The fit of laughter came as Harris was questioned about whether she was “the most liberal United States senator” in a Sunday interview on CBS’ ‘Sixty Minutes’ with host Norah O’Donnell, who was referring to the results of a GovTrack analysis conducted last year.
In response, the vice presidential hopeful burst out laughing and quickly tried to disown the label, claiming it was Vice President Mike Pence who used the term about her in an attempt to make the California senator unpalatable to conservative voters.
A second bout of laughter came when O’Donnell asked if Harris would bring a “socialist or progressive perspective” into Joe Biden’s potential Democratic administration.
“No,” Harris scoffed, adding that she would instead bring the perspective of a woman “who grew up a black child in America, who was also a prosecutor” and someone who “likes hip-hop.”
If elected, would Kamala Harris advocate for Medicare for All, a plan Joe Biden doesn’t support?
— 60 Minutes (@60Minutes) October 26, 2020
O’Donnell then made a last-ditch attempt at getting a more substantive answer from the vice presidential candidate, asking Harris if she would push Biden to support ‘Medicare for All’, a mandatory universal healthcare plan that would replace private health insurance. Harris dodged the question, refusing to give a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer, instead saying she supports “expanding” on the current system.
The moment drew a slew of social media criticism from both sides of the US political divide.
Leftists said the segment was “infuriating” and slammed the senator for laughing at the idea of pushing for progressive policies. Some called her an opportunist for “not believing in much of anything” and “sprinting away from the real solutions” to the country’s problems.
Everything about this clip is infuriating. The right wing framing of the questions and Kamala sprinting away from the real solutions to our problems pic.twitter.com/6sUoOgj3aS
— Secular Talk (@KyleKulinski) October 26, 2020
Right wingers will interpret Kamala's nervous laughter as covering her true belief in progressive values. Truth is it's to cover her not believing in much of anything. https://t.co/DZ19PVWzM4
— Krystal Ball (@krystalball) October 26, 2020
Conservatives, however, suggested that Harris’ laughter showed she was lying when she said she would not push progressive policies. The laughter is her “tell,” some argued. Another called the senator out for supposedly being a disingenuous politician who “will say or do anything for power”.
Someone needs to tell Kamala, that she has a tell. She does it every time, when she is lying, she breaks out in laughter. That says it all. https://t.co/bo812baETu
— Icantbefrench (@icantbefrench) October 26, 2020
She is Hillary Clinton and will say or do anything for power
— Fun Guy (@DailySportsTalk) October 26, 2020
Others countered that genuine socialists were not fans of Harris and her policies, a sign that she is more centrist than the Trump campaign and Republicans like to suggest.
The idea that Kamala Harris is a socialist is pretty surprising to those of us who have spent the past year seeing what socialists have to say about Kamala Harris on this hell site.
— Charlotte Clymer 🏳️🌈 (@cmclymer) October 26, 2020
Others ignored the political substance but picked up on Harris’ tendency to laugh a lot during interviews. “Has anyone seen Kamala and the Joker in the same room together?” one commenter quipped.
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