Pete Buttigieg dismisses account of ‘rivalry’ with Kamala Harris as tank of approval

Transport Secretary Pete Buttigieg has dismissed the report that there is a rivalry between him and Vice President Kamala Harris as his poll numbers have plummeted and some have speculated that he could organize another presidential campaign in 2024.

President Joe Biden has publicly stated that he plans to run for a second term in the White House, but due to his age and low approval rating, some analysts have suggested he would step down and allow another Democratic candidate to run instead. Although Harris, as vice president, is viewed by many as the top pick, his poll numbers are even worse than Biden’s, leading some to speculate on a Buttigieg campaign.

The White House, Harris and now Buttigieg have publicly rejected any reports of internal tensions within the administration. The Transportation Secretary was asked about the matter in an interview with NBC News on Sunday ‘ Meet the press.

“Anytime anything is written about Vice President Kamala Harris’ political position, your name seems to be in each of these articles. Has this had any impact on your relationship with the Vice President, it seems like ‘there is this tale of a developing rivalry between the two of you? ” host Chuck Todd asked Buttigieg.

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Sunday dismissed reports of a rivalry between him and Vice President Kamala Harris. In this photo, Buttigieg speaks at the COP26 event on November 10 in Glasgow, Scotland.
Ian Forsyth / Getty Images

Buttigieg rejected the suggestion. “No, because she and I are part of a disciplined team that doesn’t focus on what the commentators are obsessed with. We’re too busy with a job to do,” he replied.

Administration official Biden said he and Harris were “focused on the laser to get the job done,” adding that “there was no room to get caught up in board games” and that he was “proud to be part of the Biden-Harris team. “

News week contacted the White House for further comment, but did not immediately receive a response.

Biden started his presidency with an American public approval rating of over 50%. This rating has plummeted over the past year as a number of crises plagued his administration. FiveThirtyEight’s current average of recent polls shows that 42.5% of Americans approve of the president.

Meanwhile, Harris experienced an even more substantial drop in his approval rating. As of April, FiveThirtyEight had the Vice President’s average approval rating north of 55%. That number has dropped to just 36.9% to date.

Although there has been speculation that Biden – who will be 81 by the time of the next presidential election – will step down, Harris said last week that they are not currently discussing the 2024 election. To find out if the upcoming presidential election was a topic of conversation between her and Biden, Harris replied “absolutely not.”

Harris and Buttigieg both unsuccessfully ran for the Democratic presidential nomination ahead of the 2020 election. They ultimately gave up and endorsed Biden.

Harris suspended his campaign in early December 2019, before caucuses and primaries began. Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, ended his presidential bid and endorsed Biden in early March after the current president won the South Carolina Democratic primary.

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