Sen. Kamala Harris Had Affair With Married Man, Used it to Launch Her Career-Mostly Fiction!
Summary of eRumor:
U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris had an affair with a married man, former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, and used him to launch her political career.
Accusations that U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris had an affair with a married man date back to the 2000s when Harris first made a run for public office. But Harris’ relationship with former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, and the beginning of her political career, have been largely misrepresented.
Kamala Harris was elected to serve as the district attorney of San Francisco in 2003. And, in 2010, she was elected to serve as California’s attorney general. Harris held that role office until she was elected to the U.S. Senate in November 2016.
And, throughout her career, rumors that Kamala Harris had an affair with a married man (Willie Brown) and used it to launch her political career, have followed. We’ll take a look at the facts and provide a brief overview of the situation.
Probing the Kamala Harris-Willie Brown Connection
Kamala Harris and Willie Brown had a relationship in the mid 1990s. At the time, Harris was working as an attorney in various city offices. Brown, who is nearly 30 years older than Harris, had been elected mayor after serving in the state legislature for more than 30 years.
Willie Brown has led an eccentric life. He’s been outspoken, and his exploits with women have been well-documented. In 2001, news broke that Brown had impregnated his top fundraiser, for example. However, the claim that Kamala Harris had an affair with Brown doesn’t fully check out.
It’s true that Brown has technically been married since 1958. However, Brown and his wife “separated amicably” in 1982 — more than 10 years before his relationship with Harris began — according to a 1984 New York Times profile of Brown.
So, again, claims that Kamala Harris had an affair with married man just don’t check out.
Did Kamala Harris Use Her Relationship With Brown to Launch her Political Career?
Kamala Harris and Willie Brown made no effort to hide their relationship in the early 1990s. And, when Kamala Harris first ran for public office in 2003, her previous relationship with Brown didn’t help her chances — it actually hurt them.
Harris’ opponents, incumbent DA Terence Hallinan and local attorney Bill Fazio, turned her previous relationship with Brown into a campaign issue. A 2003 article that appeared in the San Francisco Gate explained that they argued Harris couldn’t be trusted to hold Brown accountable as DA:
Hallinan and Fazio aren’t attacking Harris’ platform (which they both profess to generally share) or professionalism (each admits that Harris is a competent prosecutor). Rather, they are knifing her with innuendo, saying her ties to the outgoing mayor would cause her, as district attorney, to look the other way should her former beau or his political minions ever be credibly accused of committing crimes in office.
Willie Brown was a lame duck mayor at that point. Kamala Harris said it didn’t make sense for her to criticize the outgoing mayor just to appear independent. She added, “His career is over; I will be alive and kicking for the next 40 years. I do not owe him a thing.”
The smear tactics didn’t work. Harris won the 2003 election. But claims that she had an affair with a married man and used it launch her political star followed Harris to the national stage. Given everything we’ve covered, we’re calling those claims “mostly fiction.”