President Biden on Tuesday tasked Vice President Harris with leading his administration’s efforts to protect voting rights, adding an urgent and complex issue to her growing portfolio.
Biden made the announcement during a speech in Tulsa, Okla., where he marked the 100th anniversary of a massacre in which a white mob killed hundreds of Black people and destroyed a thriving community known as Black Wall Street.
The president pointed to the systemic challenges facing Black Americans 100 years later, including threats to the right to vote as multiple states debate and pass laws that experts say will make it more difficult for minorities in particular to cast their ballot.
“To signify the importance of our efforts, today I’m asking Vice President Harris to help these efforts and lead them among her many other responsibilities,” Biden said. “With her leadership and your support, we’re going to overcome again, but it’s going to take a hell of a lot of work.”