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Karen Bass, Susan Rice Rise As Bidens search for VP Nears End

Ms. Bass has also led a previously undisclosed campaign to influence influential liberal leaders calling union presidents to seek their advice and support.

The house speaker Nancy Pelosi is close to Ms. Bass, whom she named to oversee the recent police reform bill, and has made her admiration clear in private conversations, including with former President Barack Obama. Ms. Pelosi’s aides said she has not provided support to any candidate, is happy for a number of them, and approached Mr. Biden’s control team last month urged them to find someone who could ensure the ticket was victorious.

Two prominent Democrats, Senators Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Kamala Harris of California, along with a handful of other women, remain as options; both legislators have the state policy experience and major national implications that Ms. Bass and Ms. Rice is missing. Ms. Warren has become something of an informal adviser to Mr. Biden on economic issues and has won the support of his party’s progressive wing, and Ms. Harris is considered a muscular find-collector with the backing of important people in the Democratic Party’s donor class.

Mens Mr. Biden’s advisers are careful to emphasize that he has not ruled out any of the major candidates, it is clear that some are less likely than others to be elected. For some of the long-shot candidates, speeches have already turned to other potential roles in a Biden administration: Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham of New Mexico, for example, has expressed interest in the job as secretary of health and human services, according to officials familiar with her thinking .

Among the other candidates that Mr. Biden has taken a closer look at government control Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan; Representative Val Demings of Florida, who has enlisted her home state’s substantial congressional delegation to appeal on her behalf; and Illinois Senator Tammy Duckworth, backed by veteran spokesmen.

Gov. JB Pritzker of Illinois has called on Mr. Biden’s team to encourage them to put Ms. Duckworth, a military veteran, on the ticket. Senator Jack Reed of Rhode Island, the top Democrat on the Senate Armed Services Committee, has shared his high-profile statement by Ms. Duckworth with the Biden camp and also urged them to elect his home state governor, Gina Raimondo, say people familiar with the talks. Mr. Biden’s nomination committee, however, has raised questions about whether to press Ms. Duckworth could create legal challenges because she was born abroad.

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