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Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) addressed in South Carolina Saturday criticisms she's faced since entering the 2020 race about her record as a district attorney and state attorney general who was tough on crime, AP reports.

Details: Harris told the NAACP state conference her prosecutorial background makes her uniquely qualified to hold President Trump accountable, per AP. She also outlined her vision for a criminal justice system in which "safety is a civil right," according to the Los Angeles Times, which noted she said it's a "myth that black people don’t want public safety."

Why it matters: Harris was criticized by some previously for stances including defending the death penalty despite being personally against it, opposing a bill that would've required her office to investigate police shootings and for remaining silent on several criminal justice reforms championed by progressives.

The big picture: In her speech, Harris sought to justify previous policy decisions, rather than apologize for them, according to Politico. And she spoke of her experience as a biracial woman involved in making decisions on how criminal cases were prosecuted, per the LA Times: "We always have to be in those rooms, especially and even when there aren’t many like us there," she said.

"In this election, regarding my background as a prosecutor, there have been those who have questioned my motivations, my beliefs and what I’ve done. But my mother used to say you don’t let people tell you who you are. You tell them who you are. Let me be clear — self-appointed political commentators do not get to define who we are and what we believe. I take my mother’s advice."
— Harris statement, according to campaign team
A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.

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

Go deeper

2020 was the economy's worst year since 1946

Source: FRED; Billions of chained 2012 dollars; Chart: Axios Visuals

One of the last major economic report cards of the Trump era lends perspective to the historic damage caused by the pandemic, which continued to weigh on growth in the final quarter of 2020.

By the numbers: The U.S. economy grew at a 4% annualized pace in the fourth quarter, a sharp slowdown in growth compared to the prior quarter. For the full year, the economy shrank by 3.5% — the first annual contraction since the financial crisis and the worst decline since 1946.

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

How GameStop exposed the market

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Retail traders have found a cheat code for the stock market, and barring some major action from regulatory authorities or a massive turn in their favored companies, they're going to keep using it to score "tendies" and turn Wall Street on its head.

What's happening: The share prices of companies like GameStop are rocketing higher, based largely on the social media organizing of a 3-million strong group of Redditors who are eagerly piling into companies that big hedge funds are short selling, or betting will fall in price.

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
3 hours ago - Health

Who benefits from Biden's move to reopen ACA enrollment

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Nearly 15 million Americans who are currently uninsured are eligible for coverage on the Affordable Care Act marketplaces, and more than half of them would qualify for subsidies, according to a new Kaiser Family Foundation brief.

Why it matters: President Biden is expected to announce today that he'll be reopening the marketplaces for a special enrollment period from Feb. 15 to May 15, but getting a significant number of people to sign up for coverage will likely require targeted outreach.

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