Nancy Pelosi (D-Ca.) has stepped on her party's 2024 messaging by raising doubts about vice president Kamala Harris.
The Democratic party elder hesitated to endorse Harris as the "best" running mate for Joe Biden during a CNN interview.
"He [Biden] thinks so, and that’s what matters,” Pelosi said.
Pelosi offered a lukewarm appraisal of the "politically astute" vice president, while noting that her role doesn't come with much responsibility.
"She is the vice president of the United States. Some people say to me, well, why isn't she doing this or that? I say, because she's the vice president. That's the job description. You don't do that much, you know," she said.
While many would likely disagree, Pelosi said Harris has done a good job fulfilling the moral and symbolic functions of her office, calling her a "source of strength, inspiration, intellectual resource."
“I think she’s represented our country very well at home and abroad,” she added.
In contrast with her tortured praise of Harris, Pelosi was unreserved with her enthusiasm for Biden.
"President Biden has -- he has great experience and wisdom. He's been at this for a long time, as you know, as a senator, vice president, and now president. He has a vision for our country."
The disconnect here is rather striking. Pelosi is a party loyalist first and foremost, and there is no indication the party is dumping Harris from the ticket.
Deep down, Pelosi knows Harris is a dud. It says a lot about Harris that a practiced liar like Pelosi can barely hide her true feelings about the vice president.
Harris has drawn outsized attention compared to many past vice presidents because of Biden's age. Most voters believe Biden is too old to serve a second term.
Pelosi acknowledged some Democrats have "concerns" about Biden, but she said the party "overwhelmingly" supports him.
Her comments about Harris required some cleanup from her successor, House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-Ny.). who called her a "great running mate" and "a tremendous partner in the things that President Biden has been able to accomplish, which have been phenomenal.”
Later, Pelosi's office affirmed her "staunch, unequivocal support for the Biden-Harris team."
For a second there, Pelosi came close to telling the truth.