Clinton and Kaine fist-bump during a campaign rally in Youngstown, Pennsylvania.
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Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine's name on the Democratic ticket can realistically nudge this pivotal state closer into Hillary Clinton's column – no small feat in a contest of two presidential nominees that engender strong feelings by themselves.And while Clinton's aides try to downplay his potential impact on the must-win state, strategists in both parties say Kaine can put Virginia out of Republican Donald Trump's reach in the race for 270 Electoral College votes.Virginia has become one of the most competitive states over the past four elections after 30 years as reliably Republican.In Virginia, Clinton leads Trump in polls of likely voters, more narrowly than in polls that also ask about Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein. Kaine has been a fixture in a metro area that accounts for 10 percent of Virginia's voting population, including heavily Democratic Richmond.These renovated urban, neatly trimmed suburban and developing rural tracts of the Old South are now a cross section of emerging Virginia where Kaine's nonideological approach has shadowed the state's Democratic migration.Although Kaine has never carried the county, he has dramatically outperformed most Democrats.
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