A Tim Kaine radio ad in Spanish will soon be hitting the airwaves in the must-win battleground states. It is not a secret that Mr. Kaine is fluent in Spanish, and he has decided to put his skills at the service of his party and running mate and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
The Democratic candidate for vice president of the United States in the 2016 election has recorded his Spanish-language ad in which he talks about his time in Honduras. At the age of 22, the former chairman of the Democratic National Committee left Harvard Law School where he was studying to go work in Honduras.
For nine months Kaine helped Jesuit missionaries, who ran a Catholic school in El Progreso. Kaine, who worked in a vocational center that taught carpentry and welding, is credited with increasing the school’s enrollment by recruiting local villagers. Mauricio Gaborit, S.J.(Society of Jesus), now 67, who met Kaine in 1976 and worked with him in the village of El Progreso, did an interview last month where he had nothing but praise for him. Gaborit stated:
“I believe it had to do with the values he grew up with in his Jesuit education. That oriented him to be attentive to and responsive to the plight of the poor. There is the belief that even if a situation is dire, people can still make a difference.”
Father Gaborit added that Kaine’s optimism while working at the Jesuit mission was something that everyone around him noticed. He added:
“When one reflects on the plight and situations of the poor, one has two courses of response,” he said. “One has the course of going the road of despair or going the road of optimism and confidence. He went the route of optimism. He saw himself…helping people.”
Gaborit also said that he was happy to hear Kaine speak Spanish at the Democratic convention. Kaine’s 60-second radio spot will target Spanish-speaking voters in Florida, Ohio, and Nevada, in the hope of getting them to turn out to the polls on Election Day.
Last week, America’s Voice and Latino Decisions released a poll that showed Clinton with a commanding lead over Republican nominee Donald Trump. According to the political polling firms, Clinton is poised to win the votes of 70% of Latino voters compared to 19% for Trump. Immigration and deportations were the most important issues facing the Latino community, according to that same poll.
In 2013, Kaine made history by delivering an entire speech in Spanish on the Senate floor in support of the bipartisan “Gang of Eight” immigration bill that overwhelmingly passed in the Senate and never made it to the House.