Tim Kaine, Mike Pence face off in vice presidential debate

Republican vice-presidential nominee Gov. Mike Pence, right, and Democratic vice-presidential nominee Sen. Tim Kaine shake hands during the vice-presidential debate at Longwood University in Farmville, Va., Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2016. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

FARMVILLE, Va. (AP) — The Latest on the vice presidential debate between Republican Mike Pence and Democrat Tim Kaine (all times local):

9:40 p.m.

Vice presidential nominees Tim Kaine and Mike Pence are assuming familiar partisan postures on the so-called third rail of American politics: Social Security.

Democrat Kaine pledges that Hillary Clinton’s administration would never privatize Social Security and is blasting Pence for supporting such an idea as a congressman.

The Virginia senator says Democrats want to shore up the popular program by raising the cap on income subject to payroll taxes. It’s currently $118,500.

Pence is not directly answering the privatization charge. He is accusing Kaine of using on “old scare tactic” common in Democratic campaigns and says Democrats just want to raise taxes.

The Indiana governor insists that he and Donald Trump will cut taxes and still pay for Social Security and Medicare. Those two programs approach 40 percent of all federal spending in some budget years.


9:35 p.m.

Mike Pence says Donald Trump used the tax code “brilliantly” to avoid paying federal income taxes for years.

Pence is describing Trump as “a businessman” who faced some “pretty tough times” 20 years ago and used the tax code just the way it was intended. He is knocking Democrats Tim Kaine and Hillary Clinton as “career public servants.”

The New York Times reported over the weekend that Trump may have avoided paying federal income taxes for nearly 20 years after suffering business losses of more than $900 million in 1996.

Kaine is challenging Pence’s defense. He says, “I guess all of us who do (pay taxes) are stupid?”

Kaine is also pressing Pence on why Trump is the first presidential nominee in decades not to release his tax returns. Pence promises Trump will release his returns once a routine audit is complete. Trump has said the same for more than a year.


9:32 p.m.

Donald Trump pledged to live-tweet the vice-presidential debate — but so far he is retweeting it.

The Republican nominee tweeted “Both are looking good! Now we begin!” in the first moments of the showdown between his running mate, Mike Pence, and Democrat Tim Kaine.

He then tweeted an odd message at Fox News host Megyn Kelly, with whom he feuded early in the campaign, to note that he is watching the debate from Nevada.

But Trump’s next 10 posts were all retweets, mostly those that praised Pence’s performance in the debate’s first half-hour.

He also retweeted a pair of graphics that made unflattering comments about Clinton and Kaine’s records.


9:30 p.m.

Mike Pence and Tim Kaine are sparring over what their economic records as governor say about what they would bring to the White House.

Pence slammed Kaine for proposing to increase taxes as governor of Virginia.

He says Kaine is a “very fitting” running mate for Clinton because they both want more of President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act.

Kaine criticized Pence for opposing a minimum wage increase as Indiana governor. Kaine says Clinton would be a “you’re hired” president, while Trump is pushing a “you’re fired” plan.


9:25 p.m.

Hillary Clinton’s running mate is defending her tenure as secretary of state.

Sen. Tim Kaine said during Tuesday’s vice presidential debate that Clinton helped revive the hunt for Osama bin Laden that led to the al-Qaida chief’s death.

Kaine says Clinton also negotiated an agreement for Russia to reduce its chemical weapon stockpile and contributed to the Iran nuclear deal. And he argues the U.S. is better off with fewer troops in the Middle East.

Donald Trump’s running mate is Indiana Gov. Mike Pence. He says Clinton is to be blamed for withdrawing troops from Iraq too soon.

Kaine notes that President George W. Bush signed the agreement to pull American forces from Iraq.


9:20 p.m.

The vice presidential candidates have come out aggressively, frequently interrupting each other and questioning the trustworthiness of the presidential nominees.

Republican Gov. Mike Pence of Indiana opened a question about Donald Trump’s presidential worthiness by saying to his opponent, Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine, that he and running mate Hillary Clinton know a lot about “an insult-driven campaign.”

Pence said the Middle East was “spinning out of control” because of Democratic leadership. When he mentioned Russia, Kaine interjected, “You guys love Russia.” That was a reference to Trump’s praise of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

When Pence said Trump had made millions, Kaine claimed Trump “paid no taxes.”

Pence said: “There’s a reason why people question the trustworthiness of Hillary Clinton. And that’s because they’re paying attention.”


9:17 p.m.

Hillary Clinton’s running mate Tim Kaine is slamming Donald Trump in the opening minutes of the vice presidential debate against Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.

Kaine says Trump is running an “insult-driven” and selfish campaign. He says Pence is “Donald Trump’s apprentice,” referencing the old reality TV show. And he accuses Pence and Trump of “loving” Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Kaine is also referencing comments Trump made when he launched his campaign, saying Trump called Mexicans rapists and criminals and saying he pursued an “outrageous lie” that President Barack Obama wasn’t born in the United States.

Pence tried to interject, saying, “Let me interrupt you to finish my sentence if I can.”


9:15 p.m.

Mike Pence is pitching his small-town Indiana upbringing as a key asset in his career in government, and says he can use it to help Donald Trump bring change to Washington.

The Republican vice presidential nominee says he has a “lifetime of experience” steeped in values from his immigrant grandfather and his childhood.

He said at the start of the vice presidential debate that he “never dreamed” he’d be able to parlay that start in life into the Indiana governorship or a spot on the national GOP ticket.

Pence misidentified the host institution of Tuesday night’s debate. He said “thank you to Norwood University for their wonderful hospitality.” The Farmville, Virginia, school hosting the event is Longwood University.


9:10 p.m.

Tim Kaine says the thought of Donald Trump as commander in chief “scares us to death.”

But the Democratic vice presidential candidate says he trusts running mate Hillary Clinton with his son’s life.

The Virginia senator’s son is serving in the Marines. Kaine made the comments Tuesday night during his debate with Republican Mike Pence.

He is also citing his own experience “at every level of government” to explain why he’s qualified. Kaine has served as a mayor, a governor and a senator.

Kaine notes that he’s proud to be running with “a history-making woman.” Clinton would be the first woman elected president.


8:40 p.m.

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe is embracing the Reverend Jesse Jackson as the two pose for pictures and talk before the debate on the Longwood University campus in Farmville, Virginia.

The two are among dozens of political dignitaries, university officials and students taking their seats before the vice presidential debate begins. Among them are senior Virginia senator Mark Warner.

News photographers and TV cameramen are wading through the crowd, waiting for the signal for the audience to take their seats before the program begins shortly.


8 p.m.

Republican Mike Pence and Democrat Tim Kaine have arrived at the site of the first and only vice presidential debate.

The candidates will face off just past 9 p.m. at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia.

Advisers for the candidates suggest there could be fireworks during the 90-minute affair, although vice presidential debates rarely change the direction of a presidential race.

Elaine Quijano of CBS News serves as the moderator.

Neither candidate is as well-known as his running mate. Pence is a first-term governor and previously served as a congressman. Kaine is former Virginia governor and now serves the state in the Senate.

Donald Trump is campaigning in Colorado, but he said he’d be “live tweeting” the debate. Hillary Clinton is at home in New York.

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