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Trump says Harris was 'my No. 1 pick' for Biden's VP

President TrumpDonald TrumpWhite House denies pausing military aid package to Ukraine Poll: 30 percent of GOP voters believe Trump will 'likely' be reinstated this year Black Secret Service agent told Trump it was offensive to hold rally in Tulsa on Juneteenth: report MORE on Tuesday said Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisHarris signals a potential breakthrough in US-Mexico cooperation Watch live: Harris delivers remarks on vaccination efforts Biden signs Juneteenth bill: 'Great nations don't ignore their most painful moments' MORE (D-Calif.) was his "No. 1 pick" to be named presumptive Democratic nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenObama: Ensuring democracy 'continues to work effectively' keeps me 'up at night' New Jersey landlords prohibited from asking potential tenants about criminal records Overnight Defense: Pentagon pulling some air defense assets from Middle East | Dems introduce resolution apologizing to LGBT community for discrimination | White House denies pausing military aid package to Ukraine MORE's running mate, knocking her unsuccessful presidential bid and complaining at length that she was "nasty" to Supreme Court Justice Brett KavanaughBrett Michael KavanaughOvernight Health Care: Takeaways on the Supreme Court's Obamacare decision | COVID-19 cost 5.5 million years of American life | Biden administration investing billions in antiviral pills for COVID-19 Five takeaways on the Supreme Court's Obamacare decision Supreme Court upholds ObamaCare in 7-2 ruling MORE.

Trump was asked during a briefing — ostensibly on the coronavirus pandemic — about Harris's record and potential effect on the race.

"She was my No. 1 pick. I mean, she was ... my No. 1 draft pick, and we’ll see how she works out," Trump said in his first public comments since Biden announced Harris as his running mate earlier Tuesday. "She did very, very poorly in the primaries, as you know. She was expected to do well. And she ended up right around 2 percent and spent a lot of money. She had a lot of things happening. So I was a little surprised he picked her."

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"I’ve been watching her for a long time. I was a little surprised," he continued. "She was extraordinarily nasty to Judge Kavanaugh. ... She was nasty to to a level that was just a horrible thing, the way she treated now-Justice Kavanaugh, and I won’t forget that soon. So she did very poorly in the primaries, and now she’s chosen, so let’s see how that all works out."

He went on to say Harris was "nasty" to Biden during the primaries as well. 

"She was very very nasty. She was probably nastier than even Pocahontas to Joe Biden," Trump added, referring to Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenDemocrats have turned solidly against gas tax Overnight Health Care: Takeaways on the Supreme Court's Obamacare decision | COVID-19 cost 5.5 million years of American life | Biden administration investing billions in antiviral pills for COVID-19 Democratic senators press PhRMA over COVID-19 lobbying efforts  MORE (D-Mass.)

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Trump, who donated to Harris's campaign for California attorney general in 2013, said he felt Harris was among the most liberal senators. The president was teed up for an attack on Harris when a reporter asked "why would she lie" about her past with marijuana, citing an appearance on "The Breakfast Club" during she said she smoked the drug in college.

But the president seemed unenthused while rattling off his attacks on Harris, and he appeared surprised when a reporter referenced his campaign ad that called the senator "phony." Trump had tweeted out the ad roughly an hour before the briefing.

Trump, asked what he thought Harris's net effect on the outcome of the November election would be, said he liked his own running mate, Vice President Pence, "much better," calling him "solid as a rock."

Biden on Tuesday afternoon announced the California senator as his running mate days before the Democratic National Convention, hailing her as "a fearless fighter for the little guy, and one of the country’s finest public servants."

Harris, in being named to the ticket, would become the first woman of color on a major party's presidential ticket upon her nomination next week. She gained national attention during Trump's first term for her sharp questioning of Kavanaugh when he was nominated to the Supreme Court and of Attorney General William BarrBill BarrLieu calls Catholic bishops 'hypocrites' for move to deny Biden communion The Hill's Morning Report - After high-stakes Biden-Putin summit, what now? Senate Judiciary Democrats demand DOJ turn over Trump obstruction memo MORE.

The Trump campaign quickly issued a statement and an ad attacking Harris as "phony" and accusing her of supporting far-left ideas and being anti-police. The latter attack may prove difficult to land, as Harris has faced criticism from the left over her record as a prosecutor and attorney general, and Biden has said he is against activists who want to "defund the police."