Harris is underperforming in a job that does not require much
The vice presidency is not a position with a job description – other than to preside over the Senate and vote in the event of a tie. Beyond that, it is whatever the President decides to assign to the Vice President.
The sole purpose of a Vice President is to standby and wait for the President to die in office – or at least get critically ill or declared incompetent in accordance with the 25th Amendment. Vice presidents often take the reigns of government when the boss has to go under for an operation – even marginal procedures. Vice President Harris was the first woman to hold the powers of the presidency – albeit briefly — while President Biden was having his butt inspected in a routine colonoscopy.
Even vice presidents succeeding the President was not clear until President William Henry Harrison died, and Vice President John Tyler declared himself to be the successor. There was no universal agreement on his claim and the issue had to be settled by the Supreme Court. Since then, it is an automatic ascension.
Many vice presidents had little to do. Benjamin Franklin humorously proposed that the Vice President be addressed as “His Superfluous Majesty.” Vice President John Nance Garner said the office was not worth “a bucket of warm spit.”
Vice President Thomas Hendricks and President Grover Cleveland had a very public contempt for each other. Hendricks tried to have Cleveland removed from the Democrat ticket. And Vice President Lyndon Johnson was not highly regarded by the John Kennedy clan. President Lincoln’s Vice President Andrew Johnson was a southern Democrat – which created major problems when Lincoln was assassinated.
Many presidents proclaim that their Vice President will be an important member of the team. Sometimes yes, sometimes no – mostly no.
As a woman and the first woman of whatever color she is, Harris is unique. It has made her more controversial than most. And the reported tension between the Oval Office and the Office of the Vice President has made the situation even more controversial.
There are a lot of complaints and reports about her work habits – or lack thereof. Her critics say she is either incompetent or too “woke” in her statements and actions. Her supporters claim that she is the victim of racism and misogyny – and that Biden has either shoved her aside or has given her all the unsolvable problems to handle.
But Harris has more than a far-right or far left problem. She has always come up short on the likeability scale – as seen in her short-lived presidential campaign. Whether it is issues of personality or not, the bottom-line fact is that she has the worst favorability rating among the general public than virtually all her predecessors Her favorable rating – which has never exceeded 50 percent is currently in the low 40s or high 30s. She had her highest favorable rating on Inauguration Day – and it has been in constant decline ever since.
According to MSNBC, Harris has had the following issues put into her portfolio – immigration, voting rights, the filibuster, climate change, increasing union membership, internet, supply chain shortages, France and Asia. Whew! That is not my list. That is what the folks at MSNBC report.
It makes me wonder even more what Biden has on his “to do” list. And if any of that list is accurate, Harris is really falling down on the job in virtually every category – especially when it comes to immigration. However, it does fit with the theory that Biden is giving Harris all the most difficult issues – the ones he cannot solve, and to which he pays very little discernible interest.
MSNBC’s Jonathan Capehart believes that Harris should fight back with the victimization argument. The criticism is all about her being black and a woman. That excuse may play well with the Democrat’s far left base, but not with most Americans. The polling proves that. The latest Rasmussen Poll shows that Harris has fallen to 39 percent favorable – with a 57 unfavorable rating.
I am betting that IF Biden runs again, Harris will not be on the ticket. And if he does not, she will not be the Democrat nominee for either the presidency or the vice presidency. She will hobble to political oblivion in about three years unless Biden cannot fulfill his terms. And even then, she still will not be on the Democrat ticket in 2024 in either spot. Just my opinion.
So, there ‘tis.