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Kamala Harris’ selection as VP resonates with Black women

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Associated Press
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China Cochran met Kamala Harris at a campaign event in Detroit last year and was swept away by her ambition, charisma and leadership. She hoped the California senator would advance in politics.

So when Joe Biden named Harris on Tuesday as his running mate — making her the first Black woman on a major party’s presidential ticket — Cochran wasn’t just struck by the history. It represented a full-circle moment for Black women, who for generations have fought for their voices to be heard and political aspirations recognized.

“It tells Black girls that they can be president,” said Cochran, who recently ran for state representative in Michigan. “If you look back at Shirley Chisholm, she ran so that Kamala could lead at this moment. I think it’s important for us to look at that and see other young women of color realize that they can go after their dreams and really make change in our world.”

Harris’ selection is historic in many senses. It also marks the first time a person of Asian descent is on the presidential ticket. Born to a Jamaican father and Indian mother, she often speaks of her deep bond with her late mother, whom she has called her single biggest influence.

Harris’ boundary-breaking potential serves as an affirmation of the growing power of voters of color, according to nearly a dozen interviews with political strategists, potential voters and activists.

“Joe Biden understood this historic moment required a tough, smart and respected public servant,” said Donna Brazile, who managed Al Gore’s campaign in 2000 and served as Democratic National Committee chair in 2016.

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