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Hillary Clinton Expected To Announce Vice Presidential Pick


With the Republican National Convention over, now the attention is turning to the Democratic Party. And the political world is awaiting Hillary Clinton's pick for vice president. The presumptive Democratic nominee is expected to announce her running mate at any time. NPR's Tamara Keith is on a bus on the way to Tampa, Fla., where Hillary Clinton will be holding a rally. Hi there, Tam.


MCEVERS: So what do we know about how close Hillary Clinton is to making her decision?

KEITH: Well, she could be very close or she could be sort of close.


KEITH: The campaign has been on absolute lockdown.


KEITH: They have not been sharing information. It's pretty remarkable. And, you know, it's typical for a campaign to try to be secretive about the process, to not have it be out in public. But the campaign has had incredible discipline here in preventing leaks. So the analogy that we - that I've been - that I can't stop thinking about as this day has gone on is that we know Hillary Clinton has the ring and that she's going to propose. But we really don't know if it's going to happen at dinner or the walk on the beach. We're just not sure.

MCEVERS: (Laughter) We are hearing a lot about Virginia Senator Tim Kaine. What can you tell us about him, and what can you tell us about some of the people - other people who are on the short list?

KEITH: So Kaine is the Virginia senator, former governor, and was actually vetted by President Obama back when he was running. He is seen as a safe choice and as the most likely choice. Another name on the list is Tom Vilsack, the agriculture secretary, and Tom Perez, the labor secretary, also possibly Cory Booker, the senator from New Jersey.

MCEVERS: You are - as we said, you're on a bus there in Florida. I understand Hillary Clinton visited the Pulse nightclub in Orlando earlier today. That, of course, was the scene of last month's horrific shooting massacre. How did that visit go?

KEITH: Yeah, she laid some roses, some white roses at the memorial. And the memorial is this - because of all the rainbow flags, it almost looks cheerful except for all the sadness. And she met with some first responders. Before that, she held a roundtable discussion with community leaders. And before that, she met behind closed doors with family members and friends of those who were killed in the Pulse nightclub attack. And during her roundtable discussion, there were people wiping away tears. It's still a - you know, a very tough thing. And she was mostly there to talk about - to listen and to talk about unity and bringing people together.

MCEVERS: The Republican convention, of course, wrapped up last night with Donald Trump's speech. Hillary Clinton, throughout the week, was a major focus of that convention. I mean, we, of course, heard delegates chanting lock her up several times across the week. How has her campaign responded to that? Have they talked about it?

KEITH: Well, they have not talked about it today. However, all throughout the week, her campaign has been doing what you'd call rapid response, sending out fact checks on various statements made by Trump and his backers who were speaking at the convention, and really trying to push back. Also, they've been doing things like - they did a Facebook Live where her campaign staffers read the titles of every single lawsuit that Donald Trump has been involved in, and it took four hours.

MCEVERS: That's NPR's Tamara Keith. She is traveling with the Clinton campaign, which is soon to announce a candidate for vice president. Thanks so much, Tam.

KEITH: You're welcome. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Tamara Keith has been a White House correspondent for NPR since 2014 and co-hosts the NPR Politics Podcast, the top political news podcast in America. Keith has chronicled the Trump administration from day one, putting this unorthodox presidency in context for NPR listeners, from early morning tweets to executive orders and investigations. She covered the final two years of the Obama presidency, and during the 2016 presidential campaign she was assigned to cover Hillary Clinton. In 2018, Keith was elected to serve on the board of the White House Correspondents' Association.