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What do the candidates say?
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What do the candidates say?

Joe Biden

  • Ban the manufacture and sale of assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.
  • Repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, which protects gun manufacturers from being held civilly liable for their deaths caused by their products.
  • Regulate the possession of existing assault weapons under the National Firearms Act.
  • Restrict the number of firearms an individual may purchase per month to one and end the online sale of firearms and ammunition.
  • Stop incarcerating people for drug offenses alone.
  • Decriminalize the use of cannabis and automatically expunge all prior cannabis use convictions.
  • Get rid of for-profit prisons.
  • Eliminate racial, gender, and income-based disparities in the system.
  • Create a $20 billion competitive grant program to spur states to shift from incarceration to prevention.
  • Eliminate mandatory minimum prison sentences

Pete Buttigieg

  • Legalize marijuana and expunge past convictions
  • Eliminate incarceration for drug possession and reduce drug offense-sentences retroactively.
  • Eliminate mandatory minimums
  • Abolish private federal prisons will be abolished.
  • End "for-profit bail industry"
  • Establish "National Review Board" to start a federal database documenting police use of force and to aim for the abolition of qualified and absolute immunity among law enforcement.
  • Expand background checks to apply to all sales of guns and ammunition.
  • Create a permit-to-purchase licensing system for guns and ammunition
  • Pass a federal law requiring gun owners to notify authorities when their guns go missing.
  • Re-ban the sale of assault weapons and magazines holding more than 10 rounds of ammo.
  • Domestic abuse perpetrators to turn over firearms they already own.

Amy Klobuchar

  • Ban bump stocks, high capacity ammunition feeding devices and assault weapons.
  • Close the gun show loophole.
  • Put universal background checks in place.
  • Direct the CDC to study gun violence as a public health issue.
  • Sponsored legislation called the 'boyfriend loophole,' which prevents people who have abused dating partners from buying or owning firearms.
  • Direct the Department of Homeland Security to resume its work tracking right wing extremism, including white nationalism, and make lynching a federal hate crime

Bernie Sanders

  • Expand background checks and end the gun show loophole.
  • Ban the sale and distribution of assault weapons.
  • Prohibit high-capacity ammunition magazines
  • Ban 3-D printing of firearms and bump stocks
  • Legalize marijuana and expunge past convictions
  • Ban for-profit prisons and detention centers
  • End cash bail
  • End solitary confinement
  • Make prison and jail communications, re-entry, diversion and treatment programs free.
  • Cut the national prison population in half and end mass incarceration by abolishing the death penalty, three strikes laws and mandatory minimum sentences.
  • Ban the prosecution of children under the age of 18 in adult courts.
  • Ban the imprisonment of youth for misdemeanor offenses.

Elizabeth Warren

  • Repeal the 1994 crime bill
  • Legalize marijuana and erase past convictions
  • End cash bail
  • Create a federal standard for the use of force
  • Separate law enforcement from immigration enforcement.
  • Reduce mandatory minimums and raise the age of criminal liability to 18.
  • Eliminate the death penalty and private prisons.
  • Nonviolent offenders with a clean record would have a federal expungement option.
  • With executive action, require background checks on "the vast majority of private sales."
  • Create a federal licensing system for purchases of guns or ammo.
  • Firearm purchases will be capped to prevent bulk buys, and a "real" one-week waiting period will be launched.

Graham Ambrose is the Iowa politics reporter for the Quad-City Times. 

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