Vice President Kamala Harris sent mixed messages this week, dismissing concerns about President Joe Biden’s decrepitude, then stressing she is ready to take over should the need arise.
In what turned out to be a controversial move, Harris ended up warming Biden’s seat at the annual Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit in Jakarta, Indonesia, where the president’s absence was seen by some foreign dignitaries as an untimely snub and by critics as yet another signal that he is no longer up to the task of leading the world’s greatest superpower.
CNBC alternatively characterized the 80-year-old’s substitution by Harris at the three-day summit, which ended Thursday, as an opportunity for her to “burnish her foreign policy credentials.”
During her time in Jakarta, Harris fielded two sets of similar questions from Associated Press reporter Chris Megerian and CBS News correspondent Margaret Brennan concerning the Democratic president’s advanced age and her willingness to replace him behind the Resolute desk.
Megerian asked Harris, “Questions about the president’s age often go hand in hand with questions about how you would step in the role if necessary. Do you feel prepared for that possibility? Has serving as vice president prepared you for that job?”
The New York Post reported the 58-year-old answered in the affirmative, adding, “First of all, let’s — I’m answering your hypothetical, but Joe Biden is going to be fine. So that is not going to come to fruition.”
With a great deal riding on the next presidential election, just over one year away, and Biden’s 81st birthday fast approaching, prospective voters don’t share Harris’ confidence.
A recent Wall Street Journal poll found that 73% of voters figure that Biden, already surpassing the average American life expectancy by several years, is too old to seek a second term. Two-thirds of Democrats indicated they felt the same way.
TheBlaze previously reported the results of a recent Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll that found a staggering 69% of Democratic voters and 77% of American adults overall believe Biden is “too old” to “effectively serve another 4-year term as president.”
Biden hasn’t exactly inspired confidence in his capacity to stand, let alone lead, repeatedly falling in public, routinely flubbing speeches, and admitting in October to the host of MSNBC’s “The Sunday Show” that he “could drop dead tomorrow.”
Harris further explained to Megerian, “But let us also understand that every vice president — every vice president — understands that when they take the oath, that they must be very clear about the responsibility they may have to take over the job of being president. I am no different.”
Harris, whose unlikability has already proven to be a major concern for the White House, reiterated in her interview with Brennan that Biden “is going to be fine,” but that she would take over “if necessary.”
Necessity might make Harris president, but most voters might wish it hadn’t.
According to the latest Economist/YouGov Poll, 57% of likely voters hold an unfavorable view of Harris. Of those who with an unfavorable view, 43% felt strongly.
While nearly tied with Biden in terms of unfavorability, Kamala Harris has managed to score five fewer points in terms of favorability than the 80-year-old. This is quite an accomplishment in light of Biden’s many recent PR disasters.
After all, extra to his handling of the economy, the border, classified documents, and America’s withdrawal from Afghanistan, Biden recently likened the deadly inferno that claimed hundreds of lives in Maui to a kitchen fire; has taken over 365 vacation days since taking office in January 2021; bailed on a Medal of Honor ceremony before its completion; and has a son with whom he was allegedly involved in suspicious foreign business deals now about to be hit with felony charges.
Despite Harris’ unpopularity with the American people, even relative to Biden, California Gov. Gavin Newsom emphasized this week that she is “naturally the one lined up” to succeed Biden.
Like Blaze News? Bypass the censors, sign up for our newsletters, and get stories like this direct to your inbox. Sign up here!