Washington: The mainstream US media on Wednesday ran rare banner headlines — similar to the ones when Barack Obama was declared presidential nominee in 2008 — hailing the decision of Democratic Party presidential nominee Joe Biden to select Indian-origin Senator Kamala Harris as his running mate.
The Jamaican media too gave frontpage coverage to the selection of Harris, whose father is an African from Jamaica and mother an Indian, as the Democratic vice presidential nominee.
Biden, the 77-year-old former US vice president, will challenge incumbent Republican President Donald Trump, 74, in the November 3 election.
By naming the 55-year-old Harris, a lawyer and politician from California as his running mate on Tuesday, Biden made history by selecting the first Black woman to compete on a major party’s presidential ticket.
Harris is currently the Senator from California and has been described as a trailblazer by former president Barack Obama.
“In historic move, Biden selects Harris for VP,” The Washington Post said in a banner headline in its Wednesday’s edition.
The decision elevates the first Black woman and first Asian-American woman to run for vice president on a major-party ticket at a moment when the country is grappling with its racial past and future , the leading daily reported.
The decision, it noted, is the most consequential of Biden’s presidential campaign and has major implications not only for the November election but for the future of the Democratic Party.
Noting that Biden would be of 78 years by the Inauguration Day, and thus the oldest president ever, the newspaper said the choice places Harris, who was a more vibrant and energetic presence on the campaign trail but was also at times unsteady, at the forefront of the party’s future as, potentially, the first female vice president.
Harris herself was a presidential aspirant until last year before she dropped out of the race because of lack of popular support.
The New York Times in its lead headline said, Biden’s VP Pick is Kamala Harris, 1st Women of Color on Major Ticket.
The daily noted that Harris is the first Black woman and the first person of Indian descent to be nominated for national office by a major party, and only the fourth woman in US history to be chosen for a presidential ticket.
“She brings to the race a far more vigorous campaign style than Mr Biden’s, including a gift for capturing moments of raw political electricity on the debate stage and elsewhere, and a personal identity and family story that many find inspiring,” it said.
Harris Named as Biden’s Running Mate in Historic Vice-Presidential Choice, was the lead headline of The Wall Street Journal.
Daughter of Indian and Jamaican immigrants, Harris has been a rising star in the Democratic Party since being elected to the Senate in 2016, it said.
Given her own presidential campaign, she was better-known than many of the other women under consideration. In addition to an established small-dollar donor list, she has ties to wealthy donors from industries including finance, media and law, The WSJ noted.
According to The Los Angeles Times, Kamala Harris is Joe Biden’s history-making pick for vice president.
In picking Harris, the daily in an editorial said, Biden has shown that “unlike the man currently holding the job he seeks, he’s not afraid of strong women”.
As Biden heads into the most consequential president election in modern history, he sees what we do: Harris has a lot to offer the campaign and the ticket beyond being a symbol, it said.
In another report, the newspaper said, Harris brings an unusual blend of social justice progressiveness and law-and-order conservatism.
She has a long career of fighting to protect the downtrodden and looking for ways to reform the criminal justice system while still locking up plenty of the proverbial bad guys. She’s gone after for-profit colleges and the mortgage industry when they preyed upon her constituents.
“She’s outspoken (at least when she wants to be) on issues she cares about, will not be cowed by bullying, and is not afraid of being seen as overly aggressive, which can be a career killer for women. Just ask Hillary Clinton, the daily said.
The Boston Globe in its lead headline noted, Biden’s running mate is Kamala Harris, first woman of color on a major party’s ticket.
Only two other women have been major party vice presidential nominees, Geraldine Ferraro for the Democrats in 1984 and Sarah Palin for the Republicans in 2008, and neither won, the daily said.
Meanwhile, Jamaican Times in its lead headline said, “Biden Selects California Senator Kamala Harris as Running Mate”.
In another front-page report it said, “While many will hail the choice of Kamala Harris as Joe Biden’s running mate, the US senator from California has come under tough criticism – but also been praised – over her past work as a top prosecutor.”
The Jamaica Observer in its lead headline stated, “Trump says ‘surprised’ at Biden’s pick of ‘horrible’ Harris”.