Home World News Lotus 123 – Kamala Harris blooms in the American mud pond

Lotus 123 – Kamala Harris blooms in the American mud pond

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WASHINGTON: A lotus has bloomed in the mud pond that is American politics, long dominated by men – mostly white men. Kamala Harris’ election as the first female Vice-President of the United States – sub-ethnicities and race aside – was celebrated wildly across a country that now has more women voters than men, with the winner herself recognizing the turning point in redressing gender imbalance in history.
In remarks that were replete with tributes to women, including to her mother Shyamala Gopalan, Harris said on Saturday that “while I may be the first woman in this office, I won’t be the last, because every little girl watching tonight sees that this is a country of possibilities.” It encapsulated the message she has said time and again her mother gave her: “Kamala, you may be the first to do many things, but make sure you’re not the last.”
“When she came here from India at the age of 19, maybe she didn’t quite imagine this moment. But she believed so deeply in an America where a moment like this is possible,” the Vice-President elect said of her mother, as she paid tributes to women in general and women of all colour – Black, Asian, White, Latina, and Native American women throughout our nation’s history who have paved the way for this moment tonight.
The celebratory speech came even as defeated President Trump and his rightwing supporters resumed their campaign to portray her as a foreign interloper who is a socialist Trojan horse whose aim is to supplant an aging Joe Biden in the White House. “Kamala Harris’ next goal – to become most Left-wing President in US history: How ‘woke’ former lawyer who fought to legalise cannabis and toughen gun control,” read one red-meat headline in a conservative outlet.
But liberals celebrated the historic occasion, with the popular Saturday Night Live cranking out a skit to celebrate the victory just hours after news outlets called the election for the Biden-Harris ticket. One segment showed Kamala, played by actress Maya Rudolph, trying her best not to gloat about the Democrat victory even as Joe Biden, played by actor Jim Carrey, counsels restraint.
The California Senator and Vice-President elect is known for her uninhibited celebration of joyful moments, expressed in a happy laugh that triggers the worst kind of sexism among conservative men. She loves her cocktails, her dancing shoes, and is a fabulous self-made cook who during campaign stops would insist on eating at little owner-cooked home-food restaurants and then try and cadge their family recipes to add to her collection.
But before she lays it out in what will be her new home at the Naval Observatory north of the White House after she is sworn in, her first order of business will be to formally secure the win through the Electoral College and then work to draw level with Republicans in the Senate, where Democrats trail 48-50 with two run-off elections on January 5, two weeks before Inauguration Day. If Democrats pull it off, her history-making vice-presidency will be even more consequential because she will have a tie breaker vote in a 50-50 Senate, a body that confirms major judicial and diplomatic appointments.
She will also have a say in the appointment of her successor to the Senate from California, which will be the remit of the state governor Gavin Newsom, a longtime friend and political ally. Given the state’s demographic composition, there is already a clamor that the replacement for two years (the remainder of her six-year term) should be a minority candidate – with Indian-American Congressman Ro Khanna’s name in the mix.