Kamala Harris has been the focus of some high-profile interviews as of late. The first woman and first woman of color to serve as U.S. Vice President is near the completion of her first year in office. Her conversation with Margaret Brennan, host of CBS Face the Nation, aired Sunday. Topics ranged from how the Biden administration is dealing with the latest coronavirus variant to passing voting rights legislation to obstacles she faces as Vice President.
When discussing voting rights and how to get a bill passed in the Senate, Vice President Harris wouldn’t commit to a carve-out (or workaround) of the filibuster in order to pass voting rights, but rather, about its importance:
I believe that voting rights is one of the most significant issues that is facing us as individuals and as leaders today. There’s no question.
Voting rights lead to every other right. And so we need to prioritize it as a nation. I think it’s really important that, in this conversation about what’s happening in Washington, D.C., on the issue of voting, that we not lose sight of the fact that there is one whole group of people, half of the United States Senate, who are refusing to even debate this issue.
When asked about two Senators not on board with changing the filibuster (Manchin and Sinema) in order to push the legislation to completion, the Vice President didn’t directly say carve-out but suggested working to make the laws happen.
What I’m saying is that we are going to urge the United States Congress, and we have been, to examine the tools they have available, to do what is necessary to fight for and retain the integrity of our voting system in America.
When asked about the Vice President’s staff, popularity, and the portfolio or the issues with which she is assigned, CBS’ Brennan cited comments from African Americans and asked if Harris thinks she is being set up:
Donna Brazile, the former Democratic strategist, said all the focus on turnover in your office is overblown, but you do need to renew and repurpose.
Bakari Sellers said: “Her portfolio is trash. You give someone a portfolio that is not meant for them to succeed.”
Do you think any of this is fair? Do you think you’re being set up to fail?
VICE PRESIDENT: No, I don’t believe I’m being set up to fail.
There’s obviously some frustration, especially as this interview followed the Harris interview with radio and tv personality, Charlamagne Tha God, also referenced Sunday:
CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: So, who’s the real president of this country? Is it Joe Manchin or Joe Biden, Madam Vice President?
VICE PRESIDENT: Come on, Charlamagne. Come on.
CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: I really — I can’t tell sometimes.
VICE PRESIDENT: No, no, no, no, no, no. It’s Joe Biden. And I’m vice president. And my name is Kamala Harris. And the reality is because we are in office, we do the things like the child tax credit, which is going to reduce black child poverty by 50 percent.
Why You Need to Know:
November 8, 2022, is the general election date of the mid-term elections. Keep Our Eyes on the Prize. Whatever one’s “feelings” or perceptions about Vice President Harris, Democrats cannot afford to be distracted in order to allow a complete white-washing of the elections from the local to federal levels. Keep Democrats’ feet to the fire when it comes to passing important legislation starting with voting rights, but keep eyes on the prize sought by Republicans: a complete turnover of the U.s. House and Senate.