Tim Kaine, Hillary Clinton’s running mate, is a strong advocate of the Indo-US relationship and a great friend of India, according to leading Indian-Americans.
Kaine, 58, is a first-time senator from Virginia, a swing state that can potentially vote Democratic or Republican, playing a critical determining role in a presidential election.
Clinton announced her pick in a tweet late Friday evening: “I’m thrilled to announce my running mate, @TimKaine, a man who’s devoted his life to fighting for others. -H”
Letter “H” meant Clinton signed off on this tweet personally.
On US-India relations
“With the strategic importance of the US-India relationship growing every year, I’ve been encouraged by increased cooperation on defence issues between our two countries, including the ongoing discussions regarding aircraft carrier technology”
Kaine, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s speech before a joint session of the US Congress in June
On his India visit
He has also been to India on official visits multiple times. Two important tours were:
In April 2007: As governor, he led a delegation of more than 100 business and government leaders on a trade mission to three Indian cities
In October 2014: Kaine went to the Mazgaon Docks in Mumbai to see the India ship building industry, and encouraged the defense ministry to send a delegation here
“There is ongoing work in these various defence spaces. US defense secretary Ashton Carter has been really good about it. I even noticed, this is interesting being on the Armed Services Committee, every DOD witness we now have always talks about the Indo-Asia Pacific. When I started on the committee they always talked about the Asia Pacific”
During a Senate foreign relations committee hearing on India in May 2016
Worked with Indians
Kaine has worked closely with Northern Virginia’s Indian-American tech community during his tenure as governor and then as a US Senator
“The talent pool of the Indian-American community in our country is so strong and so diverse in different subject areas, that if you are just putting together a team on the aristocracy of merit, you have Indian Americans at the forefront”
During an annual gala of the American India Foundation in Bethesda in November 2014
On PM Narendra Modi
In June 2014: Kaine joined three other senators — Democrat Mark Warner, Republicans John Cornyn and Jim Risch — to pass a resolution inviting Prime Minister Narendra Modi, just a few days in office then, to address US Congress
“This resolution sends a strong signal about the importance of the US-India Strategic Partnership and the bipartisan support the relationship enjoys on Capitol Hill”
Kaine said in a statement
With inputs from agencies