The team behind the Biden/Harris ticket just got even more historic.
Karine Jean-Pierre, a Black lesbian activist, lecturer at Columbia University, and longtime political commentator, will serve as VP pick Kamala Harris’ chief of staff, rounding out one of the most diverse presidential campaign teams in U.S. history. Jean-Pierre’s new role was announced this Tuesday, August 11, ahead of Joe Biden’s running-mate reveal, according to NBC News.
The veteran politico and Obama administration alum took to Twitter to celebrate her appointment. “Karine ’ambitious’ Jean-Pierre is incredibly proud to be working to elect the Biden/Harris ticket,” she tweeted Tuesday. “Let’s go!!”
— Karine Jean-Pierre (@K_JeanPierre) August 13, 2020
In case you’ve been living under a rock, the Democratic frontrunner chose Harris—a California lawmaker and former White House hopeful herself—to run with him against President Donald Trump.
Although Harris has a controversial record on criminal justice from her time as a California prosecutor, district attorney, and eventual attorney general, her role as Biden’s running mate is momentous. As The New York Times noted on Tuesday, Harris is the first Black woman—and woman of color, period—to be nominated for national office by a major political party. She’s been equally praised and criticized by prominent LGBTQ activists like Angelica Ross, who said Harris was “the right choice for this moment.”
You are the right choice for this moment. I’m with you @KamalaHarris. From our 1-on-1 talks you know I’m here to support as well as hold you accountable as you’ve invited me to do. THANK YOU! Now let’s focus on BOTH the work to be done NOW for #BreonnaTalyor & come November! pic.twitter.com/41ASCnHrCe
— Angelica Ross (@angelicaross) August 11, 2020
“I introduced @KamalaHarris to @iamsheadiamond, another Black trans woman who rightfully had questions about her record as a prosecutor,” the Pose actress tweeted Tuesday. “Shea did NOT go easy on her and took her to task on the points and Kamala was open, apologetic & held herself accountable. Let’s do so as well!”
Harris’ chief of staff isn’t the only openly LGBTQ person working to elect Biden and Harris. As NewNowNext reported in April, Biden tapped gay Obama campaign alum Rufus Gifford to serve as his deputy campaign manager.
The former veep also scored an endorsement from the Human Rights Campaign in May. If all goes as expected, he’ll face off against the infamously anti-LGBTQ “stable genius” in the White House come November.