Authors: Biden vowed to fire WH staffers for leaking negative stories about Kamala Harris

Vice President Kamala Harris has had an extremely rocky tenure in office, but according to a new book, there is at least one person who wants to keep her extreme unpopularity under wraps as much as possible, namely, President Joe Biden, who reportedly threatened to terminate the employment of any White House aide caught leaking negative information about her to the press.

As Business Insider reports, the revelations about Biden’s stance on the leaks are included in a forthcoming volume from New York Times reporters Jonathan Martin and Alex Burns entitled, This Will Not Pass: Trump, Biden, and the Battle for America’s Future.

River of leaks

In the authors’ telling, the president’s words of warning were issued last year when Harris was the subject of several stories highlighting alleged dysfunction – and even abusiveness – in her office, a situation thought to have attributed to a rapid exodus of high-level staffers.

A Washington Post exposé on the turmoil in the vice president’s office was especially damning, with one insider describing an environment in which “you have to put up with a constant amount of soul-destroying criticism” and are “constantly sort of propping up a bully and it’s not really clear why.”

As similar reports about Harris’ perceived weaknesses continued to make their way into public view, word of an “open panic” among Democrat elites over whether the vice president was indeed suited to be the party’s heir apparent began to spread, leading to an even more intense need to stop the bleeding.

Biden’s vow

It was at this point, according to Martin and Burns, that Biden felt compelled to act. “No one was more frustrated by the leaks than Joe Biden,” they write.

“The president had known many of Harris’ shortcomings when he chose her to be his running mate, but he was defensive of her and irritated by the unsightly drama spilling into view,” the duo continued.

As such, the authors assert, Biden summoned senior staffers to the Oval Office and said in no uncertain terms that they would be fired if it was discovered that they had given negative stories about Harris to members of the press.

Divisive from the start

Despite his somewhat protective posture concerning negative press stories about Harris, it is clear that Biden may never have been fully on board with her having received the number-two spot on the 2020 ticket.

According to the book, first lady Jill Biden expressed strong reservations about Harris before she became her husband’s running mate, largely because of the aggressive stance the then-California senator took against Joe Biden during a particularly heated debate in which she seemed to imply that he had a problematic past on issues of race.

“There are millions of people in the United States,” Jill Biden reportedly said when Harris emerged as a top contender for the job. “Why do we have to choose the one who attacked Joe?”

In the end, however, now-White House chief of staff Ron Klain succeeded in convincing Biden that choosing Harris would be a magnanimous, unifying thing to do, and, given the vice president’s disastrous showing and staggering unpopularity since ascending to the office that decision could prove to be to his party’s serious detriment for years to come.

Share on facebook
Share To Facebook

Welcome to our comments section. We want to hear from you!

Any comments with profanity, advocacy of violence, harassment, personally identifiable information or other violations will be removed. If you feel your comment has been removed in error please contact us!

Latest Posts