Tim Kaine on Civil Rights

Democratic Senate Challenger; previously Governor


We're still fighting for full LGBT equality

Q: Support gay marriage?

Tim Kaine (D): Yes. In 2006 opposed VA amendment banning same sex marriage. "We're still fighting for full LGBT equality."

Corey Stewart (R): No. Strongly opposes; seeks to overturn Supreme Court legalization. Signed survey to oppose "brainwashing elementary school children with the Homosexual Agenda."

Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Virginia Senate race , Oct 9, 2018

Redefine VA as rainbow coalition instead of Unite the Right

Q: You have said that Virginia has a lot of scar tissue when it comes to race.


Q: But it feels, on many of these issues, that it`s very much an open wound. What has actually changed since Charlottesville's [racist attack]?

KAINE: Charlottesville was shocking. At that Unite the Right rally, most of the people arrested for violence that day were out-of-staters who came in to bring their hatred and bigotry. What I see that has changed in Virginia is people saying, "we`re not going to let our state be defined this way." It was seen most directly in the Virginia elections in November of 2017: Of the 15 people that got elected, 11 of the 15 were women, African-American, LGBT--It was a real rainbow coalition.

Q: Yet Corey Stewart, the man running against you, wants to protect Confederate monuments. That`s countering what you`re describing.

KAINE: Yes, it is. But look who won last year. It wasn`t the people who want to secede or go backwards who are winning elections.

Source: CBS Face the Nation on 2018 Virginia Senate race , Aug 12, 2018

Supports the legalization of same sex marriage

Q: Do you support the legalization of same sex marriage?

Tim Kaine's answer: Yes

Mike Pence's answer: No

Evan McMullin's answer: My faith believes in traditional marriage between a man and a woman, but I recognize that not all Americans share my beliefs.

Source: iSideWith.com analysis of 2016 presidential hopefuls , Nov 1, 2016

Battle for social justice: everyone deserves opportunity

When I left high school, I knew that I wanted to battle for social justice. That is why I took a year off to volunteer with Jesuit missionaries in Honduras. I got a firsthand look at a different system. A dictatorship where a few people at the top had all the power and everybody else got left out. That convinced me that we have got to advance opportunity for everybody, no matter where you come from, how much money you have, what you look like, how you worship or who you love.
Source: Speech at 2016 Democratic National Convention , Jul 27, 2016

Civil rights work inspired by fight to integrate schools

Back in 1970, in Virginia, a Republican governor named Linwood Holton integrated Virginia's public schools so that black and white kids could learn together. The family enrolled their own kids, including his daughter, Anne, in those integrated inner city schools. Many years later Anne went off to college and she brought those lessons from that pivotal time with her. Linwood's example helped inspire me as a civil rights lawyer.
Source: Speech at 2016 Democratic National Convention , Jul 27, 2016

Confederate flag celebrates an anti-civil rights heritage

Confederate flags in South Carolina and Mississippi have garnered much of the public's attention following the murder of nine black churchgoers in Charleston, but they aren't the only symbols forcing politicians to judge the line between heritage, history and intimidation. It's easy to pick on the Deep South on this issue, but just outside the capital in Northern Virginia is a vivid tapestry of memorialization to Confederate leaders: Robert E. Lee High School, Lee Jackson Memorial Highway, Lee Highway, Jefferson Davis Highway and so on.

Tim Kaine noted the difference in intention; noting the flag above the South Carolina statehouse was raised in 1961 at least partially as a statement against the civil-rights movement of that era. "That's really the heritage that the flag is celebrating--an anti-civil rights heritage from the '60s," Kaine said. "And I think the day has come when we're just better than that."

Source: RollCall.com Capitol Hill News, "Confederate Flag" , Jun 24, 2015

Property rights important when mapping pipeline routes

Griffith, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Roanoke County, and U.S. Sens. Tim Kaine and Mark Warner were asked about the proposed Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast pipelines, surveying for routes without a property owner's permission and natural gas exports. None expressed opposition to the pipelines. All emphasized that constituents' concerns about the projects should receive careful consideration by both the companies that want to build the pipelines and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
Source: Roanoke.com, "Eminent Domain," on 2016 Veepstakes , Mar 22, 2015

Help whites and blacks find common ground

White council members and African-American council members on a controversial issue would go into their corners and would vote different ways. [I had] an ability to be a bridge builder. I got into my first race 20 years ago, in 1994, to be a bridge builder.
Source: Coursera Lecture #59, "Public Policy Challenges Ahead" , Jan 29, 2015

Strong supporter of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act

I signed an executive order that banned discrimination against state employees based on race, sex, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, age, political affiliation, veteran status or disability. I also convened the Virginia Sexual Violence Commission and adopted many of their recommendations, which improved prevention and response to sexual violence in the Commonwealth. I have been a strong supporter of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which guarantees equal pay for equal work.
Source: 2012 Senate campaign website, kaineforva.com , Oct 9, 2012

Obama fought for equal pay for women

President Obama said he'd pass health care reform, and he did. He promised he'd fight for equal pay for women, college affordability for students and fair treatment for LGBT Americans--and he's kept his word. He's a tough leader who gets results. Let's come together, show how tough we are and prove our best days will always be ahead of us.
Source: 2012 Democratic National Convention speech , Sep 4, 2012

Obama fought for fair treatment for LGBT Americans

President Obama said he'd pass health care reform, and he did. He promised he'd fight for equal pay for women, college affordability for students and fair treatment for LGBT Americans--and he's kept his word. He's a tough leader who gets results. Let's come together, show how tough we are and prove our best days will always be ahead of us.
Source: 2012 Democratic National Convention speech , Sep 4, 2012

No discrimination against nominating gay judges

The General Assembly blocked a gay judicial nominee's appointment to the bench in Richmond: veteran prosecutor Tracy Thorne-Begland, who came out as gay as a naval officer 20 years ago. [Opponents say he] was unfit for the bench because he had challenged the military's ban on gays openly serving in the military, advocated for gay marriage & lives with a partner with whom he is raising twins.

George Allen said he objected to anti-gay discrimination in principle but refused to take a position on whether it had played a role in Thorne-Begland's rejection: [selections should be] "based on fidelity to the Constitution and laws--judges should apply the law, not invent it or impose their own political views."

A spokesman for Tim Kaine has equated Thorne- Begland's rejection to discrimination: "Gov. Kaine believes that the only standard for selecting judges should be their qualifications. This type of discrimination has no place in government, and serves to pit Virginians against one another."

Source: Washington Post on 2012 Virginia Senate debate , May 21, 2012

Same-sex couples should have the same legal rights

Kaine sought to lay out a middle ground position on same-sex marriage. "The underlying issue is, should committed couples have the same legal rights and responsibilities, and the answer to that is an unequivocal yes," Kaine said, noting that he had campaigned against a 2006 amendment adding a gay marriage ban to the Virginia Constitution. "I believe in the legal equality of relationships," Kaine continued. "The debate about, 'is it marriage? Is it civil union? Is it domestic partnership?' I just kind of let that one go and say committed couples should be treated the same by law."

But reporters pressed Kaine on whether marriage is a civil right; Kaine responded, "Relationship equality is a civil right." Asked whether gay couples should be given marriage licenses, he said, "There should be a license that would entitle a committed couple to the same rights as a married couple." But would that be called a marriage license? "I think the labels get in the way of the issue," Kaine said.

Source: Washington Post on 2016 Veepstakes , May 8, 2012

2005: No gay adoption; 2011: gay adoption okay

As a former Democratic National Committee chairman, Kaine was asked whether he thought support for gay marriage should be added to the party's official platform this year. He said he thought the party could unite around "relationship equality" but did not directly answer the question.

Questions surrounding gay couples have long followed Kaine. A year ago, he said that he believed gay couples should be able to adopt if a judge determined that it was in the best interests of a child. That marked a shift from when Kaine ran for governor in 2005, when he said he opposed any unmarried couples -- gay or heterosexual -- being able to adopt children.

Kaine wouldn't say whether his position on gay marriage differed from Obama's, which the White House has said is "evolving." Kaine said, "People like to ding the president on that word but the answer is, it's exactly what's happening in society."

Source: Washington Post on 2016 Veepstakes , May 8, 2012

GOP agenda on gay marriage is divisive social legislation

All four GOP candidates voiced support for the Defense of Marriage Act, which preserves states' rights not to recognize same-sex marriages. Marshall, the General Assembly's most outspoken social conservative, said he would consider impeaching any judge who refused to uphold the law.

A Kaine spokeswoman said, "Their support for divisive social legislation will only cause more polarization and gridlock in our politics."

Source: The Virginian-Pilot on 2012 Virginia Senate debate , Apr 29, 2012

Tried to pass laws favoring domestic partnerships

Although Kaine issued an executive order banning discrimination based on sexual orientation, he was unable to push through legislation to allow public institutions to extend health insurance benefits to same-sex couples before the end of his term.
Source: Hannah Lea Smith in George Mason University Broadside , Apr 9, 2012

Apology & reconciliation for slavery, at VA's slave market

In 2007, Virginia became the first state to officially apologize for slavery [while I was governor]. We unveiled the "Reconciliation Statue" at the site of the old slave market in Richmond. I noted when I participated in that unveiling that the apology was appropriate because Virginia had promoted, defended, and fought to preserve slavery. How we got from there to where we are today is the subject of this book.
Source: Trustbuilding, introduction by Tim Kaine, p, ix , Mar 4, 2010

2007: pardoned leader of 1800 slave rebellion

Henrico County dedicated a park in honor of Gabriel Prosser, close to the spot where he planned the country's first major slave rebellion. In 1800, Prosser and one thousand men armed with clubs, scythes, homemade bayonets and a few rifles marched towards Richmond, only to be foiled by a freak flood.

As a result of the initiative of the Defenders of Freedom, Justice and Equality, a local organization leading a "sacred ground historical reclamation" project, a historic marker on Broad Street commemorates the courage with which Prosser and at least twenty- five coconspirators faced execution as freedom fighters in the spirit of George Washington and Patrick Henry. In 2007, Governor Tim Kaine issued a pardon recognizing Prosser's "courage and devotion to the fundamental Virginia values of freedom and equality."

Source: Trustbuilding, by Rob Corcoran, p. 68 , Mar 4, 2010

First state apology for involuntary servitude of Africans

The Virginia General Assembly had become the first state in the nation to offer a formal apology for slavery. As Virginia marked the four- hundredth anniversary of the first English colony at Jamestown, House and Senate lawmakers voted unanimously to express "profound regret" for the involuntary servitude of Africans and the exploitation of Native Americans. Virginia's governor, Tim Kaine, told the crowd at the unveiling that the state's apology was appropriate, since Virginia had "promoted, defended, and fought to preserve" slavery. Within the year, Alabama, Maryland, North Carolina, New Jersey, and Florida, followed Virginia's example.
Source: Trustbuilding, by Rob Corcoran, p.230 , Mar 4, 2010

Voted YES on reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act.

Congressional Summary:
    Amends the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (VAWA) to add or expand definitions of several terms used in such Act, including :
  1. "culturally specific services" to mean community-based services that offer culturally relevant and linguistically specific services and resources to culturally specific communities;
  2. "personally identifying information" with respect to a victim of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking;
  3. "underserved populations" as populations that face barriers in accessing and using victim services because of geographic location, religion, sexual orientation or gender identity; and
  4. "youth" to mean a person who is 11 to 24 years old.

Opponent's Argument for voting No (The Week; Huffington Post, and The Atlantic): House Republicans had objected to provisions in the Senate bill that extended VAWA's protections to lesbians, gays, immigrants, and Native Americans. For example, Rep. Bill Johnson (R-OH) voted against the VAWA bill because it was a "politically–motivated, constitutionally-dubious Senate version bent on dividing women into categories by race, transgender politics and sexual preference." The objections can be grouped in two broadly ideological areas--that the law is an unnecessary overreach by the federal government, and that it represents a "feminist" attack on family values. The act's grants have encouraged states to implement "mandatory-arrest" policies, under which police responding to domestic-violence calls are required to make an arrest. These policies were intended to combat the too-common situation in which a victim is intimidated into recanting an abuse accusation. Critics also say VAWA has been subject to waste, fraud, and abuse because of insufficient oversight.

Reference: Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act; Bill S. 47 ; vote number 13-SV019 on Feb 12, 2013

Opposes defining traditional marriage.

Kaine opposes the CC Voters Guide question on same-sex marriage

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: "Maintaining current federal law defining marriage as one man and one woman"

Source: Christian Coalition Voter Guide 12-CC-q3b on Oct 31, 2012

Endorsed as "preferred" by The Feminist Majority indicating pro-women's rights.

Kaine is endorsed by by the Feminist Majority on women's rights

The Feminist Majority endorses candidates for the U.S. House and U.S. Senate. In addition to the stronger "endorsement," the organization also determines "preferred" candidates in races where they do not endorse. Their mission statement:

"Our mission is to empower feminists, who are the majority, and to win equality for women at the decision-making tables of the state, nation, and the world. The Feminist Majority promotes non-discrimination on the basis of sex, race, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, religion, ethnicity, age, marital status, nation of origin, size or disability. The purpose of Feminist Majority is to promote equality for women and men, non-violence, reproductive health, peace, social justice and economic development and to enhance feminist participation in public policy. Feminist Majority supports workers’ collective bargaining, pay equity, and end of sweatshops. We encourage programs directed at the preservation of the environment."

Source: FeministMajority.org website 12-FemMaj on Oct 31, 2012

Enforce against wage discrimination based on gender.

Kaine co-sponsored Paycheck Fairness Act

    Congress finds the following:
  1. Women have entered the workforce in record numbers over the past 50 years.
  2. Despite the enactment of the Equal Pay Act in 1963, many women continue to earn significantly lower pay than men for equal work. These pay disparities exist in both the private and governmental sectors. In many instances, the pay disparities can only be due to continued intentional discrimination or the lingering effects of past discrimination.
  3. The existence of such pay disparities depresses the wages of working families who rely on the wages of all members of the family to make ends meet; and undermines women's retirement security.
  4. Artificial barriers to the elimination of discrimination in the payment of wages on the basis of sex continue to exist decades after the enactment of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938. These barriers have resulted because the Equal Pay Act has not worked as Congress originally intended.
  5. The Department of Labor and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission have important and unique responsibilities to help ensure that women receive equal pay for equal work.
  6. The Department of Labor is responsible for investigating and prosecuting equal pay violations, especially systemic violations, and in enforcing all of its mandates.
  7. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is the primary enforcement agency for claims made under the Equal Pay Act.
  8. With a stronger commitment [to enforcement], increased information on wage data and more effective remedies, women will be better able to recognize and enforce their rights.
  9. Certain employers have already made great strides in eradicating unfair pay disparities in the workplace and their achievements should be recognized.
Source: S.84&H.R.377 13-S0084 on Jan 23, 2013

Let states recognize same sex marriage.

Kaine signed Respect for Marriage Act

Congressional Summary: Amends the Defense of Marriage Act to let states recognize same sex marriage. Defines "marriage" to provide that an individual shall be considered married if that individual's marriage is valid in the state or country where the marriage was entered into. Removes the definition of "spouse" (currently, a person of the opposite sex who is a husband or a wife).

Wikipedia and GLAAD history: In United States v. Windsor (2013), the U.S. Supreme Court declared Section 3 of DOMA unconstitutional under the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment. Obergefell v. Hodges (2015) struck down the act's provisions disallowing same-sex marriages to be performed under federal jurisdiction. The Supreme Court case did not challenge Section 2 of DOMA. Section 2 declares that all states have the right to deny recognition of the marriage of same sex couples that originated in states where they are legally recognized.

Heritage Foundation recommendation to vote NO: (3/20/2013): Americans respect marriage, not only as a crucial institution of civil society but the fundamental building block of all human civilization. This is why 41 states and the federal government affirm that marriage is between a man and a woman. The government isn't in the business of affirming our loves. Rather it leaves consenting adults free to live and love as they choose. And contrary to what some say, there is no ban on same-sex marriage. In all 50 states, two people of the same sex may choose to live together, and choose to join a religious community that blesses their relationship. What's at issue is whether the government will recognize such relationships as marriages--and compel others to recognize and affirm same-sex relationships as marriages.

Legislative outcome: Died in Committee (never came to a vote).

Source: S.29 & H.197 17-S0029 on Jan 6, 2015

Other candidates on Civil Rights: Tim Kaine on other issues:
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Amanda Chase
Bob McDonnell
Frank Wagner
Justin Fairfax
Ken Cuccinelli
Mark Herring
Ralph Northam
Robert Sarvis
Terry McAuliffe
Tom Perriello
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Amanda Chase
Corey Stewart
Daniel Gade
Mark Warner
Nick Freitas
Scott Taylor

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