Gabbard calls Harris confrontation with Biden 'a political ploy' to get attention

Rep. Tulsi GabbardTulsi GabbardFox News says network and anchor Leland Vittert have 'parted ways' New co-chairs named for congressional caucus for millennials Tulsi Gabbard blasts new House rules on gender neutral language as 'height of hypocrisy' MORE (D-Hawaii) went after Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisOde to Mother's Day Warren says she'll run for reelection to Senate In honor of Mother's Day, lawmakers should pass the Momnibus Act MORE (D-Calif.) for her remarks on former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenSanders: Reinstating SALT deduction 'sends a terrible, terrible message' GOP braces for wild week with momentous vote Shining a light on COINTELPRO's dangerous legacy MORE at the first round of Democratic debates last month.

Gabbard called Harris’s viral moment, in which she called out Biden for his previous stance on busing and comments about working with segregationists in Congress, "a political ploy" to smear Biden and boost the California Senator's standing in the crowded Democratic primary field.


"Really, what she's saying is her position is the same one she was criticizing Joe Biden for," Gabbard said Monday on CBS News. "So this is just a political ploy  and I think a very underhanded one, just to try to get herself attention, to move herself up in the polls."

"I think that we need to be above that," Gabbard added. "All of us."

Gabbard also said Harris has been "levying this accusation that Joe Biden is a racist — when he's clearly not — as a way to try to smear him."

Ian Sams, a spokesman for Harris, pointed out Gabbard's accusation is in direct opposition to what Harris said about Biden at the debate. 

"She literally said in the debate: 'I do not believe you are a racist,'" Sams told The Hill Monday regarding Gabbard’s previous attack. 

The California senator did specifically say that she didn’t believe Biden was a racist before pointing out his previous stance on the issue.

Harris stood out on the second night of the debates in Miami late last month when she called out Biden for opposing federally mandated busing to desegregate public schools in the 1970s.

Harris noted that Biden’s opposition was deeply personal to her because she was bused to school as a child.

The Hill has reached out to the Biden and Harris campaigns for comment.