Vice President Kamala Harris took a trip to Asia just as a crisis was unfolding following a withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan, and weeks later, she’s still largely AWOL on the topic of the Taliban takeover of Kabul. Now, reports are raising questions about where Harris has been — and whether she’ll be returning to the spotlight.
Harris has been “conspicuously absent lately,” Just the News reported Saturday, as the White House continues to grapple with the fallout of the botched Afghanistan withdrawal.
“They have her shelved”
According to Just the News’ Sophie Mann, “Kamala Harris’ absence is especially puzzling given the recent drop-off of confidence in the president.” Recent polls have shown Biden’s approval rating at “new lows” in the wake of the Afghanistan fiasco, Politico reports.
But Harris had long been struggling in the polls even before the debacle in Kabul. Part of that may have been because of her poor handling of a migration crisis at the U.S.–Mexico border that Biden put her in charge of managing on the diplomatic front.
According to one Fox News host, voters’ lack of confidence in Harris on the border and other issues may have led the Biden administration to keep her out of the limelight on purpose.
“They had a minority, they had a woman, and now that they don’t need her, they have her shelved,” Fox’s Will Cain said, according to Just the News.
Notably, the Biden administration’s efforts to hide the vice president stand in stark contrast to its predecessor. Former Vice President Mike Pence was always visible in times of crisis, and even headed the White House coronavirus task force under Donald Trump.
“I wouldn’t vote for her”
Harris was once considered a political heavyweight and a favorite for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2024. Now, any political clout she may have had has been destroyed — and even those on the left are starting to recognize it.
In an interview, the Los Angeles Times spoke with a Democrat voter who said she would vote for Harris in 2024, but that she doesn’t expect the VP’s name to even be on the ballot.
“Absolutely not,” the voter remarked, according to the Times. “I’d vote for her. But I don’t think she can win. And I wouldn’t vote for her in a primary.”
Others told the Times that they haven’t seen enough of Harris to make a sound judgment. “She’s not in the news in a way that portrays her positively, and she’s not in the news period,” one voter said. “She’s in the shadows of the administration.”
All things considered, Harris is said to be one of the least popular vice presidents in decades. If Biden wants to save his presidency, he may want to consider keeping Harris out of the spotlight a little longer.