Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters of California said Friday that presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden will choose a black woman as his running mate.
Waters made the comment in an interview with Essence.
In July, Biden said four black women were on his list of possible vice-presidential candidates but did not name names, according to The Hill.
To date, speculation has focused on Sen. Kamala Harris of California, former national security advisor Susan Rice and California Rep. Karen Bass. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, who made some lists early in the process, is now rarely mentioned.
Biden has said he will pick a woman.
.@repmaxinewaters on Joe Biden: “He can’t go home without a Black woman being VP.”
— ESSENCE (@Essence) August 7, 2020
Waters said Biden will pick a black woman because he owes black voters.
“Let me guarantee you this: Based on everything that I know and understand, and the help that [Biden] has already gotten from the black community, with what Jim Clyburn has done, Jim Clyburn, when he hears about this he’s gonna laugh. He can’t go home without a black woman being VP,” Waters said.
“We’re going to have a black woman VP,” she added.
Clyburn, a black congressman from South Carolina and the House majority whip, was instrumental in helping Biden get the support of black voters at a time in the Democratic primary process when Biden’s campaign was off to a rocky start.
Some found the comment by Waters troubling.
“I don’t understand why everyone is stating “we must have a black woman VP in the WH”. What happened to best candidate…”
— Intrepid (@RuDauntless) August 8, 2020
@RepMaxineWaters I respectfully disagree. @JoeBiden VP candidate should be based on qualifications, period. Race or gender should have NOTHING to do with it. And, I am a man of color, I live to fight 4 equal rights. This is not it.
— Stand Up 4 Justice, Integrity & Good (@4Justice4Good) August 8, 2020
Waters told Essence that black voters must turn out and defeat President Donald Trump.
“I believe that Black Lives Matter and the protests that were in the streets [are] a sign of people understanding that this dangerous man with all of this power must not continue in office for another four years,” she said.
She also invoked the memory of the late Georgia Rep. John Lewis, a civil rights icon who died last month.
“We have a responsibility to vote,” the California Democrat said.
“We can’t have people going around talking about how wonderful John Lewis was, how much he sacrificed, the beatings that he took, the way that he put his life on the line and we don’t get up and vote. There is no excuse.”
Waters said black voters need Biden in office.
“Our lives depend on this,” she went on. “Four more years of Trump, he will be able to exercise the kind of exclusion and discrimination that will set us back many, many years and we cannot afford that. He stands to imperil our future and the future of our children. So vote, vote, vote.”
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