POLITICO: Trump hearings launch Kamala Harris

Trump hearings launch Kamala Harris

The California senator’s fierce opposition to the White House is heightening speculation about her 2020 intentions.
Kamala Harris is pictured. | Getty
From her first days on Capitol Hill, Sen. Kamala Harris has been winning kudos from progressives, beginning when she became one of only 11 senators to vote against the confirmation of General John Kelly to head the Department of Homeland Security. | Getty
The first-term California senator often described as risk-averse and overly cautious appears to be eagerly shedding that profile and embracing a role as one of the Senate’s fiercest critics of the Trump administration.
It’s enough to spark widespread speculation about her prospects for 2020.
“The dominant trend in Democratic Party politics is fresh, new and interesting — that’s what people are looking for — not old, steady and establishment,’’ says Wade Randlett, a longtime Democratic fundraiser in Silicon Valley who has known Harris for years. “And Kamala is the trifecta on that.’’
Within hours of her aggressive questioning of Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and National Security Agency Director Adm. Mike Rogers on Wednesday, Harris was raising money off the furor that resulted from panel Chairman Richard Burr’s admonishment to be more “courteous” in her questioning — an awkward scene that went viral, raising questions about whether her gender played a role in his action.
The next morning, prior to the James Comey hearing, Harris scored a prized appearance on NBC’s “Today” show during which she noted her own credentials in asking tough questions, and called out Trump’s “inappropriate” demand that Comey pledge his loyalty.
“When I think about that, I was a district attorney of San Francisco, the attorney general of California, and now a United States senator. I’ve taken the oath many times,’’ she said. “The oath was to the Constitution of the United States, not an individual.”
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