Democratic officials won't criticize historically unpopular vice president Kamala Harris out of fear that "activists and social-media critics" will accuse them of racism and sexism, Politico reported Thursday.
If any Democrat ever "openly criticizes Harris," Politico noted, leftist gadflies accuse the critic of "showing, at best, racial and gender insensitivity." One House Democrat went so far as to say that "no white member [of Congress] is going" to criticize the veep.
A large majority of Americans don't share Democrats' fear. Harris has faced record-setting unpopularity numbers, with her approval rating last month hovering around 38 percent. Dozens of staff members, including the vice president's chief of staff and communications director, have fled from her office. Former staffers told the press in 2021 that Harris is "toxic" and that they are "terrified at the thought of her becoming president," the Washington Free Beacon reported.
Many Democrats, at least in private, also admit that President Joe Biden, who would be 86 by the end of a second term, is "too old," Politico reported. One Democratic congressman, Minnesota's Dean Phillips, even went on the record to suggest that the party nominate someone younger.
"It's absurd we're not promoting competition" to Biden in the 2024 Democratic primary, Phillips said.
Party members agree, according to a Sunday Wall Street Journal report, with one Democrat saying she worries about Biden's "cognitive decline."
Most Democratic officials, though, are reluctant to talk about the president's age for fear that Harris will take his place.
When Politico asked "nearly a dozen Democratic governors" if they thought Harris should automatically receive the party's nomination in the case that Biden doesn't run, "the voluble bunch grew quiet."
"I don't think we're going to go there on that one," said New Jersey governor Phil Murphy.