Vice President Kamala Harris has little to worry about when it comes to remaining on the Democratic ticket next year. Only one post-World War II president has replaced his vice president when seeking another term. If Joe Biden were to dump Kamala Harris, it would be an admission that he miscalculated in 2020 when he put her on the ticket.
Rumors suggested that Dwight Eisenhower wanted to replace Richard Nixon in 1956; that John F. Kennedy would have dumped Lyndon Johnson in 1964 had he lived; or that George H.W. Bush should have dumped Dan Quayle in 1992.
Harris has become the most unpopular vice president since Quayle, and her tendency to misspeak or say dumb things has invited comparisons to Quayle from Democrats and Republicans alike.
Polling Shows Public Divided on Harris By Race, Ethnicity
An NBC News poll from June found that Harris had the highest net negative in the history of the poll. A poll taken last week by the Los Angeles Times found that only 39% of Americans have a favorable opinion of her, while 55% have an unfavorable opinion. The Los Angeles Times found that Harris does best among voters between the ages of 30-44, with a 47% favorability rating and 50% disfavoring her.
She does worst of all among Gen-Xers who came of age in the Reagan era, with a 36% favorability rating and 62% unfavorability rating.
“Biden’s selection of Harris to be his running mate in 2020 made some political sense. She helped unite the party and balance the ticket. Indeed, they won. But in late 2021, Biden’s needs have shifted. The Virginia gubernatorial election, coupled with subsequent polling, suggests that many suburbanites are turning against a Democratic Party they perceive to be too progressive. At the same time, Biden faces serious challenges, including rising inflation, a border crisis, supply chain troubles, violent crime rates, and more,” Daily Beast columnist Matt Lewis wrote. “The things he has tried to get help from Harris on, starting with immigration, have not panned out. In general, Harris’s performance has only contributed to the sense that this is an administration that isn’t quite ready for primetime. If Harris is the bridge to the future, that bridge isn’t holding its weight.”
The Los Angeles Times also found significant disparities by party and race. Among Democrats, Harris enjoys a 78% favorability rating, and 18% disfavor her. Sixty-five percent of black voters support her, compared with 34% of white voters and 47% of Hispanics.
Harris’ Lackluster Performance as VP
Harris has come out as the Biden-Harris campaign’s point woman on issues including gun control, abortion rights, and immigration. Her performance on the last issue caused consternation among Democrats and Republicans alike.
New York Mayor Eric Adams panned her lack of leadership in the migration issue in March, and Texas Rep. Ronnie Johnson sponsored a congressional resolution calling for her removal as the administration’s border czar.
She pretended that a border crisis did not exist when confronted by CBS News “Face the Nation” host Margaret Brennan.
“What it means is that we have to stay focused on a number of issues related to the irregular migration that again, we’re seeking around the world and America is not immune,” Harris said. “Just like the weather fluctuates and circumstances fluctuate, such as elections in those regions and what that might mean. It doesn’t mean that we keep our foot off the gas, we have to stay focused and understand there has to be a long-term strategy, as well as a short-term strategy.”
Replacing Harris is Unlikely
Some analysts say that Harris will stay on the ticket largely due to the diversity boxes she checks off.
“But switching out VP on the ticket could present a very different story, with many strong downsides. It would make the president look both weak and disloyal. It would turn off any supporters of the vice president. And since Harris is a trailblazer in two key focus areas for Democrats, women, and Black voters, dumping her from the ticket poses a legitimate danger for Democratic turnout,” political scientist Joshua Spivak wrote in The Daily Beast.
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.