Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine will give the keynote address at the South Carolina Democratic Party's annual Jefferson/Jackson Dinner on May 2. The event kicks off the state party's annual "Dem Weekend," which is focused this year on the midterms. Tickets to dinner cost $125 to $175.
Last year, Vice President Biden spoke at the big fundraiser, telling the crowd: “I love coming down here to South Carolina … As soon as I show up in South Carolina, the Washington press corps comes out saying, ‘Is Biden getting ready?’”
When former governor and current Democratic National Committee chair Tim Kaine spoke at Virginia's Jefferson/Jackson dinner in 2011, he was met mostly with calls for him to run for U.S. Senate. He did, and he won, so let the speculation run rampant about his future ambitions in the warm-up to his next Jefferson/Jackson appearance.
The theme of Dems Weekend in South Carolina this year is "When Governors Govern," and they are likely to discuss South Carolina State Sen. Vincent Sheheen's bid against incumbent Republican Gov. Nikki Haley.
"On a weekend when we’ll be focused on how the work of a Governor should move a state forward, we could not have a better example than the former Governor of Virginia, Senator Tim Kaine," Jaime Harrison, the South Carolina Democratic Party's chair, sais in a statement. “It’s the difference in leadership that put Virginia at the top of all the good lists under Tim Kaine.”
Former South Carolina governor Dick Riley will also be honored at the dinner. Riley was also appointed secretary of education by President Bill Clinton. Time Magazine put him on their list of the 10 best U.S. Cabinet members of all time, calling him "a popular South Carolina governor — in fact, he was so popular that the state's citizens amended the constitution to allow him to run for a second term."
The state Republican Party has not announced the keynote speaker at its annual Silver Elephant dinner. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas spoke last year.