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Politics
Follow the latest news and information about voting and the 2020 election, including essential information about how to vote during a pandemic and more.

Kamala Harris Visits Charlotte

Kamala Harris at Truist Field, Charlotte
Steve Harrison
/
WFAE
Standing atop a dugout at Truist Field, vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris speaks to supporters.

Kamala Harris, the Democratic nominee for vice president, made a campaign stop in Charlotte on Wednesday as North Carolina has become a valuable swing state in the presidential race.

Wednesday evening, Sen. Harris spoke at Truist Field, a minor-league baseball stadium in downtown Charlotte that’s surrounded by skyscrapers. There were about 250 people in the stands, and everyone was spaced several feet apart. The event was not open to the general public.

North Carolina Democratic Congresswoman Alma Adams spoke, as did Charlotte Democratic Mayor Vi Lyles. Lyles urged Mecklenburg County to have a higher turnout in 2020 compared to 2016 when it was 67%. Surrounding counties – which vote Republican – had higher turnouts, she said.

Unlike the other speakers, Harris addressed the crowd without a mask. She was more than a dozen feet from anyone in the stands.

Harris compared the current economic climate to the Great Depression.

She said a Biden-Harris administration will not increase taxes on anyone making less than $400,000 a year.

Harris spent the final few minutes of her speech talking about voter suppression.

Kamala Harris at Plaza Midwood's Social Status
Steve Harrison
Sen. Kamala Harris (right) speaks with store owner James Whitner.

Earlier in the afternoon, Sen. Harris visited a business in Charlotte's Plaza Midwood neighborhood. The store, Social Status, is owned by James Whitner, who is selling special Chuck Taylor high tops that are adorned with messages like 2020 and Black Lives Matter. The designs on the Converse shoes were made by New York artist Nina Chanel Abney.

On entering the store, Harris quickly gravitated to the wall of white sneakers where she and Whitner chatted about the shoes.

“She was really excited about everything that is the election,” Whitner said of Abney.

Harris asked Whitner about what inspired him to carry the shoes. He said he wants his stores to do more than sell things but to connect with the community.

“For me, there wasn’t much opportunity there,” he said of growing up in public housing.

Whitner said his hope now is to use his business as a platform to connect with the community, specifically the Black community “to show them that there's opportunity and there's hope for us, and we can do anything.”

Tell us about your voting experience. Did it go smoothly? Were there any problems? How were the lines? Did you feel safe? If so, why or why not?

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