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Biden announces Sen. Kamala Harris as his VP pick

U.S. Senator Kamala Harris speaking with attendees at the 2019 National Forum on Wages and Working People hosted by the Center for the American Progress Action Fund and the SEIU at the Enclave in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)
August 11, 2020

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden announced he has picked U.S. Senator Kamala Harris to serve as his vice president and run with him on the ticket in the November 3rd, 2020 presidential election.

“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.

Harris, 55, became the junior U.S. Senator for California after winning office in 2016. Prior to becoming a senator, she served as the Attorney General of California from 2011 to 2017 and the San Francisco District Attorney from 2004 to 2011.

Harris’ U.S. Senate biography lists her as the second African-American woman and first South Asian-American senator in history.

“Back when Kamala was Attorney General, she worked closely with Beau,” Biden said in a follow-up tweet. “I watched as they took on the big banks, lifted up working people, and protected women and kids from abuse. I was proud then, and I’m proud now to have her as my partner in this campaign.

Biden’s follow-up tweet referenced his late son Beau Biden, who served as the Attorney General of Deleware prior to his death in 2015.

“.@JoeBiden can unify the American people because he’s spent his life fighting for us. And as president, he’ll build an America that lives up to our ideals. I’m honored to join him as our party’s nominee for Vice President, and do what it takes to make him our Commander-in-Chief,” Harris tweeted Tuesday.

Biden’s Tuesday announcement comes days before the Democratic National Convention is set to begin in Milwaukee Wisconsin on Monday, Aug. 17. The convention is set to run from Aug. 17 to Aug. 20.

The Democratic Biden-Harris ticket is set to face off against Republican President Donald Trump and Vice President in the November election.

“I’ve decided that Kamala Harris is the best person to help me take this fight to Donald Trump and Mike Pence and then to lead this nation starting in January 2021,” Biden said in a statement emailed to CNN ahead of his Twitter announcement Tuesday.

Biden, 77, told CNN he hopes to use his candidacy as “a bridge” to a younger set of Democratic leaders including Harris, who is more than 20 years younger than Biden.

Harris also ran as a contender for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination but dropped out of the race in December.

Trump responded within minutes of Biden’s announcement, releasing a campaign ad attacking the Democratic ticket.

Trump’s ad referenced Harris’ own attacks on Biden for “racist policies.” In one of the early Democratic debates, Harris accused Biden of opposing busing programs to integrate previously segregated public schools and said the opposition to busing affected her directly as a schoolgirl in California.

Trump’s ad also accused Biden and Harris of sympathizing with “radical left” policies like a Medicare for All plan and raising taxes.

Biden’s selection of Harris is the third time in U.S. history a woman has been chosen to run as the vice presidential candidate of a major political party, first with Geraldine Ferraro as the Democratic vice presidential pick chosen by Walter Mondale in 1984 and then Sarah Palin as the vice presidential pick chosen by John McCain in 2008.