Courtesy of Gage Skidmore via Flickr

Since taking public office in January, Vice President Kamala Harris has struggled to find her place within the Biden administration. Her approval ratings have hit record-breaking lows, a trend that started over the summer. Harris has found herself under a magnifying glass, constantly being criticized by the American public. Many Democrats are already looking to the future. If Joe Biden decides not to run for a second term, Harris would most likely become the frontrunner. But with her current struggles as vice president, her name might not hold enough weight to bring in voters. Harris needs to win over the trust of the American people, because without their support she has no chance of becoming president.

Last week, President Biden had to be put under anaesthesia for a colonoscopy, during which time Harris was technically filling the role as the active president. While this shift in power lasted for one hour and twenty five minutes, it brought into conversation Harris’ ability to be president in the near future.

If you ask any Democrat what their opinions are about a potential Harris presidency, their answer might surprise you. Even people within her own party are having a hard time defending some of her recent actions. Progressives saw Harris as a unique champion, her political actions have many feeling disappointed in her.

One instance of this was over the summer, when Harris took a lot of heat for her comments about immigration. While on a trip to Guatemala, she stated in a speech, “Do not come. Do not come. The United States will continue to enforce our laws and secure our borders.” She was speaking to Guatemalan immigrants who had been trying to seek asylum in the United States. This is around the time that her approval rating started to fall. It’s clear that her message wasn’t accepted.

It would seem that current tensions being reported between her and President Biden are not helping her case. The pair have been struggling to work together, oftentimes with Harris being sidelined. Coming to the end of their first year in the White House, both President Biden and Kamala Harris’ approval ratings are down. A recent poll found that 51% of voters disapprove of her job performance. People who initially supported her are feeling like she’s not doing enough. The vice presidency can be restrictive at times, so in reality, there’s not much she can do right now. But if she wants to win the presidential nomination in the near future, she’s going to have to start changing the public opinion on her leadership skills.

Nonetheless, the likelihood that President Biden won’t run for a second term is still relatively low. But with the growing concerns about his health and age, that probability might start to increase as we continue into their presidential term. Kamala Harris needs to decide what she wants her legacy to be as vice president. This is crucial for her political future. The Democratic Party will need to decide if Harris is a worthy enough candidate, and right now she’s not.