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Joseph Kaminski

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December 15, 2017

My (Negative) Thoughts on Tim Kaine


Earlier this year, I laid out some of the options on Hillary Clinton’s Vice Presidential shortlist. I gave rather detailed explanations to shut down rumors of Warren or Sanders or Brown (or s getting the VP spot. I personally expected Julian Castro, a rather centrist Democrat from Texas who could be considered a near “complete package” (unless you’re a progressive, of course). That’s where we were at. I knew she was going to pick a centrist, but I didn’t think she’d pick Tim Kaine.

Look, I’m going to piss some Hillary Clinton voters off with this post. I really don’t care at this point. I’ve dealt with the emotional investment of Bernie Bros, and I can deal with the narcissistic neo-liberalism coming from the Hillary camp. Don’t take that the wrong way, either.

So, taking personal concepts aside, let me just say this: I am more than disappointed that Hillary Clinton has chosen Tim Kaine as Vice President.

Clinton Kaine

Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine.


Clinton is running to the right in an attempt to gain moderate centrists. Let me say that again. Clinton’s running to the right in an attempt to gain moderate centrists.

I dislike Tim Kaine. In fact, I despise Tim Kaine. If I had to put all of the contenders of Clinton’s VP shortlist in a list of my own, I would have put Tim Kaine in last place by a mile. He, despite what the media is trying to beat into the news, is NOT a progressive. He’s far from it.

Now, I know what you’re thinking. Oh! He’s got an F rating from the NRA because he fought them after the Virginia Tech Massacre! Oh! He’s got an A rating from Planned Parenthood even though his faith makes him personally pro-life! Oh! He was a mayor, a lieutenant governor, a governor, a senator, and can play the harmonica! WHO GIVES A SHIT?

Hillary supporters get mad at people like me when we say this, too.

I watched Tim Kaine’s first speech with Hillary Clinton the other day. Despite popular belief, I think he shit the bed. He literally played every “safe” card he possibly could. I laughed out loud when Kaine talked about how his mother told him “to make a difference you have to be an optimist.” He literally played the good ole fashioned 1992 cards that out-of-touch politicians always have up their sleeves.

He’s pro-TPP. Don’t come to me linking the newest article of him claiming he’s no longer for it. Why on Earth would you believe that he’s suddenly against the TPP almost immediately after he became the Vice Presidential nominee? He’s been for it since the beginning, just like Clinton was until rather recently. Tim Kaine voted for “fast tracking” authority for the TPP in the Senate. He vocally wanted the trade deals to speed through Congress. He, in the past, has defended the trade pact in an interview with The Intercept as early as this past WEEK.

Tim Kaine Supported TPP, Offshore Drilling & Anti-Union Right-to-Work Measures.

“I am having discussions with groups around Virginia about the treaty itself. I see much in it to like. I think it’s an upgrade of labor standards. I think it’s an upgrade of environmental standards, I think it’s an upgrade in intellectual property projections,” Kaine said of the TPP during his interview with The Intercept. He quickly came out against It, saying he has “very significant concerns about” the TPP’s “dispute resolution mechanism”.

Well, Tim, if you had concerns about it, why did you vote for fast tracking authority for it to get it and other deals moving quicker throughout the Senate?

It’s just like Hillary Clinton who, up until last year, favored and even advocated for it. She called it, in the past, the “gold standard” of trade pacts, for God’s sake! But the 2016 Democratic Platform has moved left, thanks in part to new standards and messages being shaken up by movements within the interior of the DNC. I’m not seeing through it. I don’t believe Tim Kaine (or Hillary Clinton, for that matter) can switch their opinions on such a topic on a dime after years of championing it.

Tim Kaine is for Bank Deregulation, too.

I have an absolute hatred for any candidate who champions the banks. Especially the deregulation of the banks. And don’t give me that bullshit “oh, that was years ago!” comment. Tim Kaine campaigned and pushed for bank deregulation AS HE WAS ON THE SHORTLIST FOR HILLARY’S VP.

Kaine signed two letters on July 18th, 2016 urging federal regulators to “go easy” on the banks of America ― one bill helps big banks dodge risk management rules while the second helps smaller banks avoid “consumer protection standards”.

The big bank letter would help major firms including Capital One, PNC Bank and U.S. Bank, all of which control hundreds of billions of dollars in assets. Such large “regional banks,” Kaine writes, are being discriminated against based solely on the fact that they are so big. – Huffington Post

So, he’s been pro-TPP for most of his political career since its inception (while Sanders and Warren have very vocally and legislatively been against it), and is publicly siding with the big banks of America over the people of the states.

He’s taken well over a hundred thousand dollars from corporations, as well.

He’s NOT a progressive.

I’ll say it again. He’s NOT a progressive.

I don’t care what Obama says of him. I don’t care what the news says about him. Did you actually read the news when he came out? Oh, he’s got a son in the military! Oh, he plays the harmonica! Oh, he likes reading books and sunsets and apple pies! We didn’t see policy in that “Five Things You Should Know About Tim Kaine” article published hours after Clinton announced his name via text message.

He’s a centrist. A center-right, corporatist, establishment Democrat that is willing to bend ever so slightly for the political winds. A candidate who would run to the right for a few votes. A corporate tool.

In many ways, he’s a Hillary Clinton. He’s just one example of Hillary Clinton running right with her campaign choices. He’s a Blue Dog Democrat.

Instead of working with independents or progressives by picking a more uniting Vice President, she ran to Kaine – who she sees as a “Safe” Pick. A white male in a swing state who speaks Spanish. A “Safe” Pick.

Meanwhile, let’s take a gander over at the Republican Party.

At this point, the base Republican Party is more united under Trump than the base Democratic Party is united under Clinton. But Trump actually listened to a faction of his party which was rather displeased with him. Rather than going with his gut and picking Gingrich or Christie as his VP, he chose Mike Pence of Indiana. He listened to the GOP establishment and chose a candidate which would “unite” the party more.

Clinton didn’t do that. She chose to snub the progressives with a pick that makes it seem as if she’s running to the right. Then her pundits try playing it off as if he’s the most golden progressive in the world. HEADS UP: He’s ranked FORTY-FIRST out of FORTY-FOUR in the Senate in terms of progressivism and liberalism.

As Kyle Kulinski from Secular Talk put it, “Hillary is so deep within her bubble that she thinks she’s “playing it safe”. She thinks the base is locked up, and that she can use Tim Kaine to grab more “moderate Republicans” that no longer exist nor have interest in her.”

The Democrats that she needed – that block of Bernie supporters that just needed a bone or two to see she could have been for them afterall – is gone. The people who dislike Clinton most are millennials, especially Bernie voters.

Clinton chose establishment politics in a new era of political movements.

She thinks she’s in 1992, when establishment centralism was popular. She’s wrong.

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