Politics

How Kaine Can Help Clinton in Swing States

From 'Wagon Wheel' to 'Colorado Trail,' Kaine could blow through battlegrounds

Democratic vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine plays "You Are My Sunshine" during an event on the West Front of the Capitol last year. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Since being selected as Hillary Clinton's running mate, one of the more endearing facts revealed about Sen. Tim Kaine is that the Virginia senator carries four harmonicas with him.  

His love of the harmonica has already been compared to Blues Traveler frontman John Popper and the band tweeted at Kaine last week.

Kaine, whose Twitter bio says he's a bluegrass and harmonica enthusiast, has already made good use of his skills on the mouth harp, apparently playing "Wagon Wheel" by Old Crow Medicine Show (a recent top country hit for Darius Rucker).  

Of course, "Wagon Wheel" tells the story of a man traveling to North Carolina, a top target for Democrats this year led by the Clinton-Kaine ticket, and where Democratic Senate candidate Deborah Ross is challenging incumbent Republican Sen. Richard M. Burr.  

Here are a few other songs that Kaine could play to appeal to various swing states.

Virginia: 'Sweet Virginia'

Kaine is known  to like The Rolling Stones and as the senator from the Old Dominion, this song could be a foot stomper throughout the purple state where Kaine also served as city councilman and mayor of Richmond, and governor.  

Pennsylvania: 'Pennsylvania Polka'

The Democrats held their convention in Pennsylvania's largest city, and the Keystone State has gone blue in the last six presidential elections going back to 1992. Kaine could easily supplant the accordion solo with a harmonica solo.  

Colorado: 'The Colorado Trail'

Colorado has a Democratic governor, and Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet is in a pretty cozy spot  right now in his re-election race. But it is important not to get complacent, as that was how GOP Sen. Cory Gardner beat former Sen. Mark Udall in 2014. This classic song could be just the hat tip to work.  

Ohio: 'Banks of the Ohio'

The song, which is about a murder , may not be the most appropriate for the whole family. But if played only on the harmonica as an instrumental, it is possible that the Buckeye State, which has voted for the winner in every presidential election since 1964, could appreciate the shout-out.  

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