Amid polls that show her becoming a political millstone around the neck of the Democratic Party, Vice President Kamala Harris has promised to use every bit of her popularity to support California Gov. Gavin Newsom in his upcoming recall election fight.
Harris was asked whether she would support Newsom, who at one time endorsed Harris during her short-lived bid for the White House.
“Yes,” she replied, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
A report in The Hill concerning the low poll numbers Harris is racking up quoted one unnamed Democratic strategist as saying Harris would not be making lots of trips to back congressional candidates in tight races.
The report noted that three recent polls gave her an average unfavorable rating of 46 percent.
An Economist-YouGov poll pegged Harris’s unfavorable figure at 48 percent.
“As of right now, I think she has the potential of doing more harm than good for some of these candidates,” the strategist said.
“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.”
“She doesn’t have the standing at this moment to go to a lot of these tighter districts,” the strategist said.
The report quoted a “Harris ally” as saying that she had hardly covered herself with glory in her first six months as vice president.
“No one is coming out and saying she’s doing an amazing job, because the first question would be ‘On what?’” the Harris ally said.
“She’s made a bunch of mistakes and she’s made herself a story for good and bad.”
A report in the New York Post that quoted an unnamed Democratic strategist said patience with Harris is wearing thin.
“This is less about the upcoming midterm and more about the future. There was a hope that she would grow into the role, but she keeps making mistakes, it’s like ‘Groundhog Day’ with her mistakes,” the strategist said.
“If Biden doesn’t run [in 2024], is there comfort with her as the nominee? I’m not sure,” the strategist said.
A report in the Los Angeles Times framed the Sept. 14 California recall election as wide open.
A UC Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies poll showed that among those who were deemed likely to vote, Newsom won a 50 percent majority of support, compared to 47 percent who wanted to get rid of him. The margin of error for those results was 2.5 percentage points.
Mark DiCamillo, director of the poll, said turnout will be key, with nearly 90 percent of Republicans expressing significant interest, far higher than 58 percent of Democrats who are highly interested in the recall election.
“Democrats, at least in the middle of July, almost unanimously believed that Newsom will defeat the recall. I think that may be contributing to some complacency among those voters. Republicans, on the other hand, are confident that they can turn out the governor,” DiCamillo said.
“I think the Newsom campaign really has to light a fire among the Democrats and say, ‘Look, the outcome is in jeopardy unless you get out there and vote,'” he added.
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