“Joe Biden has named his one-time rival Kamala Harris as his running mate, the campaign revealed on Tuesday, elevating California’s junior senator as the first woman of color to appear on a major party’s presidential ticket,” as the Los Angeles Times and others are reporting.
“Harris, who centered her unsuccessful White House bid last year on a promise to ‘prosecute the case’ against President Trump, was widely seen as a front-runner to be Biden’s vice presidential pick. With her statewide experience as California attorney general and four years in the U.S. Senate, Harris was among the most conventionally qualified of the half dozen or so women under consideration in the most diverse crop of contenders ever.
“’I need someone working alongside me who is smart, tough, and ready to lead. Kamala is that person,’ Biden wrote in an email to supporters Tuesday afternoon. The pair is slated to appear together for the first time as a presidential ticket in Wilmington, Delaware, on Wednesday.
“In many ways, Harris, 55, is a safe pick — broadly popular in the Democratic Party and well acquainted with the rigors of a national campaign. But her selection also carries symbolic heft in this moment when race relations are at top of mind for voters, particularly since Harris, who is of Indian and Jamaican descent, had her own highly publicized confrontation with Biden over race during the primary.
“Despite her strengths, Harris’ selection is not without risk, particularly if the race tightens. She was an inconsistent candidate in her own presidential run and her record as a prosecutor has at times been a political millstone, particularly as attitudes on law enforcement and mass incarceration have dramatically shifted to the left. While Harris has more forcefully embraced criminal justice reform recently, she faces lingering distrust from some in the party’s progressive flank, including younger voters of color who did not broadly embrace her candidacy.”
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