Update: As anticipated, POLITICO is claiming it’s a “pre-write,” but as I noted in the article, pre-writes do not include quotes from the announcement. We do pre-writes ahead of anticipated announcements, but we don’t include fictional quotes. Who would?
You pre write candidate quotes? https://t.co/P7yLhLrNeE
— Stephen L. Miller (@redsteeze) July 28, 2020
Was it an accident? Misdirection? Wishful thinking? POLITICO’s page with profiles of soon-to-be Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s potential Vice President picks had an addendum for one of the candidates published briefly yesterday. According to the leak, Senator Kamala Harris will be tapped as Biden’s running mate ahead of the announcement that’s expected at the beginning of next month.
A screenshot from Archive.org showed two updates on July 27. The first, pictured below, shows Harris tagged as “BIDEN’S VP PICK” with two more paragraphs that were not there before. In those paragraphs, it appears to indicate she was his final selection and includes a quote from the announcement. There has been no announcement made public, meaning if this is real it has been embargoed. The second snapshot of the day from Archive.org did not include the addendum. Here is what it said:
Joe Biden chose Kamala Harris to become his running mate for the 2020 election on Aug. 1, two weeks before the Democratic National Convention, after keeping his choice close to the chest for months.
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In his announcement, Biden called Harris “a worthy opponent and a worthy running mate,” alluding to the pair’s rivalry during the earlier stages of the Democratic primary. She will bring her experience as a prosecutor, household name recognition, and skill as a debater to the ticket.
There are a few possibilities here. This could be as it appears, a mistake made by a POLITICO staffer who was preparing the edit but accidentally made it live temporarily. It could be an intentional leak, whether by POLITICO for the sake of attention or by the campaign. There may be some misdirection happening here as well, though it’s noteworthy that nobody picked up on this apparent snafu yesterday. Lastly, it could just be preparatory; they’re expecting her to be the nominee and were testing the formatting with dummy content.
One of the reasons this seems to be from an embargoed press release is the presence of a quote from the announcement. While it’s possible that this is also part of dummy content for format testing or a pre-write in anticipation of the announcement, the wording makes it appear to be legitimate. The timing is right, too. A Saturday release, as the story indicates for August 1st, would give fodder for all of the much-watched Sunday morning news shows leading into two weeks of momentum-building ahead of the Democratic National Convention starting August 17.
If POLITICO’s leak is legitimate, and all indicators point to it being so, then Joe Biden has picked a running mate who almost tanked his campaign by reminding people of his racist history. Kamala Harris as his VP pick will be ripe for GOP attacks.
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