Kamala Harris to decide on 2020 run 'over the holiday'

California senator Kamala Harris said at the "Know Your Value" conference that she is seriously weighing whether to run for the Democratic nomination for president in 2020 and would make a decision "over the holiday."

Harris has been prominently mentioned as a presidential candidate since her 2016 election.

NBCNews:

Harris, whose husband joined her in the audience, said she is keenly aware of the challenges a barrier-breaking campaign will entail.

"Let's be honest.  It's going to be ugly," Harris said.  "When you break things, it is painful.  And you get cut.  And you bleed."

Harris also expressed frustration over the slow progress of the Secure Elections Act, which she introduced in March, along with co-sponsor Republican Sen. James Lankford of Oklahoma.  The bipartisan legislation would give the Department of Homeland Security responsibility for ensuring secure elections and shoring up election infrastructure against cyber attacks, and would establish an independent advisory panel of experts to develop guidelines on election cyber security.

Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell, who currently serves as the leader of the Senate, has not yet brought the legislation to the floor for a vote.  Harris said she has been told that is at the White House's request.

"First of all, let's be clear about the fact Russia did interfere in the [2016] election of the president of the United States," Harris told Brzezinski.  "Flawed though it may be, we designed a beautiful system of democracy, and one symbol of that is that we have free and open elections.  When a foreign government chooses to manipulate our democracy knowing that would compromise our strength and our perception of our strength, you would think leaders would say 'No, we are going to do everything we can to strengthen and to give ourselves the immunity we need to be free from that kind of manipulation.'  Yet, it's not happening."

I think we should look carefully at any effort to federalize local elections – even if it's for cyber-security reasons.  The bill Harris is talking about would give DHS wide latitude to interfere in state and local election infrastructure.

But what does Harris bring to the table?  She certainly checks all the Democratic boxes; she's a woman, she's black with Indian ancestry, she's radically liberal, and she's tough and smart.

On the other hand, she's not one of the septuagenarians who are far better known and will almost certainly be better financed.  She is currently considered a "second-tier" candidate along with the likes of Sherrod Brown and Beto O'Rourke.

But she excites many Democrats because of her sex and her race.  She is also a pretty good public speaker.

At age 54, she's no spring chicken, but compared to Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, and Joe Biden, she's just a kid.  The national press will take her seriously from the start and will give her plenty of doting coverage.

She is an unknown in an already crowded field.  How her California politics will play in Iowa and New Hampshire will be critical in determining if she has the staying power to compete for the top prize.

California senator Kamala Harris said at the "Know Your Value" conference that she is seriously weighing whether to run for the Democratic nomination for president in 2020 and would make a decision "over the holiday."

Harris has been prominently mentioned as a presidential candidate since her 2016 election.

NBCNews:

Harris, whose husband joined her in the audience, said she is keenly aware of the challenges a barrier-breaking campaign will entail.

"Let's be honest.  It's going to be ugly," Harris said.  "When you break things, it is painful.  And you get cut.  And you bleed."

Harris also expressed frustration over the slow progress of the Secure Elections Act, which she introduced in March, along with co-sponsor Republican Sen. James Lankford of Oklahoma.  The bipartisan legislation would give the Department of Homeland Security responsibility for ensuring secure elections and shoring up election infrastructure against cyber attacks, and would establish an independent advisory panel of experts to develop guidelines on election cyber security.

Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell, who currently serves as the leader of the Senate, has not yet brought the legislation to the floor for a vote.  Harris said she has been told that is at the White House's request.

"First of all, let's be clear about the fact Russia did interfere in the [2016] election of the president of the United States," Harris told Brzezinski.  "Flawed though it may be, we designed a beautiful system of democracy, and one symbol of that is that we have free and open elections.  When a foreign government chooses to manipulate our democracy knowing that would compromise our strength and our perception of our strength, you would think leaders would say 'No, we are going to do everything we can to strengthen and to give ourselves the immunity we need to be free from that kind of manipulation.'  Yet, it's not happening."

I think we should look carefully at any effort to federalize local elections – even if it's for cyber-security reasons.  The bill Harris is talking about would give DHS wide latitude to interfere in state and local election infrastructure.

But what does Harris bring to the table?  She certainly checks all the Democratic boxes; she's a woman, she's black with Indian ancestry, she's radically liberal, and she's tough and smart.

On the other hand, she's not one of the septuagenarians who are far better known and will almost certainly be better financed.  She is currently considered a "second-tier" candidate along with the likes of Sherrod Brown and Beto O'Rourke.

But she excites many Democrats because of her sex and her race.  She is also a pretty good public speaker.

At age 54, she's no spring chicken, but compared to Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, and Joe Biden, she's just a kid.  The national press will take her seriously from the start and will give her plenty of doting coverage.

She is an unknown in an already crowded field.  How her California politics will play in Iowa and New Hampshire will be critical in determining if she has the staying power to compete for the top prize.