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February 1, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Less than two weeks after announcing a bid for president of the United States, Sen. Kamala Harris is facing the return of an old scandal, reignited by former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown’s admission that he, a married man, had a romantic relationship with the California Democrat.

Harris, a 54-year-old black prosecutor who was Attorney General of California before her election to the U.S. Senate, formally announced her candidacy last month. Running as an “advocate for the voiceless and vulnerable,” Harris is a thorough supporter of abortion and same-sex “marriage,” and as the Golden State’s top cop she moved to investigate the pro-life journalists of the Center for Medical Progress rather than Planned Parenthood for the baby-parts sales CMP’s undercover videos revealed.

“Sure, I dated Kamala Harris. So what?” read the headline of a January 26 op-ed by Brown in the San Francisco Chronicle. “Yes, I may have influenced her career by appointing her to two state commissions when I was Assembly speaker. And I certainly helped with her first race for district attorney in San Francisco.”

A then-29-year-old Harris met the 60-year-old Brown in 1994, and dated him for about a year, according to a 2003 profile on Harris from SF Weekly. The piece quotes her mother as having “gone out with” Brown, and Harris herself as calling him an “albatross hanging around my neck.”

“Harris routinely tries to distance herself from her ex-squeeze, whom she hates even talking about,” SF Weekly’s Peter Byrne adds. “The mere mention of their former liaison makes her shoulders tense, her hands clench, and her eyes narrow.” Their relationship has been a source of controversy ever since.

“As the speaker of the state Assembly, Brown had named Harris to well-paid posts on the California Medical Assistance Commission and Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board,” Politico reported. “As mayor of San Francisco in 2003, Brown was supportive of her district attorney campaign although they were no longer dating. Critics — including her opponents — were bemoaning cronyism at City Hall.”

Brown denies any political impropriety in his piece, claiming his support for her was no different than his career assistance to other California Democrats. “The difference is that Harris is the only one who, after I helped her, sent word that I would be indicted if I ‘so much as jaywalked’ while she was D.A.,” he added. “That’s politics for ya.”

Political favors aside, the piece has also caused controversy on moral grounds. Brown has been estranged from his wife Blanche Vitero since 1981, but they never legally divorced. “The measure of (Brown’s) flamboyance is he’ll go to a party with his wife on one arm and his girlfriend on the other,” Sacramento Bee reporter and Brown biographer James Richardson once wrote.

Liberal publications have leapt to Harris’ defense, with Vox’s Li Zhou claiming conservative rhetoric about Harris having “slept her way to the top” is “misogynistic.” The Nation’s Joan Walsh suggested Harris may not have known Brown was married, because “while living in the San Francisco Bay Area and even working under Speaker Willie Brown in the California State Assembly, it took me years to learn that the Democratic leader was still married.”

Responding to those defending Harris on the basis that Brown and Vitero were separated, The Daily Wire’s Paul Bois noted that the separation “does not negate the fact the two were still married, meaning Kamala Harris willingly slept with a man who had yet to divorce his wife and benefited (sic) politically because of it.”

“I’m sitting here, I’m trying to figure out what’s the difference between Stormy Daniels and Kamala Harris? Well, I mean, stop and think about it. What is the real difference?” conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh said. He added that it was unlikely to matter to Democrat primary voters.

“Just as the media began telling us that ‘everyone lies’ and ‘lying is healthy and human’ during Bill Clinton's sexual scandal, we can expect the media to begin informing us ‘Actually, sleeping with your married boss for what basically amounts to a monetary payoff is very empowering’ and suchlike,” conservative blogger Ace of Spades predicted.

Harris has rejected multiple media organizations’ request for comment on Brown’s op-ed.