Kaine Stumps for House Candidates, Calls Nobel 'Great Thing for Our Country'
Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D) paid a visit to Northern Virginia today in the hopes that his appeal among suburban voters might rub off on four fellow Democrats running for the House of Delegates: Incumbents Paul Nichols (Prince William) and Chuck Caputo (Fairfax/Loudoun), and newcomers John Bell (Loudoun/Prince William) and Mark Keam (Fairfax).
If you'll recall, Kaine won the 2005 gubernatorial race in part by emphasizing the issues that mattered to suburbanites: traffic, development and education. He became the first Democratic gubernatorial candidate in two decades to win Loudoun and Prince William counties, and he still enjoys a 71 percent approval rate in Northern Virginia, according to a recent Washington Post poll -- despite Republican efforts to paint him as a part-time governor because of his second job as chairman of the Democratic National Committee.
He wore both hats as he dropped in on a cafe in Woodbridge, dodged toddlers at a daycare center in Gainesville, walked neighborhoods in Fairfax and met volunteers in Vienna. He was upbeat about the chances of gubernatorial hopeful R. Creigh Deeds, who is behind Republican Robert F. McDonnell in the polls, but acknowledged that the next three weeks will be challenging.
"In Virginia we've had this weird tradition that for 32 years when the White House goes one way, the state race, the governor's race, goes the other way," he told reporters outside the Garden Kitchen in Occoquan. "We've got to assume that's not just a coincidence and work harder and smarter and better and we still have some ground to close."
Later, outside the Kid DropZone in Gainesville, he waxed eloquent about President Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize and the criticism it has elicited, especially from Republicans.
"We love having America back at the table of international diplomacy. Our strength as a nation has never been about just military strength -- it's always been military strength, plus diplomatic strength, plus the strength of our moral example. You've got to have all three, and if you don't, you're not really strong, and I think the Nobel was very much an affirmation of that," he said. "I think some of the negative reaction was predictable. [The prize] was a great thing for our country."
October 12, 2009; 6:45 PM ET
Categories: Creigh Deeds , Election 2009 , General Assembly 2009 , Loudoun County , Prince William , Robert F. McDonnell , Sandhya Somashekhar
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