Can Kamala Harris Mount a Comeback?: Vice-President Kamala Harris is the letdown of the decade, in terms of Democratic Party notables.
Billed as the heir apparent to the throne, since running for president in 2020, Harris has been a gaffe-prone, incoherent, shambolic public official who inspires more incredulity from voters than anything else.
Despite her disastrous tenure as vice-president, Harris remains a key member of the Biden Administration.
And, strange as it is, President Joe Biden is keeping Harris on as his number two.
Does he have any options or way to replace her?
Can Harris correct her course, though? Does she even understand how bad she looks to the rest of the country going into 2024? And what happens to Biden’s support among women and African-Americans if he does, in fact, replace Harris going into 2024?
As of April 7, 2023, 48.8 percent of Americans polled disapprove of Kamala Harris as vice-president whereas 39.3 percent approve. 17 August 2021 was the last time that more Americans approved of Kamala Harris’ handling of her job than they disapproved of her in the role of vice-president. More than two years have passed, and Harris’ numbers have only worsened.
Kamala Harris Fails in Policy
Foregoing talk about polls, which on their own mean nothing, we should be asking ourselves how effective has Harris been in her role?
After all, President Biden handed his number a portfolio of policies that she needed to spearhead to alleviate his workload. According to most sources, she has done just the opposite for President Biden; complicating his life and adding more onto his plate. This does not bode well for Harris’ prospects as Biden’s number two—or as a possible replacement for President Biden.
From immigration to the Russo-Ukraine War to space policy, Vice-President Harris has failed to achieve any major success for the Biden Administration.
Let’s just run through the litany of failures, shall we?
As the point person for the Biden Administration on America’s broken southwestern border, Harris has proven herself to be presiding over a human, moral, and national security catastrophe. Of course, it doesn’t help the situation that the Democratic Party oscillates between completely denying that any crisis along the southwestern border and encouraging this condition so that they could fundamentally change the demographics of the United States (thereby making those demographics more favorable to the Democratic Party). Harris was placed in charge of the crisis to keep it out of the papers.
Absolutely nothing she has done has ameliorated the situation there.
After failing at the border, Biden next had his number two focus on resolving the Russo-Ukraine War that began in earnest in February 2022. One year later, it’s obvious that Harris’ much-ballyhooed skills as a politician have yet to be brought to bear. Still, the Biden Administration constantly harps on about how resolved they’ve been on this issue.
Honestly, though, if this success on Harris’ part, I shudder to think how catastrophic failure would be.
When it comes to space policy, something that Harris should find easy enough since she herself is a space cadet (see here), the vice-president can’t get herself together. The vice-president traditionally heads the Space Council, which as the name suggests, brings together the various stakeholders in the US government charged with managing US space policy.
At a time when the United States is facing the prospect that either Russia and/or China could launch a devastating surprise attack against America’s vital-yet-vulnerable satellite constellations in orbit, Harris unilaterally disarmed the United States.
China and Russia have both developed an impressive arsenal of what’s known as counterspace capabilities. These are weapons that can target, damage, or destroy American satellites. Believing that satellites are the Achilles Heel to the US military and its wider society, American foes want to be able to render US forces globally deaf, dumb, and blind before ever having to fight those US forces on Earth. Russia and China have begun testing these anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons in orbit at alarming rates.
Rather than use her position as the person in the Biden Administration tasked with overseeing U.S. space policy to deter Russia and China from threatening the United States in space, Harris ordered a unilateral termination of all American ASAT tests in space. This was born out of her naïve belief that effectively disarming in the face of growing Chinese and Russian threats in space would somehow inspire Beijing and Moscow to abandon their aggressive course of action.
Of course, it will not.
This will be perceived as weakness and will only militate China and Russia further against the Americans in space—and ensure that we are not ready for when these foes potentially decide to strike us in space.
Harris is Not Ready to Lead
There are many more examples of Harris’ abject failures as a leader. Yet, these are some of the glaring ones. Given how close the next election is expected to be (at least based only on the generic ballot poll I cited above), if President Biden is indeed running for reelection, he will need to do something to pad those close numbers. Having a number two who is perceived as being competent and tough on key issues would help him greatly.
For Kamala Harris, then, there is no amount of heavy lifting she could do to climb out of the hole she’s found herself in. It is clear that she is out of her depth and should be replaced immediately by Biden’s handlers. Yet, replacing her likely revolves around the fact that she is popular with women—a critical demographic that Biden must win again if he is to secure a second term—and with African-Americans (although, not nearly as popular among African-American men as she is with African-American women).
Those demographic factors are the only reasons for why Harris has been kept on the ticket. There’s no way that the Biden team is keeping Harris on because they think she’s competent or possesses the requisite leadership capabilities to replace Biden, should something happen to the octogenarian president. And those are very thin reasons for keeping her in place.
Should the Democrats opt to keep the vice-president on, unless she can change drastically overnight, she will be a drag on the ticket.
A 19FortyFive Senior Editor, Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as at American Greatness and the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower (Republic Book Publishers), Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (May 16), and The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (July 23). Weichert can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.