NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's uplifting perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Tuesday, August 11th, 2020

It’s official: Joe Biden has selected Senator Kamala Harris as his 2020 running mate

This after­noon, pre­sump­tive 2020 Demo­c­ra­t­ic pres­i­den­tial nom­i­nee Joe Biden announced that he has cho­sen Cal­i­for­ni­a’s junior Unit­ed States Sen­a­tor Kamala Har­ris as his run­ning mate and vice pres­i­den­tial hopeful.

Har­ris, a for­mer rival of Biden’s for the pres­i­den­tial nom­i­na­tion, is the first Black woman and the first Asian Amer­i­can woman to be the pre­sump­tive vice pres­i­den­tial nom­i­nee of a major polit­i­cal party.

She is slat­ed to accept the par­ty’s nom­i­na­tion next week along with Biden dur­ing the 2020 Demo­c­ra­t­ic Nation­al Con­ven­tion, which will be a vir­tu­al event.


Biden/Harris: The 2020 Demo­c­ra­t­ic pres­i­den­tial ticket

Har­ris has a long his­to­ry of polit­i­cal involve­ment in Cal­i­for­nia. Her first cam­paign was when she ran for San Fran­cis­co Dis­trict Attor­ney in 2003. She won with 56% of the vote and became the first African Amer­i­can DA in California.

In 2010, Har­ris ran for Attor­ney Gen­er­al of Cal­i­for­nia and won. The elec­tion was close and the result was­n’t known until sev­er­al weeks after Elec­tion Day.

Har­ris was con­sid­ered as a pos­si­ble replace­ment for then Unit­ed States Attor­ney Gen­er­al Eric Hold­er dur­ing the last few years Oba­ma admin­is­tra­tion, but she was not inter­est­ed in the job. (The posi­tion went to Loret­ta Lynch.)

Har­ris announced her inten­tion to run for Sen­ate in Jan­u­ary of 2015 to replace Sen­a­tor Bar­bara Box­er, who had announced she was not seek­ing re-election.

She ran in the gen­er­al elec­tion against fel­low Demo­c­rat Loret­ta Sanchez and eas­i­ly defeat­ed her with over 60% of the vote.

Har­ris is well known for her tough ques­tion­ing in Sen­ate com­mit­tee hear­ings —  most famous­ly with Attor­ney Gen­er­al Bill Barr and then Supreme Court Jus­tice can­di­date Brett Kavanaugh, both of whom were flus­tered by her lines of inquiry.

On Jan­u­ary 21st, 2019, Har­ris announced her cam­paign for Pres­i­dent in front of a mas­sive crowd in Oak­land, California.

Her cam­paign moniker was “Kamala Har­ris | For The People.”

Senator Kamala Harris

Cal­i­for­nia Sen­a­tor Kamala Har­ris pass­es the micro­phone at the “Link­ing Togeth­er: March to Save Our Care” Ral­ly at the U.S. Capi­tol on June 28, 2017. (Pho­to:
Mobilus In Mobili, repro­duced under a Cre­ative Com­mons license)

In the June 27th Demo­c­ra­t­ic pres­i­den­tial debate, Har­ris went after Joe Biden regard­ing bus­ing. This brought her cam­paign pub­lic­i­ty and a polling bump.

But her aggres­sive attacks on Biden irri­tat­ed many Biden supporters.

Har­ris’ promis­ing pres­i­den­tial cam­paign began to fade as the sum­mer wore on, and by fall, the cam­paign was in an increas­ing­ly pre­car­i­ous position.

By Decem­ber of 2019, Har­ris was run­ning out of mon­ey. She chose to sus­pend her cam­paign before a sin­gle state had held a nom­i­nat­ing contest.

Unit­ed States Rep­re­sen­ta­tive James Clyburn, who is cred­it­ed with hav­ing played a major role in sav­ing Biden’s cam­paign by endors­ing him in South Car­oli­na, had pre­vi­ous­ly stat­ed: “I would advise him that we need to have a woman on the tick­et, and I pre­fer an African Amer­i­can woman.” For his part, Biden has said he would be lean­ing toward pick­ing some­one who has run for President.

Har­ris was the only can­di­date who met all of those criteria.

As Attor­ney Gen­er­al of Cal­i­for­nia, Har­ris worked along­side Joe Biden’s beloved son Beau (who passed away sev­er­al years ago) on a wide range of issues — a con­nec­tion that undoubt­ed­ly helped her cause as Biden deliberated.

By pick­ing Har­ris, Biden has demon­strat­ed he’s not one to hold a grudge.

Har­ris may have giv­en Biden a tough time dur­ing the first two debates, but Biden clear­ly felt com­fort­able ask­ing her to cam­paign and gov­ern with him, which says a lot about his char­ac­ter. Don­ald Trump’s deputy Mike Pence can now look for­ward to being Har­ris’ next spar­ring part­ner on a debate stage.

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One Comment

  1. Once again, Joe Biden is on a his­to­ry mak­ing ticket.

    # by Mike Barer :: August 11th, 2020 at 10:44 PM
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