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Progressive groups urge Biden to tap Warren as running mate

Progressive groups urge Biden to tap Warren as running mate
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A pair of national progressive groups are urging former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenBaltimore police chief calls for more 'boots on the ground' to handle crime wave Biden to deliver remarks at Sen. John Warner's funeral Garland dismisses broad review of politicization of DOJ under Trump MORE to tap Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Senate to vote on elections bill Supreme Court battle could wreak havoc with Biden's 2020 agenda Progressives fear nightmare scenario over voting rights assault MORE (D-Mass.) as his running mate, the latest push by activists to install a liberal on the presidential ticket. 

In an open letter to Biden, Progressive Democrats of America and RootsAction.org said that picking Warren would not only install an experienced lawmaker as his No. 2 but would also send a message to liberals that he was trying to unite the party ahead of the general election.

“If you want to unify the party and take back the White House, then you should choose the running mate best suited to those goals: Elizabeth Warren,” they wrote.

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“Senator Warren is deeply qualified to be our next vice president, bringing decades of experience and a track record of leadership on issues from the Green New Deal to fighting corporate greed and corruption – issues that excite the progressive voters you'll need to win the White House. Few senators have fought harder and more consistently for the kinds of structural reforms that would lift up working-class families and communities.” 

Progressive Democrats of America said in a separate release that it polled its members last week on who they backed for Biden’s running mate, with 52 percent saying they prefer Warren. Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisA call to action for strategic space competition with China Old-guard Democrats must end the filibuster and symbolic progress Biden job approval at 43 percent in Iowa: poll MORE (D-Calif.) finished in a distant second with 18 percent.

“For voters and activists who supported Bernie SandersBernie SandersSchumer vows next steps after 'ridiculous,' 'awful' GOP election bill filibuster Schumer, Pelosi meeting with White House on infrastructure Feehery: 8 reasons why Biden should take the bipartisan infrastructure deal MORE in the primary, it’s vital that Biden choose a running mate with a longstanding progressive track record of fighting for the working families of this country,” said Alan Minsky, executive director of Progressive Democrats of America. “Elizabeth Warren fits that bill, and she’s popular with Democratic voters in the progressive and centrist wings of the party.”

Biden has been the target of a sustained pressure campaign from an array of outside groups to pick their preferred running mate, though he has said he would prioritize someone with whom he’s “simpatico” and prepared to lead the country.

Warren is reported to be among those being seriously considered by the Biden camp and is undergoing the vetting process, with allies saying she’d be able to win over progressives who remain skeptical of Biden’s centrist brand of politics.

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However, the former vice president has been urged to pick a woman of color as his running mate in the aftermath of the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis last month and widespread unrest over police brutality and systemic racism. 

Among the other contenders being considered for vice president are Harris, Rep. Val DemingsValdez (Val) Venita DemingsFlorida governor adept student of Trump playbook It's past time we elect a Black woman governor Demings raises million after announcing Senate bid against Rubio MORE of Florida and Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance BottomsKeisha Lance BottomsStudents sue Atlanta police after being shocked with a stun gun, pulled from car Family of child killed during Atlanta protests sues city, Wendy's Atlanta mayoral candidate has car stolen while meeting with community leaders MORE.

“We’re just underway now in the hard vet of going into the deep background checks that take anywhere from six to eight weeks to be done,” Biden said at a press conferenceTuesday. 

“Early August. I can't guarantee you Aug. 1, but it will be in early August, several weeks before the convention,” he added, referring to the Democratic National Convention that will be held from Aug. 17 to Aug. 20 in Milwaukee.