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Kaine Rounds Out Campaign Team

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Former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine’s first round of campaign hires included several veterans of his past campaigns.

Kaine announced a portion of his team Thursday, two days after making his much-anticipated Senate bid official and resigning as chairman of the Democratic National Committee.

Having run two successful statewide campaigns, Kaine is so far largely sticking by the team that gave him a 6-point gubernatorial victory in 2005. As Roll Call has reported, the group was part of Kaine's inner circle.

Some of them have experience running against former Sen. George Allen, who was defeated in 2006 and is heavily favored to win the GOP nomination and face Kaine in the general.

Pete Brodnitz, a principal at Benenson Strategy Group, is back as Kaine’s polling director. Brodnitz has worked with Kaine since his successful 2001 lieutenant governor campaign, and he worked on the surprisingly successful 2006 campaign of now-Sen. Jim Webb (D), whose retirement opened the seat and led to Kaine’s run.

Kaine’s media consultants will once again be David Eichenbaum and Karl Struble, whose communications firm has helped elect Senators across the country. They worked on both of Kaine’s previous statewide campaigns.

Mo Elleithee, a veteran Democratic communications consultant and founding partner of Hilltop Public Solutions, is back as a senior adviser. Elleithee has extensive experience in the state, including serving as communications director for Kaine in 2005 and press secretary for now-Sen. Mark Warner’s (D) 2001 gubernatorial campaign.

Elleithee ran the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee’s independent expenditure effort against Allen in 2006, and he was a traveling secretary and senior spokesman on Hillary Rodham Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign.

Kaine’s finance director is Jenny Nadicksbernd, who was Kaine’s Northern Virginia finance director for the three years leading up to his gubernatorial campaign. Nadicksbernd later worked for Warner’s leadership political action committee and as a finance director on his 2008 campaign.

As Roll Call previously reported in Shop Talk, Brandi Hoffine has left the DNC to serve as Kaine’s press secretary. Hoffine has worked with Kaine at the DNC as deputy national press secretary for the last two years, and in 2008 she did rapid response for the joint Democratic rapid response team at the DNC and President Barack Obama’s campaign.

Also coming over from the DNC is Marc Cheatham as director of scheduling. Cheatham was Kaine’s traveling assistant at the DNC and director of constituent services in Kaine’s gubernatorial administration.

Kaine hired Marcus Jadotte and Sharon White of the specialty media consulting firm Potomac Waves, which specializes in African-American and Latino radio advertising.

For more from our At the Races politics blog, click here.

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