Democratic presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden; and vice presidential candidate Senator Kamala Harris take the stage at a campaign event, their first joint appearance since Biden named Harris as his running mate, at Alexis Dupont High School in Wilmington, Delaware, U.S., August 12, 2020.Image copyright

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden is holding his first campaign event with Kamala Harris, a day after unveiling her as his running mate.

At a high school in Mr Biden’s home state of Delaware, he said “this is a serious moment for our nation” ahead of November’s election.

Later on Wednesday, they will hold a virtual town hall from the hotel where Mr Biden launched his 1972 senate bid.

Mr Biden will face President Donald Trump in the election on 3 November.

Ms Harris, a California senator, is the first black woman and South Asian American to serve in the role.

What did the candidates say?

Wednesday’s event in Wilmington, Delaware, was not open to the public, with Mr Biden, 77, citing coronavirus prevention needs. Both candidates walked on stage wearing masks.

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Speaking from the gymnasium of the Alexis I DuPont High School to a socially distanced group of journalists, Mr Biden said: “The choice we make this November is going to decide the future of America for a very, very long time.”

He continued: “Donald Trump has already started his attacks calling Kamala, quote, nasty, whining about how she is, quote, mean to his appointees.

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Media captionKamala Harris’ childhood home reacts to Biden pick

“It’s not a surprise because whining is what Donald Trump does best, better than any president in American history.

“Is anybody surprised that Donald Trump has a problem with a strong woman, or strong women across the board?”

He also attacked Mr Trump’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic, climate change, the unemployment rate and “his politics of racist rhetoric that appeals to division”.

Coming to the podium, Ms Harris said: “I am ready to get to work.”

The 55-year-old former prosecutor told reporters: “This is a moment of real consequence for America. Everything we care about, our economy, our health, our children, the kind of country we live in, it’s all on the line.”

Ms Harris continued: “America is crying out for leadership, yet we have a president who cares more about himself than the people who elected him.”

“We don’t have to accept the failed government of Trump-Pence,” she added. “In just 83 days we have a chance to choose a better future for our country.”

Ms Harris continued: “He [Mr Trump] inherited the longest economic expansion in history form Barack Obama and Joe Biden.

“And then, like everything else he inherited, he ran it straight into the ground.”

She added: “This is what happens when we elect a guy who just isn’t up to the job – our country ends up in tatters and so does our reputation around the world.”

What is President Trump saying?

Shortly before the event, Mr Trump goaded Mr Biden for remaining at home for much of the campaign so far amid the pandemic lockdown.

The Republican president asked a group of teachers at a White House event whether it was healthy for students to be learning in isolation at home.

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Media captionWho is Kamala Harris? A look at her life and political career

He then asked: “So if you’re a presidential candidate and you’re sitting in a basement and you’re looking at a computer, that’s not a good thing?”

He also tweeted an attack on the Biden-Harris ticket, saying they would put Senator Cory Booker, who is black, in charge of low-income housing in the suburbs. Critics said the tweet was racist.

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