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Democratic Insiders Are Terrified About What They're Seeing from Kamala Harris: Report

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Vice President Kamala Harris has received low ratings in a series of surveys, prompting some Democrats to worry about how the party will fare in the 2022 midterms.

Even though vice presidents generally don’t outdo the presidents they work for in popularity, the low ratings Harris got were notable, according to a report from The Hill.

According to three recent surveys compiled by RealClearPolitics, Harris earned a combined average of 46 percent in unfavorable ratings. This is 3 points greater than President Joe Biden, who has a 43 percent in unfavorable ratings.

The scores Harris earned in these surveys throw into question how Democrats can leverage her in getting more people to vote blue so that the Democrats can maintain a majority in the House of Representatives, The Hill reported.

One Democratic strategist pointed out to the news outlet that with the way Harris’ popularity ratings are looking, she doesn’t have the position to go to tightly contested districts to rally support for Democratic candidates running there.

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“As of right now, I think she has the potential of doing more harm than good for some of these candidates,” the strategist told The Hill.

“My sense is she’ll probably raise a lot of money and maybe she’ll go to some specific districts, but they’ll have to be really strategic with her.”

“No one is coming out and saying she’s doing an amazing job, because the first question would be ‘On what?’” one Harris supporter told the outlet. “She’s made a bunch of mistakes and she’s made herself a story for good and bad.”

A spokesperson working for Harris turned down The Hill’s request for comment.

Harris has been criticized for her role, and lack of satisfactory action in the border crisis still plaguing the country as an influx of illegal immigrants from South and Central America try to enter the United States unlawfully.

Despite being appointed to handle the crisis by Biden in March, Harris never went to the border until June.

And when she told illegal immigrants not to come to the United States during a news conference when she was touring south of the Mexican border, she irked some progressives, The Hill reported.

“I don’t think someone like Mark Kelly would want her anywhere around him,” the Harris supporter told the outlet.

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Some Democrats, however, are optimistic about the role Harris could play ahead of the midterm elections.

“You’re going to use your vice president strategically,” a chief pollster for former President Barack Obama, Joel Benenson, told The Hill. “She’s going to be popular in many places that will matter. She may be popular in Georgia.”

Georgia is one of the policy battlefields between Democrats and Republicans as the two parties butt heads over recent election reform legislation.

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Democrats view such legislation as a Republican attempt to undermine people’s right to vote. Republicans see the legislation as a much-needed measure to make elections secure.

“She’s not the person who’s out front day in and day out,” Benenson told the outlet. “It’s a lot harder to break through as vice president.”

According to The Hill, there is a widespread belief among Democratic circles that many from the right-wing seeking to discredit Harris “oftentimes relying on racist and sexist stereotypes to minimize her standing as the first female, Black and Asian American vice president.”

“The reason that Harris is unpopular is that they haven’t been able to make headway against Joe Biden personally, so they really have switched their messaging strategy to focus on Harris and attack him indirectly,” political analyst Rachel Bitecofer told The Hill.

“If Democrats buy into the old-school political book and make the same mistakes that they’ve made in the past and try to shelf her, hide her, run away from her, all they’re doing is reasserting the right’s negative frame against her.”

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Andrew Jose is a freelance reporter covering security, U.S. politics, and foreign policy, among other beats. He has bylines in several outlets, notably the Daily Caller, Jewish News Syndicate, and the Times of Israel.
Andrew Jose is a freelance reporter covering security, U.S. politics, and foreign policy, among other beats. He has bylines in several outlets, notably the Daily Caller, Jewish News Syndicate, and the Times of Israel. Speak to Andrew securely via Follow Andrew on Twitter: @realAndrewJose
Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service
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