Is Kamala Harris Scared of Chris Kelly?

In politics, as in life, smart folks pick their battles. If you're winning the race, it doesn't do to get caught jawing with some little-known also-ran. So the recent, persistent efforts of Kamala Harris — the Democratic front-runner in the Attorney General's race — to deep-six former Facebook Chief Privacy Officer Chris Kelly's rival campaign by tying him to the website's controversial policies say a lot. It says that San Francisco's District Attorney is wary of the political naif. And perhaps a bit scared.

“If one of your opponents is not as well-known or not to be taken seriously, the last thing you want to do is give the guy name recognition,” said San Francisco political consultant David Latterman. “To hit someone publicly, they have to be taking him seriously. It means people must know who the dude is. And now they've gotta go after him. They must know something.”

By “something,” Latterman holds out that Harris' people must have some kind of internal polling “showing weakness. They must have something internally that shows there's a there there.” Otherwise, why should front-runner Harris empty both barrels on a little-known political newcomer?

Because he's rich as hell, answers Harris campaign manager Brian Brokaw.

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