Biden's VP choice generates differing opinions from state party leaders

Joe Biden chooses Kamala Harris as vice presidential running mate
Posted at 10:49 PM, Aug 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-11 23:12:35-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — After months of speculation, presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden has chosen his running mate.

While Governor Gretchen Whitmer was on his short list, the former VP ultimately went with California Senator Kamala Harris.

The last time former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Kamala Harris were together publicly was in Detroit, campaigning ahead of the March primary.

Almost five months later to the date, they are running mates.

On Twitter Biden called Harris, “a fearless fighter for the little guy and one of the country’s finest public servants.”

It’s Vice President Biden’s first presidential decision, and he's made an excellent one,” Michigan Democratic Party Chair Lavora Barnes said.

On a Zoom call with FOX 17, Barnes spoke of the historic nature of Harris being added to the ballot.

“As a black woman, as the mother of black women as the daughter and granddaughter of black women it's a proud moment. It's been a long time coming frankly for black women and I'm proud to be here and be a part of this moment, it's terrific," Barnes said.

In a battleground state, Barnes believes having senator Harris on the ticket will energize voters.

“I think that she resonates well with the people of Michigan because she understands the issues that matter to us, she's been here several times talk to our voters got to understand our issues. I think she's an excellent addition to the ticket and we'll run strong here in Michigan and lift up the Biden campaign and lift us all up as we head toward November,” Barnes.

But Republicans in Michigan see it differently.

“I don’t think it changes much to be honest, the whole ‘veepstakes’ was an interesting exercise for political hobbyists but ultimately it doesn’t change much,” Peter Meijer told FOX 17.

A week after winning his primary, Peter Meijer the Republican nominee in the 3rd Congressional District, held a campaign rally in Grand Rapids alongside Michigan GOP Chair Laura Cox.

“She has bad ideas for Michigan,” Laura Cox said.

Cox believes Harris’ policies will not resonate with Michiganders.

“She’s a California liberal, she supports the Green New Deal…that’s a bad deal for Michigan and we don’t want a California liberal telling us what to do here in the Midwest and in Michigan especially,” Laura Cox said.

President Trump held a news conference shortly after Biden’s announcement.

He said he was a little surprised by the pick based on how, “disrespectful,” Senator Harris was towards Biden in the early debates.

The president also said she was the VP pick, he most wanted to go up against.