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On the day he accepted the Democratic nomination for vice president, Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine roiled Republican nominee Donald Trump in a big introduction to a broad audience at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
The Virginia senator and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s running mate repeatedly dug into Trump, even occasionally bursting into an impression of the real-estate mogul.
In his lengthy address, he deemed Trump untrustworthy for promising “a lot” and adding a simple “believe me” after his biggest vows.
“It’s gonna be great – believe me!” he said, mocking Trump. “We’re gonna build a wall and make Mexico pay for it – believe me! We’re gonna destroy ISIS so fast – believe me! There’s nothing suspicious in my tax returns – believe me!”
“By the way, does anyone here believe that Donald Trump’s been paying his fair share of taxes?” he continued, noting Trump’s persistent refusal to release his tax returns, which every major party nominee has done since 1976. “Do you believe he ought to release those tax returns like every other presidential candidate in modern history? Of course he should. Donald, what are you hiding?”
Kaine continued his ripping of Trump, adding that “most people” who run for president don’t back up their proposals by saying, “Believe me.”
“They respect you enough to tell you how they will get things done,” he said. “He never tells you how he’s going to do any of the things he says he’s going to do. He just says, ‘Believe me.’ So here’s the question. Do you really believe him? Donald Trump’s whole career says you better not.”
The Virginia Democrat lambasted Trump for his reported treatment of small contractors, Florida retirees, charities, Trump university students, and other current and former associates.
“He says, ‘Believe me,'” Kaine continued. “Well, his creditors, his contractors, his laid-off employees, his ripped-off students did just that. Folks, you cannot believe one word that comes out of Donald Trump’s mouth. Our nation is too great to put it in the hands of a slick-talking, empty-promising, self-promoting, one man wrecking crew.”
Kaine employed the statements of prominent Republicans not in favor of Trump’s candidacy to help back up his point. Kaine mentioned former First Lady Barbara Bush, a former adviser to Sen. John McCain of Arizona, and Ohio Gov. John Kasich.
The senator also praised Clinton, the Democratic nominee and the other half of his ticket. He explained why he trusts her to be a good president.
“First, she’s consistent,” he said. “She has battled to put kids and families first since she was a teenager – in good times and bad, in victory and defeat, in and out of office, through hell or high water. Fighting for underprivileged kids at the Children’s Defense Fund. Fighting to get health insurance for 8 million kids when she was First Lady. Fighting for the well-being of women and girls around the world.”
“Here’s a little tip for you: When you want to know about the character of someone in public life, look to see if they have a passion, one that began before they were in office, and that they have consistently held on to throughout their career,” he continued. “Hillary’s passion is kids and families.”
He went on to include some of what he considers her best accomplishments: helping first responders of the September 11, 2001, terror attacks to get expanded care, implementing sanctions against Iran as secretary of state, and being part of the national-security team that killed terrorist leader Osama bin Laden.
“She’s ready because of her faith,” he said. “She’s ready because of her heart. She’s ready because of her experience. She’s ready because she knows in America we are stronger together. My fellow Democrats, this week we begin the next chapter in our proud story.”