In the wake of presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s announcement that U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) would serve as his running mate, campaign surrogates and media outlets have portrayed her as a moderate with widespread electoral appeal.
As Breitbart reported, however, some critics are painting a different picture by rehashing an on-air joke she made in 2018 in which she laughs about the theoretical death of either President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, or then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
“Stuck in an elevator”
The joke came during an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show after the host pressed her repeatedly regarding a possible entry into the 2020 presidential race.
She began the interview by describing herself as a “happy warrior,” which might explain the glee she demonstrated in response to one of DeGeneres’ questions.
“If you had to be stuck in an elevator with either President Trump, Mike Pence, or Jeff Sessions, who would it be?” the host asked.
After a brief pause, Harris responded with a smile: “Does one of us have to come out alive?”
“Could you imagine”
The host, guest, and studio audience shared in the laughter that followed, though the remarks are receiving renewed scrutiny in light of her current political position.
As Breitbart’s Hannah Bleau noted, several prominent social media users suggested that the backlash would have been swift and severe had the roles been reversed.
“Could you imagine what the reaction would be if any of those men said the same thing about her?!?!” tweeted comedian Tim Young.
Nevertheless, most media sources are portraying Harris as the sensible choice to complement Biden’s campaign. Even former President Barack Obama weighed in, announcing in a statement that his former vice president “nailed this decision” and selected “an ideal partner to help him tackle the very real challenges America faces right now and in the years ahead.”
It is clear the Democratic Party establishment is falling in line behind the Biden-Harris ticket. The only thing that will ultimately matter, however, is if the senator’s presence on the ticket gives voters sufficient motivation to cast the ballots needed on Election Day.