|Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine|
It is Wednesday and time for Blogger Candidate Forum. Before we get going on today's subject, Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA)'s urban bona fides, yours truly must declare this space a Trump gaffe-free zone. Blogger was losing her mind and lunch responding to every utterance coming out of Mr. Trump's mouth. Therefore, if we talk about Mr. Trump, it will be in the context of specific issues not who he has recently insulted or latest tweet. That out of the way, shall we move on to the Gentleman from Virginia?
|Senator Tim Kaine|
|Then-Mayor Tim Kaine|
Laudable as this is, Mr. Flint points out, "...it was in statewide office that he built a record that should pique the interest of anyone who cares about cities." Virginia is a state best know for traditional suburban development-sprawling subdivisions and corporate office pass. As governor, he became a sort of anti-sprawl crusader. Then-Governor Kaine became a handful of governors that shouldered the mantle of smart growth at the beginning of the 21st-century along with former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-CA), Janet Napolitano (D-AZ). Christine Todd Whitman (R-NJ), Angus Kings (I-ME), Mitt Romney (R-Mass), and Parris Glendening (D-MD).
|Tyson's Corner, Virginia|
Prior to becoming a United States Senator, Gov. Kaine was instrumental in bringing about the transformation of Tysons Corner, once a "soulless edge-city poster child to transit-oriented development hub." As governor, he supported a tunnel for the D.C. Metro extension, making this former soulless edge city more vital. In an aside, Anthony Flint writes, "Although he apparently joked about the fierce advocacy of 'mole people' during the debate over surface versus underground."
Anthony Flint recalled his own experience meeting the Gentleman from Virginia shortly after the publication of his book This Land: The Battle Over Sprawl and the Future of America and moved from the Boston Globe Governor Romney's smart-growth bureau in Massachusetts. Virginia was interested in then-Gov. Romney's organization strategy for coordinating state agencies involved in growth and development-transportation, housing, the environment, economic development-which was eventually adopted in partnership with federal agencies under President Barack Obama.
|The cover of Anthony Flint's book|
In the rough and tumble world of land policy, there is a possibility that the Gentleman from Virginia's predilection for smart growth could be turned against by the Trump-Pence campaign or surrogates. Over the past several years, the anti-density sentiment has been growing around the country, manifesting in TEA Party protests during local planning meetings. The pitched battle for property rights and the attending resistance to planning, the aftermath of the United States Supreme Court case Kelso vs. New London (http://www.oyez.com), is another result of this rebellion.
Like his former counterparts in Maryland and Massachusetts, then-Governor Kaine did not stress urban growth boundaries as much as incentives for growth and development options. Generally speaking, supporting sustainable development is part of a post-carbon environmental position: mitigating climate change, reduce emissions though transportation options made possible by more efficient land-use patterns, and supporting renewable energy resources (wind and solar). These are not positions that would be supported by a Republican ticket insisting on dismantling the Environmental Protection Agency.
Anthony Flint has the final word. "It's notable that both parties are holding their conventions in struggling cities but thus far haven't made much in the way of reference to urban policy. In Tim Kaine, there is now a figure on the national stage who is eminently conversant."