Joe Biden chose Kamala Harris, a prominent senator from California whose political career has included many barrier-breaking moments, as his running friend, his campaign announced on Tuesday .
The decision comes more than a year after Harris, who was also a Democrat candidate in 2020, clashed with Biden over race issues in the first preliminary debate. If elected, she would be the nation’s first female, first black and first Asian-American vice president.
Choose Harris, 55, that offers tickets with a diverse number of generations. Biden, 77, will be the oldest elected president in US history.
The Biden announcement stifled weeks of speculation and was Biden’s biggest decision to date as the supposed Democratic candidate, a detail Biden himself noted in his announcement. me.
“You make a lot of important decisions as president. But the first decision is who you choose to be your Vice President. I decided that Kamala Harris is the best person to help me launch the war. This with Donald Trump and Mike Pence and then to lead this nation starting January 2021, “Biden wrote in an email from his campaign to supporters.
“I need someone smart, tough and willing to lead by my side. Kamala is that person,” he wrote. “I need someone who understands the pain so many people in our country are suffering. Whether they lost their jobs, their businesses, their loved ones because of this virus.”
“This president said he ‘didn’t want to be distracted by it.’ He doesn’t understand that taking care of the people of this country – everyone – is not a distraction – it’s work, “Biden continued. “Kamala understands that. I need someone who understands that we are in a war for the soul of this nation. And that if we get through these crises – we need to unite together for one country.” America is better. Kamala gets that. “
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Harris, in a tweet, said she was “very honored” to join Biden “as our party’s candidate for the position of Vice President and does what is necessary to make him become. Our commander-in-chief. “
Biden and Harris will appear together and speak in Biden’s hometown, Wilmington, Delaware, on Wednesday, the campaign said.
Harris, the only black woman in the US Senate, was elected in 2016 after serving as California’s attorney general and previously as a San Francisco county attorney. A native of Oakland, California, and a child of Jamaican and Indian immigrants, Harris said she was inspired to attend law school after participating in civil rights protests with her parents. .
“She’s a warrior and a principle leader and I know because I’ve seen her up close and I’ve seen her in the trenches,” Biden said of Harris at a virtual fundraiser in June. .
As attorney general, Harris worked closely with Biden’s late son, Beau Biden, when he was Delaware’s attorney general, especially in challenging major banks after the crisis. real estate. In his book, “The Truths We Hold: The American Journey,” Harris says that the couple “speak every day, sometimes several times a day.”
Because of their friendship, Harris’s attack on Biden in the Democratic’s first preliminary debate over his profile of traveling and working with the quarantineists caused. a shock to Biden’s campaign, his family and the candidate himself.
“I was prepared for them to chase me, but I wasn’t prepared for that person to come to me the way she came to me. She knows Beau, she knows me,” Biden said in an interview. at the end of that summer. Harris says that Harris has “misinterpreted” his position.
The surprise and backlash of that moment of controversy in Miami has always been in the mind for Biden’s wife, Jill, most recently in March. Jill Biden said during a virtual fundraiser, “Our son Beau has a very high appreciation of her and you know how amazing she is. And it’s not like she’s not. I’m not saying.” But it’s like a gut punch. It’s a little unexpected. “
Trump’s election campaign snatched that moment right after Biden’s announcement in a newly cut ad – which Trump himself tweeted shortly after the announcement – accusing Harris of attacking “Biden for racist policies. clan “and that makes the pair” Slow Joe and Phony Kamala. “
Then, during a press conference at the White House, Trump said Harris was “upset” and “disrespectful” with Biden during the primary election. The President also criticized her for “extremely upset” with Brett Kavanaugh during his Senate confirmation hearing for her nomination to the Supreme Court.
“She was so bad that it was just a horrible thing, in her own way,” Trump said. “I won’t forget that anytime soon.”
In the months after she left the race, Harris provided full support for the Biden campaign. She often campaigned mostly for Biden, holding joint fundraisers with candidates and roundtings around issues like racial disparity in coronavirus infections and defending the Price Care Act. affordable. During a virtual fundraising campaign in June, she raised $ 3.5 million for the campaign.
Harris is praised for clearly questioning Attorney General Bill Barr and Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh in their respective confirmation hearings, highlighting her case as a prosecutor tablets.
But that profile, especially on issues like convictions of marijuana use and truancy, is also a source of criticism, especially from younger, more progressive voters.
Biden has made the selection public after weeks of considering a number of other women for the job. Other top candidates include former national security advisor Susan Rice, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., And Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer.
Former President Barack Obama hailed the choice as “the ideal partner to help Mr. Biden tackle the very real challenges America faces now and in the years to come.”
“Joe Biden has crucified this decision,” Obama said in a statement.
Many of the women being considered for work also congratulated Harris after Biden became known.
“Senator Harris is a stubborn and pioneering leader who will make a great partner on the running path. I am confident that Biden-Harris will prove to be a winning ticket, ”Rice said in a statement.
Warren tweeted that Harris will be a “great partner” with Biden.
Other top Democrats also offered praise for this choice.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Said: “Joe Biden’s appointment of Senator Kamala Harris as the Democratic candidate for the vice presidency marks a historic and proud. towards our country ”. “As vice president of the United States, Senator Harris will continue his legacy as pioneering leadership to move our country forward.”
2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton tweeted that she was “delighted to welcome @KamalaHarris to the Democratic historic ticket” and praised her as a “civil servant and home. incredible leadership. “
Another former Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Tweeted that Harris “understands what it takes to stand up to the working people, fight to take care of their health.” healthy for everyone and deposed the most corrupt government in history. “
Well-known Democratic groups also welcome the selection.
“Today is a ray of hope and a first moment for black women and women of color. Kamala Harris – a Jamaican and Indian-American woman – as vice president has nothing to do with history, “said Aimee Allison, Founder of She the People.
Human Rights Campaign Chairman Alphonso David said: “Senator Kamala Harris is a special choice for the vice president position.
Harris has faced opposition in recent weeks from some of Biden’s allies who say the former presidential candidate is too ambitious – criticism many are quick to point out as discriminating. sex.
“Our campaign is full of ambitious women who give their all to Joe Biden,” Biden’s campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon said in a tweet. “Whoever he chooses from very qualified picks to help him win and unify the country, she will be one too.”
Harris responded in a virtual conference with Black Girls Rock earlier this month.
“There will be resistance to your ambitions,” she said. “Someone will tell you, you’re on your way. But don’t let that burden you.”
Harris ended her presidential campaign in December, plagued by fundraising issues and reporting on power struggles on the top board of her campaign.
During the pandemic, Harris lived in an apartment in Washington with her husband, Douglass Emhoff, an entertainment lawyer. She attended Howard University for her college degree and was a Capitol Hill trainee in the same office she works in today.