Joe Biden and Kamala Harris's close bond 'won't last' for four years, says expert: 'All VPs want the top job'

Whenever Biden stepped into the limelight for signing executive orders or delivering his daily briefing, Harris was always either behind him or standing beside him


                            Joe Biden and Kamala Harris's close bond 'won't last' for four years, says expert: 'All VPs want the top job'
President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris (Getty Images)

From the day that the 'Biden-Harris' administration entered the White House, the President and the Vice-President have appeared to govern as if they were joined at the hip. But political experts have claimed that the relationship is not fated to last. 

Whenever President Joe Biden stepped into the limelight for signing executive orders or delivering his daily briefing to the press, Vice President Kamala Harris was always either behind him or standing beside him. And this equation has continued for the 11 days that the new administration has gone into effect, replacing the last one. Cameras caught both in the Oval Office on Friday, January 29, to receive the president’s daily security briefing together. After that, both Biden and Harris headed together for an economic briefing with Janet Yellen, the newly installed secretary of the Treasury. They also had lunch together in the president’s private dining room.

In fact, Kamala Harris is not only sharing the president's photo ops, she and her husband Doug Emhoff are also temporarily living across the street, in Blair House, the president’s guest residence on Pennsylvania Avenue. This arrangement will persist till her vice-presidential home at the US Naval Observatory gets cleaned up. 

Vice President Kamala Harris looks on as US President Joe Biden signs executives orders related to his racial equity agenda in the State Dining Room of the White House on January 26, 2021, in Washington, DC (Getty Images)

Although Biden is attempting to set a very different precedent for what a relationship between a commander-in-chief and a second-in-command should look like, a presidential scholar has said that the closeness cannot prevail over the span of four years. “It won’t last,” presidential historian Craig Shirley told Washington Examiner. “It never does. The vice president always has their own political ax to grind," adding, "They all want the top job. They watch stories about the president’s health and go to funerals. That’s what they do.”

Professor of political science at Northeastern University Costas Panagopoulos said Biden considered a more central role for his vice president which was modeled on the kind of relationship he once shared with former president Barack Obama. “It is clear President Biden views Vice President Harris as a close partner in governing,” he said. “It appears he is modeling his partnership after his own role in the Obama administration, but he also brings to the relationship his own perspective having served as vice president for eight years.”

Biden and Harris' relationship was in stark contrast to the kind of bond shared by the 45th president and his vice president. It has been reported by a number of outlets over the last four years that ex-vice president Mike Pence was frequently blindsided by his boss, Donald Trump. The relationship worsened in the final weeks of his time in office, during which he had to resort to extreme methods to ensure he remained in the loop on key issues.

Former president Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence arrive at the daily coronavirus task force briefing at the White House on April 24, 2020, in Washington, DC (Getty Images)

According to the New York Times, he was rarely invited to the meetings held by POTUS in the Oval Office, and in an effort to keep abreast of what was going on, he would visit the West Wing every morning and after finding out when the president was expected, he would loiter around office hoping to keep updated about the crucial developments. 

The worsening bond took a turn for the worse after Trump seemed to incite a crowd of his supporters on January 6 who minutes later, stormed the Capitol building where Pence was presiding over a session of Senate which was underway to certify the results of the 2020 election and declare Biden a winner. Following the insurrection, which had many Capitol rioters chanting "Hang Pence," the ex-POTUS reportedly did not speak for five days.

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