Kamala Harris’ Declining Approval Ratings Could Impact 2024 Election, Experts Say

by Gee NY

Kamala Harris’ approval ratings have continued to decline throughout 2023, raising concerns about the potential impact on the 2024 presidential election.

Political analysts suggest that her unpopularity may become a significant factor in the upcoming political landscape.

President Joe Biden, already committed to having Harris as his running mate in the 2024 Democratic nomination, faces challenges as only fringe Democrats have stepped forward to challenge the White House incumbent.

As reported by Newsweek, analysis by polling website 538, released on December 5, shows Harris’ net disapproval rating has surged by 7.4 percent since the beginning of the year, reaching 17.4. Over the same period, her approval dropped from 41.7 percent to 36.3 percent, while disapproval increased from 51.7 percent to 53.7 percent.

A separate polling compilation by The Los Angeles Times, published on December 12, gave Harris a net rating of -16 points.

This data indicated that 39 percent of registered voters had a favorable view of the vice president, while 55 percent viewed her unfavorably. Harris has not recorded a positive net approval rating since June 2021, and her popularity is notably lower than other former vice presidents at a similar point in their terms.

Harris’ declining popularity is gaining significance, especially considering widespread concerns about President Biden’s age (81), who would be 86 at the end of a potential second term. A survey conducted in August for Newsweek found that 75 percent of Democratic voters expressed concerns about Biden’s ability to function as president given his age.

Should Biden serve a full second term and then be forced to step down on health grounds, Harris would be his immediate successor. Critics argue that a vote for Biden is, in essence, a vote for Harris.

Thomas Gift, who leads the Centre on U.S. Politics at University College London, highlighted that Harris is the least popular first-term vice president since Dan Quayle. He emphasized that her historic unfavorability could impact the margins in the 2024 election.

On the other hand, Thomas Whalen, an associate professor teaching U.S. politics at Boston University, argued that it’s premature to write off Harris, considering the historical trend of vice presidents being perceived as unpopular, particularly during the first term.

As Harris grapples with declining approval ratings, the spotlight on her unpopularity raises questions about her potential role in the 2024 election.

While some experts emphasize the historical context of vice presidential unpopularity, others see her current ratings as a potential “difference-maker” on the margins in the upcoming election.

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