Amy Klobuchar quits vice presidential race, tells Joe Biden 'it's time to put a woman of color on that ticket'
The campaign has many women of color shortlisted for vice president, including California Senator and former presidential candidate Kamala Harris
Minnesota Senator and former presidential candidate Amy Klobuchar on Thursday, June 18, stepped aside from the vice-presidential race despite being one of the frontrunners. Her decision came in the wake of the countrywide debate over racial injustice and police brutality that has spread like wildfire following the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis in her state last month. The 60-year-old suggested that Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, should instead pick a woman of color to suit the mood of the times.
Klobuchar was one of Biden’s rivals in the presidential race but quit ahead of the first Super Tuesday on March 3 to back the former vice president in a bid to unify the centrist votes to defeat the leftist Bernie Sanders. The plan paid off as Biden sweeped most of the primaries since then to win the required number of delegates to clinch the nomination. He though hasn’t got the official nomination of the party yet but political observers are already preparing for his contest with President Donald Trump in November.
“This is a historic moment, and America must seize on this moment. And I truly believe as, I actually told the vice president last night when I called him, that I think this is a moment to put a woman of color on that ticket,” Klobuchar, told MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell.
“And there are so many incredibly qualified women, but if you want to heal this nation right now, my party ... this is sure a hell of a way to do it.”
The Biden campaign has a number of colored women in its shortlist for the vice presidential pick, including California Senator and former presidential candidate Kamala Harris, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, Florida Representative Val Demings, and others.
Biden had words of praise for Klobuchar after she announced her decision. In a tweet, the 77-year-old former VP said: “Amy — from the moment you announced you were running for president in a snowstorm, it wasn't hard to see you had the grit and determination to do anything you set your mind to. You know how to get things done. With your help, we're going to beat Donald Trump.”
Klobuchar's VP chances dwindled recently
Klobuchar remained one of the top contenders for the VP’s post ever since Biden sought to choose a woman as his running mate. Her centrist appeal remained one of the main reasons for her popularity. However, the recent protests in favor of black lives have put more pressure on Biden to go for a woman of color as his running mate to assuage the feelings of the black communities. Klobuchar also courted controversy recently over her alleged failure in handling another case of a fatality involving Derek Chauvin, the policeman charged with murdering Floyd, in the mid-2000s when she was the lead prosecutor of the Hennepin County that covers Minneapolis. She rubbished the allegations in what observers said a desperate attempt to save her VP prospects.
Biden himself though did not commit towards picking a black woman. Last month, he told CNN’s Dana Bash when asked whether he would pick a black woman as his running mate: “There are women of color under consideration and there are women from every part of the country under consideration because there are a lot of really qualified women that are ready to be president. But I'm not making that commitment. I'm going to make that judgment after in fact this group goes through interviewing all these people.”
Biden told the same anchor last month that he hopes to pick his VP candidate around August 1.