- Associated Press - Monday, October 27, 2014

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - In a story Oct. 25 about the U.S. Senate race in Virginia, The Associated Press reported erroneously that Republican challenger Ed Gillespie said Democratic Sen. Mark Warner is to blame for $7 trillion worth of new taxes. Gillespie said Warner voted for nearly $1 trillion worth of new taxes, not $7 trillion.

A corrected version of the story is below:

Senate candidates on the issues

On the issues: Senate candidates Mark Warner, Ed Gillespie and Robert Sarvis

Associated Press

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Democratic Sen. Mark Warner and his GOP challenger Ed Gillespie have finished up their debates and joint appearances and are now in the final spring to the Nov. 4 election.

Warner, a popular former governor seeking a second Senate term, has a large cash advantage over Gillespie and has consistently been ahead in various public polling. Warner has spent much of the campaign touting what he says is his bipartisan approach to legislating while attacking Gillespie’s past as a D.C. lobbyist.

Gillespie is a former Republican National Committee chairman who said he believes his campaign is picking up late momentum and will close the gap with Warner by Election Day. Gillespie has tried to tie Warner to President Barack Obama and said Warner’s bipartisan rhetoric has not matched his voting record.

Libertarian Robert Sarvis has tried to position himself as the alternative for those unhappy with the two-party system.

Here are their views on key issues:

THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT:

Warner said he wants to keep the good parts of the health care law and “fix what needs to be fixed.” He said “Virginians don’t want to go back to the days when people with pre-existing conditions couldn’t get health care coverage” and has proposed changes to the law that include “introducing a copper plan that would allow for a cheaper option.”

Gillespie said the Affordable Care Act “reduces job growth, patient choice and the quality of care” that needs to be repealed. Gillespie he would replace the law with “patient-centered, market-oriented reforms that would reduce costs, save a trillion dollars and mean six million more people with private health insurance than under Obamacare.”

Sarvis said the Affordable Care Act is “is proof that centralized planning by politicians and bureaucrats simply doesn’t work.” He said the way to improve the health care system is “is intelligent deregulation coordinated at the state and federal levels.”

ABORTION:

Warner said he “trusts the women of Virginia to make their own health care decisions, in consultation with their families and their doctor.”

Gillespie said he is pro-life and believes “we should foster a culture that respects human life.” He said he believes there should exceptions to abortion restrictions “for the life of the mother, rape and incest.”

Sarvis said that “Congress simply does not have the Constitutional power to regulate abortion.”

GUN RIGHTS:

Warner said “there are responsible steps we can and should take to address the increasing gun violence in our country” that don’t infringe on Second Amendment rights. He said he supports a proposal to “strengthen our background check system” aimed at preventing criminals and those with serious mental illnesses from obtaining guns.

Gillespie said he “will oppose efforts to infringe upon our Constitutional right to keep and bear arms, which is an individual right.”

Sarvis said he is the “only candidate committed to protecting the entire Bill of Rights” including the “rights of law-abiding gun-owners.”

TAXES:

Warner said the U.S. needs a “balanced” approached to deal with the country’s debt and founded the bipartisan Gang of Six aimed at resolving the country’s budget deficit. He said he “believes if we’re going to tackle this problem, both sides are going to have to give.”

Gillespie said Warner voted for nearly $1 trillion worth of new taxes and wants further tax increases. Gillespie said his proposals “would provide tax relief for families and businesses who are struggling under the Obama-Warner policies, and lower the highest corporate tax rate in the world which is driving American jobs, investment and businesses overseas.”

Sarvis said “taxes should be simple and few. Taxes should have broad bases and low rates. Taxes should not be stacked, or duplicative, and we should prefer efficient taxes to less efficient ones. Taxes should also be designed to ensure that increases in government spending are felt by all.”

IMMIGRATION:

Warner said he supports a comprehensive immigration bill that would “double the amount of border security” and provide “a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who are here now and have followed the law.” He said the bipartisan plan he supports has the backing of business and labor groups.

Gillespie said he’s proud to be the son of an Irish immigrant and said the U.S. has “a responsibility to secure our borders” and “enforce our existing laws.” He said “border security is not just an immigration concern, it is increasingly a homeland security and public health and safety concern.”

Sarvis said his mother is a Chinese immigrant who “inculcated in me an open-mindedness and inclusiveness that shows in everything I do.” Sarvis said the U.S. should make it easier for those want to move to here and work peacefully” and that he supports “modernizing our immigration laws and expanding legal immigration.”

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