California 2010 Election: Future President Kamala Harris Announces Run for Attorney General
San Francisco DA Kamala Harris announces her run for California A.G. We have LOTS to say about this in the coming days, weeks, months, years — but for now, we’ll just say ladies and gentleman, here’s your first look at a future President of the United States. Kamala! why not skip this whole AG thing and just run for governor? Oh yeah, Gavin Newsom wants the job. Rats.
Here’s her announcement:
San Francisco District Attorney Kamala D. Harris today filed papers to run for California Attorney General in the June 2010 primary election. In taking this step, she talked about bringing an experienced prosecutor’s perspective to the unique challenges of public safety and the need for new ideas in our criminal justice system:
I’ve spent my entire professional life in the trenches as a courtroom prosecutor. I started my career out of law school as a prosecutor in the Alameda DA’s Office and I can tell you from the frontlines, we need tough new ideas for strengthening our criminal justice system in California. I will fight for all Californians – from distressed homeowners to families whose neighborhoods are under siege. In the coming months, I will detail new ideas on how we can fight street gangs, go after subprime lenders and others responsible for the current financial crisis, and fundamentally reform our prison system. We have to shut the revolving door that simply recycles criminals in and out of our neighborhoods.”
In December 2003, Harris was elected as the first woman District Attorney in San Francisco’s history, and as the first African American woman in California to hold the office. She was overwhelmingly reelected to a second term in November 2007.
Harris has spent her entire professional life in the trenches as a courtroom prosecutor. As San Francisco’s District Attorney, Harris has used her nearly 20 years of prosecutorial experience to focus intensively on fighting violent crime. She increased conviction rates for serious and violent offenses, expanded services to victims of crime and their families, created new prosecution divisions focused on child assault, public integrity and environmental crimes, and launched innovative initiatives to prevent re-offending. To combat one of San Francisco’s biggest challenges, gun violence, she created a gun specialist team and implemented tough gun charging policies.
This work is paying off — the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office has more than doubled its trial conviction rate for gun felonies to 90 percent. Under her leadership, the office has sent 50 percent more serious and violent offenders to State Prison, has put more than 220 gang members behind bars and convicted more than 1,200 domestic violence offenders. According to the San Francisco Superior Court, the office’s overall felony conviction rate is at its highest point in 12 years.
Harris was born in Oakland, California and raised with her sister Maya, in the East Bay by their mother Dr. Shyamala Gopalan, a breast cancer specialist. After attending public schools, her strong commitment to justice and public service led her to Howard University, America’s oldest historically black university, and then to the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.