Kamala Harris was the first Black Attorney General in California, the first Indian-American Senator in Washington, and is now the first Black woman to run for Vice President. A portrait of a fearless fighter who has her heart in the right place.
Nobody would have expected this duo: Joe Biden, 77, and Kamala Harris, 55, are fighting together against incumbent US President Donald Trump, 74, and are trying to replace him in the White House. Joe Biden as US President, Kamala Harris as his “Running Mate” and Vice President. Who is the woman in the elegant trouser suit in whom the world has so much hope?
Commitment runs in the family
Kamala Harris was born with her political and social commitment: Her father, Donald Harris, a now retired economics professor from Jamaica, her mother, Shyamala Gopalan, a cancer researcher and civil rights activist from India who moved to America alone to study. Gopalan died on February 11, 2009. The two met and love each other during civil rights marches in the 1960s, but when Kamala Harris was seven they divorced.
Kamala Harris: Your steep career
After the split, Harris stayed with her mother and moved from California to Montreal, Canada. Here she attended high school. After graduating, Kamala Harris studied political science and economics at Howard University in Washington, and in 1986 she returned to her native California with a bachelor’s degree in her pocket. Here she studied law and obtained the degree of “Juris Doctor” in 1989. A year later she was admitted to the bar, which marked the start of her career.
In 1998, Kamala Harris joined the San Francisco District Attorney, in 2003 she was elected District Attorney for San Francisco, and in 2010 she was elected California’s first Black Attorney General. In her position, she advocated stricter gun laws and the recognition of same-sex marriages, and she was exceptionally tough against offenders. Nevertheless, she initiated a rehabilitation program and spoke out against the death penalty.
“Doesn’t define me based on what a man has achieved”
During her time as attorney general, Barack Obama, 59, called her “by far the best-looking attorney general in the country” – the wave of outrage over his sexist statement was great afterwards. But Kamala Harris was unimpressed, she rejected nicknames like “female Obama”. “Don’t define me based on what a man has achieved,” was her credo. And that is still the case: with her quick wit, her charisma and her values, Kamala Harris stands for what so many Americans want: tolerance, justice, peace. Joe Biden knows that too, it is not for nothing that the Democrat elected the woman as vice who publicly accused him of racism because he spoke out against a federal bus program for black children in the 1970s.
Joe Biden describes Harris as a “fearless fighter”
“I was the little girl on the bus,” Harris chalked at the Democratic presidential candidate debate. And it still is today. Even as a married adult woman, Harris fights against racism and for equality in the USA. No wonder she was – once again – one of the first politicians to take part in the “Black Lives Matter” demonstrations in Washington DC. “If you see wrong, do something about it,” her mother used to tell her. And that’s what Kamala Harris does. “She’s a fearless fighter for the common people,” describes Joe Biden.
Your most important title
In her private life, Kamala Harris has long since found happiness. In 2014, she gave the lawyer Douglas Emhoff, 55, the yes-word, the two met only a year earlier on a blind date. Emhoff brought two children into the marriage, now grown up, of whom Harris is affectionately called “Momala”. At the Democratic Congress in August, she said: “I’ve had many titles in my career. And vice-president would be pretty good. But Momala remains the title that means most to me.” Family means everything to her, you can feel that. After all, her younger sister Maya, also a lawyer and prominent civil rights activist, is Harris’ closest confidante – both privately and professionally. “Our connection is unbreakable,” says the senator, who actually would have liked to become president herself. Harris also gets support from her husband: Douglas Emhoff has taken leave for her election campaign and is traveling with her through the country.
Duel against Mike Pence
Tonight, October 7th, all eyes are on Kamala Harris. In a first TV duel, she competes against Donald Trump’s Vice President Mike Pence, 61, because of the corona pandemic, according to media reports, the two “running mates” are to be separated by a Plexiglas pane. It should still be heated.
Sources used: Vogue, Forbes, Tatler, Bpb, Instagram