Joe Biden chose Kamala Harris as his running mate because she’s popular with suburban women and has shown “she can take on Donald Trump and Mike Pence,” among other things, according to internal Biden campaign talking points obtained by HuffPost.
The documents were distributed to delegates this week ahead of the Democratic National Convention, which is set to begin on Monday. They outline how to promote Harris, how to describe her relationship with Biden and hint at why he chose her as his running mate.
In one section, titled “intended for surrogate use only,” the Biden campaign outlines five talking points about why the former vice president picked the senator from California and what her presence on the ticket can do to help win the election in November.
“Senator Harris enjoys especially high popularity among suburban women, who constitute one of the most important swing constituencies in the country, and may well determine the outcome in every major swing state,” one bullet point reads.
Another talking point details how she was a “tough questioner” in Judiciary Committee hearings, likely referring to her widely publicized takedown of Brett Kavanaugh during his Supreme Court confirmation hearings. “She was a tough opponent during the primary campaign, and she’ll fight for the American people every step of the way.”
Delegates are also instructed to discuss Harris as “a deeply respected member of the Black community,” whose presence on the ticket will “drive turnout and enthusiasm in communities of color.” Additionally, the document encourages surrogates to discuss Harris’ track record fighting for immigrant rights. “We expect her popularity among Latino voters to drive turnout across the battleground states, particularly in Arizona, Florida, and Texas,” the memo reads.
A spokesperson for the Biden campaigned declined to comment to HuffPost.
The talking point about suburban women voters is likely in response to President Donald Trump’s recent claim that he will be better for “suburban housewives” because, if elected, Biden and Harris would reinstate low-income housing programs that would create “safety” concerns for suburban communities — a poorly veiled racist statement that assumes low-income housing means more crime.
Trump and right-wing media have wasted no time attacking Harris since Biden announced her as his pick to be his vice president on Tuesday. The Trump campaign and conservative media have already used racist and sexist attacks in an attempt to smear Harris, with Trump calling her “very, very nasty” and multiple talking heads concocting a new, bizarre birtherism claim that Harris is not actually Black.
The document’s talking points do not include guidance on how to push back against criticism of Harris’ early work as a prosecutor, which was a flashpoint during her run for president.
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