Perhaps no vice president in decades has taken the kind of internal beating that Kamala Harris has taken over the last year. Yes, many people hated Dick Cheney, but he always enjoyed the full support of George W. Bush. Regarding Harris and Joe Biden, you'd probably have to go back to George H.W. Bush and Ronald Reagan butting heads to find that kind of tension between an administration and its second-in-command.
RedState has chronicled much of the conflict, including the White House's complaints about Harris essentially being a deadbeat on the job. In fact, the vice president's “lack of focus” has become such an issue that the president's staffers have reportedly “thrown up their hands” regarding their attempts to work with her. Meanwhile, accusations from Harris' camp include her being treated differently because of racism.
And while that dust-up was in mid-November, things have not gotten better. Harris did an interview last Sunday following her awkward blow-up on a podcast host in which she fumbled about trying to answer softball questions. When asked about the top foreign threat to the United States, she somehow managed to only come up with “our democracy,” which I assume was a veiled reference to January 6th. She couldn't think to list China, Iran, or even Russia. Just “our democracy.”
Then the economic questions started, and Harris was less than prepared in that arena as well.
I'd tell you to watch the clip to hear what Harris has to say, but why bother? She never really says much of anything in these settings and this was no exception. Clearly, the vice president wasn't prepared to even talk about the most important domestic issue of the day when queried on it. Instead, Harris tripped over some badly delivered talking points about the supply chain and then mentioned the “Build Back Better” bill, a massive boondoggle that would only increase short-term inflation. Is any of that word salad supposed to make normal Americans feel confident that their government knows what it's doing?
And that's really the biggest problem for Harris: She obviously doesn't know what she's doing. In the past, vice presidents were typically selected because they had more experience than their bosses. The idea was that they would be a chief advisor and soundboard for the president, who may or may not have dealt with certain situations before.
But Harris didn't have the resume of Mike Pence, Dick Cheney, or even Joe Biden when he was vice president (though, Barack Obama treated Biden like an idiot outcast and not a real asset). Instead, she was a one-term, backbench senator after previously failing as the Attorney General of California, a state that is largely nonrepresentative of the rest of the country.
Yet, Harris is like the perpetual failing student who just keeps getting put through to the next grade. Eventually, her lack of ability was always going to catch up with her. That is why the White House has such an issue with the vice president. It's not racism or “mean girls” drama. Rather, Harris is legitimately bad at her job and refuses to even try to get better at it. She's so lazy that she can't even properly prepare for a friendly interview with CBS News.
Perhaps that false sense of ability comes from so many people praising her over the years, giving her the impression that she can just show up and succeed? Whatever the reason, it's only going to continue to cause problems as this administration marches forward for the next three years. Of course, it is Joe Biden who chose Harris as his running mate, publicly announcing that it was about her identity. He's hardly blameless in the hand he's now holding. The president made this bed for ridiculously cynical reasons, and he gets to lie in it.