Macon: Republican Senator David Perdue mocked Kamala Harris, his Senate colleague and the Democratic vice presidential nominee, on Friday by repeatedly mispronouncing her name at a Georgia rally for President Donald Trump.
Perdue was wrapping up his remarks at an event in Macon when he referred to Harris as “KAH’-mah-lah? Kah-MAH’-lah? Kamala-mala-mala? I don’t know. Whatever.” The audience laughed.
A spokesperson for Perdue said the first-term senator “didn’t mean anything by it.”
Since the time Harris became the first Black woman and first person of South Asian descent on a national ticket, her political opponents have repeatedly mispronounced her name.
Democrats say the mispronunciations smack of racism. Her first name is pronounced “KAH’-mah-lah” — or, as she explains in her biography, “‘comma-la,’ like the punctuation mark.”
Trump and Vice President Mike Pence are among the top Republicans who have repeatedly mispronounced it. A few Democrats, including former President Barack Obama, have said it incorrectly, too.
Harris’ spokesperson, Sabrina Singh, responded to Perdue’s remark in a tweet and worte, “Well that is incredibly racist. Vote him out.” In a second tweet, she wrote, “He has been her Senate colleague for over 3 years. 3. Years. THREE. Do better.”