If you remember correctly, the Biden administration was supposed to be an altogether new and different thing, at least in terms of the jobs the president and vice president would be tasked with. Unlike most presidencies, this one was supposed to be more of a co-alliance, with Democratic President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris working side-by-side on nearly equal ground through everything.
Biden even said as much during his campaign, touting that whomever he chose to be his running mate and right-hand woman would have to be able to do everything he did and just as well, and on day one, no less.
And when he announced that Kamala Harris was his chosen VP, he confirmed that one reason was because of her age and boundless tenacity to get the job done. So basically, he found someone who could run the country for him while he languished in luxury and behind the curtain that says everything is going well.
As we moved into January and the official inauguration of Biden and Harris, their partnership was made even more evident. Biden announced that he wanted her present for each and every presidential daily briefing possible. And on week one, that plan was put into action. A vice-presidential aid reported that Harris had indeed attended the PDB in the Oval Office with Biden, and “that is the plan going forward.”
In addition, it seemed Harris was given a few major tasks that most vice presidents never get the chance to handle. The largest, of course, was the ongoing immigration/border crisis. It’s also been noted that she is the go-to on many foreign affairs policies and relations, as well as many other issues.
But it seems as time has gone on, her role has become less and less involved.
Take the daily briefings, for example.
As I said, at the start, everything seemed to be fine. But now, Harris barely manages to attend five of those briefings in a month’s time.
According to data secured by the Los Angeles Times and reported on by the U.K.’s Daily Mail, there had been 275 presidential daily briefings as of October 22. And yet, Kamala Harris had only attended 69 of those. That means she was missing in action for no less than 206 of them.
In their earlier months, she was more regular in those meetings. For example, in February, she was present in the Oval Office for 15 and in March for 17. However, the latter months paint quite a different picture.
In August, for example, she only managed to make two. In September, that increased to five. But so far in October, she’s only made two…
Now, to be clear, both Harris and Biden are not always in Washington together. Business often takes them to very different parts of the country and the world, naturally making in-person PDBs impossible.
But to miss 206 out of 275?
Her calendar, which was also obtained by the Los Angeles Times, doesn’t show her out of the country or the White House on all of those dates.
And it’s not just the PDBs. It seems she’s also been missing for a grand number of press events as well.
Again, things started out great. She attended no less than 18 presidential press events with Biden in the month of February, for example.
But in September, the only one she managed to be present for was the commemoration of September 11, an event she would have no doubt been heavily criticized for had she missed it. And in October, the only press event she attended was the anniversary of the dedication for the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial – again, another event she couldn’t very well miss.
So, where has she been? And what has she been doing?
The White House, of course, simply claims that she is a very busy woman, which no doubt is true. As Harris spokeswoman Sabrina Singh told the Daily Mail, “The vice president keeps a busy schedule doing the work of the administration and always in support of the president. Sometimes those events are together, other times apart, sometimes she is on the road amplifying the agenda of the administration and highlighting the importance of Build Back Better.”
But is that the truth? Surely a partnership as close as Biden and Harris’s wouldn’t keep her away so often, right?