On Tuesday, presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden announced that he had tapped Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) as his running mate for the November election. Harris ran against Biden in the 2020 primary, and she did not do particularly well. She did, however, repeatedly attack the former vice president.
Harris comes with a great deal of baggage. While she did serve as California’s attorney general for six years, she pursued very divisive policies during that tenure. Not only did she pursue a tough-on-crime stance that she would later reject in the 2020 election, she also abused her power to attack pro-life journalist David Daleiden when he released videos exposing Planned Parenthood’s use of aborted baby body parts. She also advocated for illegal immigrants.
Harris led the fight to demonize Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. Read more about her background here.
Harris constantly touted her history as a prosecutor, but she also wanted to appear hip and court Black Lives Matter. The thing is, Harris was a “law and order” candidate in California, and that doesn’t play very well with pro-pot criminal justice reform advocates.
So the senator decided to pander — and hard. She claimed to have smoked marijuana in college while listening to Snoop Dogg and Tupac Shakur. The only problem? Harris graduated Howard University in 1986, and she got her law degree in 1989. Snoop and Tupac didn’t hit the music scene until the 1990s. Voluntary mistakes like this made her actual record a liability, and decreased her credibility, to boot.
Harris’s big stand-out moment came in the first Democratic debate. In an orchestrated moment, she attacked frontrunner Joe Biden for opposing forced busing for racial integration. Not only did Kamala exaggerate her history, but she seized on a rather unpopular issue. School choice is a far better and more popular solution to educational disparities. While Kamala enjoyed a short-lived bump in the polls, her standout moment faded quickly.
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) attacked Kamala before, during, and after the second round of Democratic debates, and her attacks stuck. She said Harris was “not qualified” to serve as president because she had no military experience. During the debate, she hit Kamala for laughing about weed while jailing people for it. Ouch!
Harris stood at a distant third in the polls — behind only Biden and Bernie Sanders (S-USSR) — at the beginning of this year, but in May, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Left of Karl Marx) surpassed her. Then Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-Church of Social Justice) surpassed her in September. Also in September, she started to lose big Democratic donors.
Harris also said she believed Biden’s accusers when women came forward accusing him of making inappropriate sexual moves on them.
Kamala Harris fizzled out before the year 2020 began. She’s divisive and unappealing, and by choosing her, Biden has handed a great deal of ammunition to President Donald Trump.
Tyler O’Neil is the author of Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Follow him on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.