Gloria Steinem: Selection of Kamala Harris recognizes that 'black women ... are the heart and soul of the Democratic Party'
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Feminist pioneer Gloria Steinem praised former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden says voters should choose who nominates Supreme Court justice Trump, Biden will not shake hands at first debate due to COVID-19 Joe Biden should enact critical government reforms if he wins MORE’s selection of Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisPelosi: Trump Supreme Court pick 'threatens' Affordable Care Act What Kamala Harris' VP nomination means to us Harris slams Trump's Supreme Court pick as an attempt to 'destroy the Affordable Care Act' MORE (D-Calif.) as his running mate Thursday, calling Black women “the heart and soul of the Democratic Party.”

"In naming Kamala Harris as his vice president, Biden has recognized that black women, 96% of whom voted for Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonThe Memo: Trump furor stokes fears of unrest Bloomberg rolls out M ad buy to boost Biden in Florida Hillicon Valley: Productivity, fatigue, cybersecurity emerge as top concerns amid pandemic | Facebook critics launch alternative oversight board | Google to temporarily bar election ads after polls close MORE, are the heart and soul of the Democratic Party,” the Ms. Magazine co-founder said in a statement to CNN’s Christiane Amanpour.

Steinem acknowledged Harris’s Indian and Jamaican heritage, saying “for the first time on a national ticket, [Biden] also has represented both African Americans and Indian Americans who together, make up 24 percent of this country.”

Harris, Steinem wrote, “is both a great governing partner and someone who is ready to serve on Day One.”

“In 1972, Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm single-handedly took the ‘white male only’ sign off the White House door,” Steinem added, referring to the New York congresswoman who was the first Black woman to run for the presidency. “It’s high time that door opened to democracy.”

Biden, after pledging during the primaries to name a woman his vice president, announced Harris as his selection Tuesday. She is the first woman of color on a major-party ticket and only the fourth woman in general.

The Biden campaign says in the 24 hours following the announcement, it broke its single-day fundraising record with a $26 million haul.