Democratic Presidential Candidates Defend Kamala Harris Amid “Racist And Ugly” Attacks
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A growing number of 2020 presidential candidates are voicing support for Sen. Kamala Harris following racist attacks claiming the California Democrat doesn’t represent African-Americans because her father was born in Jamaica.
The attacks began to flood Twitter Thursday, following Harris’ breakout performance on the second night of the Democratic debate when she challenged former Vice President Joe Biden’s record on race.
They gained momentum after Donald Trump Jr. — President Trump’s eldest son — retweeted, then deleted, a post from right-wing commentator, Ali Alexander.
“Kamala Harris is *not* an American Black. She is half Indian and half Jamaican,” Alexander wrote Thursday night. “I’m so sick of people robbing American Blacks (like myself) of our history. It’s disgusting. Now using it for debate time at #DemDebate2?”
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Trump Jr. added the comment: “Is this true? Wow.”
While the post is no longer on Trump’s timeline, several websites — including HuffPost — made screen shots of it.
Harris, a former California attorney general is the biracial daughter of a Jamaican father and Indian mother.
Before attending law school, she earned a bachelor’s degree from historically black Howard University, and pledged Alpha Kappa Alpha, the nation’s oldest black sorority. Her race has been questioned repeatedly since she entered the presidential contest.
As of Saturday afternoon, Harris had not responded to these latest attacks, but her 2020 Democratic challengers did.
“The attacks against @KamalaHarris are racist and ugly,” tweeted Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). “We all have an obligation to speak out and say so. And it’s within the power and obligation of tech companies to stop these vile lies dead in their tracks.”
Sen. Cory Booker (D-New Jersey) added: “@KamalaHarris doesn’t have s–t to prove.”
Meanwhile, South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg tweeted: “The presidential competitive field is stronger because Kamala Harris has been powerfully voicing her Black American experience. Her first-generation story embodies the American dream. It’s long past time to end these racist, birther-style attacks.”
Despite the social media assault, fueled by bots and trolls, Harris’ campaign has surged since the debate.
Today, the campaign reported it raised more than $2 million online in the first 24 hours after Thursday’s debate.
“Supporters across this country are fueling our campaign because they saw her empathy, her passion, and her direct focus on the issues that keep people up at night,” Lily Adams, the campaign’s communications director, said in a statement to CBS News.
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