Where the Presidential Candidates Stand on Video Game Legislation

GamePolitics readers are obviously quite interested in where the presidential candidates of both parties stand on video game issues.

But so far, there hasn’t been much hard information available on this topic.

Now, watchdog group Common Sense Media has helped fill in the blanks. As reported by Jacques Steinberg of the New York Times:

Common Sense reached out to a dozen prominent candidates seeking the Democratic and Republican nominations… to ask about the policies they’d imagine implementing in regard to children and the media.

In addition to Senator Edwards, three others responded by the organization’s deadline… former Governor Romney, Governor Richardson and Senator Barack Obama.

Senator Edwards and Senator Obama and Governor Richardson said that they’d be more inclined to let the video game industry try to police itself… than to have the government regulate [violent game sales], at least as a first step.

Governor Romney, by contrast, suggested that “we get serious against those retailers that sell adult video games that are filled with violence and that we go after those retailers.”

Mitt Romney’s response is no surprise. A Romney campaign ad earlier this year lumped video games into an “ocean of filth” in which today’s children are supposedly swimming. And while she did not make the deadline for the Common Sense Media survey, Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton has been a high-profile critic of game violence – and Hot Coffee – over the years.

According to the NYT report, Clinton, along with Republicans Mike Huckabee and John McCain, expressed interest in participating in the survey but did not respond by deadline. Only Rudy Giuliani flat-out refused to participate. But his kids are older and apparently aren’t on good terms with the candidate following his messy divorce from their mother.

CSM founder Jim Steyer plans to invite the eventual presidential nominees to a national forum on media issues next fall. That sounds a bit optimistic given that the fall of 2008 is crunch time in the run-up to the November election.

Detailed breakdown of candidate video games responses here.

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