The White House has refuted claims of a significant divide between President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, according to reports. An anonymous report suggested that there was disagreement between Harris and Biden regarding the administration’s approach to the Israel-Hamas conflict. Allegedly, Harris is urging Biden to take a tougher stance on Israel and show more sympathy towards the Hamas terrorists in control of Gaza. However, White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby dismissed the report later that day.
Kirby vehemently denied any daylight between Harris and Biden on the issue. This reference to a lack of division between the president and vice president was consistently emphasized by various senior officials in response to the leaked report. During the White House press briefing on Thursday, Fox News reporter Peter Doocy questioned the NSC spokesman about this matter.
“John, why would somebody around here leak that the vice president is upset with the president about Gaza?”
Kirby initially attempted to laugh off the blunt question but then said:
“You’ve seen us, officially and on the record — not in a leak — refute the basic premise of the story that there’s some sort of daylight between the vice president and the president.
“I found the headline of the story interesting, that — that the vice president is pushing the White House to — you fill in the blank: X, Y, Z.
“Last I looked, the vice president is part of the White House.
“She’s part of the team,” he continued.
“And if she wasn’t offering her advice and counsel to the president on innumerable issues, that would be a story.
“Her job is to provide advice and counsel to the president.”
Doocy pressed the matter and asked about VP Harris:
“So, she does want President Biden to show more concern publicly for humanitarian damage, then, in Gaza?”
Kirby reiterated the “no daylight” talking point once more and said:
“I would say that the entire leadership team here in the administration, Peter, wants to see no civilian casualties; wants to see the Israelis be more surgical, more precise; wants to see that humanitarian aid is increased into Gaza.”
The NSC spokesperson proceeded to commend Harris for being regarded by Biden as a genuine collaborator and a significant figure in the field of foreign policy. She is valued for her honesty, knowledge, intelligence, and her willingness to express her true opinions to him. The Politico report, released on Thursday, referred to three anonymous sources who claimed that Vice President Harris had been urging President Biden to publicly demonstrate more concern and sensitivity towards the suffering of Palestinians in Gaza.
She is also advocating for Biden to take a tougher stance on Israeli leaders, establish plans for the aftermath of the conflict, and actively pursue a long-term peace and a two-state solution. In comparison to Biden, Harris appears to align herself more closely with the progressive wing of the Democratic Party’s voter base, which holds a more anti-Israel/pro-Hamas stance.
The report suggests that there may be some differences between Harris and Biden due to their contrasting positions. However, Harris’ press secretary, Kirsten Allen, stated that there is no disagreement between the president and the vice president, and they are aligned on the most important issues.
She also warned, “I would caution the media about citing anonymous sources in the ‘orbit’ about sensitive national security conversations between the president and vice president that take place in the Oval Office.”
National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan echoed the sentiment that there is no discrepancy in their stance, reiterating the “no daylight” talking point. This came as a response to inquiries regarding Vice President Harris’ recent remarks, which were notably critical of Israel, in contrast to President Biden’s more conciliatory language concerning the nation’s right to defend itself. Politico reported that Sullivan emphasized the unity of their position by stating, “There’s no daylight on that.”
An unnamed senior administration official told the outlet, “From Day 1, the president, the vice president, and their advisers have been aligned and adamant that humanitarian aid must be provided, civilians must be protected, and we must remain committed to a Palestinian state,” and was adamant that “the president and vice president have been consistent in public and private about these policy priorities.”