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'The Most Liberal US Senator': Biden's VP Pick Kamala Harris on Banning Fracking, Green New Deal & Open Borders

Sen. Kamala Harris, D-CA, has been picked by Joe Biden to be his 2020 running mate (Photo: Alex Wong/Pool via AP)
Sen. Kamala Harris, D-CA, has been picked by Joe Biden to be his 2020 running mate (Photo: Alex Wong/Pool via AP)

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden is perceived as a moderate liberal. But what about his running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris?

She has publicly supported progressive policies and has been rated the most liberal member of the Senate. When asked if she's a socialist in a recent interview, she responded with laughter.

"60 Minutes" and CBS anchor Norah O'Donnell pointed out that Biden and Harris are "very different in the policies" that they've supported in the past. She went on to say that Harris is "considered the most liberal United States Senator."

"I, somebody said that, and it actually was Mike Pence on the debate stage, but...," Harris responded, ending in laughter.

"Well, actually, the non-partisan govtrack has rated you as the most liberal Senator," O'Donnell interrupted. "You supported the Green New Deal; you supported Medicare for All; you've supported legalizing marijuana."

"Joe Biden doesn't support those things. So are you gonna bring the policies, those progressive policies that you supported as Senator into a Biden administration?" she asked.

"What I will do, and I promise you this, and this is what Joe wants me to do – this was part of our deal. I will always share with him my lived experience as it relates to any issue that we confront," Harris answered.

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When O'Donnell asked if her perspective was "socialist" or "progressive", Harris responded with laughter again, which prompted criticism on social media.

"No," she laughed. "No, it is the perspective of a woman who grew up a black child in America, who was also a prosecutor, who also has a mother who arrived here at the age of 19 from India, who also likes hip-hop, like what do you want to know?"

Harris got her start in California politics when State Assembly speaker Willie Brown appointed her to the first of two state board positions in 1994. That move created controversy as the two dated while Brown was separated from his wife.

After that relationship ended, Brown took credit for influencing Harris' career so much so that when she ran for San Francisco DA in 2003, Harris referred to him as an "albatross hanging around my neck."

When it comes to 2020, another hanger-on could be when, as a presidential candidate, she came out against fracking and the fossil fuel industry. 

"There's no question I'm in favor of banning fracking," Harris said during a CNN Democratic presidential town hall.

In her vice presidential debate, she had this to say about her running mate: "Joe Biden will not ban fracking. That is a fact. That is a fact."

During the Democratic primary, Harris supported taxpayer-funded abortions, saying they would rescue the lives of lower-income women. 

Another hot-button issue? Immigration. The BBC says Harris was a proponent of making it no longer a crime to cross the US border as an undocumented immigrant and was in favor of providing taxpayer-funded healthcare for undocumented immigrants. 

While Harris is moving more toward the middle as Biden's running mate, critics wonder if the Green New Deal co-sponsor would run back to the left in a Biden administration.

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