Fox News’s Chad Pergram is getting a tip that he should “start to familiarize” himself “with the confirmation process not just in the Senate, but in the House, for a vice president.”
Such a method exists, but there are substantial logistical obstacles to overcome in executing it under the current political conditions. Biden cannot fire Harris, who is an elected constitutional office holder in her own right, rather than an appointee who works at the president’s preference. She would have to step down and has little incentive to do so.
A vice-presidential vacancy would immediately bump both House Speaker
Nancy Pelosi and the Senate’s president pro tempore, currently leaving Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont, up in the line of presidential succession. No matter which party controlled the Senate, both officeholders would be older than Biden, the oldest person to be president.
The Senate is split 50-50. When the office of vice president was empty, the Democrats would be without Harris’s tie-breaking vote, which they are counting on to pass their sprawling spending bill next month and which is needed to even control the Senate.
Those same margins would become a problem in approving Harris’s succession if her resignation could somehow be saved. Democrats could not approve a new vice president without Republican votes, much less those of centrist Sens. Joe
Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona within their own party. A bipartisan nominee could be necessary for Senate confirmation.
A bipartisan nominee would not be satisfactory to large crowds of Democrats in the House, which also must vote to establish a new vice president. Harris is the first woman and minority, being black and Asian American, to serve as vice president. Her ouster
would not please the Congressional Black Caucus or the Congressional Asian and Pacific Islander Caucus, among other groups.
Kamala Harris has a 28% approval rating, yet the Radical Left still blames Joe Manchin for their embarrassing election performance in Virginia.— Madison Cawthorn (@CawthornforNC) November 13, 2021
Makes total sense.
Civil rights groups have been susceptible to the perception that Harris is being marginalized within the Biden administration. The Rev. Al Sharpton said last month that he wanted to discuss her role directly with the president.
It would be even more complex than the delicate dance Democrats have been performing on their social welfare spending bill and infrastructure. Absent Republican defections, a vice presidential nominee would have to be ideologically satisfactory to both Manchin and the left-wing Squad. There would also be an expectation that the nominee represents the variety that added to Harris’s selection in the first place. There is no unifying choice, such as the late former Secretary of State Colin Powell, waiting in the wings.