Kamala Harris: First black Indian American nominated on major US party ticket

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Democrat's Kamala Harris (Photo Credit:  New York Times)
Democrat's Kamala Harris (Photo Credit: New York Times)

Washington : Who is Kamala Harris? Who is Joe Biden's vice-president running mate? The answer to these questions is in this article.


Kamala Harris has been picked up by Democrats's president-candidate Joe Biden as the vice-presidential running mate. The announcement was made on Tuesday.

About Kamala Harris

The California Democrat was born in Oakland to two immigrant parents – an India-born mother and a Jamaican father. 

Her parents divorced after some years and she was single-handedly raised by a Hindu single mother, Shyamala Gopalan Harris, a cancer researcher and civil rights activist.

While she has a keen interest in Indian culture, she claims that her mother adopted Oakland's black culture, immersing her two daughters - Kamala and her younger sister Maya - within it.

"My mother understood very well that she was raising two black daughters," she wrote in her autobiography The Truths We Hold. "She knew that her adopted homeland would see Maya and me as black girls and she was determined to make sure we would grow into confident, proud black women."

Years later, Ms Harris says she is comfortable with her identity and is proud to describe herself as an American.

In 2019, she told the Washington Post that politicians should not have to fit into compartments because of their colour or background. "My point was: I am who I am. I'm good with it. You might need to figure it out, but I'm fine with it," she said.

She attended a historically black college (Howard University), is a member of a prominent black sorority (Alpha Kappa Alpha) and visited India often while growing up. She often argues that her identity makes her uniquely suited to fight for people who have been traditionally ignored.

Kamala Harris Vision for the US

"I believe our country wants and needs some leadership that provides a vision of the country in which everyone could see themselves."