Prospective voters turning out at Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris’ campaign events often hear about her late mother.
The California senator says she’s the single greatest influence in her life and an inspiration for her White House bid, someone who grounded Harris in the civil rights movement and instilled in her a duty to act rather than complain.
Harris’ mother, Shyamala Gopalan, emigrated from India, went to college in Berkeley, California, at the dawn of the 1960s and was active in protest movements.
Harris says she remembers the cacophony of chants as her parents made their way to marches.
In her autobiography, Harris calls her mother “the reason for everything,” and while campaigning, Harris cites her as a reason why she’s running for the Democratic nomination.