Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) followed the lead of Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) on Monday when she announced that she would reject donations from corporate PACs, just a few weeks after a town hall attendee pointedly questioned her about her stance on such contributions.
Kamala Harris becomes (by my count) the sixth sitting senator to publicly refuse corporate PAC money, after Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Maria Cantwell, Kirsten Gillibrand and Cory Booker. https://t.co/uCmNbRFTC6
— Emma Vigeland (@EmmaVigeland) April 23, 2018
On the New York-based radio show "The Breakfast Club," host Charlamagne Tha God asked Harris about the exchange she had with a constituent in Sacramento, who asked her if she would take money from political action committees representing corporate interests. When Harris told the audience member, "It depends," he replied, "Wrong answer."
"I think that money has had such an outside influence on politics," said Harris on Monday, two weeks after the exchange garnered attention. "...We're all supposed to have an equal vote, but money has now really tipped the balance between an individual having equal power in an election to a corporation. So I've actually made a decision since I had that conversation that I'm not going to accept corporate PAC checks."
Thanks to Citizens United, big corporations have an outsized influence in our politics. For that reason, I’m no longer accepting corporate PAC checks. pic.twitter.com/xro1V7eQLG
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) April 23, 2018
Harris is the fifth Democratic senator who's been repeatedly named as a likely 2020 presidential contender to announce that she'll forswear corporate money—a sign, some progressives said Monday, that the rejection of such contributions is rapidly becoming a prerequisite for candidacy.
Kamala Harris pledges to no longer take corporate PAC money, joining fellow Democratic presidential frontrunners Bernie Sanders, Cory Booker, Elizabeth Warren and Kirsten Gillibrand. Any other Democrat who wants to run in 2020 should make the same pledge.
— Adam Best (@adamcbest) April 23, 2018
The Young Turks' Cenk Uygur, co-founder of the Justice Democrats, said the progressive PAC deserved credit for the wave of 2020 frontrunners who have been pressured into promising not to take corporate cash. The Justice Democrats last year demanded that candidates pledge to reject such donations, and is so far endorsing more than 50 candidates who have agreed to take the pledge for 2018.
Now @KamalaHarris has pledged not to take corporate PAC money. Let me be clear about who did this - @justicedems. When that group started, Washington laughed & said almost no one would take that pledge. Now almost all of the Dem front-runners have!
— Cenk Uygur (@cenkuygur) April 23, 2018