The US president had, hours earlier, called Kamala Harris “nasty” after she became the first Black and South Asian woman to appear on a mainstream party’s presidential ticket. Those attacks on both Mr Biden and Ms Harris come despite Mr Trump having donated to the Democratic vice presidential candidate’s bids to become California’s attorney general between 2011 and 2013.
“Joe Biden understood this historic moment required a tough, smart and respected public servant,” said Donna Brazile, who managed Al Gore’s campaign in 2000 and served as Democratic National Committee chair in 2016.
Black women in particular helped rescue Mr Biden’s campaign earlier this year by delivering a resounding victory in the South Carolina primary, which powered him to the Democratic nomination. As he prepares for the general election, Mr Biden is trying to recreate the multi-racial and cross-generational coalition that twice sent Barack Obama to the White House. That will hinge on Black voters in battleground states like Michigan to turn out in force in November.