Hillary Clinton Announces Her Vice Presidential Running Mate
The Clinton campaign successfully kept its vice presidential pick confidential, even as a shortlist of potential contenders emerged. Although Bernie Sanders supporters longed for progressive Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren to run alongside the Democratic presidential nominee, the former secretary of state went in another direction. On Friday, Hillary Clinton revealed Tim Kaine will be her vice presidential running mate, just before the Democratic Party convenes in Philadelphia to officially nominate them both.
Clinton sent out the announcement on Twitter after days of saying she would text it to her supporters in an attempt to ensure they were the first ones to know about her pick. After Donald Trump spontaneously announced his partnership with Indiana Governor Mike Pence on Twitter, Clinton continuously assured voters backing her that they wouldn’t have to find out who she chose while randomly browsing the internet.
Now, she’s headed to the Democratic National Convention with her ticket officially decided. This way, the convention will be more about getting voters on board with her campaign and excited about potentially electing the first female president of the United States rather than the nation only focusing on who she would pick to run alongside her and help her take on Trump in the general election.
Although a safe choice for Clinton, Kaine, a Democratic senator from Virginia, could help win over more rural and midwestern states, including his battleground home state, as well as white men (a demographic Trump currently has a hold over). Political analysts believe if Clinton can win Virginia, she’ll easily defeat Trump in November, even if he takes Florida and Ohio.
Kaine has the extensive government experience Clinton sought in a right-hand confidant. He served as the lieutenant governor of Virginia, the governor of Virginia, and the chair of the Democratic National Committee before becoming a U.S. senator in 2013. Also working in his favor is the fact that he speaks Spanish fluently, increasing his appeal to Latinx voters despite his overwhelming whiteness.
However, progressives have been critical of Kaine’s somewhat lenient stance on big banks, which Sanders continuously bashed Clinton for as well. He also supported the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), voting to fast track the bill in the Senate and defending that decision Thursday, telling The Intercept, “Fast track was to give President Obama the same tools to negotiate a trade deal that every president since Gerald Ford has had, and of course I voted for that.” Clinton came out opposing the TPP after supporting it while secretary of state, so Kaine’s continuous defense of the deal is in direct opposition with Clinton’s.
Now that each presidential candidate has chosen their running mate, let the 2016 general election games begin.