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Transcript: Sept. 25 Virginia gubernatorial debate
19:30:01:00: Of course, the — tragedy at Virginia Tech led us to look at a lot of things. And for those of you who know me, you know that I have been deeply involved in working with people suffering from mental illness for years. And — one of the common themes in the most public tragedies is that we’re dealing with people who suffer from mental illness.
19:30:22:00: I would tell you, though, that the more common tragedy in mental illness is day to day, one person at a time, that you don’t read about in the paper. It’s a suicide. It’s a family struggling and they’re at their wits’ end to try and get one of their family members on a path to recovery and — sustainability. We have not found — gun control to — to effect that, to be effective in that area.
19:30:51:00: What we’ve done in Virginia is we have become the number one state per capita in screening out people with mental illness from gun purchases. We’re the f — we’re the best state at that in the country. We’re also the number one state that I’m aware of, The Department of Justice doesn’t keep data on all of them — in terms of prosecuting people who attempt to buy guns illegally.
19:31:11:00: That is the best way to enforce our gun laws is to be aggressive and proactive. I’m running against the only F-rated candidate from the — N.R.A., the only one of all six running statewide. I will support the Second Amendment. It deserves support — as does our whole constitution. But I will continue to focus on where I believe the main source of this problem is. And that is resolving mental health issues.
19:31:38:00: He absolutely said nothing with that response as it relates to gun control. Obviously, we both believe in investing in — in — in mental illness, mental health, and what we need to do. I can tell you this, without the Medicaid expansion money, there’s not a penny for any new investment in mental health, not a penny. With his tax plan that would take all this money out of our budget, there’s not a penny.
19:31:58:00: So it’s really just talk. Now whatever rating I may get from the N.R.A., I’m gonna stand here and tell you today that as governor, I want to make sure that every one of our citizens in the Commonwealth of Virginia are safe. Everyone of our children, when they go into a classroom, should know that they are safe. When any one of our loved ones goes into work, what happened at the Navy Yard the other day is continued pattern of what’s going on. We need to eliminate guns from the folks who should not own guns. There are many reasons why individuals who are dangerous, who have a issue of mental hellness — mental illness. And a background check, I’ve done it, it takes two, three, four minutes.
19:32:39:00: Thank you there. We’re gonna do a pause here for a brief commercial break. We’re gonna be right back with many more questions for the candidates of the governor — for governor of Virginia. And after the debate, you can join me and News 4 Northern Virginia Bureau Chief Julie Kerry for a special Google Hangout on NBCWashington.com. We’ll be right back. (APPLAUSE)
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