Kamala Harris Vogue row deepens as Anna Wintour defends cover – ‘Disrespectful!’

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Twitter users complained the picture of Ms Harris in jeans and trainers was an “insult”, and added a picture of her in a full suit would be more respectful. The editor-in-chief of Vogue magazine then defended the choice to feature a less formal picture of the Vice President-elect as the cover as it “reflected the moment we were living in”.

Ms Wintour said in a statement the choice of an informal outfit highlighted Ms Harris’ successes, and reflected the “character” of the Biden-Harris administration.

She said: “Obviously, we have heard and understood the reaction to the print cover, and I just want to reiterate that it was absolutely not our intention to in any way diminish the importance of the Vice President-elect’s incredible victory. (…)

“There was no formal agreement about what the choice of the cover would be. And when the two images arrived at Vogue, all of us felt very, very strongly that the less formal portrait of the Vice President-elect really reflected the moment that we were living in, which we are in the midst- as we still are — of the most appalling pandemic that is taking lives by the minute.

“And we felt to reflect this tragic moment in global history, a much less formal picture, something that was very, very accessible, and approachable, and real, really reflected the hallmark of the Biden-Harris campaign and everything that they are trying to — and, I’m sure, will achieve.”

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Staff on Ms Harris’ team disputed Ms Wintour’s claims, and said it was agreed the more formal outfit would feature on the February cover.

Sources close to Ms Harris said to the Los Angeles Times she was disappointed by the cover.

They said: “Harris’ team was unaware that the cover photo had been switched until images leaked late Saturday.”

CNN also reported Ms Harris’ team asked for a new cover but were rebuffed as the edition went to print in mid-December.

Social media users stated the informal cover was “the least dignified and greatest insult” to Ms Harris.

One user said: “Delete the chucks picture and change the cover to the blue suit MVP agreed to…this is disrespectful.”

Another user added: “This speaks volumes of how you view our Madam Vice President.”

The Vice President-elect and President-elect Joe Biden will be inaugurated to office on January 20.


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Speaking to the New York Times’ Kara Swisher ahead of the cover’s release, Ms Wintour said Vogue were “very honoured” to feature the Vice President-elect.

She said: “We were very open. I mean, I think that she has a very assured sense of style. I think, if you look at any images of her during the campaign season, she has a very strong sense of self and what she wants to wear.

“So she was very clear on what she wanted to wear. And on the inside picture, she has a super chic blue pantsuit. And I think it’s very much in character.

“And I think the fact that the cover itself is so charming and so relaxed — and for me, so surprising and so real — and as I listen to the President-elect and the Vice President-elect talk about empathy, and unity, and bringing people together, to me, this cover symbolises that. I feel it’s a very welcoming image.”

It comes after the FBI began investigating “threats to harm” Mr Biden and Ms Harris ahead of their inauguration.

A leaked internal bulletin from the federal department referenced “various threats” and warned of an “uprising” should the outgoing President Donald Trump be removed from office early.

It read: “…various threats to harm President-elect Biden ahead of the presidential inauguration.

“Additional reports indicate threats against VP-elect Harris and Speaker Pelosi.”

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