Editorial: Kaine for Senate
Washington is broken. Of that, there can be no doubt. The House of Representatives and the Senate have become mockeries of the democratic process.
While there has always been partisan bickering on the Hill, at the end of the day, both sides had once been able to come to an accord for the good of the people. Old-school politicians knew they had to give a little if they hoped to get some of their agenda through. Increasingly, that’s not the case anymore.
We need to return to that spirit of compromise. Looking at the race in Virginia for U.S. Senate, there’s one candidate who seems to get it, and another who would rather spend his time driving more wedges into the political divide.
Tim Kaine appears poised to follow in the footsteps of his mentor, U.S. Sen. Mark Warner. Warner has been willing to work with all of his fellow Senators, both Republicans and Democrats, most famously in his efforts with the Gang of Six in their effort to come up with a solution to the nation’s debt crisis.
Like Warner, Kaine recognizes the need for a balanced approach to this crucial issue, with a combination of targeted budget cuts paired with some increases in revenue to bring down the deficit. Kaine favors allowing the Bush-era tax cuts to expire on those who earn $500,000 or more a year (which is a bit of a departure from President Obama, who would set the bar at $250,000 for returning to those pre-Bush tax levels).
On the other side, there is George Allen, who has pledged not to raise a penny of new taxes … not even $1 in revenue for every $10 in budget cuts. Allen’s off-hand comments have also given an indication into his personality and his willingness (or lack hereof) to work with his Democratic colleagues.
In 1994, at the state GOP convention, Allen promised to knock Virginia Democrats’ "soft teeth down their whiny throats." In 2006, of course, he famously hit the self-destruct button on his own re-election campaign for Senate when he made what many believe was a racial slur about a worker for his Democratic opponent.
Virginia doesn’t need a Senator who will go to Washington with one hand tied behind his back. The only oath our new Senator needs to take is his oath of office, and the pledge to work in the best interest of all Virginians.
For that reason, we endorse Tim Kaine for U.S. Senate.