Former Senate Majority Leader and longtime Nevada powerbroker Harry Reidhas in recent weeks told former vice president Joe Biden that he supports Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto as his vice presidential nominee, as part of an effort to give a shot in the arm to his Latino support as the general election comes into view, with Biden telling Reid that she is in his “top three” for the role, three sources confirmed to Mediaite.
Biden and Reid have been speaking regularly since the Nevada caucus, but Biden mentioning her as a top three vice presidential pick came up during the last week, a source with knowledge of the conversation said.
A source close to the Biden campaign said Biden has privately mentioned Cortez Masto as someone who would be on his shortlist for vice president and said he really likes and respects her, appreciates her intellect and leadership, and the history she made as the first Latina U.S. senator.
Critically, Reid is not just sharing his thoughts with Biden, but is someone whose counsel Biden heeds, with the campaign acknowledging internally that it must strengthen its support from Latino voters in an expected general election matchup with President Donald Trump, who doesn’t need to win the Hispanic vote, just erode margins enough in key states.
Reid has additionally encouraged a new behind the scenes effort to get national Latino advocacy groups to support Cortez Masto for vice president, because of the strong support within the party for other popular women senators, like Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who could energize progressives dispirited over Sen. Bernie Sanders flagging campaign, and Sen. Kamala Harris, who is among the black women powerful Biden ally Rep. Jim Clyburn has said Biden should choose from….