2020 Virginia Senate Candidate Guide
ABORTION – Legal or ban?
Daniel Gade – Ban. “I’m 100% pro-life. We need to protect children in the womb.”
Mark Warner – Legal. Co-sponsored act guaranteeing “equal access to abortion, everywhere.”
AFFORDABLE CARE ACT – Support Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare?
Mark Warner – Yes. Voted for the ACA. Voted against the American Health Care Act of 2017, which would have ended ACA.
CAMPAIGN FINANCE – Require political ads to disclose their largest funders?
Daniel Gade – No position found.
Mark Warner – Yes. Supports constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United. Introduced bipartisan bill against foreign election interference and for ad transparency.
CLIMATE CHANGE – Consider human-caused climate change a serious threat?
CLIMATE CHANGE – Address as a top priority by taxing or limiting output of greenhouse gases? Support government subsidies for renewable energy?
Daniel Gade – No. “For the time being,” wants “best energy production mix,” with renewables, nuclear, and “natural gas, and oil, and coal.” Concerned about “crippling our own current economic conditions.”
Mark Warner – Yes. For “investing in new technologies that reduce harmful emissions.” Co-sponsored bill for net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Wants carbon capture to use coal “more responsibly.”
COURTS – Support Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch nominations?
Daniel Gade – Yes. “We have TWO new conservative Supreme Court Justices.” See CEEP Supreme Court guide.
COVID-19 – Support administration’s response to coronavirus pandemic?
COVID-19 ECONOMIC RESPONSE – Support administration’s economic response to coronavirus pandemic?
Daniel Gade – Yes. “President has been great” getting “economy back to work.” Against normalizing overspending. Would have voted for CARES Act.
Mark Warner – No. Asked Treasury Dept. to give states more flexibility in distributing relief funds. Asked Trump for more help for working families.
EDUCATION – Use public funding for private and/or for-profit schools?
Mark Warner – No recent position found. Opposed publicly funded vouchers for private school tuition in 2001.
ENVIRONMENT – Tighten or loosen regulations?
FINANCIAL REGULATION – Tighten or loosen regulation of banks and credit card companies?
Mark Warner – Mixed. Voted for Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform. Later introduced bill to loosen regulation on small banks and credit unions.
GAY RIGHTS – Support Equality Act protecting LGBTQ persons from discrimination based on sexual preference?
Mark Warner – Yes. Co-sponsored Equality Act. “Always wrong to fire a person simply for being gay or transgender.”
GUN CONTROL – Enact more restrictive legislation on firearms?
Daniel Gade – No. It’s about individual liberty and “God-given rights to protect ourselves”— not guns. Concerned about “gun confiscation.” Red flag laws unconstitutional.
IMMIGRATION – Path to citizenship for “DACA” participants brought to the U.S. as children? Expand border walls?
Daniel Gade – No position found on DACA. Supports temporary guest worker program and “recruiting high-skilled workers from other countries.” Would limit humanitarian asylum.
Mark Warner – Yes. Co-sponsored bipartisan amendment offering path to citizenship for “DREAMers,” along with $25 billion for border wall funding. Opposed Trump diversion of funds for wall.
IRAN – Oppose military attacks on Iran without congressional approval?
Daniel Gade – Yes. Views specific Iran War Powers Act as an “attempt to embarrass Trump,” but supports idea of requiring congressional approval.
Mark Warner – Yes. Trump should have consulted Congress. Attack turned “anti-Iranian fervor into anti-American fervor.”
LABOR – Support “right-to-work” laws, stopping unions from mandating dues for workers they represent?
Mark Warner – Unclear. Has said wants to increase worker protections but no specific position found on Virginia attempt to repeal right-to-work.
MARIJUANA – Decriminalize or legalize?
Daniel Gade – No position found.
Mark Warner – Legal for medical. Co-sponsored bill to allow banks to work with cannabis businesses. “Supports the use of medical marijuana when used appropriately.” Waiting to see experience of other states on recreational.
MINIMUM WAGE – Raise hourly minimum wage in Virginia above current $7.25?
Daniel Gade – Unclear. Raising federal minimum wage in Virginia to $15 would “destroy small businesses.”
PLANNED PARENTHOOD – Can Planned Parenthood get public funding for non-abortion-related care?
Daniel Gade – No. “Planned Parenthood should not be government funded.”
Mark Warner – Yes. Co-sponsored Women’s Health Protection Act and voted against rescinding Planned Parenthood funding.
POLICE RESTRICTIONS – Restrict police use of force and increase public oversight?
Daniel Gade – Yes on oversight. Says he cares about criminal justice reform “passionately,” with many “in jail who don’t need to be.” Says police unions may protect “bad apples.”
Mark Warner – Yes. Co-sponsored Justice in Policing Act “to hold law enforcement accountable …, improve transparency …, and reform police training and policies.”
TRUMP IMPEACHMENT – Supported or opposed Trump impeachment and Senate’s calling witnesses?
Daniel Gade – Opposed impeachment. “About personal vendettas.”
Mark Warner – Supported. Voted to call witnesses and to convict Trump on both articles of impeachment.
STUDENT FINANCIAL AID – Support payment subsidies or forgiveness on student loans?
Daniel Gade – No. Forgiveness is an “immoral transfer of risk from poor people to already privileged people.” No position found on payments.
Mark Warner – Yes. Co-sponsored bill to limit payments based on income and forgive debts after 20 or 30 years of payments.
Campus Election Engagement Project is a nonpartisan effort to help colleges engage students in elections. Sources include Votesmart.org, FactCheck.org, Politifact.com and candidate statements. Vote411.org and Ballotready.org offer guides to local races.