Health care tripped Harris up perhaps more than any other issue. As support for Medicare for All turned into a kind of litmus test, Harris indicated openness to joining her more left-wing rivals in abolishing private insurance—before quickly backtracking.
When she released her own health-care plan this summer, she tried to bridge the gap between the two health-care camps. Matt Breunig skewered Harris’s health-care plan earlier this year:
If Biden’s plan is Obamacare 2.0 and the Sanders/Warren plan is wonky universalism, then Harris’s plan is a bizarre and confusing muddle that also has come to typify her campaign.
2. Harris faced scrutiny over her prosecutorial past.
“Kamala Harris for the People”: the official name for Harris’s own presidential campaign is callback to her roots as a prosecutor, first as San Francisco’s district attorney, and then as California’s attorney general.
That background was supposed to give her campaign a leg up, an opportunity to showcase her legal chops in the event of an impeachment trial in the Senate. But her criminal-justice record didn’t do her favors with a certain sect of Democratic primary voters.
In her January review of Harris’s book Truths We Hold, our culture writer Hannah Giorgis noted:
Harris doesn’t meaningfully reconcile her punitive track record as a California prosecutor with her more recent activist-adjacent positioning as a national Democratic darling.
When my colleague wrote those words, Harris hadn’t yet declared her candidacy.
« SNAPSHOT »
(Delil Souleiman / AFP / Getty)
Looking Back on a Year of Unrest
For the final month of 2019, our photo editor Alan Taylor reviews some of the major news events and moments of 2019. The collection stunned us—all that happened this year?
In the photograph above, a Syrian boy on his bicycle looks at a convoy of U.S. armored vehicles patrolling fields near the northeastern town of Qahtaniyah at the border with Turkey, on the last day of October.
« IDEAS AND ARGUMENTS »
Former White House Counsel Don McGahn (Jim Bourg / Reuters)
What House Democrats Talk About When They Talk About a Cover-Up
President Donald Trump has made a big impeachment mistake. Russell Berman writes, after scanning through 300 pages of the House Intelligence Committee’s impeachment report, released today.
In detailing Trump’s flat-out refusal to comply with their investigation, Democrats effectively accused him of the worst case of presidential obstruction of Congress in the country’s history.
« EVENING READ »
Servant of the People
He’s a famous comedian well-known for his sitcom role as a man who unexpectedly ascends to the Ukrainian presidency. He’s also the president of Ukraine, a Jewish and pro-Europe populist who now plays a very real role as the other man in the center of the U.S. impeachment story.