Kamala Harris accepts a historic nomination, and Twitter responds
Sen. Kamala Harris accepted the vice presidential nomination at the 2020 Democratic National Convention. She is the first Black woman and the first South Asian woman ever nominated, and Democrats’ first vice presidential pick from west of the Rockies.
When Joe Biden first announced Kamala Harris would be his running mate, many people online celebrated the moment as historic.
California’s junior senator, a daughter of immigrants from India and Jamaica, became the first woman of color officially nominated to a major party’s presidential ticket Wednesday night at the virtual Democratic National Convention. She is joining Biden to face President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence in November.
Harris honored the women who paved the path before her as she accepted the nomination. She also blasted Trump for his “failure of leadership” and celebrated former Vice President Biden’s vision of a country where everyone is welcome, “no matter what we look like, no matter where we come from, or who we love.”
Harris spoke immediately after President Obama, and some acknowledged he could be a tough orator to follow. Former Acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal praised Harris for meeting the moment.
“As someone who speaks for a living, I would have been beyond terrified to have to follow that @BarackObama speech. Terrified beyond all words. But @KamalaHarris pulled it off — a fabulous speech in which Americans learned who she is and what she is about. Flawless delivery. Wow.”
There were some critics who felt that her speech fell flat. Eric Phillips, a former press secretary for New York Mayor Bill de Blasio (another former presidential candidate) said that it was a programming error to have her follow the former president.
“Harris isn’t a speechmaker. It’s not her game,” he said. “So they put her after Obama?? Won’t matter, but an unforced error.”
Some of her former rivals on the campaign trail praised Harris as she spoke.
“Kamala seems to be at home celebrating this moment in history,” entrepreneur Andrew Yang noted. Former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg congratulated her: “Extraordinary to witness the history made tonight.”
Former Housing Secretary Julián Castro simply wrote: “For the people.”
Others praised Harris’ groundbreaking nomination as a win for children of immigrants and people of color.
“Felicidades,” Nathalie Rayes, the CEO and president of the political organization Latino Victory, wrote in a tweet to Harris. “To see the daughter of immigrants become the Vice-Presidential nominee of the most powerful country in the world fills me with pride and joy.”
Republican strategist Ana Navarro-Cárdenas urged parents to let their daughters watch the historic moment. “If you’re a parent to a young girl let them stay up late...,” she said. “Tell them they too can reach for the stars.”
The moment was also meaningful to graduates of historically Black colleges and universities and members of Black sororities and fraternities. Harris joined Alpha Kappa Alpha as a student at Howard University, an HCBU in Washington, D.C.
“A strong biracial Black woman, an AKA,” author Arianna Davis wrote. “I never thought I’d be able to describe myself and the future Vice President the same way. This is so inspiring.”
And her walk-off song did not go unnoticed by viewers who stuck around after her speech.
“Kamala Harris. It was The Mary J. Blige ‘Work That’ at the end of her speech for me.....” radio host Charlamagne Tha God wrote.
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