kamala harris canada

Joe Biden's new running mate Kamala Harris has a strong connection to Canada

Joe Biden has picked California Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate, and while Harris could shape the future of the U.S., her history actually stretches north of the border to Canada.

Harris spent her teenage years in Montreal, where her mother, Dr. Shyamala Gopalan, worked as a breast-cancer researcher at the Jewish General Hospital and taught at McGill University.

The California-born senator doesn't talk much about her time in Canada — in fact, it spans only a few pages in her recent biography — but she recalls having to learn French.

According to Harris, the only French words she knew when she first arrived at her Francophone school, Notre-Dame-des-Neiges, came from her ballet class.

"I used to joke that I felt like a duck, because all day long at our new school I'd be saying, 'Quoi? Quoi? Quoi?'," Harris wrote.

She later enrolled at Westmount, one of the oldest English-language schools in Montreal, which boasts famed singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen among its alumni.

At Westmount, Harris joined the pep club and a five-person dance troupe, performing for local community centres. She also dreamed of becoming a lawyer, per Mercury News.

Given that Trump made a point of slamming Sen. Ted Cruz during the 2016 election over being born in Canada, we can probably safely assume that Harris won't be talking much about her Montreal roots during the campaign.

Still, Canada is proud to have a former Montreal resident in the running for Vice President.

Even Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante extended her congratulations to Harris on Tuesday.

"Joe Biden's running mate for the presidential election will be Kamala Harris, who lived in MTL for 10 years," Plante wrote on Twitter. "This is the first nomination to this post for an African-American woman. Congratulations!"

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Kamala Harris


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