Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden has chosen California Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate, making her the first Black woman and the first person of Indian descent to be nominated for a major party’s ticket.
“I have the great honor to announce that I’ve picked @KamalaHarris — a fearless fighter for the little guy, and one of the country’s finest public servants — as my running mate,” Biden tweeted Tuesday afternoon. “Together, with you, we’re going to beat Trump.”
Harris was one of nearly two dozen presidential candidates who challenged Biden for the 2020 Democratic nomination.
After winning enough primaries to secure the nomination, Biden promised to pick a female vice presidential candidate. There was much speculation he would choose a Black woman to run with him.
Harris, 55, was born in California to a Jamaican-born father and an Indian American mother. She gained prominence after she was elected California’s attorney general in 2010, winning the praise of civil rights activists for refusing to defend the state’s Proposition 8 ballot that banned same-sex marriage.
Her presidential campaign faded quickly when many progressives and liberals questioned her staunch support for law enforcement while attorney general. She was accused of being out of touch over issues of police violence — questions that are bound to be raised again as Americans protest police brutality against Black people and other people of color.
According to some polls, many Black voters hoped Biden would choose the more progressive Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren as his running mate.
Harris is the third woman to run for vice president on a major party ticket.
Democrat Geraldine Ferraro was Walter Mondale's running mate in 1984 when they lost by a landslide to the Republican ticket of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.
Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin ran with Republican John McCain in 2008 but lost to Democrats Barack Obama and Biden.