Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) will search reelection in 2024, giving Democrats some excellent news as they put together for an especially powerful Senate map with a number of incumbents up for reelection in pink states.
“I’ve been honored to serve individuals as a missionary, civil rights lawyer, and elected official on the native, state, and federal ranges. I like the Commonwealth and its residents and need to maintain being your Senator,” Kaine stated in an announcement Friday.
Kaine’s announcement got here after hypothesis in Washington and in Virginia that he would possibly step down on the finish of his second time period. He informed reporters at a Friday morning occasion in Richmond that he made his determination to run for reelection simply final week.
Kaine has been outspoken about his struggles with lengthy COVID, revealing final 12 months that his signs included a “24/7” tingling sensation and that his physique has “not gone again to the place it was earlier than” he was first contaminated with the virus in 2020. He helped introduce laws to enhance analysis and supply federal sources for these affected by the lingering illness.
“I inform individuals it seems like all my nerves have had like 5 cups of espresso,” Kaine informed The Washington Put up final 12 months.
Kaine started his lengthy political profession in Richmond, first serving on the town council earlier than changing into its mayor. He was elected as Virginia’s lieutenant governor in 2001 after which as governor in 2005. In 2009, he started a two-year stint as chairman of the Democratic Nationwide Committee. He received his first election to the Senate in 2012 after former Virginia Sen. Jim Webb (D) stepped down. Within the 2016 election, Kaine was tapped because the Democratic nominee for vp as Hillary Clinton’s operating mate.
Kaine has been a number one progressive voice on overseas coverage within the Senate, advocating for reasserting Congress’ constitutional position in declaring battle and authorizing the usage of army pressure, together with the 2002 Iraq Battle authorization. He’s additionally been a key proponent for baby care, reproductive rights and civil rights.
Kaine’s determination to run for reelection bolsters Democrats’ odds of retaining the Virginia Senate seat. Nonetheless, Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s (R) victory in 2021 ― the primary GOP statewide win in Virginia since 2009 ― is one purpose Democrats could be silly to take the race without any consideration. Although it has trended blue, significantly in federal races, the commonwealth has been a historic battleground that might nonetheless provide surprises, significantly with President Joe Biden on the prime of the ticket with an anticipated bid for a second time period.