In 2016, Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA), the then-potential vice president of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, had no problems with the many allegations of corruption, dishonesty, and criminal wrongdoing that his running mate faced.
Now, however, Kaine is seizing upon allegations of corruption, dishonesty, and criminal wrongdoing as a means to have former President Donald Trump disqualified from the presidency and removed from the ballot in the 2024 election, according to Axios.
Team Trump, meanwhile, has hit back against Kaine by highlighting his dramatic about-face and prior defense of Clinton as well as his apparent support for the "absurd conspiracy theory" the left is pursuing to render Trump ineligible to be elected president again.
On Sunday, Sen. Kaine appeared on ABC News's "This Week" and was asked by host George Stephanopoulos about his support for the growing effort to have former President Trump disqualified and removed from state ballots via Section 3 of the U.S. Constitution's 14th Amendment.
"I discussed this with colleagues at the time of the second impeachment, George," Kaine said in reference to the post-Jan. 6 Capitol riot "insurrection" impeachment effort against Trump. "I thought actually it might have been a more productive way to go than the second impeachment to -- to do a declaration under that section of the 14th Amendment."
"The language is specific. If you give aid and comfort to those who engage in an insurrection against the Constitution of the United States, it doesn't -- it doesn’t say against the United States. It says against the Constitution," he explained. "In my view, the attack on the Capitol that day was designed for a particular purpose at a particular moment, and that was to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power as is laid out in the Constitution."
Kaine added, "So, I think there is a powerful argument to be made. My -- my sense is it's probably going to get resolved in the courts."
Axios reported that the Trump campaign has pushed back, both against the 14th Amendment disqualification effort more broadly and against Sen. Kaine more specifically.
"The people who are pursuing this absurd conspiracy theory and political attack on President Trump are stretching the law beyond recognition much like the political prosecutors in New York, Georgia, and D.C.," a Trump campaign spokesperson said in a statement. "There is no legal basis for this effort except in the minds of those who are pushing it."
The outlet further noted that a Trump-affiliated super PAC, MAGA Inc., also sent out an email blast that focused directly on the "bogus legal theory" being pushed by "Hillary Clinton's former running mate," Kaine.
That email pointed out how a federal judge in Florida had just summarily dismissed for lack of standing a lawsuit that sought to have Trump removed from the state's ballot in the 2024 elections by virtue of the 14th Amendment's disqualification clause.
It also highlighted how Kaine had previously defended Clinton when she was credibly accused of violating federal laws and being dishonest with the American people about her own actions and the true nature of the accusations against her while seeking the presidency.
Sen. Kaine has revealed himself to be an unserious partisan hack who has completely reversed himself with regard to whether a presidential candidate accused of criminal wrongdoing is eligible and qualified to be the president of the United States.
When he stood to benefit from Clinton's potential ascendency to the presidency, he had no qualms about her blatant lies and apparent wrongdoing, but now as he stands to benefit -- perhaps personally as well as politically -- from Trump being denied the presidency, he is suddenly deeply troubled by a candidate's alleged dishonesty and criminal wrongdoing.