The 2020 election is around the corner, and presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden is finally putting the speculation about his running mate to rest. On Aug. 11, Joe Biden announced Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate in the presidential race, and she could make history should the pair win the election. November 2020 is going to be a lot.
After weeks (months, really) of speculation, Biden made the announcement via Twitter. "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," he wrote in a tweet. In a release shared with Elite Daily, the Biden campaign further praised Harris as having a "track record of managing through multiple crises [and] standing up for the people who need it most."
If elected, Harris, who is of Jamaican and Indian descent, would be the first-ever Black woman and first person of Indian heritage to hold the office of the vice presidency. The United States has never had a woman, let alone a Black or non-Black woman of color, serve as a U.S. president or vice president. Harris would also be the third woman ever, and first Black woman, to receive a major party nomination for vice president, following U.S. Rep. Geraldine Ferraro in 1984 and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin in 2008. She is only the fourth woman ever to be included on a major party presidential ticket, after Hillary Clinton's presidential run in 2016.
While Biden had given some clues about who he would choose as his vice president leading up to the announcement on Tuesday, there were a few names being floated around. Voters knew he would be picking a woman, since he announced his plan to do so during the March 15 Democratic debate between Biden and former presidential candidate, Sen. Bernie Sanders. During the debate, which aired on CNN, Biden said, "If I'm elected president, my Cabinet, my administration will look like the country, and I committed that I will pick a woman to be my vice president."
Closer to the actual announcement, on MSNBC's The Reid Out on Monday, July 20, Biden revealed to host Joy Reid that he was considering selecting one of four Black women as his running mate. The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee told Reid, "I am not committed to naming any [of the potential candidates], but the people I've named, and among them there are four Black women." Those under consideration were reportedly Harris, Rep. Val Demings of Florida, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, former Obama administration national security adviser Susan Rice, and Rep. Karen Bass of California, per CNN.
The reveal also came after Politico accidentally "announced" his vice presidential pick early, publishing a July 28 graphic that referred to Harris as the choice before later swapping it out. "In his announcement, Biden called Harris 'a worthy opponent and a worthy running mate,' alluding to the pair’s rivalry during the earlier stages of the Democratic primary. She will bring her experience as a prosecutor, household name recognition, and skill as a debater to the ticket," the graphic read. Politico's editor's note followed the news shortly after: "Due to a technical error, an earlier version of this graphic mistakenly reported that Biden had made his VP selection. We regret the mistake." According to reports, Biden didn't make his final decision until the week of Aug. 10.
Harris was previously a Democratic presidential candidate for the 2020 election but announced she was suspending her campaign on Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019, due to a lack of financial resources. She was elected to her Senate seat in 2016, and previously served as attorney general of California from 2011 to 2017, the district attorney of San Francisco from 2004 to 2010, and deputy district attorney in Alameda County, California. As of 2020, Harris serves on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, the Select Committee on Intelligence, the Committee on the Judiciary, and the Committee on the Budget.