Columnist: Don’t Underestimate Kamala Harris – A San Francisco Chronicle columnist argues that Vice President Kamala Harris should not be underestimated. Columnist Jack Ohman contends that history is behind her. He points to Barack Obama’s short Senate tenure prior to becoming president in 2008.
Obama entered the U.S. Senate in 2005 and served until becoming president in 2009. He also pointed to late Vice President Spiro T. Agnew who served as governor of Maryland for barely two years before Richard Nixon named him as his running mate in 1968.
Similarly, Ohman notes that former Vice President Dan Quayle was 41 when he became George H.W. Bush’s running mate. At that point, Quayle had served 12 years in Congress, first as a congressman and then as a senator.
Kamala Harris Should Not Be Underestimated
“Of course, Harris has flaws. Her 2020 campaign had its high and low moments, like kicking President Biden in the teeth with the ‘that little girl was me’ line, which bought her some publicity that she couldn’t capitalize on,” Ohman writes. “Having met Harris a few times, I can say she’s a formidable presence in the room. My observation was that she was great at answering the questions she was confident about and rather tentative in the way she answered questions she didn’t want.”
He claims that Harris shares JFK’s ability to answer questions and bring them in for a landing, which he argues could make her formidable.
“The current crop of GOP presidential candidates who are not the incomprehensible, elliptical Donald J. Trump, mostly invoke Vice President Harris as a scary Halloween specter if she, again, God forbid, becomes president,” Ohman writes. “Former Ambassador Nikki Haley, a woman of color who knows better, routinely invokes this Horrific Harris Harridan Scenario, without a trace of irony.”
Ohman continues, “Harris, while flawed, is utterly and completely able to serve as president. A GOP hobby is underestimating her, according to Dan Morain, the veteran California political journalist and author of ‘Kamala’s Way.’”
Harris Alienates People, Dem Columnists Say
Harris’s current favorability rating stands at 37.3%, according to the Real Clear Politics Average.
Her biggest detriment is her ability to alienate people.
“She is less popular than Biden, with a 39.5 percent approval rating, according to polling website FiveThirtyEight. Harris has many laudable qualities, but the simple fact is that she has failed to gain traction in the country or even within her own party,” Washington Post columnist David Ignatius wrote last month.
New York Magazine columnist Eric Levitz penned a similar column warning how Harris was not connecting with voters last month.
“Yet most Democratic operatives believe that sticking with Biden is the party’s best option. And it’s hard to argue with this assessment for a simple reason: However bad Biden’s numbers are, Vice-President Kamala Harris’s look worse. A CBS News–YouGov poll released last week found 42 percent of Americans saying that the job Harris is doing makes them think worse of the Biden administration, compared to just 18 percent who said it makes them feel better about the White House,” Levitz wrote. “Among independents, 48 percent said worse and only 9 percent better. Even among Democrats, only 41 percent said Harris made them think better of the administration. At the same time, only 30 percent of Democrats said that they felt “enthusiastic” about Harris being Biden’s running mate.”
Harris Concerns Dismissed
Ohman dismisses the criticisms of Harris.
“Granted, Harris does have a lot of staff turnover. The thing is, do we read any stories about Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg’s staff turnover? Any hot takes on Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown’s staff turnover? Any quick hits on Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders’ staff turnover? No?” Ohman writes, noting that such criticisms of Harris do not matter in the long run.
When it comes to Kamala Harris, you either hate her or love her. There’s nothing in between.
John Rossomando is a defense and counterterrorism analyst and served as Senior Analyst for Counterterrorism at The Investigative Project on Terrorism for eight years. His work has been featured in numerous publications such as The American Thinker, The National Interest, National Review Online, Daily Wire, Red Alert Politics, CNSNews.com, The Daily Caller, Human Events, Newsmax, The American Spectator, TownHall.com, and Crisis Magazine. He also served as senior managing editor of The Bulletin, a 100,000-circulation daily newspaper in Philadelphia, and received the Pennsylvania Associated Press Managing Editors first-place award for his reporting.
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