What Kamala Harris must do to discuss race in a racist America and a hostile GOP

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Race is an issue Vice President Kamala Harris will confront. Now, she must be strategic and effective.

Shortly after President Joe Biden’s 100-day address to congress, Sen. Tim Scott, the only Black Republican in the Senate, spoke about his own experience with racism in the U.S. The senator contended “America is not a racist country” and said progressives perpetuate discrimination akin to Jim Crow-era policies.

Vice President Kamala Harris, the country’s first Black and first Indian American VEEP, disagreed with some – but not all – of Scott’s statements.

“Well, first of all, no, I don’t think America is a racist country, but we also do have to speak the truth about the history of racism in our country and its existence today,” Harris said while praising Biden’s comments on race and domestic terrorism in his first joint address to Congress on Wednesday.

She applauded Biden for “having the ability and the courage to speak the truth” about the country’s history with racism.

To back Harris, Biden, told NBC News in an interview Thursday, “No, I don’t think the American people are racist, but I think after 400 years, African Americans have been left in a position where they are so behind the eight ball, in terms of education, health, in terms of opportunity.”

POTUS continued: “I think the overhang from all of the Jim Crow and before that, slavery, have had a cost, and we have to deal with it,” Biden added.

The conversation on race continues as a prominent thread in the White House and beyond. What we discuss during this Week’s Check In is how can Vice-President Harris address race and racism when her identity is a salient marker. Our contributors this week are Dame Crawford and Sherice Janaye Nelson

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