Where Virginia’s Senate candidates stand on the issues


PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — 10 On Your Side is your local election headquarters.  All this week we are helping you get to know where the candidates stand on important issues before you head to the polls Nov. 6.

Virginia’s U.S. Senate candidates, Incumbent Democrat Tim Kaine and Republican challenger Corey Stewart have very different ideas, but we’ll start with common ground. 

Both want healthcare reform, but in different ways. 

Kaine wants Medicare to create a policy that people could buy on the exchange.

“Because Medicare doesn’t have to pay a profit, pay taxes, return to shareholders, pay fancy salaries, advertise on the 6:30 news because they already exist in every zip code in the United States and have a compete distribution network.  Medicare could offer an insurance policy that would be dramatically cheaper then private insurance,” Kaine told WAVY.com. 

Stewart said: “I think we need to take the Medicaid system and block grant it, give it to the states, let the states develop their own healthcare program for the poor and the needy … it’ll be more efficient, better for the taxpayer, better for the federal taxpayer as well, and it will be a better system for those who need the help.”

Candidate profiles 

When asked where they stand on immigration, Stewart said, “I’m going to be very tough on removing criminal illegal aliens and building the wall on the Mexican border”.

Kaine said, “I’m in the thick of the discussion around immigration reform and yes it’s got to be about Dreamers, it needs to be border security, it needs to be visa reforms.”

Both men would like to see marijuana decriminalized at the federal level.

When addressing guns and school violence, Stewart said that he would put armed security guards in schools. Kaine supports a ban on assault style weapons, universal background checks and allowing the CDC to conduct research on gun violence.

On the military front, Stewart supports the president’s plan for a 355 ship Navy. Kaine supports the ship increase as well, but has been critical of the president’s use of military force without congressional authorization and wants to see a strong U.S. cyber strategy.

When it comes to money and jobs, Stewart wants the president’s tax cut to become permanent.

“The president’s efforts to deregulate, to reduce unneeded and antiquated regulations, have also helped out businesses. This will bring back manufacturing, and eventually the manufacturing brings back all the other jobs as well,” Stewart said. 

Kaine believes a healthy economy calls for education reforms.

He is working toward affordable college and help for those seeking career and technical training for certifications in electric, welding, ship building, etc. 

“I think the best thing that Virginia can do, the best thing that Hampton Roads can do, when it comes to economic development in general is be able to look any employer in the eye and say if you come here  you will have a fantastic workforce.”

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