That clean trip ended this week, due to a confluence of occasions — some inside her management, others not.
* The White Home made an enormous deal out of Harris’ two-day journey to Central America earlier this week. And Harris’ major purpose was easy: To ship a message to Central Individuals to cease coming to the US southern border. Which she did, to the consternation of liberals however the satisfaction of Biden. However the go to wound up being overshadowed by her seemingly flippant reply to a query from NBC’s Lester Holt about why she hadn’t but visited the southern border. (Biden has tasked Harris with main the administration’s response to stemming the movement of migration from Central America.)
“Sooner or later, you realize, we’re going to the border,” Harris stated within the interview. “We have been to the border. So this entire, this entire, this entire factor in regards to the border. We have been to the border. We have been to the border.”
“I, and I have not been to Europe,” Harris replied to Holt, with amusing. “And I imply, I do not — I do not perceive the purpose that you just’re making.” Which, not nice. As CNN reported on Tuesday: “A number of sources say there was an actual hope contained in the White Home that Harris’ first journey overseas could be successful, and fear that what seemed like ill-prepared solutions to that inevitable query would overshadow it.”
* Apart from immigration, Harris’ different massive job within the Biden administration is to work to develop voting rights — and push again towards a collection of legal guidelines being handed in GOP-controlled states that make it tougher to vote. That effort took an enormous physique blow on Sunday, when West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin (D) introduced that he would oppose the For the Folks Act, a serious election reform package deal that Democratic leaders on each ends of Pennsylvania Avenue had been advocating for. Manchin’s opposition not solely ensures the measure is DOA within the Senate but additionally that its efficiency as a problem for use towards Republicans in 2022 is far diminished. Whereas Manchin sought to pivot — calling for passage of the John Lewis Voting Rights Development Act — the prospects for passage of that laws look decidedly dim. All of which signifies that passing any kind of main (or minor) election reform proposal on this Congress appears most unlikely in the meanwhile.
* Politico reported on Monday that Biden is rising more and more prone to search a second time period in 2024 even though he could be in his early 80s at the moment. “Based on his allies, Biden believes that he’s the Democrat finest outfitted to tackle Trump, simply as he did within the lead as much as 2020,” Politico wrote. “Additionally they say that’s pushed by the concept that his legacy could possibly be that of the president who defeated Trump and Trumpism, which he sees as an unpleasant, corrosive motion.”
Add all of it up and also you get a foul week for Harris. And sadly for her, it isn’t prone to be only a dangerous week. Manchin’s opposition to the For the Folks Act, coupled with the advanced challenges on the border — there is a cause not one of the final three presidents have been capable of finding a workable answer — increase the chance that Harris’ two major priorities might not ship her the types of wins a vice chairman with a watch on the highest job may need.
Republicans are utilizing this second to ramp up their assaults on Harris. (Price noting: Harris has been an everyday goal for Republicans since she started working for president — and the frequency of these assaults has solely elevated because the GOP has struggled to discover a good hit on Biden.)
“The one factor Vice President Kamala Harris managed to realize within the final 3 days was keep away from really coping with the worsening disaster at America’s border,” tweeted
Home Minority Chief Kevin McCarthy.
These assaults, nonetheless, will not (and should not) hassle Harris — or Biden. The Trump wing of the Republican Occasion, which is almost all of the GOP base, is closely invested in demonizing Harris, and can discover methods to take action it doesn’t matter what the vice chairman says or does. (Plus, the truth that Harris is the primary lady and first particular person of colour to function vice chairman should not be misplaced on anybody on this dialog.)
What ought to concern Harris and her advisers is that her first overseas journey — a closely touted one no much less — didn’t go to plan.
And her two home priorities, immigration and voting rights, look like caught in impartial at finest.