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American dream and democracy under attack: US Prez candidate Kamala Harris

Harris also said racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, homophobia and transphobia are real in the US

AP | PTI  |  Oakland 

A file photo of Kamala Harris	(Photo: Reuters)
A file photo of Kamala Harris (Photo: Reuters)

Democratic Harris said Sunday that those in power are trying to turn people against each other, which she says is "not our America".

Harris, a first-term US from who announced her candidacy last Monday, rallied supporters outside in Oakland, her hometown and where she served as a before becoming the state The event was the formal kickoff for her campaign.

"We are here because the American Dream and our American democracy are under attack and on the line like never before," she said. "And we are here at this moment in time because we must answer a fundamental question: Who are we? Who are we as Americans? So, let's answer that question to the world and each other right here and right now. America, we are better than this."

Harris also said racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, homophobia and transphobia are real in the US. "They are age-old forms of hate with new fuel. And we need to speak that truth so we can deal with it," she said.

Harris cast herself as the kind of leader who can unify the country and would fight for the needs of all Americans. "I'm running for because I love my country. I'm running to be a by the people. Of the people. For all the people," she said and echoed the words she has used in courtrooms and has adopted as her campaign's slogan: "My whole life, I've only had one client: The people."


The daughter of immigrants from and India, Harris entered the race on Martin Luther Jr Day. Campaign aides say she has drawn inspiration from Shirley Chisholm, who in 1972 became the first black woman to run for from a major party.

If Harris were to win the White House, she would be the first African-American woman and first person of Asian descent to be president.

Her first news conference as a candidate was on the campus of Howard University, the historically black college in the nation's capital that she attended as an undergraduate. On Friday, she was in to speak to members of the Kappa sorority, of which she is a member.

Harris' campaign is expected to highlight her career as a as part of her rationale for seeking the presidency. Harris was the first black woman elected in California, as well as the first woman, first African-American and first Asian-American to hold that job. Some of her tenure as attorney general, particularly relating to criminal justice, has come under early scrutiny.

Harris is among the first major Democrats to jump into what is expected to be a crowded 2020 Senators of and of have announced exploratory committees. Former and Julian Castro, under President and a former mayor, already are in the race.

Senators of New Jersey, Sherrod Brown of Ohio, of and of may also run.

In her speech, Harris said she sees this year as an "inflection point" in American history and that she is best positioned to unite a divided country. "Even though we have powerful forces trying to sow hate and division, the truth is that, as Americans, we have much more in common than what separates us," according to her prepared remarks.

After the rally, Harris planned to her first trip to as a In the weeks before last November's elections, Harris travelled to the lead off caucus state to campaign on behalf of Democrats, and also visited other early-voting states.

Harris' campaign will be based in and led by who managed her 2016 campaign. Aides say the campaign will have a second office in

First Published: Mon, January 28 2019. 05:55 IST
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