Jul 1, 2019 - Politics & Policy

Kamala Harris stands by decision to take on Joe Biden at 2020 debate

Democratic presidential candidate U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) waves as she rides in a car during the SF Pride Parade on June 30, 2019 in San Francisco, California.

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) told reporters Sunday she stood by her decision to take on 2020 Democratic presidential rival Joe Biden on the issue of race at last week’s debate, despite an online backlash, Bloomberg first reported.

"It may make people uncomfortable to speak the truth about the history of our country but we must speak the truth. We must agree that there not only is fact that is the basis for these truths but that we should recommit ourselves to also agreeing that these things should never happen again."

Why it matters: While a new poll shows Harris received a 6-point bump in favorability after she challenged the former vice president's opposition to federally mandated busing in the 1970s, she's also endured false online accusations about her race and U.S. citizenship that saw other candidates rush to her defense — including Biden.

  • Biden's supporters and some fellow Democrats have criticized Harris for her stance in interviews with Politico, including former Sen. Carol Moseley Braun (D-Ill.), the first African American woman to serve in the Senate, who's endorsed Biden in the 2020 primary.
"We can be proud of her nonetheless, but her ambition got it wrong about Joe ... for her to take that tack is sad."
— Former Sen. Carol Moseley Braun's comments to Politico

The big picture: Harris made the comments outside San Francisco’s city hall after marching in the city’s LGBTQ pride parade, per Bloomberg. She also addressed the San Francisco pride breakfast, where she denounced President Trump for his administration's record on LGBTQ rights.

Go deeper: Kamala Harris on the issues, in under 500 words

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