Sen. Kamala Harris is considering endorsing former Vice President Joe Biden for president ahead of the California primary, a source close to the California Democrat tells CNN.
Harris on Friday did not deny the New York Times report that she is weighing endorsing Biden when asked by CNN.
“I am talking to everyone and no one. I am talking to my team, I’m talking to my colleagues about this (impeachment) trial, that is my entire focus,” Harris said. She is serving as a juror in the ongoing Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.
Harris told CNN, “The fact is I have not made a decision. I haven’t made a decision about who, I have not made a decision about when.”
She and Biden have largely mended their relationship since a tense exchange at the June presidential debate, where she confronted him over his decades-old fight against busing to desegregate schools, according to the source. At the debate, Harris delivered a blunt, pointed attack that mixed her personal story and race, which put Biden on the defensive.
Harris had a personal relationship with the Biden family before the 2020 presidential campaign; she served as California attorney general at the same time that Biden’s late son, Beau Biden, was attorney general of Delaware. Joe Biden has publicly and privately encouraged Harris to remain involved in politics.
An endorsement by Harris ahead of the state’s March 3 primary could be a boon for Biden and increase the value of her endorsement to him. But a decision about which candidate to endorse could be informed by the outcomes of the early caucuses and primaries.
Harris was once seen as a leading contender for the Democratic nomination, but she ended her campaign in December after struggling for months to move her low poll numbers. She said in an announcement at the time that financial pressures had led her to end her bid.
The source described Harris as “open” to being a vice presidential pick but said she also remains receptive to other ways “her leadership could make the most difference.”
Endorsing Biden could prove controversial in Harris’ home state of California, where Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont has considerable support. But this source noted that Harris is leaning toward Biden because of her desire for ideological and temperamental compatibility.
“She wants to maintain her independence and her freedom around the positions that she takes,” the source said. “But she has a different style. She doesn’t believe in binary choices.”