Can Joe Biden’s VP pick make it all the way to the White House?

In 2016, Kamala Harris was a fresh-faced senator still finding her way around Washington. 

A year later, her role on the Senate Intelligence Committee, which was investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election, earned her the kind of national spotlight almost unheard of for a fledgling senator. 

One of her most notable appearances on the committee was in June 2017, when her feisty exchange with Jeff Sessions, Donald Trump’s attorney general at the time, won her plaudits from Democrats.

Ms Harris’s prosecutorial background was shown to full effect as she questioned Mr Sessions on his contacts with Russian agents during the 2016 election campaign. 

Her questioning, he freely admitted during the televised appearance, made him “nervous”. The exchange was carried live on US cable news and made a political star out of Ms Harris.

It was the start of a prominent public profile for the 55-year-old California senator, who has just been selected as Joe Biden’s running mate for the Democratic presidential ballot in 2020.

Ms Harris is a former presidential hopeful herself, entering the Democratic race on Martin Luther King day, carefully timed to highlight the historic nature of her candidacy. It was also a nod to Shirley Chisholm, the first black woman elected to Congress, who became the first black woman to seek the Democratic nomination for president 47 years ago that week.