WAMU 88.5 : Morning Edition

At DNC, Kaine Looks To Win Over South For Democrats

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Former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine is locked in a tough Senate race in Virginia, but he took time off from the campaign to travel to Charlotte to address the Democratic National Convention last evening. In contrast, his opponent, Republican George Allen, stayed home to campaign instead of heading with his party to the Republican convention in Tampa last week.. 

Kaine was one of the opening night speakers in Charlotte. In his address he praised President Obama whose policies are dominating Kaine's tight race. 

"[President Obama] is a tough leader who gets results for the American public," Kaine said. 

After his convention speech, Kaine came to shake hands and sit briefly with Virginia delegates. Besides getting to spend time with Virginia Democratic activists, Kaine had another mission down here that stems from his time as the Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, he said.

"And the second thing is look, I picked Charlotte as the convention city because, as a former chairman of the Southern Governors Association, I want Democrats to play well in the South," Kaine said. "And I got to know the mayor and the entire civic community and I wanted to come and thank them for doing a good job."

As for Kaine's speech, Virginia convention delegate Frank Leone thought the candidate accomplished what he needed to. 

"I thought he was positive, reaching out, did a great job of talking about what he accomplished as governor and why the president should be reelected," Leone said.

While in Charlotte, Kaine also tried to fill up his campaign coffers, but now he plans to spend the rest of the week back at home trying to convince voters to back him in November.

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