Amid free-falling poll numbers for Vice President Kamala Harris and reports of White House infighting, Harris’ communications director is resigning.
Ashley Etienne, who served former President Barack Obama and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, will leave her post next month, according to Fox News.
Etienne’s departure produced a White House reaction to the effect that this was nothing special.
“Ashley is a valued member of the Vice President’s team, who has worked tirelessly to advance the goals of this administration,” a White House official said. “She is leaving the office in December to pursue other opportunities.”
The only person more unpopular than Joe Biden is Kamala Harris.
— Madison Cawthorn (@CawthornforNC) November 18, 2021
In its reporting based on sources it did not name, CNN said one source said Etienne “was not a good fit” for Harris and did not play a highly active role in developing a strategy for getting the vice president out of the tailspin that has marked her first year.
According to CNN, “many in the vice president’s circle” think she is being inadequately positioned or prepared.
The network also quoted other unnamed sources as saying that the fault is not with Biden and his aides, but that Harris has not been well-served by her staff.
The role of family members in running the office was also cited as a factor in the problems Harris has experienced.
A cycle of reports focused on Harris and her problems brought her public praise.
People need to back off @VP Harris. She’s a powerful woman. She’s a powerful Black woman. She’s been given some of the toughest political assignments in the face of two Dem senators who—under the lie of being so-called “moderates”—have blocked $15/hr min wage, voting rights, etc.
— Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II (@RevDrBarber) November 17, 2021
“The president selected the vice president because — to serve as his running mate — because he felt she was exactly the person he wanted to have by his side to govern the country,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said at a Monday media briefing, according to an official White House transcript of her remarks.
As noted by the New York Post, Psaki says race and gender have been used wrongly to attack Harris.
“Some in the right wing who have gone after her because she is the first woman, the first woman of color. I’m not suggesting anyone will acknowledge that publicly, but I think there’s no question that the type of attacks — the attacks on her that certainly, being the first she is many times over — is part of that,” she added at a Wednesday event, according to Townhall.
Kamala Harris is not a victim of racism or sexism. She is unqualified to serve as Vice-President.
— TheLeoTerrell (@TheLeoTerrell) November 17, 2021
That has not stilled the drumbeat of criticism, however.
“It’s hard to screw up being vice president,” Washington Post columnist Marc Thiessen wrote Thursday. “But after just 10 months in office, Kamala D. Harris has managed to make herself the least popular vice president at this point in at least 50 years.”
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