Warner and McDonnell take action in the wake of school shooting - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Warner and McDonnell take action in the wake of school shooting


Not only has the tragedy in Connecticut had an impact on people's daily lives it is prompting lawmakers to consider changes.

We tracked down two of Virginia's most powerful politicians, one a Democrat the other a Republican. Both made bold moves to address the Newtown tragedy.

Mark Warner may be a Democrat, but he has long been a strong defender of the second amendment.

"The status quo isn't acceptable anymore," he said in the wake of the school shooting.

Warner, who used to boast that he signed every pro-second amendment bill that came to his desk as governor, is ready to start a conversation about a ban on some semi-automatic weapons.

"We cannot accept a circumstance where every few months a tragedy hits another community," Warner said.  

While Warner the Democrat is ready to open the door to new laws, Republican Governor Bob McDonnell took a different route.

"I still haven't quite come to terms with it," said McDonnell

McDonnell ordered a review of recent audit of the safety of Virginia schools. He also is forming a safety task force to prepare for the worst. 

 "I'm going to do everything I can certainly to make sure that we never have an event happen like that in the state of Virginia," he said.  

But McDonnell stopped short of saying he would be open to new state laws, like the closing of the gun show loop hole, to restrict gun access in Virginia.

"It is way too early to start reacting or overreacting to what the policies may be," he said.  

Warner meanwhile is hoping it is both Republicans and Democrats that take big steps to make a big change.

"I think you are going to see at least I hope, that there is an awful lot of folks like myself that have an A rating from the NRA that are willing to say enough," Warner said.

The question now is, will public sentiment push a change that up until this point seemed impossible?

One group that is silent is the NRA. They did not return our request for comment. We aren't alone. They have not responded to any media request since the Newtown tragedy.

You can see Senator Warner's entire interview on DecisionVirginia.com

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