In an interview with NBC News, Vice President Kamala Harris refused to answer when asked if the 2024 Democratic presidential ticket will feature both her and President Joe Biden. The comments came Thursday morning during an interview with NBC’s Craig Melvin and possibly indicate the reportedly sour relationship between Team Biden and Team Harris may cause some trouble for the Democratic Party moving forward.
“Are we going to see the same Democratic ticket in 2024?” Melvin asked.
“I’m sorry, we are thinking about today,” Harris pushed back. “I mean honestly — I know why you’re asking the question because this is part of the punditry and the gossip around places like Washington, D.C. Let me just tell you something, we’re focused on the things in front of us.”
The clip can be seen here:
WATCH: @VP Kamala Harris REFUSES to confirm whether or not President Biden will run in 2024
REPORTER: “Are we going to see the same Democratic ticket in 2024?”
HARRIS: “I’m sorry, we are thinking about today.” pic.twitter.com/YlQys1DMe2
— Chad Gilmartin (@ChadGilmartinCA) January 13, 2022
Harris’ refusal to answer a seemingly easy question contradicts previous statements from White House spokespersons. In December 2021, White House principal deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told media that Harris would remain Biden’s running mate if he ran in 2024, CNN reported:
“Yes, he does,” Jean-Pierre told reporters when asked if Biden would keep Harris as his running mate, adding: “There’s no change.”
Jean-Pierre would not comment on possible conversations between Biden and Harris on any possible reelection plans telling reporters: “I can’t speak to a conversation that the vice president and the president had. I can only … reiterate what [White House press secretary] Jen [Psaki] has said and what the President has said himself: that he is planning to run for reelection in 2024.”
For her part, Harris has maintained that she and the president have not discussed the presidency in any capacity.
While Biden’s team has stated that he and Harris may run together in 2024, polls have indicated that the American people would rather the two do not run at all. In December, The Daily Wire reported that a nationwide poll showed just 22% of Americans wanted Biden to run for the presidency in 2024, and only 12% wanted to see Harris atop the ticket.
While the Biden-Harris duo crater in popularity, some pollsters are pining for a Hillary Clinton comeback. This week in The Wall Street Journal, liberals Andrew Stein and Doug Schoen wrote an opinion column detailing why Clinton 2.0 would be the Democratic ticket’s best option. Schoen founded and leads “a polling and consulting firm whose past clients include Bill Clinton and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.” Stein is “a former New York City Council president, Manhattan borough president and state assemblyman,” according to the Journal.
“Several circumstances—President Biden’s low approval rating, doubts over his capacity to run for re-election at 82, Vice President Kamala Harris’s unpopularity, and the absence of another strong Democrat to lead the ticket in 2024—have created a leadership vacuum in the party, which Mrs. Clinton viably could fill,” the author’s wrote.
“Hillary Clinton remains ambitious, outspoken and convinced that if not for Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey’s intervention and Russian interference that she would have won the 2016 election—and she may be right,” they added.
Regardless of who runs in 2024, Harris’ hesitancy and demeanor on The Today Show indicate the reported friction between Harris and Biden may be more than has been led on in the media. The White House was plagued by reports of “animosity” between the president and vice president all of last fall. At a time when the White House is trying to push major voting rights legislation in a united front, it is not the best look when the president and vice president either cannot agree on proper messaging about the future.