With just days until Joe Biden is expected to make his vice presidential choice public, the buzz is growing.
The Biden campaign says the decision will come as early as Aug. 1.
“Vice presidential nominees have not been this consequential. But it appears this season that it is,” former Massachusetts state Rep. Marie St. Fleur said.
The latest top contenders include Sens. Kamala Harris of California, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Tammy Duckworth of Illinois; former national security adviser Susan Rice and Congresswomen Val Demings of Florida and Karen Bass of California.
Bass, a newcomer to the shortlist, was seen walking with the Bidens on Monday.
St. Fleur said she’s excited about Bass as a candidate because “she’s levelheaded. She’s thoughtful. She works across the aisle.”
St Fleur said she’d be happy with any of the women -- Biden has said he would pick a woman, and many Democrats have urged him to pick a woman of color -- but has been impressed with Bass, a former house speaker in California, now the head of the Congressional Black Caucus.
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But St. Fleur said she isn't using candidates' race as a "litmus test."
“Most importantly to me it's, we need to get Joe Biden elected," she said.
But Democratic analyst Evan Falchuk thinks a woman of color should be a priority, “especially as we are seeing this time of reckoning around racial discrimination and our history in this country.”
Falchuk thinks two women stand out. One is Harris, the former California attorney general who many consider the top contender.
“She’s serious, she’s accomplished, she’s been vetted as a presidential candidate,” he said.
And, with problems flaring up around national security and world alliances, he likes Susan Rice as well.
“She has the gravitas, the background, the experience, the credibility to take on those challenges,” he said
As for Warren, Falchuk thinks she is more than qualified but added, “She can be a divisive figure. And I think that [President Donald] Trump is itching to run against her so we can pull out his racist comments about her.”