US vice president-elect Kamala Harris sent a strong message through both her triumphant speech and careful choice of outfit while claiming victory over the weekend.
In her powerful address Saturday evening (local time) from Wilmington, Delaware, she appeared before a roaring crowd wearing a striking white pant suit and cream-coloured pussy bow blouse.
The combination triggered frenzied speculation over the pussy bow selection being a deliberate dig at Donald Trump, whose wife Melania wore a bright pink pussy bow blouse at the 2016 election.
Shortly prior to the election, disturbing footage had surfaced of Trump in 2005 bragging about “grabbing women by the pussy”.
Melania’s choice of top was perceived by some to be a purposeful swipe at her husband.
There is now speculation that Harris’ choice had similar motivation, with her also donning a pussy bow blouse in red during an appearance with president-elect Joe Biden the night beforehand.
“I keep thinking about how in her first speech as Vice President elect, Kamala wore a pussy bow and I laugh. That was such a HUGE f--- you to trump. It's perfection,” one viewer tweeted.
“Anyone think Kamala's pussy bow blouse may be trolling trump?,” another wrote.
“She knows exactly what shade she's throwing and looking good doing it!,” a third said.
Many others pointed out the significance of Harris, the first woman and woman of colour to hold the vice presidency, wearing a white pant suit.
The colour white has a symbolic connection to the women's suffrage movement, where it took on meanings of moral purity and non-violence.
Harris paid tribute in her speech to the women before her whose shoulders she was standing on - women who also stepped out in white for historical appearances.
Shirley Chisholm wore white when she became the first African American woman elected to Congress in 1968 and Geraldine Ferraro wore all-white to accept the role of Walter Mondale's running mate in his 1984 presidential campaign.
More recently, Hillary Clinton wore a signature white pantsuit to accept the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016.
Harris’ pant suit was undoubtedly a nod to the women whose battle to enter American politics had set a crucial precedence for her to do the same.
“While I may be the first woman in this office, I will not be the last,” the 56-year-old California senator said in her first post-election address to the nation.
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