US President Joe Biden has said that Vice President Kamala Harris would be his running mate if he stood for office again in 2024.
President Biden made this emphatic assertion on Wednesday amid US media reports alleging dysfunction among her staff and doubt on her standing within the administration.
Harris, 57, is the first woman and first Black and Asian American person ever sworn in as US vice president.
Harris was born at Oakland in California. Her mother Shyamala Gopalan migrated to the US from Tamil Nadu, while her father, Donald J Harris, moved to the US from Jamaica.
Asked by a reporter whether Biden was satisfied with Harris’ work leading the voting rights effort for the White House and whether he will commit to putting her on the ticket once again, Biden replied directly.
“Yes and yes,” he said during a press conference held at the White House to mark the first year of his presidency.
“She’s going to be my running mate, number one. And number two, I did put her in charge. I think she’s doing a good job.”
Biden’s remarks Wednesday came after Harris dismissed a question about whether she would be on the Democratic Party’s ticket in 2024 in an interview with NBC recently.
“I’m sorry, we are thinking about today. I mean honestly, I know why you’re asking the question… We’re focused on the things in front of us,” she said.
Still, questions persist about whether Biden actually plans to run again in 2024. Harris has said on multiple occasions that she and Biden have not discussed whether the 79-year-old will run for reelection in 2024.
Biden has been adamant that he will run for reelection in 2024, despite the fact that he will be 81 on Election Day, CNN reported.
Biden is already the oldest person in US history to be inaugurated as president, but has been deemed to be in good health and “fit to successfully execute the duties of the president, to include those as Chief Executive, Head of State and Commander in Chief,” according to his White House doctor, Dr. Kevin O’Connor.
Biden’s relationship with Harris has not been nearly as smooth though the two top leaders insist publicly that their relationship is solid, the Associated Press reported on Tuesday.
According to some US media reports, people close to Harris believe she is both underutilised as a political asset and overexposed to difficult issues like the migration crisis at America’s southern border.
Harris has served as the US Senator from California and has been described as a trailblazer by former president Barack Obama.
Harris is known for many firsts. She has been a county district attorney; the district attorney for San Francisco, the first woman and first African-American and Indian-origin to be elected to the position.
She was also the first female African-American and Indian-origin to become California’s attorney general. Harris became the first Indian-origin and second African-American woman to join the Senate, winning the California seat vacated by Senator Barbara Boxer, who retired after 24 years.
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