Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), the first African-American to ever be nominated as a vice presidential candidate, is facing much of the same hatred and lies that hounded former President Barack Obama from the moment he first announced his candidacy in 2007. But the “birther” lies being used against Harris are even more disgusting and widespread than what Obama had to endure, according to The New York Times:
“Toxic misinformation has continued reaching new heights in 2020. One sign of that? ‘Birtherism’ misinformation about Senator Kamala Harris, the Democratic vice-presidential nominee, now exceeds that about President Barack Obama at its peak in 2017, according to a new analysis.”
The attacks on Harris even follow the same pattern as the ones right-wingers used against Obama:
“Lies that Ms. Harris was not born American (she was) and is therefore not eligible for the vice presidency spiked last month in the week after Joseph R. Biden Jr. announced her as his running mate, according to Zignal Labs, a media insights company. Mentions of the falsehood soared to 103,400 that week across social media and TV broadcasts. That was higher than the volume of birtherism misinformation about Mr. Obama in the week after President Trump renewed questions about his predecessor’s birthplace in 2017, Zignal Labs said. Those mentions rose to 98,100 that week.”
Sen. Harris, it should be noted, was born on October 20, 1964 in Oakland, California, and has lived in the United States her entire life.
The volume of the attacks on Harris is nothing short of staggering: Birtherism misinformation is now the fifth-highest election misinformation topic by volume since January, according to Zignal Labs, which tracks such online trends. The topics that have surpassed it were about voting by mail, the Clintons, billionaire investor George Soros, and vaccines.
Clearly, the common link between the attacks on Harris and Obama can be attributed to the fact that both are black and have risen quickly in the political world, gaining tremendous support and admiration among the American public, which many on the right see as a threat as the nation’s electorate grows more diverse and increasingly votes for Democratic candidates.
As we draw closer to the election, it’s safe to assume that the vitriol and propaganda against Harris will continue to increase.
Featured Image Via NBC News