WASHINGTON (WFLA) — Presumptive Democratic Presidential Nominee Joe Biden announced Kamala Harris as his running mate on Tuesday. But who is Harris, exactly?
Here’s what you need to know about the VP nominee:
Former presidential candidate
Before she was selected as Biden’s running mate, Harris was in the running to become president herself.
Harris launched her bid to become president in January 2019 but eventually dropped out of the race in December 2019.
She endorsed her former rival, Joe Biden, in March 2020. Months later, after Sen. Bernie Sanders had dropped out of the race, Harris was named as a potential VP pick for Biden.
US senator serving California
Kamala Harris was sworn into the U.S. Senate in 2017, representing her home state of California. According to her Senate bio, Harris is just the second African-American woman and first South Asian-American in Senate history.
Harris serves on several Senate committees including the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, the Select Committee on Intelligence, the Committee on the Judiciary and the Committee on the Budget.
Harris has gained attention in recent years for her actions during Senate hearings, specifically how she questions members of the Trump administration.
A ‘progressive prosecutor’
Before she was elected to the Senate, Harris served as the California Attorney General. She was the first woman and the first Black person to be elected to the position. Harris was first sworn in as AG in 2011 and was re-elected in 2014.
During her presidential campaign, Harris often touted her work as AG prosecuting transnational gangs. According to her campaign website, those gangs exploited women and children and trafficked in guns and drugs.
Harris also often promotes her work fighting for consumers by going after Wall Street banks and big corporations, as well as her fight for marriage equality – including her work to end Proposition 8 in California.
Before serving as attorney general, Harris spent seven years as the District Attorney of the City and County of San Francisco. On her Senate page, Harris highlights a program she started during her time as district attorney that helped give first-time drug offenders the opportunity to earn a high school diploma and find a job.
Early life and education
Harris grew up in Oakland, California.
She attended Howard University in Washington, D.C., where she earned her undergraduate degree. She then earned her law degree from the University of California.
Harris says she lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Doug Emhoff.