Kamala Harris steps in for New York 9/11 anniversary ceremony as critics say Biden wrong to mark from Alaska

Biden will commemorate the anniversary of the terrorist attacks at a military base in Anchorage with 11,000 US servicemembers

Eric Garcia
Monday 11 September 2023 15:18
9/11: Memorial Events Across US Mark 22 Years Since Attacks

Vice President Kamala Harris arrived in New York City on Monday to commemorate the 22nd anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks as President Joe Biden heads to Alaska amid some right-wing criticism.

Ms Harris arrived in LaGuardia Airport in Queens on Monday to commemorate the terrorist attacks by al-Qaeda on the World Trade Center that caused the two buildings in New York City to collapse.

The vice president will head to the National September 11th Memorial in Manhattan and will join a variety of New York elected officials including Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, Sen Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), New York City Mayor Eric Adams and former mayor Michael Bloomberg.

The visit comes as some right-wing media figures criticised Mr Biden, who is in Asia, for choosing to commemorate the anniversary at a US military base in Anchorage, Alaska where more than 11,000 US servicemembers are stationed.

Almost all officials in the exeuctive branch will commemorate the terrorist attacks that claimed almost 3,000 lives. First Lady Jill Biden will lay a wreath at the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial in Arlington, Virginia. Ms Harris’s husband, Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff, will visit Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where passengers on Flight 93 downed a plane that terrorists had hoped to use to attack Washington, DC.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, who served as commander of US Central Command responsible for all US military operations in Afghanistan, will hold an observance ceremony at National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial, which commemorates the area of the Pentagon where terrorists attacked on that same day.

Unlike Mr Biden, Ms Harris was not in national politics at the time of the attacks and would not be elected to her first prominent role, district attorney for San Francisco, until three years later. Mr Biden at the time served as a US Senator from Delaware who spent years as the top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

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