President Joe Biden reassigns Vice President Kamala Harris, and the White House announces Wednesday that she will lead a vaccine tour as the administration aims to have at least one shot in the arms of 70 percent of American adults by July 4. to get.
Harris will lead “a nationwide tour to reach millions of Americans who still need protection from the virus, to emphasize the ease of vaccination, to encourage vaccinations and to promote and mobilize basic vaccination education,” the White House said.
The new order comes a day after on a visit to Tulsa, Oklahoma — on the 100th anniversary of the city’s brutal racing carnage — Biden announced that Harris would be leading the government’s efforts to protect voting rights.
On Wednesday morning, Harris performed one of her ceremonial duties – sworn in Biden’s candidate for director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, Eric Lander, whose Senate confirmation was postponed due to meetings he had so late. convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
There, Harris was asked about another aspect of her growing portfolio – her upcoming trip to Guatemala, when Biden assigned her to be the liaison with the countries of the Northern Triangle and address the “root” causes of migration.
Vice President Kamala Harris (right) signs Dr. Eric Lander (left), the director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, whose confirmation was delayed due to previous meetings with Jeffrey Epstein. The White House announced Wednesday that Harris would lead a vaccine tourtour
The vaccine tour announcement comes a day after President Joe Biden said Vice President Kamala Harris would be tasked with the administration’s efforts to protect voting rights, meaning she will spend time this month lobbying her former Senate colleagues.
Harris, who will also travel to Mexico City next week, said she will meet Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei during the “front leg of the trip,” in hopes the two can have “an honest and real conversation.” to have.
“We have a lot to discuss,” she told reporters, including what they could do to “support the people who need help in the areas of hunger, economic development, extreme weather.”
“It’s also about the need to have very candid and honest discussions about the need to tackle corruption, tackle crime and violence, and in particular against some of the most vulnerable populations in that country,” she continued.
Critics of Harris have pointed out that she did not trek to the southern border, which has seen unprecedented crossings due to the typical seasonal rise, as well as pandemic debottling.
On Tuesday, just six days away from her first international trip as vice president, Biden made the headlines when he said he was assigning her voting issues.
“I ask Vice President Harris to assist and lead these efforts, in addition to her many other responsibilities,” Biden said. “With her leadership and your support, we will win again, I promise you. But it will take a lot of work.’
Harris repeated the order in a statement: “President Joe Biden has asked me to lead our administration’s efforts to protect the fundamental right to vote for all Americans.”
“In the coming days and weeks, I will engage the American people, and I will work with voting rights groups, community organizations and the private sector to strengthen and improve voting rights efforts across the country,” Harris continued.
“And we will also work with members of Congress to advance these bills,” the vice president said.
That means Harris will be back in her old stomping grounds — the U.S. Senate — as Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has already pledged to give House-passed HR 1, the For the People Act, a vote when Congress returns from its Memorial Day hiatus later this month.
“And June should be a month of action on Capitol Hill,” the president said, before setting out his political realities.
“I hear all the people on TV saying, ‘Why isn’t Biden taking care of this?’ Well, because Biden only has the majority of affectively four votes in the House and a tie in the Senate, with two members of the Senate voting more with my Republican friends,” Biden said, with a slight jab at Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema.
Both Manchin and Sinema have opposed changing Senate filibuster rules, which would see Senate leader Mitch McConnell and Republican senators block any piece of legislation that doesn’t have 60 votes.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki clarified on Wednesday that Biden’s comments about the duo were not intended as a dig.
Last week, however, the filibuster tanked a House passed bill that would have created a 9/11-style commission to investigate the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.
Democrats were unable to find four additional Republicans to vote in his favor and break the GOP’s filibuster.
Biden vowed that the For the People Act would not suffer the same fate.
Harris also has broadband internet and space in her portfolio.
Harris was also recently criticized for not doing enough to help India, her mother’s native country, as it has seen a massive COVID-19 spike.