5 Things to Know About Tim Kaine, the Democratic VP Choice

July 22nd 2016

Danielle DeCourcey

The Democratic ticket in the race for the White House is set.

Hillary Clinton has picked Sen. Tim Kaine (D- Va.) as her running mate.

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.)

Kaine previously served as the governor of Virginia and as the mayor of its capital, Richmond. Kaine was also a top contender to become President Barack Obama's running mate in 2008, before he was named chairman of the Democratic National Committee.

Here are five things to know about the Democratic VP pick.

1. Kaine opposes abortion personally, but has legislated against restricting abortion rights. 

During an interview in June on "Meet the Press," he openly said that he doesn't support abortion.

“I’m kind of a traditional Catholic," he said. "Personally, I’m opposed to abortion, and personally, I’m opposed to the death penalty.”

"Tim Kaine On Meet The Press (Full Interview) | Meet The Press | NBC News NBC News "

But he takes liberal positions on most women's health issues. Kaine stood up to attempts in Congress to strip Planned Parenthood of funding, and he supported the Supreme Court decision to strike down a Texas law that put restrictions on abortion clinics, according to Politico.

2. Kaine's Spanish is bueno.

Kaine is fluent in Spanish. In 2013, he became the first senator to give a full speech in the language while speaking in favor of immigration reform.

3. He's married to Virginia's secretary of education.

Kaine has been married to Virginia Secretary of Education Anne Holton for more than 30 years. They have three children. Holton is a former lawyer as well as a former juvenile court judge. She gave a Tedx talk last year about Richmond City public schools.

4. Kaine doesn't agree with the current president's strategies for fighting the Islamic State.

Kaine, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, criticized President Barack Obama in an NPR interview in 2015 for his decision to send troops to Syria, calling it an "undeclared war." He called for Congress to vote on future military action, such as air strikes, in Iraq and Syria.

"We all think ISIL is bad, but what we're basically doing is setting a precedent where a president can start a war and take it, you know, for more than a year without Congress getting involved at all, and that's just not what should happen," he said to NPR.

In February, the Obama administration sent Congress a bill that would solidify his authorization to wage war against ISIS, but House Republicans have refused to vote on it.

5. Bill Clinton is a fan.

Kaine seemed a likely pick for Hillary Clinton's campaign after The New York Times reported that Bill Clinton favored him as his wife's running mate. Bill Clinton reportedly thinks Kaine has the right mix of domestic and national security experience to both attract voters and to serve as Commander in Chief should duty call.

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