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Photo: Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty Images

Former President Barack Obama released a statement Tuesday celebrating Joe Biden's selection of Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate and calling it a reflection of Biden's "own judgment and character."

Why it matters: Obama recognized Harris's talent early on, in 2013 famously calling her "brilliant," "dedicated" and "tough." He and former First Lady Michelle Obama remain two of the most popular figures in the Democratic Party and are scheduled to headline two nights of next week's Democratic National Convention, where Harris will also give an address.

Full statement:

Choosing a vice president is the first important decision a president makes. When you’re in the Oval Office, weighing the toughest issues, and the choice you make will affect the lives and livelihoods of the entire country – you need someone with you who’s got the judgment and the character to make the right call. Someone whose focus goes beyond self-interest to consider the lives and prospects of others.
Joe Biden nailed this decision. By choosing Senator Kamala Harris as America’s next vice president, he’s underscored his own judgment and character. Reality shows us that these attributes are not optional in a president. They’re requirements of the job. And now Joe has an ideal partner to help him tackle the very real challenges America faces right now and in the years ahead. 
I’ve known Senator Harris for a long time. She is more than prepared for the job. She’s spent her career defending our Constitution and fighting for folks who need a fair shake. Her own life story is one that I and so many others can see ourselves in: a story that says that no matter where you come from, what you look like, how you worship, or who you love, there’s a place for you here. It’s a fundamentally American perspective, one that’s led us out of the hardest times before. And it’s a perspective we can all rally behind right now. 
Michelle and I couldn’t be more thrilled for Kamala, Doug, Cole, and Ella. This is a good day for our country. Now let’s go win this thing.

Go deeper: More reactions from around the political world

Go deeper

Nov 17, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Biden to bring Donilon and Ricchetti into White House

Biden after delivering remarks on the economic recovery in Wilmington, Del. Nov. 16. Photo: Salwan Georges/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President-elect Joe Biden is bringing two longtime confidants — Steve Ricchetti and Mike Donilon — into the West Wing along with newer faces as he fills out out his senior White House staff.

Driving the news: Biden named Ron Klain as his chief of staff last week, and on Tuesday announced other members of his senior team.

DOJ watchdog to probe whether officials sought to alter election results

Former President Donald Trump and former First Lady Melania Trump exit Air Force One in West Palm Beach, Florida, on Jan. 20. Photo: Alex Edelman/AFP via Getty Images

The Justice Department's inspector general will investigate whether any current or former DOJ officials "engaged in an improper attempt to have DOJ seek to alter the outcome" of the 2020 election, the agency announced Monday.

Driving the news: The investigation comes in the wake of a New York Times report that alleged that Jeffrey Clark, the head of DOJ's civil division, had plotted with President Trump to oust acting Attorney General Jeffery Rosen in a scheme to overturn the election results in Georgia.

2 hours ago - Podcasts

Google's chief health officer Karen DeSalvo on vaccinating America

Google on Monday became the latest Big Tech company to get involved with COVID-19 vaccinations. Not just by doing things like incorporating vaccination sites into its maps, but by helping to turn some of its offices and parking lots into vaccination sites.

Axios Re:Cap goes deeper into what Google is doing, and why now, with Dr. Karen DeSalvo, Google's chief health officer who previously worked at HHS and as health commissioner for New Orleans.