The Slatest

Kamala Harris Endorses Joe Biden for President

Former Vice President Joe Biden and California Sen. Kamala Harris speak while Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders walks by after the third Democratic primary debate of the 2020 presidential campaign season in Houston, Texas on September 12, 2019.
Former Vice President Joe Biden and California Sen. Kamala Harris speak while Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders walks by after the third Democratic primary debate of the 2020 presidential campaign season in Houston, Texas on September 12, 2019. ROBYN BECK/Getty Images

Sen. Kamala Harris endorsed Joe Biden for president on Sunday, becoming the latest in a string of presidential hopefuls who have dropped out of the race to throw their support behind the former vice president. Harris, who ended her presidential campaign in December, is now the sixth former rival to endorse Biden since the former vice president’s big victory in the South Carolina primary established him as the clear moderate alternative to Sen. Bernie Sanders. Former South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Sen. Amy Klobuchar, and former Texas lawmaker Beto O’Rourke all endorsed Biden before Super Tuesday. Former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg endorsed Biden after he dropped out of the race Wednesday and former Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick endorsed Biden on Friday.

“I have decided that I am with great enthusiasm going to endorse Joe Biden for president of the United States,” Ms. Harris said in a video posted to Twitter. “I believe in Joe. I really believe in him, and I have known him for a long time.” Harris also released a statement in which she said that “there is no one better prepared than Joe to steer our nation through these turbulent times, and restore truth, honor, and decency to the Oval Office.”

Harris also mentioned Biden’s late son, Beau, who was attorney general of Delaware when she held the same post in California. “I got to know Joe more than a decade ago through his son—my dear friend, the late Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden,” Harris said in her statement. “As attorneys general during the financial crisis, Beau and I were leaders in the fight to take on the biggest banks in the nation and secure billions of dollars in relief for homeowners across the country. And I can tell you that Beau inherited his strength of character, selfless courage, and commitment to public service from his father, Joe.”

Biden also mentioned his son when he sent out a tweet to thank Harris for her endorsement.

The endorsement came months after Harris attacked Biden in a debate for his ties to segregationist senators. The heated exchange amounted to one of the most personal attacks in the early part of the Democratic contest. “It was hurtful to hear you talk about the reputations of two United States senators who built their reputations and career on the segregation of race in this country,” Harris said in the first Democratic debate. “And it was not only that, but you also worked with them to oppose busing. And, you know, there was a little girl in California who was part of the second class to integrate her public schools, and she was bused to school every day. And that little girl was me.”

For those keeping close tabs on the campaign, the endorsement didn’t really come as a surprise. Biden seemed to preview the endorsement on Saturday when he included Harris’ supporters as he talked about how his campaign was the best choice for Democrats whose initial preference for nominee had dropped out of the race. “To all of Amy’s folks. To all of Pete’s folks. To all of Kamala’s folks … Beto’s folks,” he said. “I tell you what, what a gigantic difference it’s made.”