Dems breathe sigh of reduction as Sen. Tim Kaine publicizes he’ll search reelection


U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine, the 2016 Democratic vice presidential nominee and a fixture in Virginia politics for a few years, launched plans Friday to hunt reelection subsequent yr.

“I’m a servant. I love Virginia. I’m proud of what I’ve done,” Kaine talked about, together with that he feels he has further to carry out.

Kaine, 64, made the announcement about trying to find a third time interval after meeting with a couple of dozen youthful advocates, state workers and political staffers at an monetary enchancment roundtable in Richmond, his longtime home. His partner, Anne Holton, was by his facet. His plans to run will doable ease Democratic worries about holding onto the seat in a state now led by a Republican governor, Glenn Youngkin.

A former Virginia governor and lieutenant governor, Kaine will enter the race as a result of the early favorite in a must-hold seat for Democrats coping with a hard Senate map in 2024.

He is most interesting acknowledged nationally as Hillary Clinton’s working mate throughout the 2016 presidential election, a race they misplaced to Donald Trump and Mike Pence in some of the beautiful upsets in U.S. historic previous.

Kaine acquired his start in public office on the Richmond City Council, working in 1994 after becoming irritated over what he observed as a shortage of cooperation between white and Black council members. He served 4 phrases, along with two as mayor, and was credited with working to reinforce the city’s enterprise and social native climate and reduce its extreme crime cost.

He went on to be elected lieutenant governor, incomes a recognition for reaching all through social gathering traces whereas serving beneath well-liked centrist Gov. Mark Warner, who later ended up as his colleague throughout the Senate. In 2005, he defeated Republican Jerry Kilgore throughout the race for governor and served from 2006 to 2010. Virginia uniquely limits its chief executives to 1 time interval.

Kaine was first elected to the Senate in 2012, defeating Republican George Allen after a bitter and expensive race by which larger than $80 million was spent, a very powerful amount for any Senate contest throughout the nation all through that election cycle. His 2018 contest in opposition to far right-wing GOP nominee Corey Stewart was far a lot much less aggressive; Kaine acquired by 16 proportion components.

Kaine is seen as a passionate however pragmatic senator and is called a vital policymaker and eager affiliate on legal guidelines.

After his high-profile activate the 2016 Democratic presidential ticket, he returned to work throughout the Senate, normally exhibiting up in darkish jeans by the coronavirus pandemic when an air of informality swept through the Capitol.

His private bout with the coronavirus led to what he has described as “mild long COVID symptoms,” as he pushes for funding in direction of evaluation and take care of these with the sickness.

As a senator, Kaine has fought automated federal worth vary cuts, labored to chop again unemployment amongst veterans and sought federal recognition for Virginia’s Native American tribes. He currently pressed for the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act and the bipartisan infrastructure laws. ___

AP Congressional Correspondent Lisa Mascaro contributed to this report from Washington.

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