Copyright © 2020 Albuquerque Journal
WASHINGTON – Joe Biden’s campaign is asking some potential vice presidential candidates to submit references as the presumptive Democratic nominee’s team begins the formal vetting process, according to two people with knowledge of the process.
At least one of the candidates who has been asked for references is New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, according to an individual with knowledge of the request.
A spokesman for Lujan Grisham said late Tuesday that the Biden campaign had reached out to her, though not necessarily as a potential vice presidential candidate. Lujan Grisham is vice chairwoman of the Democratic Governors Association, a position that gives her a national profile and puts her on track to lead the group in 2021.
The campaign “has reached out presumably because (Lujan Grisham) is not only DGA vice chair, but also the only Latina governor – that’s important input if we’re going to win in November,” Lujan Grisham spokesman Tripp Stelnicki told the Journal.
Biden’s vetting process, in any case, is in its early stages.
The reference requests are the first tangible sign that Biden’s vice presidential selection committee, announced at the end of April, is beginning its work in earnest.
The people with knowledge of the process declined to name who the campaign has been asking about, citing the private nature of their discussions. The Biden campaign declined comment.
Biden’s vetting team is chaired by former Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd, Delaware Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, and former Apple executive and longtime Biden aide Cynthia Hogan. Biden has said he hopes the vetting process will be complete by July.
Biden, who has promised that his running mate will be a woman, said he is looking at “more than a dozen women” and there is “significantly more than one black woman” on the list.
Journal Capitol Bureau reporter Dan McKay contributed to this report.