"I'm home!" Sen. Kamala Harris exclaimed as she was greeted by old friends and colleagues on Kearny Street on her way to a Saturday afternoon event in San Francisco's Manilatown, where about 100 residents and neighbors of the International Hotel had gathered.
Harris was met outside by three members of the Bay Area's state legislative delegation, Assemblymen Phil Ting and David Chiu from San Francisco and East Bay Assemblyman Rob Bonta, the first Filipino American elected to the California Legislature.
After months of campaign stops in early primary states like Nevada, Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, Harris seemed genuinely relieved to be back in the place where her political career started as district attorney.
Harris took a short tour of photos and artwork at the International Hotel, a symbol of urban renewal that became the site of protests in the late 1970s when the previous building there with its low-income single-room occupancy rooms was demolished. A new building that replaced the old International Hotel now provides housing for seniors on the edge of Chinatown.
Harris, whose presidential campaign was launched with such promise before a packed crowd of some 20,000 people in Oakland in January, has seen her fortunes slip as other candidates, most notably Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, have gained traction and surpassed her in polls.