Throughout his remarkable 18-year political career, we have strongly endorsed the candidacies of Tim Kaine."
"...[Mr.Kaine] has significantly built on the Holton legacy by uncommonly standing up for equal rights, along with social and economic justice."
We're for Kaine
Throughout his remarkable 18-year political career, we have strongly endorsed the candidacies of Tim Kaine.
When he first ran for the Richmond City Council in 1994, we were there for the freshman candidate in whom we saw much promise. He was elected in 1994 from the city’s 2nd District and was re-elected three more times.
He also was elected in 1998 to the ceremonial office of mayor of the majority black council, with our endorsement based on his qualifications and what we thought best for the council and the city at that time.
He stepped down in September 2001 as mayor and councilman after winning the Democratic nomination for lieutenant governor, a position that he won on the ticket with now U.S. Sen. Mark Warner, who won the governorship.
The Free Press endorsed Mr. Kaine during each one of his victorious campaigns.
We are proud of these endorsements. That pride is escalated by our confidence that he will continue to build on the courageous legacy of A. Linwood Holton Jr., his father-in-law who, in 1970, became the first Republican governor since Reconstruction. The editor of the Free Press, then editor of the Richmond Afro-American, played a large role in persuading the leadership of the largely Democratic Richmond Crusade for Voters to back candidate Holton who, against the bitter opposition of white segregationists in both the Democratic and Republican parties, stood up courageously for racial justice. An example: Gov. Holton and his wife, “Jinks,” decided in 1970 to enroll their four children in the majority-black Richmond Public Schools.
The governor even escorted his daughter, Tayloe, to a previously allblack school in the East End in still segregated Richmond, where there remained strong opposition to the 1954 U.S. Supreme Court decision that outlawed segregation in public schools.
While we have not agreed with Mr. Kaine on all occasions, we still feel that he, a former civil rights lawyer, has significantly built on the Holton legacy by uncommonly standing up for equal rights, along with social and economic justice. One of his most unforgettable achievements: His becoming the first governor outside of Illinois to endorse Barack Obama for president in the historic 2008 presidential campaign. One of our most disturbing disagreements with Tim Kaine is that, under his gubernatorial leadership, he often said that Virginia was the “Best State to Do Business,” although black-owned businesses were and still remain outrageously discriminated against.
Gov. Kaine, as most voters know, is now involved in another political campaign for a seat in the U.S. Senate. Specifically, his opponent is Republican George Allen, whose disgraceful record clearly shows that he, along with the Cantor and Romney types, are only concerned about getting President Obama out of the White House and turning the clock back on hard-earned civil rights gains.
The Allen mentality is not a surprise. It is an extension of his racist record, including the demeaning “macaca” utterance he made in his unsuccessful 2006 re-election campaign, his glorification of Confederate flags and his deplorable opposition to a public holiday in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Mr. Kaine staunchly rejects this Confederate brand of bigotry.
Again, without reservation, we endorse Tim Kaine for the U.S. Senate to succeed Democrat Jim Webb, who is retiring for personal reasons.
Unlike former Gov. Allen, former Gov. Tim Kaine doesn’t need boots and a wad of chewing tobacco to identify with Virginians, their needs and aspirations.
Tim Kaine’s record substantiates this. He once again has earned our endorsement.
He also deserves the opportunity to extend the glowing legacy of our longtime, good friend A. Linwood Holton.
By: Richmond Free Press Editorial Board