Biden VP contender Susan Rice's past foreign consulting work prompts questions

Between 2001 and 2002, Rice worked part-time for the geopolitical research firm Intellibridge

As presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden narrows down his choices for a running mate, some are calling for a deeper dive into one of the contender’s past work as a private consultant.

Susan Rice, the former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations under President Barack Obama, worked in the White House and State Department under President Bill Clinton earlier in her career. After Clinton left office, Rice went into private consulting – a common move by former Washington officials but one that sometimes involves shadowy deals with less-than-savory foreign actors whose connections could come back to haunt the government worker should he or she return to public service.

In Rice’s case, as HuffPost reported, this could be particularly concerning given that she has kept under wraps the names of her clients she represented between 2001 and 2002 when she worked part-time for the now-defunct geopolitical research firm Intellibridge.

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One client who she had a particularly close relationship with, however, is known. Rice worked closely with Rwandan strongman Paul Kagame – the country’s president since 2000 – despite concerns over his human rights record.

Rice has also not volunteered whether or not she will share the names of her other clients if Biden taps her for the VP spot, with a spokesperson for the former ambassador telling HuffPost that it “remains hypothetical” but that Rice would “fully comply with the law and any disclosure requirements.”

According to some Biden confidants, the presumptive nominee has narrowed down his choice of running mates to Rice and Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif.

Last week, Biden said that he would choose his party's vice presidential nominee by "the first week in August." But a source familiar with the process told Fox News on Monday that "an announcement isn't likely this week."

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With the Aug. 17 start of the Democratic National Convention nearing, a leading Biden adviser said the former vice president would use the next week or so to "spend some time" with the contenders on the shortlist.

Biden announced in March that he would name a woman as his running mate. The past two and a half months – amid nationwide protests over police brutality and systemic racism – Biden has faced increased calls to name a Black woman as the party's vice presidential nominee.

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If he chooses Rice or Harris, either would become the first woman and first African-American vice president in U.S. history should Biden best President Trump in November’s general election.

Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.