Kamala Harris Became the First Woman With Presidential Powers

Kamala Harris Became the First Woman With Presidential Powers

Vice President Kamala Harris became the first woman to hold presidential powers — at least for 85 minutes.

On Friday, President Joe Biden underwent a routine physical entailing a colonoscopy, which required him to go under anesthesia. As such, the president temporarily transferred his power over to Harris, who worked from her office in the West Wing during her brief time as Acting President.

The appointment is yet another historic first achieved by Harris, who is also the first Black and South Asian woman to hold the office of vice president. That said, similar transfers of power have also happened in 2002 and 2007 when former President George W. Bush underwent the same procedure, per White House press secretary, Jen Psaki.

According to the New York Times, Section 3 of the 25th Amendment allows for a temporary transfer of power if the president provides a written declaration to president pro tempore of the Senate, Sen. Patrick J. Leahy, and Speaker of the House, Rep. Nancy Pelosi. Biden was also required to submit another written declaration once the procedure was done in order to resume his presidential duties around 11:35 a.m.

Read the New York Times' full report here.

Photo via Getty / Spencer Platt