The Importance Of Madame Vice President

JD V., Editor

On Saturday, November 7, 2020, Joe Biden was elected to become the 46th president of the United States and his running mate, Kamala Harris, made history as the first African American, first Indian American, and first woman to become the Vice President.

 The daughter of two immigrant parents, Ms. Harris’ recent ascension into the nation’s second highest office empowered women and girls of color everywhere. After Hillary Clinton’s loss in the 2016 election, it seemed as though a female president was still only a possibility. Now, Arwa Mahdawi in The Guardian writes: “If Joe Biden only serves one term, as expected, there is a chance that in 2024 she (Harris) could become the first black female president” bringing women one step closer to the highest position in the nation.

I reached out to Elena Hoag, ‘21, and asked her how it felt for first time voters to see the first woman Vice President; “I turned 18 a few weeks before Election Day and I couldn’t be more excited to vote. When Biden won, it was actually happening, a woman with a high position in office. I watched her speech with my family and had hope for this country again. I was thrilled to know that my vote counted and made history.” 

In her victory speech on Saturday, the Vice President-elect credited all the women who came before her and wore white to honor the women’s suffrage movement. Ms. Harris remarked; “I am thinking about her, and about the generations of women- Black women, Asian, White, Latina, Native American women- who throughout our nation’s history have paved the way for this moment tonight, I stand on their shoulders.”

With her victory comes a sense of security. Her connections to the Black, Asian, and immigrant communities give us hope that she will represent and voice the problems that they face.  Meera Estrada for Global News writes: “There is optimism that she will help Biden restore justice to a broken system on issues of racial equality…and end the deplorable immigration and refugee policies that have ripped children from the arms of their parents.” There is hope that after everything they’ve been through these last four years, the system that ostracized and oppressed them may be amended. 

Although, it is also best to remember that with Ms. Harris’ background, there is also her years of experience from serving as California’s Attorney General, and as a prosecutor. In her speech the Vice President-elect said: “While I may be the first woman in this office, I will not be the last.”