Despite repeated attempts by the media to prop up California Democratic Senator Kamala Harris as a potential 2020 presidential candidate, the idea is not sticking with many liberal groups or supporters of former Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders.
An opinion editorial published Friday, written by Sarah Jones of the New Republic, observes that the Democrat Party is struggling to come up with a viable candidate for 2020, stating, “The recent uproar over Kamala Harris shows that the left needs to decide how to approach flawed candidates who meet its litmus tests.”
The editorial notes that Harris is a supporter for universal health care, free college tuition, and a $15 minimum wage.
Jones writes that at this point, Harris has “as good a chance as anybody else at this early stage” to get the nomination, but acknowledges that she has “a deeply troubling record,” due to her past career as a prosecuting attorney.
The editorial lists some of the cases that might create problems for Harris in the future, should she try to run for president:
- As a district attorney, she implemented a law that penalized parents of truant children with a fine of up to $2,000 and a year in jail.
- As attorney general in California, Harris fought against a transgender prisoner’s efforts to receive health care.
- Her poor record on prosecuting financial crimes is an issues, including her failure to prosecute OneWest Bank over foreclosure cases.
“Under what circumstances could the left accept a flawed candidate for high office?” asks Jones. The broader goal is having a candidate with allies in government, Jones indicates:
“A cluster of lawmakers—Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Ro Khanna, Keith Ellison, Mark Pocan, and other members of the House Progressive Caucus—come closest to the mark, on issues including Medicare-for-All, free college tuition, a federal $15 minimum wage, trust-busting, immigrant rights, and police brutality. But with the exception of Sanders and Ellison, these politicians did not come up through the ranks of the activist left. They have flawed records, as most politicians do, marked by bad positions and dubious compromises.
“But that is grounds for criticism, not outright dismissal. The left’s most realistic hope is for a candidate with a spotty record who enthusiastically and sincerely takes up its cause. And that means approaching the party’s Kamala Harrises with flexibility.”
Jones says it’s “still too soon to say #NeverKamala.”
Harris has become a “fundraising magnet” in the Democrat Party, and has attended many dinners and fundraisers in the Hamptons recently. She is reportedly using the advertising firm, Revolution Messaging, LLC, and has spent over $400,000 this year alone to help get her message out to the masses.
Some of the major donors she has met with in the Hamptons include Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein and his wife Georgina Chapman, Citigroup’s Ray McGuire, and PepsiCo’s Tony West.
Bernie Sanders supporters are not warming up to her, however.
“She’s not on our radar,” stated RoseAnn DeMoro, executive director of National Nurses United, who supported Bernie Sanders in the 2016 presidential primaries.
Another Sanders supporter, Winnie Wong, co-founder of People for Bernie, condemned Harris as being out of touch and in the pockets of the wealthy. “She is the preferred candidate of extremely wealthy and out-of-touch Democratic party donors … her recent anointing is extremely telling. These donors will line her coffers ahead of 2020 and she will have the next two years to craft a message of broad appeal to a rapidly changing electorate,” Wong said.
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