Full Text DNC Day 3, July 27, 2016: Tim Kaine’s Speech Accepting the Vice Presidential Nomination at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia

POLITICAL TRANSCRIPTS

2016 PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN:

Tim Kaine’s Speech Accepting the Vice Presidential Nomination at the Democratic National Convention

Source: Time, 7-27-16

Thank you everybody. Hello, Philadelphia!

(APPLAUSE) Hello Democratic families.

I want to start off by thanking my beautiful wife and my three wonderful children, Nat, Woody, and Annella. They are sitting right up there.

(APPLAUSE)

You know my son, Nat, deployed with his Marine battalion just two days ago.

(APPLAUSE)

KAINE: He deployed overseas to protect and defend the very NATO allies that Donald Trump says he now wants to abandon.

Semper fi, Nat! Semper fi!

(APPLAUSE)

My parents and my in-laws are here. Our siblings and their spouses. Our nieces and nephews, and hundreds of friends from Virginia and beyond.

(APPLAUSE)

I love seeing you front and center. Including my friend of 37 years, senior Senator Mark Warner. My great Governor Terry McAuliffe.

(APPLAUSE)

And my great friend and Congressman Bobby Scott.

(APPLAUSE)

We love you all.

Today, for my wife Anne and every strong woman in this country, for Nat, Woody, and Annella, and every young person starting out in life to make their own dreams real, for every man and woman serving our country in the military at home or abroad, for every working family working hard to get ahead and stay ahead, for my parents and in-laws and every senior citizen who hopes for a dignified retirement with health care and research to end diseases like Alzheimer’s.

For every American who wants our country to be a beloved community where people are not demeaned because of who they are but rather respected for their contributions to this nation, and for all of us who know that the brightest future for our country is the one that we build together, and for my friend, Hillary Clinton, I humbly accept my party’s nomination to be vice president of the United States.

(APPLAUSE)

(APPLAUSE)

Thank you.

(APPLAUSE)

Can I be honest with you about something? Can I be honest with you about something? I never expected to be here. But let me tell you how it happened, I was born in Minnesota and grew up in Kansas City.

(APPLAUSE)

My folks were not much into politics. My dad ran a union iron- working shop in the stockyards.

(APPLAUSE)

And my mom was his best salesman. My two brothers and I pitched in to work during summers and weekends. And, you know, that is how small family businesses do it.

My parents, Al and Kathy, here tonight and going strong, they taught me about hard work and about kindness and most especially, about faith. I went to a Jesuit boys high school, Rockhurst High School.

(APPLAUSE)

Wow, that’s a big line for the Jesuits.

Now we had a motto in my school, “men for others.” And it was there that my faith became something vital. My north star for orienting my life. And when I left high school, I knew that I wanted to battle for social justice.

(APPLAUSE)

Like so many of you. Like so many of you.

That is why I took a year off from law school to volunteer with Jesuit missionaries in Honduras. I taught kids how to be welders and carpenters. (SPEAKING SPANISH), faith, family, and work. Faith, family, and work. (SPEAKING SPANISH).

And let me tell you what really struck me there, I got a firsthand look at a different system. A dictatorship. A dictatorship where a few people at the top had all the power and everybody else got left out.

Now that convinced me that we have got to advance opportunity for everybody, no matter where you come from, how much money you have, what you look like, how you worship or who you love.

(APPLAUSE)

Back in 1970, in Virginia, a Republican governor named Linwood Holton believed exactly the same thing. He integrated Virginia’s public schools so that black and white kids could finally learn together. And then the family enrolled their own kids, including his daughter, Anne, in those integrated inner city schools.

Many years later Anne went off to college and she brought those lessons from that pivotal time with her. And then one day, in a study group, she met this goofy guy who had been off teaching kids in Honduras.

Well, Anne and I have now been married almost 32 years and I am the luckiest husband in the world.

(APPLAUSE)

You know, let me tell you something, Anne’s parents, Lin and Jinks, are here today, 90-plus and going strong.

(APPLAUSE)

Ninety-plus and going strong. Linwood Holton, he is still a Republican but he is voting for an awful lot of Democrats these days. An awful lot of Democrats.

(APPLAUSE)

And here is why, he is voting for Democrats because any party that would nominate Donald Trump for president has moved too far away from his party of Lincoln.

(APPLAUSE)

And I’ll tell you, if any of you are looking for that party of Lincoln, we have got a home for you right here in the Democratic Party.

(APPLAUSE)

Linwood’s example helped inspire me as a civil rights lawyer. Over 17 years I took on banks, landlords, real estate firms, local governments, anybody who treated anybody unfairly.

I had a six-year case against an insurance company that was discriminating against minority neighborhoods all across the United States in issuing homeowner’s insurance.

Folks, Democratic friends, these are the battles that I have fought my entire life.

(APPLAUSE)

And that is the story — and that is the story of how I decided to run for office. My city of Richmond was divided and discouraged in the early 1990s. We had an epidemic of gun violence that was overwhelming our low-income neighborhoods.

People were pointing fingers and casting blame instead of finding answers. And I couldn’t stand it. So I ran for city council and I won that first race more than 20 years ago by a landslide margin of 94 votes.

(APPLAUSE)

And I’ve said ever since, if I’m good at anything in politics, it’s because I started at the local level listening to people, learning about their lives, and trying to get results. I see a mayor here who knows what I’m talking about.

Later I became mayor of Richmond, lieutenant governor, and then the 70th governor of Virginia.

(APPLAUSE)

Now, I was a hard times governor. I had to steer my state through the deepest recession since the 1930s. But hey, tough times don’t last and tough people do. And can I tell you that Virginians are tough people? We are tough people.

(APPLAUSE)

And we are smart, too . We achieved national recognition for our work, best-managed state, best state for business, best state for a child to be raised, low unemployment, high median income.

We shed tears along the way. We shed tears especially together in the days after that horrible mass shooting at Virginia Tech that killed 32 people from beautiful 19-year-old students to 70-plus-year- old Romanian-born Holocaust survivors, and we shed tears and held each other up, but afterwards we rolled up our sleeves and we fixed the loophole in the background record check system so that we could make our commonwealth safer. And we got have to do that in the nation. (APPLAUSE)

We invested in our people expanding pre-K and higher ed., because we all know in this room that education is the key to all we want to be, all we want to be.

(APPLAUSE)

And now I have the honor of representing my commonwealth in the U.S. Senate. I work on the Armed Services and Foreign Relations committees to keep us safe at home and strong in the world.

(APPLAUSE)

I work on the Budget Committee with our great Democratic leader of that committee, a spectacular senator who used to be a mayor, Vermont’s Bernie Sanders.

(APPLAUSE)

CROWD: Bernie! Bernie! Bernie!

And, everybody, we all should feel the Bern and we all should not want to get burned by the other guy.

(APPLAUSE)

On that Budget Committee under Bernie’s leadership, we fight for investments in education, health care, research, transportation. And I also serve on the Aging Committee to make sure that seniors like my folks have a secure retirement and don’t get targeted by rip-off artists who will scam them out of their savings or overcharge them for prescription drugs.

(APPLAUSE)

Can I tell you a funny thing about the Senate? Can I tell you a funny thing about the Senate?

(APPLAUSE)

That sounds like a yes. I spend a lot of time with Republican senators who, once they have made sure that nobody is listening, will tell you how fantastic a senator that Hillary Clinton was.

(APPLAUSE)

Now, look, this journey that I’ve told you about has convinced me, has convinced me over and over again that God has created in our country a beautiful and rich tapestry, an incredible cultural diversity that succeeds when we embrace everybody in love and battle back against the forces, the dark forces of division.

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