Vogue’s longtime editor-in-chief Anna Wintour called for presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden to pick a woman of color as his running mate as soon as possible amid a wave of protests over the death of George Floyd.
“Vice President Biden has already spoken with feeling and empathy about the death of George Floyd, but he has to do more: assume the mantle of president in waiting, raise his voice, and become the national leader we so desperately need,” Wintour wrote in an op-ed published by Vogue on Sunday.
“He must surround himself with the best and the brightest minds who represent all of America—and that means he should choose a woman of color to be his vice president, and he should do it soon,” she added. “What an important symbol she will be for a country that is long and tragically overdue for new leadership.”
Without using President Trump’s name, Wintour called the commander-in-chief a “disgraceful president who seems capable of only vile statements of hate, of stoking our divisions, and turning American against one another.”
But she said it is not enough to vote him out of office, she said all Americans need to reckon with the violence against black people in the U.S.
In addition to Floyd, Wintour cited the “appalling murders” or Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor.
“The need for change should fall especially on those of us who enjoy incredible privileges; we need to listen and learn and take action to ensure social justice and basic human rights for people of color in this country,” she said.
Floyd died last week in custody of Minneapolis police. A widely shared video of his arrest shows a a police officer kneeling on him as Floyd says he can’t breathe. Four officers were fired and the ex-officer seen kneeling on Floyd was charged third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
Taylor, a 26-year-old EMT, was fatally shot by police in plain clothes in her home in Louisville, Ky., in March.
Arbery was shot by two bystanders while running in his Brunswick, Ga., neighborhood. The killing occurred on Feb. 23, but the case was passed along by several prosecutors until a video of his death was released in May.
Biden has committed to choosing a woman running mate, but has not pledged to choose a woman of color.
Biden said last week during a digital fundraiser that he hopes to decide on a running mate by Aug., 1, about two weeks before the Democratic nominating convention. He said his campaign’s vice presidential committee has already interviewed contenders on the shortlist.
Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), former Georgia state Rep. Stacey Abrams (D) and Rep. Val Demings (D-Fla.) are among those believed to be up for consideration for the spot on the ticket.