by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Vice President Kamala Harris resurfaced on Wednesday to campaign for embattled California Gov. Gavin Newsom after weeks of remaining largely behind the scenes while the Biden administration took on water confronting multiple crises.
The timing of Harris’s campaign appearance was the result of careful orchestration from the White House. A previous appearance for Newsom was scrapped on Aug. 26 after a suicide bomber killed 13 U.S. service members in Afghanistan the day before.
Since then, Harris has stayed mostly out of sight while President Joe Biden suffers plunging poll numbers following his disastrous plan to withdraw troops precipitously from Afghanistan. She proceeded in late August with a trip to Southeast Asia, for which she took some criticism from the Right due to a scheduled leg in Vietnam amid widespread comparisons of the fall of Kabul this year and the fall of Saigon in 1975.
Alex Conant, a Republican strategist and former senior adviser to Sen. Marco Rubio’s presidential campaign, said Harris’s reemergence is not surprising.
“Losing the recall would be incredibly embarrassing for Democrats and really undermine Biden’s national standing,” Conant said. “Harris has won statewide in California before and should be able to help with turnout, so I’m sure they think it’s important that she’s there now.”
Harris’s return to her home state this week comes after Newsom managed to recover from a slide in the polls that had Democrats concerned throughout August about his fate. …
… Harris’s brief speech on Wednesday afternoon in San Leandro, California, on behalf of her “long-standing friend” Newsom focused primarily on the liberal side of national debates over abortion and voting rights — making no mention of Afghanistan or the other problems presently facing the Biden White House.
The vice president has spoken little of inflation, disappointing jobs numbers, or plummeting public support for Biden’s signature piece of legislation, a $3.5 trillion spending bill.