Joe Biden, who holds an almost-insurmountable lead over U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders in the Democratic presidential race, told donors Sunday he will soon begin vetting a list “in excess of six or seven people” of possible running mates.
During the last Democratic debate, Biden confirmed he will choose a woman as a vice presidential running mate.
Biden, according to Newsweek, said he wanted to avoid “any snafu” resulting from his choice and added that background checks would “be prepared” by his campaign within “a matter of weeks.”
The former vice president also said he had spoken to Barack Obama about potential running mates. The former president has not made any official endorsement.
A record number of women launched presidential campaigns in 2019, but all have dropped out. U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard was the last to end her presidential bid, just last week.
That basically leaves the Democratic race to two white men well into their 70s. Walter Mondale was the first White House nominee from either party who chose a woman to be his running mate in 1984, former New York Rep. Geraldine Ferraro.
GOP White House nominee John McCain picked Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin in 2008.
Biden has previously said he would seriously consider naming a woman or a person of color as his running mate.
Also during the last debate, Biden repeated a previous pledge to nominate an African American woman to the U.S. Supreme Court if given the chance to do so as president.
Biden and Sanders have been under pressure to consider a woman or person of color as a running mate as the once-historically diverse field of Democratic presidential candidates has dwindled to two white men.
Biden has scored a series of decisive wins over Sanders the last several weeks, beginning with the South Carolina primary and followed by Super Tuesday. He has since swept Sanders in every major state presidential primary, and pressure is increasing on the independent Vermont senator to concede the race.
Since then, most of his party’s establishment lined up behind him as the best option to unseat President Donald Trump in November.
Potential Biden running maters being rumored include former Georgia legislator and unsuccessful gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams; Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer; U.S. Sens. Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Kirsten Gillibrand and Elizabeth Warren; Gabbard; and former Attorney General Sally Yates.
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