Sen. Kaine: Let military, not lawmakers, decide whether guns are allowed on bases

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Last week’s deadly shooting at Fort Hood has spurred renewed calls to allow military personnel to carry weapons on bases, but Sen. Tim Kaine argues politicians ought to stay out of the issue.

“I trust the military leadership on this. I don’t live on a military base, and I don’t serve in the military,” the Virginia Democrat said on “Fox News Sunday.” “For those of us in Congress to say ‘here’s what they should do,’ I worry that it would be a little political rather than really about safety or security.”


SEE ALSO: Calls rise after Fort Hood to allow carrying firearms on base


In the aftermath of last Wednesday’s shooting — which left four dead, including shooter Spc. Ivan Lopez, and 16 others wounded — some lawmakers are redoubling their efforts to repeal the ban on military personnel bringing weapons on base. Right now, only base security are permitted to carry arms.

Rep. Steve Stockman, Texas Republican, is pushing “The Safe Military Bases Act,” which would allow base personnel to arm themselves.

Fellow Texas Republican Rep. Michael McCaul, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, argued Sunday that, at the very least, senior military leadership on base ought to be able to carry weapons

** FILE ** Sen. Tim Kaine, Virginia Democrat, left, accompanied by Vice President Joseph R. Biden, gestures during a roundtable discussion on gun violence, Friday, Jan. 25, 2013, at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Va. The panelists included officials who worked on the aftermath of the Virginia Tech shootings. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

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** FILE ** Sen. Tim Kaine, Virginia Democrat, left, accompanied by Vice ... more >

“Can we stop [these shootings] in the future? I don’t think you can ever 100 percent secure a military base … but I do think it requires a review, a re-analysis, of the force protection policies that we have at our military installations to see how we can better secure them,” Mr. McCaul said on “Fox News Sunday.”

Mr. Kaine also said that if the military reviews the issue and determines more personnel should be armed, he would support that decision.

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