December 3, 2019 - Post-Mortems on Harris’s Campaign Cite Different Standards and Electability Doubts Among Other Factors Hindering Success

Multiple media outlets – including The 19th NewsPolitico, and Rolling Stone, among many others – analyze possible contributors to Harris’s departure from the presidential contest, including financial hurdles, electability doubts, being held to different standards than her opponents or predecessors due to race and gender, and struggles in self-definition and presentation. They also point to the lasting effects of her campaign in disrupting images of who and what is presidential, and to the prospects of her influence and future role in the presidential race. Harris’s communications director Lily Adams tells The 19th that “during the campaign, Harris would often play a game with the staff where she would ask them to close their eyes and imagine a four-word expression that encapsulates other people who have run for president. ‘The boy next door’ was a popular answer. ‘There is no four-word phrase that can capture Kamala Harris for people,’ Adams said. ‘She doesn’t fit into any neat box.'” In another piece for The New York Times, Lisa Lerer and Jennifer Medina ask, “What Does This Country Demand of Black Women in Politics?,” citing the particularly gendered, racialized, and intersectional hurdles that Harris faced as a presidential contender.