Kamala Harris is the latest amongst a string of candidates who have announced their intention to run for presidency in 2020. What makes her unique is her iron-clad record as an attorney and a multicultural background.
US Senator Kamala Harris recently threw her hat in the ring for the 2020 US presidential race as a candidate from the Democrat party. In over 24 hours of the announcement, Harris received a whopping $1.5 million in the form of donations to her campaign by around 38,000 donors. Harris joins other women including Kirsten Gillibrand, Tulsi Gabbard and Elizabeth Warren in her bid.
Sales of her campaign merchandise also reportedly broke a single-day, single-candidate record for the vendor, Bumperactive.
A daughter of immigrants
Harris was born in Oakland, US, in the year 1964. She is the daughter of immigrant parents- Shyamala Gopalan Harris from India and Donald Harris from Jamaica. Her parents separated and she moved with her mother and sister to Montreal, Canada, at the age of 12. Her mother took up a research position at the Jewish General Hospital and taught at the McGill University. "I grew up going to a black Baptist church and a Hindu temple," Harris told the Los Angeles Times in 2015.
Harris began her career as a Deputy District Attorney in Alameda County, where she worked for 8 years, from 1990 to 1998. She went on to join the San Francisco City Attorney's Office. She was elected as District Attorney of the City and County of San Francisco in 2004. She served two terms at this post. Her mother passed away in 2009, and her father remains a professor at Stanford University. He has also served as an economic adviser to various Jamaican Prime Ministers and has been consultant to the Government of Jamaica.
In 2010, Harris was elected as the California Attorney General, the first African-American and the first woman to be serving in that office. In 2014, she was reelected.
Proposed policy outline
Harris has proposed a nearly $3 trillion tax plan. She supports popular socialist policies such as Medicare-for-all, and a reduction in the amount of cash bail for inmates charged with offenses of criminal nature. She has also proposed to give billions in tax credits to low-income renters.
Her plan also includes increase in election security, which she has emphasized upon citing the alleged Russian interference in the 2016 elections. Harris plans to provide tax credits up to $3000 for citizens. However, these credits would not be available to higher earners and those with no income. This is in stark contrast to the strategy of the current President Trump, whose plans are projected to benefit the richest 1 percent by providing them tax benefits.
'College for all Act' again
Harris endorses the "College for all act" that has been previously proposed by Senator Bernie Sanders. This creates a government fund that can pay for the fees at public colleges for students with incomes of less than $125,000. This is to be funded by Wall Street firms on a minimal fee (about 0.5%) of their stock trade.
What's the answer to gun violence?
Harris plans on putting a ban on the sale of assault rifles, those that can shoot a round of more than 10 bullets without even reloading once. She has earlier rounded up those with illegal possession of guns. She has also defended a state law that banned the descriptive advertising of handguns by stores.
The great wall of USA
Harris has openly opposed Trump's idea of a border wall. She has sponsored the bill meant to reunite parents and children at the border, and wishes to "reexamine" ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement). She also supports the Obama era DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) that protects children brought illegally into the country.
Climate Change – Accord de Paris
Harris has voiced her disappointment in the President's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accord. She has also launched an investigation into Exxon's alleged lies related to their environmental policies and repercussions.
Harris has earlier voted against a bill that limited abortion up to 20 weeks. She refused to defend the law that banned same sex marriage in California. She also endorses the right of transgendered people to use the bathroom of their choice.
Harris has proposed laws aimed at combating the high rent rates in significant cities in the USA.
Harris has also opposed the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) on various grounds. She is against the escalating tension that has risen between the US and China due to the trade war.
If elected president, Harris would make history as the first female president of the United States, and the second African-American president. She would also be the first person with Asian heritage to attain one of the most powerful positions in the world.