Remarks by Vice President Harris During Fireside Chat with Priyanka Chopra Jonas

By: White House: Office of the Vice President

Q    Hello.  You just —
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Hi, Priyanka.  How are you?
 
Q    I’m very well.  You just landed last night, literally, from your, you know, tour in Asia.  I just want to ask, how are you feeling?
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Perky.  Just wonderful.  (Laughs.)  I was at — can you believe it, I was literally at the DMZ I think less than —
 
Q    Twenty-four hours ago.
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  — 24 hours ago.
 
Q    Yes.
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  But I — I actually feel great because I’m in a room full of phenomenal women who are doing phenomenal things.  And so I feel great.  And thank you for asking.
 
Q    Of course.  (Applause.)
 
I was thinking about, okay, what do I and the VP have in common?  (Laughter.)  You know, we’re women.  And then I really wanted to start with something like that.  And I think we’re both daughters of India, in a way.  You’re a proud American-born daughter of an Indian mom and a Jamaican father.  I am an Indian born of two physicians as parents and a recent immigrant to this country who totally still believes in the wholehearted, you know, American Dream. 
 
So I just want to start at the fact that this country is regarded as a beacon of hope, freedom, and choice for the whole world, and these tenants are being endlessly assaulted right now. 
 
So what has, I think, catalyzed this erosion when it comes to a few specific things — which I really wanted to ask you — is long battles of equal pay.  Like I, for the first time in my career, have just — after 22 years of working — got equal pay as a male co-actor.  So — (applause) — this year.  Thank you.  Marriage equality and, of course, the topic of the moment right now, reproductive rights.
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Yeah.  So what — I think we’ll get into more detail to the last —
 
Q    Yes.
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  — the last issue, which is a first issue.  But I will say this: There’s no question that right now we’re living in an unsettled world.  To your point, I just left Asia; I’ve been traveling around the world as Vice President.  I’ve — I’ve directly talked with 100 world leaders in person or by phone — prime ministers, presidents, kings, chancellors — since I’ve been Vice President.  There’s no question we are living in an unsettled world.  Things that we long took for granted are now up for debate and question. 
 
You look, for example, at Russia’s unprovoked war in Ukraine.  We thought it was pretty well settled — the issue of territorial integrity and sovereignty — and now that is up for some debate, given what’s happening there. 
 
We look in our own country.  We thought, surely with the Voting Rights Act and all that it stood for — we assumed and thought the issue of voting rights in America was settled.  Then we had the Shelby v. Holder decision.  And then after the 2020 election, when more people voted and more young people voted than ever before, states around our country started systematically and intentionally making it more difficult for people to vote. 
 
We thought a woman’s right — a constitutional right — to make decisions about her own body was settled.  No longer. 
 
And so it does cause us, we who pay attention and feel and think about the principles that are at play — it does cause us to be upset, distressed, angry. 
 
But I will say this — and many of you have heard me paraphrase Coretta Scott King many, many times, and I’m just going to keep doing it. (Laughter.)  And so — and Coretta Scott King famously said, I’ll paraphrase: The fight for civil rights, which is the fight for justice, the fight for equality, must be fought and won with each generation. 
 
Because fundamentally, I think we all understand, because I know the women and the leaders in this room keep coming back every year doing what you do — we all understand that it is the nature of it all that whatever gains we make, they will not be permanent.  It’s the nature of it, which is why everyone in this room continues to be vigilant in fighting to maintain the progress that we’ve made and also, where there have been steps backward, to push it forward.  It’s the nature of it. 
 
So yes, we must be clear-eyed and do what is necessary at the moment.  And that’s why we’re all convened here today.  But I will say that we should retain a sense of optimism, because every time we’ve made progress it has been because we had the ability and the courage to see what is possible and go for it. 
 
And right now, there’s a lot at stake, and we got 39 days to go for it.  So let’s see it through, and do what we need to do.  And we can talk about the connection between the next 39 days and all these issues in a moment.
 
Q    Absolutely.  You’re so right.  Like, there’s so much to navigate right now.  And I feel like we’re also living in a world of information, right?  Where, about 20 years ago, we might not know about so many issues around the world versus now — and the generation now that knows and cares about everything that happens not just to them, but to the world around them. 
 
So just talking about a point that I am very concerned about, and I — as I’m sure so is this room: You and the administration obviously are working around the clock right now to support relief efforts in Florida and to prepare citizens as Hurricane Ian now is closing in on South Carolina. 
 
So, extreme weather conditions like this are becoming obviously more frequent and more severe.  And I wanted to acknowledge the administration for passing the biggest climate legislation –legislation in history earlier this year — (applause) — because it is a fact that America’s leadership sets an example to other major economies around the world, which are truly dragging their feet when it comes to doing their bit. 
 
So can you talk just a little bit about the relief efforts, obviously, of Hurricane Ian and what the administration has been doing to address the climate crisis in the states? 
 
But — and just a little follow up, because this is important to me: We consider the global implications of emissions, right?  The poorest countries are affected the most.
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Yeah.
 
Q    They contributed the least and are affected the most.  So how should voters in the U.S. feel about the administration’s long-term goals when it comes to being an international influencer on this topic?
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  I’m going to unpack that question.  (Laughter.)
 
Q    I’m going to ask you packed and loaded questions because I’ve been given a little bit of time.
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  So, first of all, again, thanks to the leadership in this room, which were part of the propelling force in the 2020 election so that we could actually be in office — because one of the requests — dare I say, “demands” — of this group was, “Do something about the climate crisis.”  And so, we were able to be elected.  Thank you, everyone here.
 
And then have the — (applause) — but — and have, then, $370 billion in the Inflation Reduction Act dedicated to address the climate crisis — not only because it is a crisis, as it evident — as evidenced, as you have mentioned by Ian, by the wildfires happening in California, the floods, the hurricanes, but also because of America’s leadership and what it should be globally on this issue.  And so that has happened, and it will propel a lot of good work. 
 
The crisis is real, and the clock is ticking.  And the urgency with which we must act is without any question. 
 
And the way that we think of it and the way I think of it is both in terms of the human toll and — I know we are all thinking about the families in Florida, in Puerto Rico with Fiona — and what we need to do to help them in terms of an immediate response and aid, but also what we need to do to help restore communities and build communities back up in a way that they can be resilient — not to mention, adapt — to these extreme weather conditions, which are part of the future. 
 
On the point that you made about disparities: You know, when I was — back when I was District Attorney of San Francisco — I was elected in 2003 — I started one of the first environmental justice units of any DA’s office in the country focused on this issue.  And in particular on the disparities, as you have described rightly, which is that it is our lowest income communities and our communities of color that are most impacted by these extreme conditions and impacted by issues that are not of their own making.  And so, when —
 
Q    And women. 
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Absolutely.  And so, we have to address this in a way that is about giving resources based on equity, understanding that we fight for equality, but we also need to fight for equity; understanding that not everyone starts out at the same place.  And if we want people to be in an equal place, sometimes we have to take into account those disparities and do that work.  (Applause.)
 
But also, I will say, as a former prosecutor, part of this issue also has to be about enforcement and, where appropriate, making sure that the bad actors pay a price for what they do that is directly harming communities in terms of their health and wellbeing. 
 
So, when we think about policy then, there are many aspects to it, including something that the President and our administration and I are very excited about, which is the opportunity that moving towards a clean energy environment and industry — what it will do in terms of job creation and building up our economy.  It’s tremendous.  (Applause.)
 
So, there are many benefits to this work.
 
And to your point about the global piece: Among the leaders that I have been meeting and convening — just recently, in fact — and now this was, I think, the third time — I convened the presidents and prime ministers of the Caribbean countries; there’s an organization called CARICOM.  And I convened them just a couple weeks ago.  And the consistent discussion we are having is exactly your point, which is: We are one of the greatest emitters in the world and the Caribbean countries, for example, are paying the biggest price.  They are some of the lowest emitters, yet the erosion that they are experiencing to their island nations is profound. 
 
And when you combine that with the fact that nations like that — their biggest source for their GDP is tourism, and what the climate crisis and extreme weather conditions do in terms of then plummeting their incoming resources, not to mention what we are expecting all good nations to do to contribute to mitigation and adaptation. 
 
So there is still a lot of work to be done to recognize the equities.  And I will say, for us, as the United States, to own responsibility for what we rightly — (applause) — should do to recognize these disparities and contribute in a way that is fair with the goal of equitable priorities.
 
Q    Thank you for saying that.  That’s incredible to hear. 
 
You were speaking about communities.  And another thing that I, as a new parent, am concerned about is, you know, gun control.  You spoke earlier in July at the National Education Association, and the address coincided with the Highland Park shooting.  Like so many of the incomprehensible tragedies in this country, I want to thank you for being such a vocal critic of gun laws in America.  (Applause.)
 
A month after the Uvalde massacre, we saw the first gun control measure come out of Congress in nearly three decades.  It was a bill focused on mental health and school safety.  It was a welcomed progress, yes.  But, you know, there’s still no meaningful legislation that has passed.  And I know this is really a question actually as a — as the fortitude for — of you as a leader, how are you able to work alongside colleagues that are refusing to budge on this matter?  Like how does that happen?  (Laughter.)  You go to work, and how do you deal with that?
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  It’s called democracy.  (Laughter.)
 
Q    Oh, boy.  I could not do it. 
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  But to your point, it can be very challenging.  And as some have said, you know, it’s a messy business sometimes. 
 
So to your point, one: Our administration and President Joe Biden is very proud of the fact that we have now passed some of the most significant gun legislation that has been passed in decades, including background checks for people over the age of 21. 
 
But there’s still so much work to be done.  We need to — we have got to renew the assault weapons ban.  (Applause.)
 
And just to break it down in terms of what we all know — why?  Why are we — why are we looking at, in particular, assault weapons ban and carving that out?  Because — let’s just always think about the fact that almost everything that can be used has a designed purpose.  What is the designed purpose of an assault weapon?  Okay, here you go: to kill a lot of human beings quickly.  That’s its design.  That has no place in the streets of a civil society.  (Applause.)
 
It’s a weapon of war.  It’s — it’s a weapon of war.  And yes, I was there that day.  I went and — I was at the scene where — the yellow tape was still up.  There were strollers that were knocked over and lawn chairs, because you’ll remember they were — they were getting ready for a parade for a community gathering. 
 
Parkland.  You look at — tomorrow is going to be the anniversary of 1 October in Nevada. 
 
You know, I, frankly, thought that when Sandy Hook happened and then later Uvalde, maybe that would be it.  To really have anyone who is a parent or has ever parented a child or cares about children to think about the effect of it all. 
 
And back during the time of Sandy Hook, I even said — and it was a bit controversial — I said, you know what I think should happen as a former prosecutor who prosecuted homicide cases and therefore looked at autopsy photographs?  I think that all those members should be locked up in a room.  No press; it’s not about making — sensationalizing it.  Lock them up in a room and put the autopsy photographs of those children down, and require them to look at them.  (Applause.)  And see what these — these weapons do to the human body.  And then ask them to speak to their conscience, their God, their — their sense of what’s right.  And then vote. 
 
And — but sadly, this has come down to a partisan political issue.  And it’s a false choice.  I support the Second Amendment — Second Amendment, but I also believe there should be an assault weapons ban. 
 
And I think again, elections matter.  And we have to keep holding people accountable because, ultimately, if we want smart, sensible gun legislation to get passed, we need the people in Congress to have the courage to act.  (Applause.)
 
Q    How far away do you think that is?
 
AUDIENCE MEMBER:  (Inaudible.)
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Yes, 39 days.  (Laughter.) 
 
Q    39 days.
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:   That’s how far away it is.  (Applause.)
 
Certainly — I mean, look, let’s just — I don’t know how much more time we have, and I do want to get to the 39 days bit of this conversation, because — yeah, I mean, if we get to the subject of, for example, voting rights, we need two more — we need to keep the senators we have and two more.  (Applause.)  And Joe Biden will pass this legislation.  He’ll pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, the Freedom to Vote Act, and the Women’s Health Protection Act.  (Applause.)

Two more senators.  Thirty-nine days.  Two more senators.  (Applause.) 

Right?  We like specific goals.  Well, we’ve got them.  I’m not even going to say, “Vote…” — you know, vote, yes, to save democracy, and vote to get two more senators.  (Laughs.)  Both.  Both.

Q    Incredible.  I honestly don’t know how much time we have, because that clock is not working.  But somebody can come and wave at me — (laughter) —

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Oh, there you go.

Q    — when we have five minutes.

Thank you for that.  You’re such an incredible leader.

I listened to a conversation on NPR earlier this year where they talked about you convening — no press, no fanfare, just roundtables of women and groups of people at the White House who, in their words, feel invisible —

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Yeah.

Q    — in politics and previous administrations. 
 
And I visited the White House this morning.  And I have to say, I saw the practice — President Biden’s promise of diversity and inclusion.  That representation brought me to tears this morning, from Surgeon General Vivek Murthy to Criminal Justice Advisor Chiraag Bains; Speechwriter Vinay Reddy; Sumona Guha, South Asian Security Advisor.

Your administration has the most South Asian representation in history and is the most diverse.  (Applause.)  It’s intentional.  It’s commendable.

I lived in America when I was 12 years old, and I would have never imagined this.  So in your two years as Vice President, and many years holding office in California, what is — what are the major changes that you have seen?

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  A lot over the years, but there’s still so much work to do.  I — we should applaud the work that we’ve — we’ve seen result in progress and including this morning, and I know you mentioned it; I was there for the investiture of now Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson.  (Applause.)

I mean, what a sight.  And, by the way, you know that she makes history on many levels, including we now have the largest number of women on the United States Supreme Court — four.  (Applause.)

Q    Wow.

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Yes.  So we’re seeing progress.  And — and that, you know — but there’s still, to your point, glass ceilings — so many more to break.

But I think that there is that.  We’re seeing the progress that we’re making on climate.  We’re seeing some of the progress that we’ve been able to make in terms of gun legislation.  We’re seeing progress in terms of representation.  I’m seeing more young women, in particular.

You know, one of the pieces of advice that I give young women, just — I just tell them, you know, dream with ambition.  Right?  (Applause.)  Like, let’s encourage ambition in our collective daughters.  Let’s encourage them and tell them we applaud it and we want to see it.  And they should never feel that they have to be embarrassed or apologetic about dreaming and believing in themselves and what they can do.

And when you see something like what has happened with our administration — and the President is truly committed to it — truly committed to it — what that does is it feeds that sense of possibility for — for our girls and our boys.

Because let’s be clear: When we break these barriers, it is also a signal, regardless of gender, to say to an individual, “Do not be confined by some notion of who can do what.”  And that’s empowering for everyone and — and, for that reason, exciting and — and truly about, you know, progress in our nation.

So we’re seeing progress, but there’s still so much work to do.  I mean, I look at the disparities in terms of maternal health, something I’ve been working on for years.

You know — there’s the sign now — that’s good.  (Laughter.)  (Five-minute warning is given.) 
 
That was very high tech.  (Laughter.)  Good job.

Q    Thank you.  Giving us direction.

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  But maternal mortality — I mean, guys, still, in our country, Black women are three times more likely to die in connection with childbirth.  Native women, one and a half times more likely to die.  Rural women, about one and — 60 percent more likely to die.  Right?

And, I mean, in connection with childbirth, in, you know, this year of our Lord, 2022, this is what we’re still talking about.  With the scientific and medical advancement on so many issues, women are still dying in connection with childbirth.  And we need to deal with it.

And a lot of it has to do with disparities in terms of race, in terms of socioeconomic condition, in terms of, you know, rural versus urban.

It also has to do with — we still have disparities in terms of the quality of healthcare that are available to women of color and poor women, low-income women.  And we need to address that, because it affects not only that person, it affects their family and their entire community.

In fact, someone close to me, I just learned today, has a relative who just passed away.  The woman died in childbirth and the baby died, just in the last week — in America.  Right?

So we still have work to do.  But I am fueled by optimism, knowing that when we put our mind to it and when we put our collective action into it, we make progress.  And so that’s what we will continue to do.

Q    Thank you very much.  I know we’ve run out of time and there’s so many things I wanted to ask you —

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Well, I don’t want to end on that though, so let’s — (laughter) —

Q    No, no, no.  I’m going to ask you one —

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Give me — give me something else.

Q    I’m giving you a good question to just end on.

I have — I’m an actor, for those of you who don’t know, but I have been asked on many occasions by young people who come up to me, and especially women aspiring for leadership positions in whatever, you know, your — your avenue might be — business, arts, politics, whatever.

I feel very strongly that opening the door is important, but that doesn’t necessarily get you a seat at the table, forget the head of the table.  Right?  So, in your own words, you say that, you know, you’re the last woman — you’re — to not — you’re not going to be the last woman to hold this office —

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Maybe the first, won’t be the last.

Q    So, yes —

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Yes.

Q    But you won’t be the last.  So for young people, not just girls — for young people who, whether you’re marginalized, whether — around the world, who see you as an inspiration, who look forward to being in leadership roles but are by — conformed by society or by culture, how do you tell them to break out of the shackles of — just inspire them to break out of the shackles of whatever it might be that holds them down?

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  So I’ll share with you just the last few days for me.  It included being in South Korea and meeting with the President.  And we had a discussion about gender equity.

Q    Wow.

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  And after that meeting, I convened a group of women leaders in South Korea.  And at the table, there was a young author.  There was an Academy Award winning actor.  All women.  There was a woman who was — who ran for office in the ‘90s — or, I think — actually, I think it was the ‘80s — did not win, but then started an organization to encourage women to run for office there.

Q    Wow.

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  There was a woman there who was the head of the medical — Women’s Medical Association, which there are very few women as compared to men.  There was a young woman CEO.  And they were there — because I convened them and I asked them to meet with me — to talk about gender equity issues there.

Because, you see, as I’ve been traveling the world, almost everywhere I’ve gone, I’ve tried to convene women.  And usually I’m there for what’s called a bilateral meeting, where I’m there to meet with the head of state.  But I always try and, during the visit, find some time to convene women to talk about the condition of women in those countries. And I’ve —
 
Q    And that must have been a really hard conversation —
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Well, but —
 
Q    — in that part of the world. 
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  It is, and it is in many places.  But I feel a sense of duty being in this position, understanding — and this may be immodest — but understanding what it has meant to women around the world to lift up this issue.  And what I will say almost everywhere I go, and it is what I believe: I do believe that one should and can measure the strength of a democracy based on the strength and status of women in that democracy.   (Applause.)  The status of women is the status of the health of a democracy. 
 
And so, with that spirit —
 
AUDIENCE MEMBER:  (Inaudible.)  (Laughter.)
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.  You’re so good.  (Laughter.) 
 
Q    Hilarious. 
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Yeah.  No, it’s very funny.  It’s like a skit.  (Laughter.) 
 
And so this is what I’ve been doing.  And the conversation — it’s a universal conversation, actually.  The conversation is almost the same everywhere.  And it includes, especially when, as it was just a couple of days ago, a table full of firsts —
 
Q    Wow.
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  — for the most part, that — we talked, for example, about what it means to be the first.  We talked about — you know, I gave a piece of advice to a couple of the younger women.  And I said, you know — and I’ll offer this advice for everyone to pass on or take. 
 
But the advice is this: You will often find yourself to be the only one like you when you walk in a room — a conference room, a boardroom.  And it is important, though, that when you walk in that room, you know you are not alone and that you carry the voices of so many people who are not in that room, you carry those voices with you in that room.  And so, chin up, shoulders back, knowing that even though you cannot see us, we are applauding you in that room and you are not alone.  Right?  (Applause.)
 
And so, you know, in that room, do not let that room make you feel small, because you — you stand for something and you — you have people — (laughs) —
 
Q    Yeah.
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  — and your people are there with you.  And I think that’s really important to recognize because there’s still so much ground to be broken all over the world.  And — and this is, you know, a critical issue. 
 
Because again — I mean, for example, another perspective that I think we all share is: When you lift up the economic status of women, you lift up the economic status of families, and all of society benefits.  (Applause.)
 
Q    And then the whole country. 
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Exactly right.  Exactly right. 
 
Q    Yeah.  Well, I think that is extremely important that what you spoke about.  You are such an incredible leader for so many people. People look up to you.  And I think more women in leadership roles across the plethora of whatever medium they’re in is going to raise the status of every country in the world. 
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  That’s right.
 
Q    And I think investing in women and girls is — it’s — it’s insane that we’re even talking about it.  We’re 50 percent of the world’s population.  Like, it should be a right —
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Right.
 
Q    But there’s such large steps to be made.  Thank you so much for that and having a conversation with all of us today. 
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Let’s talk about one more thing before
we part.  (Laughter.) 
 
Q    I was going to — I was going to (inaudible), but —
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  They’ll be fine.  (Laughter.)  Let’s talk about Dobbs. 
 
Q    Yes. 
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Okay.  So if there were ever any reason for this group to exist —
 
Q    Yes.
 
THE VICE PRESIDENT:  — in recent memory, the moment is now.  The moment is now.  (Applause.) 
 
So with the Dobbs decision, the highest court in our land took a constitutional right, that had been recognized, from the people of America, from the women of America.  You know, so when I’m traveling around the world, let — let’s just put this in context for a moment in that context. 
 
So when we walk in the room with foreign leaders as Americans, we have enjoyed standing that allows us to walk in those rooms and talk about democracies, to talk about human rights, the rule of law.  And with that, we have earned a reputation for being a role model. 
 
But as everyone in this room knows, when you’re a role model, it means people watch what you do to see if it matches what you say.  Understand, then, that everyone around the world is watching what we’re doing right now on this issue, as it relates to what we’re talking about and the previous point about the status of women. 
 
Because best believe there are so-called leaders around the world who are probably saying, “Well, you know, this greatest democracy you talk about, they did it.  Why can’t we?  Why shouldn’t we?”  Or “This is why we do.” 
 
So when we look at what’s at stake right now, let’s understand that what happened with that decision, I believe, will impact women around the world. 
 
Now let’s talk about what’s happening specifically in our country.  We’ve got states that are literally criminalizing healthcare providers, punishing women for the fact that they are women.  We have extremist so-called leaders who are literally deciding that their judgment is the appropriate replacement for the judgment of that woman.  As I said the night that that draft came out: How dare they?  But this is what is happening in our country. 
 
So, first of all, I know there’s some women from Kansas here, and I just want to say thank you.  (Applause.)  Where are you?  Stand up. 
 
And for anyone who hasn’t seen — when you have a moment, look up some of the commercials that they ran in Kansas; they’re just brilliant.  They just talked about — they just — a lot of them I saw just use two words: government mandate.  Right?  Government mandate. 
 
We have got to do everything we can in these next days — 39 days — to remind people of what is at stake in this election.  Because, one, it is going to be about those two senators.  As I said earlier, our President, Joe Biden, will pass and — will sign that legislation if we get two more senators to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act.  Okay? 
 
Also, it matters who’s the governor.  I’ve been meeting with governors in blue states with completely red legislators who — legislatures who are vetoing as necessary.  I’ve been convening state legislatures around the country, talking with them about what they’re trying to do.  Who is governor matters, who is attorney general — I convened a bunch of state attorneys general, who are litigating where appropriate, who are defending where appropriate this issue.
 
God knows secretaries of state matter.  You know there are 11 secretary of state candidates right now who are election deniers?  Okay, so you want to run the elections, but you don’t trust the outcome?
 
Elections matter.  For those places that are criminalizing, who your county prosecutor is matters. 
 
So, 39 days.  And there is so much at stake in terms of what we have as an inflection point right now on this issue, what we can do.  And I do think of it in the way I think we all do, which is: Great women and leaders of all genders started a movement, which cultivated about 50 years ago in the Roe v. Wade decision.  We are now responsible for picking up that movement.  (Applause.)  And so we will.
 
And the other piece of every great movement, including that one — but every great movement in our country that has produced progress, I believe one of the critical ingredients was coalition building. 
 
And so, part of this movement — let’s also continue to do that good work, which is bringing folks together who seemingly have nothing in common, bringing folks together in this movement. 
 
Because here’s the last point that I’ll share with you.  I asked my team — I love Venn diagrams, so — (laughter) — I just do.  Whenever you’re dealing with conflict, pull out a Venn diagram, right?  And so — you know, the three circles.
 
And so — so I asked my team right there —
 
Q    I love Venn diagrams. 

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  Right?  They’re fantastic.
 
Q    I’m geeking out right now, that you love Venn diagrams.  (Laughter.)

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  So, I asked my team, “Show me from which states are we seeing attacks on women’s reproductive health and attacks on voting rights and attacks on LGBTQ rights.”
    
Would not be surprised, would you, to see the overlap.
 
Okay, so that is very dispiriting.  And hey, that also tells us coalition building.  Coalition building.  Let’s bring together all the folks who historically and currently are fighting for voting rights.  Bring together all the folks who historically and currently are fighting for LGBTQ rights.  Bring together everyone who has been fighting for women’s rights, including health rights. 
 
And let’s bring everybody together and build this movement in a way that is about the collective, in a way that is about community, in a way that is about reminding us that we are not alone and that one of the greatest, I think, aspects of who we are is we, as part of our spirit and essence, believe nobody should be made to fight alone. 
 
And so let’s own that and push forward, again, knowing that all of the great progress that we’ve made as a nation has been because we know what we stand for — freedom, liberty.  That’s what’s at stake.  And I believe when you know what you stand for, you know what to fight for.  That’s where we are.  (Applause.)
 
Q    Wow.  What a wonderful note to end on.  The world is watching.  November 8th is coming up.   We got to galvanize, get people to vote.  Thank you so much, VP Harris.
 
END
 

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