While she is reportedly at the top of presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s shortlist of potential running mates, at least one pundit argues that U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) might do more harm to the campaign than good.
Tiana Lowe wrote in a recent Washington Examiner opinion piece that even though Harris “checks all the demographic boxes required to satisfy a base obsessed with identity politics,” she might indirectly aid the re-election campaign of President Donald Trump.
“A colossal gift”
Of those commonly listed as likely Biden running mates, Harris has the most political seniority. She is also the only Black woman currently serving in the Senate.
Nevertheless, “she would also be a colossal gift to the Trump campaign,” Lowe argued, even as Biden maintains a healthy national lead in most polls.
For starters, Harris represents California. A running mate from a more competitive state might offer a boost to the Biden campaign that such a solidly Democratic state will not need.
Another reason she could harm the Biden campaign is her harsh rebuke of the former VP’s record during the presidential primary race. In one particularly heated debate exchange, Harris said the former vice president’s depiction of his working relationship with two segregationist lawmakers was “hurtful,” as CNBC reported.
Perhaps the biggest issue Harris faces in the current cultural climate is her record on police reform. Though she currently makes the case for swift and significant changes, the former prosecutor has seen criticism from within her own party for some of her previous positions.
She has supported the death penalty, criminalizing prostitution, and laws that led to parents being arrested for their children’s truancy, as Lowe pointed out.
Still, Biden has promised to choose a woman, and Harris represents the preferred choice of most Democratic voters, according to Forbes.
What’s more, her name recognition as a senator and presidential candidate could be enough to secure a position filling out her party’s presidential ticket.
As one Democratic Party official told Newsweek, this is “no time to formulate name ID” and American voters are “not in an environment to get to know new faces.”
The insider’s assessment might be right, but it remains to be seen whether that will be a sufficiently inspiring reason for undecided voters to back a Biden–Harris ticket.