also directly remove funding from Medicare and Social Security. We have to have programs that people can count on as they contemplate their retirement years. Instead of talking about dismantling Social Security, I will work to find common ground on reforms and adjustments that preserve the long-term integrity of the program." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Video: CBS6: Gov. Kaine Discusses Social Security with Seniors. 1 June 2012. "Social Security is not on the verge of insolvency [...] The program has done what its supposed to do ... and we've done it by making these sorts of basic changes every 10 or 20 years." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Twitter: TimKaine. 24 May 2012. ""I will fight against any effort to privatize Social Security if I am in the Senate because the program has worked." -@timkaine ª#vasen." (
  • Timothy Kaine. Twitter: TimKaine. 22 March 2012. "We need a balanced approach to reducing our deficit. The Ryan Plan is fiscally irresponsible and could hurt seniors. (
  • Timothy Kaine. Twitter: TimKaine. 17 May 2012. "I will always work to strengthen Social Security while my likely opponent voted to shift money to private accounts: (


Candidate Answer

Official Position: Candidate had the Political Courage to address this issue directly.

Inferred Answer

Inferred Position: Candidate refused to address this issue directly, but Project Vote Smart inferred this issue position based on the candidate's public statements, voting record, and evaluations from special interest groups.

Unknown Answer

Unknown Position: Candidate refused to address this issue.

Project Vote Smart's Research: Click on this icon to reveal more information about this candidate's position.

Other or Expanded Principles & Legislative Priorities are entered exactly as the candidate has submitted it. Project Vote Smart does not edit for misspelled words, punctuation or grammar.

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