What Is Tim Kaine's Approval Rating? Hillary Clinton's Vice President Pick Has A Solid History
For day, rumors had been swirling among the chatterati that the junior U.S. senator from Virginia, Tim Kaine, was on the shortlist to be Hillary Clinton's veep. Finally, on Friday evening, Clinton announced her pick via a text message to supporters, revealing that Tim Kaine would be Clinton's running mate. So, what is Tim Kaine's approval rating? Let's take a look back at what voters have thought of the longtime Virginia politician.
Most recently, Kaine has been serving as the junior senator from Virginia. Before winning his Senate seat, Kaine served as head of the DNC from 2009 to 2011, following Howard Dean's resignation. He was also serving as governor of Virginia during some of that time, too.
Elected to serve in the Senate in 2012 after a tough contest that saw two former Virginia governors vying for one Senate seat, Kaine prevailed — but narrowly. When Public Policy Polling asked voters for their feedback on Kaine's first six months as a senator in 2013, the results were pretty evenly mixed. Forty-three percent approved of the job he was doing, while 40 percent of those polled said that they disapproved of his performance. PPP did note that these were pretty similar numbers to the ones that former Sen. Jim Webb was posting up during his tenure in the same seat.
As governor, his job approval rating started to drop midway through 2008 and his unfavorable rating continued to climb until the end of his tenure in 2010. Aggregate polling collected by the Huffington Post shows Kaine's approval rating in September of 2008 topping out at just under 60 percent, with it hitting just above 45 percent by the time he left the governor's mansion in 2010. While the recession definitely didn't help make things easy for Kaine, it appears as if it had a depressive effect on the approval ratings of a whole slew of governors during that same time period, not just Kaine.
While his approval ratings aren't exactly the best that have ever been recorded, they still are pretty respectable for a long-term politician hailing from a purple-ish state, and will provide some balance to the Democratic ticket in terms of location, gender, religion (Kaine and his family are Catholic), if not in terms of ideological orientation or substance.