Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris skipped an interview with the Working Families Party (WFP), attending two celebrity fundraisers instead, The Daily Beast reports.
The California Senator was scheduled to attend a question-and-answer event with the progressive, labor union-backed group, but she did not do so, appearing on the day her interview had been scheduled at two different fundraisers. One of them was hosted by actress Jessica Alba and MGM Motion Picture Group President Jon Glickman, and the other by CEO of Blackbird Collective Bridgid Coulter.
Rob Duffey, national communications director for WFP, expressed regret over Harris’ decision.
“We don’t know how the campaign makes decisions. We were willing to be flexible on time and locations, however, and we are disappointed they didn’t find a time to hear questions from our members,” he said.
Harris’ campaign told the Daily Beast that the White House hopeful did not skip the interview because of the fundraisers, but sources inside the WFP claim that the group had spent a month arranging a session with the White House hopeful, only to have the candidate back away 48 hours before the scheduled date.
The progressive group responded by announcing that Harris is no longer being considered for the endorsement.
In a statement supplied to The Hill, the WFP explained its decision.
“The one thing we asked of candidates who wanted to be considered by WFP members is that they had to be willing to take questions from us in a live Q&A,” the group said.
“We regret that Senator Harris did not agree to a time for an interview, and consequently is not moving forward in our process,” they added.
A handful of White House hopefuls has already completed their interviews with the labor union-backed organization. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, New Jersey Democrat Cory Booker, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio have all attended a session with the WFP.
As the Daily Beast notes, this is not the first time for Harris to prioritize a fundraiser over a grassroots event. Earlier this month, the California senator declined an invitation to a climate change town hall. After backlash, however, the White House hopeful reversed her decision.
Despite gaining a considerable amount of traction early on in the race and after the first debate, Harris is fading away in the polls. According to a RealClear Politics average of polling data, the California Democrat is currently polling at 7 percent. Former Vice President Joe Biden is still leading the field.