CNN commentators Bakari Sellers and Evan Osnos criticized their own outlet’s reporting on Vice President Kamala Harris early Monday.
A CNN article headlined “Exasperation and dysfunction: Inside Kamala Harris’ frustrating starts as vice president,” written by Edward-Isaac Dovere and Jasmine Wright, detailed the alleged growing frustrations between West Wing aides and Harris regarding the lack of leadership positions she is assigned with.
CNN spoke with several admin officials, Harris aides, advisors and operatives. The aides and several other staff are reportedly concerned that Harris is being sidelined.
“Few of the insiders who spoke with CNN think she’s being well-prepared for whichever role it will be. Harris is struggling with a rocky relationship with some parts of the White House, while long-time supporters feel abandoned and see no coherent public sense of what she’s done or been trying to do as vice president,” the piece read.
“I have a larger issue with the tone and tenor by which Kamala Harris is covered, and I think we saw that in this article,”Sellers said.
Sellers also said he has “to push back heavily” and “throw a little cold water” on the article for their coverage of Harris’ performance in France.
“Yet this article, the only thing they mentioned about that French trip was the right-wing trope that somehow she was utilizing a French accent and saying ‘thee’ instead of ‘the.’ So when you have these articles come out it puts a lot of us in a defensive posture because we see that a lot of people are treating Kamala Harris the same way they treated Hillary Clinton, which is attempting to, end her political career, in a death by million cuts.” (RELATED: Meghan McCain Questions Kamala Harris’s Apparent Attempt At A French Accent In Paris)
Harris arrived in Paris Tuesday to ease tensions between the U.S. and France after a negotiation was settled with Australia and the U.K. on a submarine deal, causing France to recall ambassadors to both the U.S. and Australia.
Sellers said that there is frustration since they want Harris to have a larger public appearance rather than be stuck in the “Washington bubble.” He said Harris and Secretary of Treasury Pete Buttigieg are “the future of the Democratic Party.”
Osnos predicted that Harris can play a significant role in determining the outcomes for Democrats in the upcoming 2022 midterm elections, adding that she has the opportunity to use her voice “to speak for parts of the party.”
“She’s been kind of kept under wraps here, close to town, close to Washington, and we’re now entering a period into the build-up of the 2022 midterm elections where you can get her out on the road. You can have her doing things that can establish both more of her own individual voice and also show that she can speak for parts of the party that are not getting heard everyday.”
CNN’s article also said that Harris is not being put in leadership positions, with some White House aides saying that they regret she did not request for “well-defined positions.” She reportedly did not want to be appointed to address root causes of migration, where she received widespread backlash for delaying her trip to the border.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki defended Harris in a Sunday tweet by pointing to her leadership on voting rights and addressing the root causes of the migration surge at the U.S.-Mexico border.
“For anyone who needs to hear it. @VP is not only a vital partner to @POTUS but a bold leader who has taken on key, important challenges facing the country—from voting rights to addressing root causes of migration to expanding broadband,” Psaki said.
Harris’ job approval ratings have dropped to just 28% in a Nov. 8 USA Today poll due to the growing public upheaval over the administration’s handling towards the surge of inflation and supply chain crisis.