Media Figures Highlight Significance Of Democratic Vice Presidential Pick Tim Kaine’s Spanish Fluency

Media figures explained how Democratic vice presidential pick Sen. Tim Kaine’s (D-VA) Spanish language fluency will enable him to be “a hell of a good surrogate” for presumptive nominee Hillary Clinton with Hispanic voters.

Tim Kaine Speaks Spanish During First Speech As Hillary Clinton’s Vice Presidential Running Mate

Fusion: Tim Kaine Made History By Introducing Himself In Spanish During His First Speech As Hillary Clinton’s Vice Presidential Running Mate. Fusion reported that Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) “took the stage Saturday to introduce himself to Americans, making history by speaking in Spanish and showcasing that the campaign will make immigration a priority,” in his first appearance with Hillary Clinton as her vice presidential running mate. Fusion explained that Kaine is “a fluent Spanish-speaker, having learned the language while on a post-collegiate missionary trip to Honduras. In 2013, he made history by delivering a speech entirely in Spanish on the Senate floor about overhauling the immigration bill.” [Fusion, 7/23/16]

Media Figures Highlight The Importance Of Tim Kaine Speaking Spanish On Campaign Trail

CNN Panel: Kaine Speaking Spanish Allows Him To Communicate With Latino Voters. CNN’s Gloria Borger, Dana Bash, and Nia-Malika Henderson highlighted the significance in Kaine speaking Spanish, explaining that not only does he speak fluent Spanish, allowing him to communicate with Latino voters, but he’s also “culturally fluent in Spanish.” From the July 23 edition of CNN’s CNN Newsroom:

WOLF BLITZER: How significant is the fact that [Tim Kaine] is fluent in Spanish?

GLORIA BORGER: It's very significant but also the way he's lived his life is significant, the story that he went to Honduras, the story of his church and how important it is in his life, the story of his faith is also important to lots of voters out there.


DANA BASH: Going back to your question about him speaking Spanish. It's not just about him being able to communicate to Latino voters in their native tongue. It’s also, like we talked about way back when with Jeb Bush, it’s that he's culturally fluent in Spanish and the Spanish community. Living in Honduras and coming back and obviously staying in touch with the Latino community, it isn't just being able to talk the talk. It's that he talked about the fact that, as Brianna talked about, it's life, it’s family, it’s work. It’s not just language. It's the values and understanding.

NIA-MALIKA HENDERSON: It's his way too of being anti-Trump. If you remember, Trump really criticized Jeb Bush for speaking Spanish on the trail. When they were in that primary fight he said something like “Jeb Bush should set an example and speak English in the U.S.” So, you sort of wonder what Trump might do with his ability to speak Spanish and the fact he's going to speak it often. [CNN, CNN Newsroom, 7/23/16]

NY Times’ John Harwood: “Ability To Speak To Voters In Their Native Language Is Very Powerful For Politicians.”

[, 7/23/16]

Public Radio International’s Gabe Ortiz: Kaine Speaking Spanish Demonstrates Contrast To Trump’s Campaign.

[, 7/23/16]

CNN’s Ana Navarro: Kaine “Will Be A Hell Of A Good Surrogate” For Hillary Clinton With Hispanics.

[, 7/23/16]