According to the reports, in a “shift of strategy” as other senior Democrats begin to raise their profiles in anticipation that Mr Biden will not contest the 2024 election, Ms Harris “wants to be seen” more, giving interviews and making visits to battleground states as she appears to position herself for a White House run of her own. The development comes as calls grow for Mr Biden to announce he will not run again.
A New York Times-Siena College poll this month found that 64 percent of Democrats said they would prefer a different candidate to President Biden in 2024.
Under the headline “Quit Joe, quit! Biden could save the midterms with a one-term pledge” Steven Isenberg, a veteran Democrat commentator, wrote in The Washington Post on Sunday: “He should not ask the Democratic Party, or the nation, to assume the risk of a second four-year term that would begin after he reached the age of 82.”
Mr Isenberg argued that Biden formally withdrawing from the 2024 race would save Democrat seats, with Republicans expected to retake the House of Representatives and perhaps also the Senate.
He wrote: “The midterm elections this November would become about key issues and the quality of individual candidates rather than the merits of Biden’s presidency and whether voters feel he should run again.
“The plotting and the politicking of Democrats aspiring to the presidency have already begun. Unless Biden announces that he is not running for re-election, this quiet campaign against him will intensify.”
However, Mr Biden has said publicly and privately that he intends to seek a second term.
Ms Harris last month said: “The President intends to run and if he does, I will be his ticket-mate. We will run together.”
The former California senator, 57, attracted much attention for becoming the first female, black and south Asian vice-president but has struggled to stay in the limelight and suffers from similarly poor approval ratings as Biden, 79.
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Ms Harris is aiming to frame as “unfinished business, not broken promises” administration failures to fulfil various pledges such as codifying abortion, passing climate change protections or forgiving some student loan debts, according to Errin Haines, editor-in-chief of The 19th.
It headlined its interview with Harris: “Kamala Harris wants to be seen — and let voters know she sees them. Can it work?”
Haines added: “Harris’s increased visibility and engagement come at a crucial moment for Democrats, as President Joe Biden’s approval rating has been steadily dropping, falling to a new low this week amid inflation woes.”
Ms Harris has held recent private meetings with at least three important backers who helped to organise her successful California campaigns to be district attorney and attorney-general and to reach the Senate, CNBC reported.
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These include at least two wealthy friends: Vanessa Getty, wife of Billy Getty, an heir of the Getty family; and Laurene Powell Jobs, a billionaire businesswoman and widow of the late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.
Getty and her family raised funds for Harris’s unsuccessful run for the Democratic nomination in 2020.
CNBC added that a Wall Street executive who raised money for Biden’s 2020 campaign said that he had heard recently from Harris and Newsom.
The executive said that neither explicitly asked for support but CNBC suggested they were probably “trying to get big-money supporters in their corner in case they run for the White House in two years”.