Local party leaders react to Biden VP pick


EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Earlier today, presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden announced that California Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate.

KTSM reached out to the leaders of the El Paso Young Democrats and the El Paso Young Republicans for their reaction to the news. Below are their responses.

J.J. Martinez, president of the El Paso Young Democrats:

“As Donald Trump continues to fail the American people, Joe Biden has proven, since becoming the presumptive Democratic nominee, that he is ready to lead and restore the soul of our nation.

Sen. Kamala Harris will be a strong and effective vice president of the United States. As one of the most progressive-voting senators in the U.S. Senate, Sen. Harris will continue to help Joe Biden move our country forward. And, as the first Black and AAPI (Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders) women ever chosen as a vice presidential nominee, Sen. Harris represents, not only the whole of the Democratic Party, but the whole of America. Her nomination sends a clear message: Donald Trump does not represent America or the American people. 

As our party meets virtually to formally nominate Joe Biden as president and Sen. Harris as vice president next week, we reaffirm our resolve to do everything we can to elect progressive Democrats, from the White House to El Paso’s City Hall. Young El Pasoans and young Texans will be the driving force in finally turning Texas blue, and the El Paso Young Democrats will do everything we can to turnout the vote in El Paso County and across Texas. We will defeat Donald Trump in November, and turn the page to a new chapter in this country.”

Luis G. Hinojos, president of the El Paso Young Republicans

“In March, the Former Vice President Joe Biden vowed to choose a woman to be his running mate. Today, Biden announced that Sen. Kamala Harris will be his running mate, making her the first Black woman nominated for vice president by a major party. Biden’s pick is predictable, but questionable as a political strategy.

Although Harris eventually endorsed Biden, she was a vocal critic of Biden in the Democratic Party presidential debates. Harris attacked Biden for opposing forced busing and his role in the 1994 crime bill. The pick can, therefore, be argued as an attempt to unify the Democratic Party, but the real gap is between the moderates and the progressives. Kamala Harris is a wavering progressive at best. Members of the Democratic Party have heavily criticized Harris for her shaky record as a prosecutor. Biden himself hit Harris for keeping non-violent prisoners behind bars while she was California attorney general. Additionally, Harris was an original co-sponsor of Sen. Bernie Sanders’ “Medicare-for-all” bill, but she has since backtracked to allow for private insurance — which we appreciate.  

Harris was a lackluster attorney general, who opposed criminal justice reforms, and a first-term senator who dropped out of the campaign trail due to single-digit polling. With Biden’s undeniable decline in his mental capacity, a vote for a Biden presidency is a vote for a Harris presidency. Accordingly, we should not forget what Biden thought of Harris’ record on criminal justice reform. A Harris presidency is not what America wants, according to the latest polls.  

We remain confident in a conservative victory this November.”

This is the third time in history that a woman has been chosen as a running mate on a major party ticket.

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