Sen. Kamala Harris

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., speaks during the Democratic primary debate hosted by NBC News at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, Thursday, June 27, 2019, in Miami. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)


With her post-debate poll numbers rising and a large fundraising haul, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) is the perceived winner from last week’s Democratic debate.

But though the praise for her debate performance against frontrunner Joe Biden continues to roll in, an unexpected source is pouring cold water on the celebration: Harris’s ex beau Willie Brown.

Brown penned a column in the aftermath of the second in a series of two Democratic presidential debates last week, and opined that after what he saw, none of the candidates could beat President Trump at this stage of the game:

The first Democratic debates proved one thing: We still don’t have a candidate who can beat Donald Trump.

California Sen. Kamala Harris got all the attention for playing prosecutor in chief, but her case against former Vice President Joe Biden boiled down in some ways to a ringing call for forced school busing. It won’t be too hard for Trump to knock that one out of the park in 2020.

Biden did himself zero favors by telling Harris that he opposed only busing that was ordered by the federal government. It was a weird endorsement of states’ rights and local jurisdictions’ right to segregate schools. That’s the best argument he could marshal against busing little kids miles across town?


Trump must have enjoyed every moment and every answer, because he now knows he’s looking at a bunch of potential rivals who are still not ready for prime time.

Brown, who is viewed as a kingmaker in California Democratic circles, has made it a habit of insinuating himself into the public debate at inopportune times for Harris ever since she announced her presidential run.

Just a week after she went public with her presidential ambitions earlier this year, Brown published a piece at the SF Chronicle admitting that the two had once dated “more than 20 years ago.” He also noted that some of his actions benefited her politically at the time:

I’ve been peppered with calls from the national media about my “relationship” with Kamala Harris, particularly since it became obvious that she was going to run for president. Most of them, I have not returned.

Yes, we dated. It was more than 20 years ago. Yes, I may have influenced her career by appointing her to two state commissions when I was Assembly speaker.


And I certainly helped with [Harris’s] first race for district attorney in San Francisco. I have also helped the careers of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Gov. Gavin Newsom, Sen. Dianne Feinstein and a host of other politicians.

Not mentioned in the piece was the fact that Brown was (and still is) married at the time of their relationship, though he and his wife have reportedly been separated for decades.

About a week after that, Brown wrote another column, which more or less stated that the one he wrote about their relationship the week prior probably did not help her nationally.

Harris has done what most in her situation would do in ignoring Brown’s rantings and bloviations. But in the long run, her ex may be the least of Harris’s worries if her opponents finally start gunning for her actual record on the issues.

—Based in North Carolina, Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 15+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter.–