Marc Caputo and Matthew Choi, Politico, June 18, 2020
Sen. Amy Klobuchar late Thursday said she personally called presumptive Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden to advise he pick a woman of color as his running mate, effectively announcing the end of her vice presidential aspirations.
“I truly believe, as I actually told the vice president last night when I called him, that I think this is a moment to put a woman of color on that ticket,” the Minnesota Democrat told MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell. “And there is so many incredibly qualified women.”
Klobuchar had long been considered a top contender for Biden’s vice presidential pick, but as protests over police brutality against African Americans erupted across the country following the death of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer, the traditional running mate calculus was altered. Klobuchar’s credentials as a former prosecutor with a tough-on-crime record didn’t sit well as her home state became a locus among protests and calls for structural change in law enforcement.
Two other potential Biden picks, California Sen. Kamala Harris and Florida Rep. Val Demings, also have law enforcement backgrounds. However, both are black women, have more support among African American leaders and have been more comfortable discussing issues of race, inequality and police brutality.
In adding her name to the growing chorus of voices who think Biden should not pick a white woman, Klobuchar’s announcement was widely viewed by Democratic insiders as a blow to the chances of Massachusetts’ Sen Elizabeth Warren, who is a top consideration for Biden.
Biden, who has not committed to picking a running mate based on race, region or ideology, has said he plans to make his decision by early August.
A POLITICO/Morning Consult poll release last week showed that found 46 percent of Democrats said it’s important Biden pick a nonwhite vice presidential candidate, an increase of 10 percentage points since early April.