(NEW YORK) — Joe Biden promised during the latest Democratic debate to appoint a woman as his vice president. “The View” co-hosts discussed Monday whether it was necessary to make such a commitment at this point in the race to the White House.
The former vice president and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders stood six feet apart as they went head-to-head without an audience on Sunday night in an effort to maintain social distancing to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. Although each candidate touted their plan to handle the pandemic, it was Biden who made headlines for committing to picking a woman as his running mate should he become the nominee.
“There are a number of women who are qualified to be president tomorrow. I would pick a woman to be my vice president,” Biden said during Sunday’s debate in Phoenix.
While Biden was definitive in his commitment to a female running mate, Sanders’ response seemed less certain, saying he would choose a woman “in all likelihood.”
“It’s not just nominating a woman. It is making sure that we have a progressive woman,” Sanders said. “So my very strong tendency is to move in that direction.”
On Monday morning, “The View” co-hosts Whoopi Goldberg, Sunny Hostin, Meghan McCain and guest co-hosts Sara Haines and Dr. Jennifer Ashton reacted to the candidates’ differing responses on appointing a female vice president.
“Bernie’s response was sort of lackluster for me,” Hostin said of Sanders’ response. “Instead of then saying, ‘I’ll do the same thing’ or ‘I have plans to do the same thing,’ he sort of equivocated on it.”
“I don’t like that he used such a label for things,” Ashton said of Biden’s promise to appoint a female vice president. “I have two kids in college and they’re very anti-label. They’re all about, like, look at the person. Look at the individual. Don’t identify in this box or this box or this box.”
McCain agreed with Ashton’s opinion that it should be the person’s skillset, not their identity, that qualifies them for the job.
“I think identity politics… Candidates in the media always overestimate how important it is to the American public,” she said. “I just think they’re gonna want someone who’s equally responsible and someone he trusts.”
Haines also agreed with Ashton and McCain.
“Women come in various shapes, sizes, names, faces,” Haines said. “I appreciate the intention of that, but it would mean I have to see who that person is before I have super strong feelings about it.”
Hostin, meanwhile, said she “appreciated” and “was encouraged by” Biden’s pledge.
“I think leadership in this country needs to reflect what our country looks like,” Hostin said. “The country is over 50% women, and so, not to have a woman in a leadership position, I think, just doesn’t make sense at this time in our country.”
“It doesn’t make sense that we haven’t had a woman in this type of position in our country’s history,” Hostin continued. “I wouldn’t take any woman, but I think that there are enough qualified women that a woman is ready for the task.”
McCain suggested that with Biden and Sanders potentially choosing a woman for their ticket, President Donald Trump would follow suit.
“If [Biden] does it, I’m telling you, Mike Pence is out and Nikki Haley is in. They’re gonna fight fire with fire,” McCain said. “If we go the identity politics route, Trump will do it just as hard, period.”
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