WASHINGTON (CNN) - Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine, a top supporter of Sen. Barack Obama, said Wednesday that while he's not running for Obama's vice president, he will do everything he can to help the presumptive Democratic presidential candidate win in Virginia.
"I'm not running for anything. ... But my highest and best uses is trying to be a good governor and trying to help Sen. Obama in Virginia, which as you know traditionally hasn't gotten a lot of attention in presidential years," he told CNN's Wolf Blitzer.
Kaine spoke from Norfolk, Virgina, where he spent the day with Michelle Obama talking to military members and their families.
"I really believe for the first time in 44 years that we have a great chance of getting the electoral votes in a blue column for Sen. Obama this fall," he added.
Virginia hasn't voted for a Democrat since President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964 - but for more than a year, Obama's campaign has cited the state's 13 electoral votes as part of its argument that he can reshuffle the electoral map this fall.
Interactive: CNN Electoral Map
Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor has said Virginia will play a "pivotal role" in the general election.
Kaine, a Roman Catholic, once worked as a missionary in Central America. He can speak about religious values, something Obama wants more Democrats to do. Kaine speaks fluent Spanish, and could help Obama with Latinos - another target group for Democrats.
Kaine was also born in Minnesota and went to college in Missouri, two swing states in the Midwest.
Stu Rothenberg of the Rothenberg Political Report has said the Virginia governor "makes a lot of sense" for Obama. CNN senior political analyst Bill Schneider spelled out some of the advantages: "He's young; he's fresh; he's new; he's an outsider."
Kaine also touched on offshore oil drilling Wednesday, saying that while he's "open to exploration" of gas reserves off the country's coast, there needs to be a "new assessment of the costs and benefits ... In order to do that you need to look at the consequences."
Obama on August 1 eased his policy against offshore drilling, saying it could be part of a larger bi-partisan energy plan.
Like Obama, Kaine believes that the government needs to first drill in the nearly 70 million acres of land that is already leased to oil companies for drilling.
"They have acreage leased already that could do significant good," Kaine said.
I don't know people. He doesn't sound or look right for the ticket. Nice guy I'm sure, but I just don't know.
YES it will! Obama 08
Kaine looks like he just ripped one... and Obama looks like he just noticed.
Don't count your chickens, Barry. Michelle and you are not making the numbers in the polls (thank goodness!). You essentially DO NOT HAVE Bill Clinton's endorsement, and whether you like it or not, Americans still love Bill Clinton despite your cunning efforts to destroy him. All the while complaining about the politics of personal destruction.
We will all remember that when we go to the polls in November, Barry. You destroy, or at least try to destroy, all your obstacles, including people who make you look like a squealing, bleating complainer.
GO OBAMA. HE AND WHAT HE STANDS FOR WILL UNITE THIS COUNTRY IN SPITE OF THE HATE FROM PUMAS AND REPUBLICANS; WHO ARE ONLY FEAR/HATE MONGERS. OBAMA WILL BE POTUS TO US ALL. PEOPLE HAVE YOU NOT SEEN WHERE FEAR AND HATE HAS GOTTEN US IN THE LAST 8 YEARS. PLEASE CITIZENS WAKE UP OUR COUNTRY NEEDS OBAMA AND THE DEMOCRATS NOW MORE THEN EVER.
Oh its sad he is only up a few points? He should be dominating at the current moment to say anything- the republicans have always killed the candidates
Face it- if Clinton couldn't win it -Obama won't
Oh and all you Obama supporters going to be calling me racist? Since im black/live in Illinois/and supported Clinton in the primaries and am now a Puma since I actually follow ISSUES?
McCain is second best to Clinton
he could serve as a bench warmer
Want to bet?
Politically correct will stop behind the curtain.
Obama has to pick Kaine, someone with less experience ,anybody but kaine and obama looks like the unqualified man that he is.
OH KAINE WHY NOT BE OBAMA LITTLE RUNNING MATE. YOU KNOW WHEN YOU CAME DOWN TO IT OBAMA MIGHT BE ABLE TO FIND HIM A LITTLE PAL TO PLAY WITH IN THE BIG OLD WHITE HOUSE. HE MAY HAVE TO SETTLE FOR OPRAH OR WHOOPIE GOLDBERG AS HIS RUNNING MATES. THEY BOTH HAVE THE MONEY TO PUT UP ADS THANKS TO ALL THE IGNORANT WHITE PEOPLE WHO SUPPORTED THEM. BUT KNOW MORE. BYE, BYE OPRAH YOUR RATINGS ARE FALLING.
whole Map will go blue by Novemebr Mccain is war war war drill drill thats Mcshame
Wonder how Virginia Dems feel being pawns for Kaine's VP pandering?
We'll see. He has a shot. It's all about turnout at fear at this point. I'm an elitist and I have to say, I wish Americans knew much more about energy, economics and law than they do. Ignorance (really a function of apathy) is our biggest challenge.
Yeah right! Only if the prison population and illegal aliens are allowed to vote. Of course, as a Chicago Democrat, he does have the dead vote working for him! Obama and his sheep are going to cry come November.
I wish PUMA would finbd other blogs to write on. You are getting very tiresome.
I don't think so! Kaine couldn't give Virgina to Obama. Especially not if McCain chooses Eric Cantor for VP! It would positively go to Senator McCain ! :)
Whatever you do Governor, remember you are a state employee . . . make sure you do it on your own time, with your own money.
Vote McCain 08
So because Tim Kaine says so - it now is so? Don't think so! CNN - what investigative journalism have you conducted to substantiate this one man's opinion? Please report! Otherwise, shut up!
TO TEXAS TRAIL DOG!!!!
YOUR IGNORANACE IS SHOWING NO MATTER WHAT RACE YOU ARE. YOUR COMMENT DOES NOT BELONG ON THIS BLOG.
I hope so. I am voting for Obama.
Virginia should absolutely vote democratic this year. What has Bush ever done for them?
Chickens .....that sounds like an imposture to me ......republican trash.........since only 5% of Americans make over 200,000......there is alot of rethug trash out there.........
McCain’s insisting we have to drill now is very reminiscent of Bush’s insisting we had to invade Iraq now. It is about time we had a president who analyses situations, draws a conclusion and acts. What we need is an energy policy. If there is to be drilling which even McCain has not said will significantly lower oil prices, its time to to pas that legislation along with other measures to solve the energy problem. For eight years Bush did not look at the entire problem and now McCain wants to do the same. Only the oil companies have benefited from Bush policy.
What is going on here, why the rush and what is all this shouting about? McCain is acting too much like Bush to give me comfort. If he thinks that the problem is that urgent then he should be seeking to trade oil reserves with the national repository. But that is not what he wants. It is time to take a deep breath and listen to Obama. He wants to treat the problem and not make a splash with some quick action. An action whose outcome will help big oil but may do the people little good.
Its time to start with projects for alternative energy and to initiate gas efficiency standards that are higher than at present. If we allow drilling in the same legislation then we can get a bipartisan support for what this country needs.
Thanks Ron M
The AOl Straw Poll – REAL people voting REALTIME (without “sampling errors”): August 4-11 - 28,095 total votes cast - McCain 70%, Obama 30%.
I seriously doubt this will happen. Truth of it is that Kaine (as much as he tries to be or thinks he is) is no Mark Warner. Our previous Governor will get his Senate seat, but Kaine's influence is extremely minimal... and I really don't see Obama turning VA blue... It takes a candidate like Warner to do this.
To heck with Virginia, we're going to turn Texas Blue.