Asma Khalid | WAMC

Asma Khalid

Vice President Harris is leading the Biden administration's efforts on voting rights. She spoke to NPR White House correspondent Asma Khalid on Tuesday ahead of President Biden's address on the issue and just before she met with Texas Democratic lawmakers who fled the state in an attempt to block a GOP voting bill.

With voting rights legislation stalled in the Senate because of Republican opposition, Vice President Harris suggested that she has talked to senators about exceptions to the legislative filibuster but said she will not be publicly negotiating an issue that the White House insists is up to lawmakers, she told NPR in an interview Tuesday.

"I believe that of all of the issues that the United States Congress can take up, the right to vote is the right that unlocks all the other rights," Harris said. "And for that reason, it should be one of its highest priorities."

Updated July 9, 2021 at 2:51 PM ET

President Biden unveiled a new plan on Friday taking aim at powerful industries where a handful of players have so much market clout that they can drive up prices, depress wages and make it hard for small companies to break in.

"We know we've got a problem, a major problem. We've also got an incredible opportunity," Biden said in remarks before signing the order.

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LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

Good morning, and happy Fourth of July.

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PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN: Put simply, our economy is on the move, and we have COVID-19 on the run.

In the last few weeks, the Biden administration began distributing an unprecedented amount of money to states: $195 billion dollars from the American Rescue Plan that congressional Democrats passed in March.

With the sheer scale of dollars at stake, a huge fight has already begun brewing between some GOP-led states and the administration over exactly how to use that money, part of a larger trend of partisan warfare between state capitols and Washington over the past decade.

Updated June 10, 2021 at 1:01 PM ET

In their first face-to-face meeting, President Biden and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson signed a 21st century version of the historic Atlantic Charter, an attempt to depict their countries as the chief global leaders taking on the world's biggest challenges.

The two leaders pledged to work "closely with all partners who share our democratic values" and to counter "the efforts of those who seek to undermine our alliances and institutions."

Updated June 8, 2021 at 12:01 PM ET

The White House on Tuesday announced a plan to manufacture more crucial medicines in the United States through an expanded use of the Defense Production Act, a relic of the Cold War that gives the president the authority to direct industrial production for national defense purposes.

Updated May 28, 2021 at 3:07 PM ET

President Biden has proposed a $6 trillion budget for the fiscal year starting Oct. 1, part of a plan to overhaul the U.S. economy that would also mean running up deficits of at least $1.3 trillion a year for the rest of the decade despite new tax increases on the wealthy.

Updated May 21, 2021 at 7:34 PM ET

For decades, Democrats and Republicans alike have stood by Israel, almost unconditionally, insisting the country has a right to defend itself.

Congress still hasn't reached a deal on a new COVID-19 relief package to help millions of Americans who could fall off an economic cliff by the end of the year when moratoriums on evictions and some unemployment benefits are set to expire. But whether or not Congress agrees on an additional aide package during the lame-duck session, Joe Biden will still inherit a fragile economy and a possibly uncooperative Congress, which raises questions about what — if anything — the next president can do on his own to bolster an economic recovery.

Joe Biden won the presidency by stitching together a broad coalition of voters — Black and white, from young progressives to former Republicans, and across cities and suburbs — united by a singular mission to defeat President Trump.

But once Biden takes office, and without Trump as an adversary, a key test for Biden's presidency will be how he prevents the broad coalition that got him into the White House from splintering once he begins governing.

Staking a claim to the win

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Updated at 2:02 p.m. ET

President-elect Joe Biden is drawing on a number of senior operatives from his campaign to fill out key top positions in his White House.

Updated at 1:54 p.m. ET

Former Vice President Joe Biden has been elected the 46th president of the United States, narrowly emerging victorious from a contentious White House campaign that stretched days past election night, as vote tallies in several swing states were slowed by an unprecedented surge in mail-in ballots.

Updated at 4 a.m. ET

The 2020 presidential election remained up in the air early Wednesday after tight races, strong turnout and record amounts of mail-in voting left millions of legitimate votes still to be counted, and races in six key states too close to call.

Democratic candidate Joe Biden urged patience until "every vote is counted," but President Trump railed against the extra time required to count the ballots, falsely accusing Democrats of trying to steal the election from him.

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ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Former President Barack Obama gave an impassioned speech in Philadelphia this evening, pleading with voters to turn out for his former vice president.

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Michael Coleman didn't vote in the 2016 presidential election. But this year, on a chilly fall day around lunchtime, the 69-year-old came to the Detroit Department of Elections to hand-deliver his ballot roughly a month before Election Day. He said he didn't want to take the risk of it getting lost in the mail.

When Joe Biden seeks to inspire or comfort, he turns to his faith. He speeches are woven with references to God, biblical language or the pope.

On Monday, the Democratic presidential nominee spoke to the faith-based anti-poverty group the Poor People's Campaign, and described the United States under President Trump as a "nation in the wilderness."

President Trump's campaign says it knocks on a million doors a week. Joe Biden's campaign hasn't knocked on any doors to talk to voters for months. In lieu of in-person meetings, Democrats are focused on conversations they can have virtually.

Updated at 6:08 p.m. ET

Joe Biden is calling for everyone in the United States to wear a mask, well into the fall.

"Every single American should be wearing a mask when they're outside for the next three months, at a minimum," Biden said Thursday afternoon in remarks in Wilmington, Del. "Every governor should mandate mandatory mask-wearing. The estimates by the experts are it will save over 40,000 lives."

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Democrats formally introduced their presidential ticket today in Delaware. That is where Joe Biden and his newly named running mate, California Senator Kamala Harris, delivered remarks. Biden announced yesterday he was picking Harris to be the first woman of color on the ticket of a major political party. Here's what he had to say today.

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ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

And I'm Ari Shapiro with some breaking news. Vice President Joe Biden has chosen California Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate. We are joined now by NPR's Asma Khalid, who has been covering the campaign.

Asma, good to have you with us.

Updated at 10:35 a.m. ET Wednesday

The speaking lineup for the Democratic National Convention that kicks off Monday includes a number of party stars that represent the ideological spectrum, ranging from Bill and Hillary Clinton to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Democrats unveiled on Tuesday morning a long list of party leaders and influential voices who will speak during this year's convention, with a mix of both moderate and progressive voices. They'll be featured across four nights of programming.

Before COVID-19 and before the death of George Floyd, Monique Sampson said she thought Joe Biden and President Trump were "different wings on the same bird."

Joe Biden spoke to a notable Muslim American advocacy organization on Monday.

Just his presence — albeit virtually, due to the pandemic, from his home in Delaware — was rather historic for Muslim leaders, who can't recall another presidential nominee speaking directly to such a large group of Muslims. The group, Emgage Action, says 3,000 people RSVP'd for its livestreamed event.

Biden didn't introduce any new policy priorities, but his tone marked a noticeable departure from how many politicians have addressed Muslims in recent years.

In the span of one day this week, President Trump gave an interview in which he defended the Confederate flag and delivered a speech from the Rose Garden in which he accused Joe Biden of trying to make office buildings too cold.

It generated just a few of the news cycles Trump dominates in any given week.

The same day, Biden held his only in-person event in the last seven days, in his hometown of Wilmington, Del.

Updated at 2:43 p.m. ET

As polls show a tightening presidential race in traditionally Republican Texas, presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden is launching his first general election ad in the state.

Updated at 4:52 p.m. ET

Former Vice President Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, laid out a key plank of his economic agenda for the country — dubbed "Build Back Better" — in a half-hour speech Thursday, offering a competing vision of economic nationalism that President Trump has trumpeted in recent years.

John Farner considers himself a lifelong Republican. He worked on George W. Bush's 2000 campaign and then took a job in the administration's Commerce Department.

But Farner was skeptical when he saw Donald Trump step onto the GOP stage. And in 2016, he chose not to vote for any presidential candidate.

This November is different, Farner said. The past 3 1/2 years have made it clear that he needs to pick a side, that it's no longer sufficient to simply abstain.

One of a series of reports looking at Joe Biden's potential running mates


Many progressives are loudly calling for Joe Biden to pick Elizabeth Warren as his running mate. They insist the liberal senator, who's long been a darling of the left, would help the presumptive Democratic nominee win over skeptical young voters.

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