Vice President Kamala Harris will be in Chicago three times in the next few weeks to promote Biden’s achievements

By Chicago 6 Min Read

WASHINGTON — Vice President Kamala Harris will travel to Chicago three times in the coming weeks — with visits aimed at galvanizing Democratic constituencies vital to the re-election of President Joe Biden and the vice president.

Harris will be in Chicago to speak to three national groups who are holding meetings in Chicago — with appearances considered official government business — even if it helps the Biden/Harris ticket.

Furthermore, from a purely political point of view, she will be the protagonist of a fundraiser for the benefit of the Biden/Harris re-election bid and the Democratic National Committee.

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The Chicago stops are part of her July and August blitz that will also take her to Florida, Massachusetts and Indiana, to speak to groups, especially aimed at black and Hispanic voters the Democrats are courting.

Harris’ upcoming visits to Chicago are, like most of his trips to this point, aimed at highlighting the achievements of the Biden/Harris administration.

President Joe Biden delivers a speech at the Old Post Office Wednesday, June 28, 2023 in Chicago.

President Joe Biden delivers a speech promoting his administration’s economic achievements at The Old Post Office in the Loop on June 28.

Owen Ziliak/Sun Times

Biden branded it in a June 28 speech at the Old Post Office in the Loop as Bidenomics.

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Harris will increasingly focus on four issues as he accelerates his journey 13 months before the Democratic National Convention in Chicago, where Biden and Harris will be nominated for second terms.

According to a source close to Harris, his government and campaigning portfolio rests primarily on four legs: the battle to preserve remaining reproductive rights; gun safety; voting rights; and small business development.

Harris, the daughter of an Indian mother and a Jamaican father, is the first woman, first black American, and first South Asian American to be vice president.

In Chicago:

  • On Sunday, Harris will keynote at the Rainbow Push Coalition’s Annual Convention, with the group founded by Reverend Jesse Jackson.

Jackson ran in Democratic primaries for president in 1984 and 1988, harnessing the power of black-and-white liberal voting.

A tribute is planned at the convention to mark the 35th anniversary of Jackson’s 1988 presidential bid.

  • On July 24, Harris will be the keynote speaker at the 2023 UnidosUS Annual Conference at McCormick Place. The group is the largest Hispanic civil rights group in the nation and was formerly known as the National Council of La Raza.

The group said in a statement that Harris “will focus on the economic power of the Hispanic community and how the Biden-Harris administration is helping move the country forward toward greater equity.”

Voting rights should be a major focus at the Rainbow Push and UnidosUS conventions.

  • Harris will also be holding a fundraiser same day at the Gold Coast home of Desiree Rogers, who is the lead organizer of the fundraiser.

Proceeds from the funder will go to the Biden Action Fund, which benefits the Biden/Harris reelection campaign and the Democratic National Committee. The goal is to raise $250,000.

Rogers, CEO and co-owner of Fashion Fair and Black Opal, the makeup and skincare company, is a close friend of Harris who was an early supporter of the then California senator when she ran for president in the primary Democrats of 2020.

Democratic National Committee Chairman Jaime Harrison is expected to attend the reception.

  • Harris returns to Chicago on August 11 for a keynote speech before Everytown for Gun Safety’s “Gun Sense University 2023.”

Everytown is the nation’s largest organization fighting gun violence. The group is bringing together activists with Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action at their annual meeting.

The Biden White House has urged Biden to sign the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act on June 25, 2022 — the first gun control measure in nearly three decades — and various executive orders aimed at reducing gun violence as Republicans refuse to join Democrats in passing other gun safety laws and measures.

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Harris on his next visits will likely take an unannounced break highlighting small businesses, which he often does when he’s on the road. In April 2022, Harris, to promote black women’s businesses, purchased sweets at Brown Sugar Bakery, 328 E. 75th on her way back to Midway Airport after visiting a COVID-19 vaccination center.

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Harris was last in Chicago in January, speaking near the 95th Street Bridge over the Calumet River to promote one of Biden’s signature pieces of legislation — a pillar of Bidenomics — the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that has sent hundreds of millions of dollars to governments Illinois premises for roads, bridges, airports and other projects.

The White House said in a statement that Harris in his travels “will continue his leadership by ensuring that communities and constituencies are not only heard, but have a seat at the Biden-Harris administration table.”

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