Californians celebrated the election results over the weekend with impromptu parades, fireworks and dancing. For Bay Area Democrats, the festivities took on greater resonance because of Kamala Harris—an Oakland native who ascended the ranks of California politics to become the first woman and first Black and South Asian U.S. vice president.
Silicon Valley leaders issued statements applauding the historic win and urging the public to start mending wounds after a bitter, drawn-out election.
“This is a moment for healing, across our divided nation, and in each of our ailing communities,” San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo said in a prepared statement. “President-elect Biden will provide the leadership and character to bring our country together and move forward—but whether we are willing to come together depends on each of us as much as it depends on them. May we all rise to this moment. May we also celebrate the historic achievement of our Bay Area’s own Kamala Harris, to become the highest-ranking woman to serve our nation in its history.”
— Sam Liccardo (@sliccardo) November 8, 2020
Congresswoman Anna Eshoo (D-Palo Alto) said the protracted wait before major outlets called the election was “worth a few extra days’ wait to celebrate such progress.”
“It’s also a victory for our Democracy that so many Americans demonstrated their faith in our system of government by casting their ballots,” Eshoo said. “Their participation strengthens our country. We must take this opportunity of a new administration to close political divides and adhere to the motto of our nation E pluribus unum, out of many, one. We are a resilient people, and united there is no problem we can’t solve.”
Assemblyman Evan Low (D-Campbell) said he’s “thrilled” to see the majority of voters reject racism and xenophobia and embrace science and a “compassionate approach” to governing. “Today’s victory is just the first step toward healing our country and reminding ourselves that we are a nation of ideals,” he said, “and it is our responsibility to live up to those lofty ambitions. I have no doubt President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris will offer a consistent example of what real leadership looks like, and one that will make all of us proud.”
On Twitter, Congressman Ro Khanna (D-Fremont) applauded the decision by the majority of voters as a rejection of Trump and “his failures during this pandemic, his racism and his disregard for people’s lives.”
America has rejected Donald Trump. We’ve had enough of his failures during this pandemic, his racism, and his disregard for people's lives.
— Ro Khanna (@RoKhanna) November 7, 2020
Dave Cortese, who garnered enough votes this past week to succeed state Sen. Jim Beall (D-San Jose), called the Democratic presidential win “a proud day for our nation.”
Congratulations to our next President and First Lady, Joe and Jill Biden, and to CA’s own Kamala Harris for being elected to be the first female Vice President! It is a proud day for our nation! pic.twitter.com/MAhHETwDiM
— Supervisor Cortese (@SupDaveCortese) November 7, 2020
In her victory speech, Harris acknowledged “all the women who have worked to secure and protect the right to vote,” saying she stands on their shoulders—especially those of her mother, Shyamala Gopalan Harris.
“She maybe didn’t quite imagine this moment,” she said of her mom, an immigrant who came from India to California as a teenager. “But she believed so deeply in an America where a moment like this is possible, and so I am thinking about her and about the generations of women, Black women, Asian, white, Latina, Native American women—who throughout our nation’s history have paved the way for this moment tonight—women who fought and sacrificed so much for equality and liberty and justice for all.”