Has the White House dumped Kamala?

As Joe Biden's public approval tanks in the polls, his sidekick Kamala Harris is also looking pretty wretched.

She underwent 'repackaging' from swamp consultants who specialize in "crisis messaging," to very miserable results as she posed for videos with kids, coming off phonier than ever.

And more important, she may have been frozen out of all serious decision-making as an obviously giggling lightweight.

There's this item, reported by Fox News:

Several top members of the Biden administration were in Mexico City on Friday for a meeting with Mexican officials regarding security along the U.S.-Mexico border. But Vice President Kamala Harris wasn't among them.

Harris, whom President Biden appointed in March to manage the U.S. response to the migrant crisis along the border, went to New Jersey instead.

Attending Friday's high-level talks in Mexico's capital were Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland. 

Ken Salazar, a former U.S. senator from Colorado who now serves as the U.S. ambassador to Mexico, also attended.

"Today's High-Level Security Dialogue marks an important new phase in the US-Mexico security partnership," Mayorkas tweeted Friday. "We will work together under a new framework to guide our joint efforts, and work toward our shared goals of security and prosperity for our two nations."

Those are heavy hitters, and they have a multipronged agenda with Mexico. They'll be talking about extradition treaties, migrant arrangements, gun-running, and how to fix up Central America so its citizens will want to live there. CNN has a report on the agenda to be discussed in these high-level talks. Harris is Biden's border czar, and somehow, she's not important enough to be there.

PJMedia columnist Rick Moran argues that Harris may be skipping out of this heavy-hitter meeting basically because she's so lazy, which is one possibility.

But the other one is that she was disinvited. The big boys have moved in and pushed Instagram-obsessed Kamala aside as a nuisance who'll get underfoot.

I lean to 'disinvited' at this point, given various circumstances.

One, on Sept. 9, according to an Associated Press report, Harris actually was the one who announced the high-level talks, surely implying she would be in them.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States and Mexico restarted high-level economic talks Thursday after a four-year pause as top advisers to presidents Joe Biden and Andrés Manuel López Obrador expressed eagerness to make headway on issues important to both nations such as infrastructure, trade and migration.

The talks were launched by Biden in 2013 when he was vice president under Barack Obama but were halted under President Donald Trump, whose hard-line immigration policies complicated the United States’ relationship with its top trade partner.

Vice President Kamala Harris opened Thursday’s meeting with brief remarks in which she sought to emphasize the Biden administration’s desire for warmer relations, referring to the Mexican delegation as “our friends, our partners.” She also stressed the importance of improving relations in a moment when dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, cyber threats and supply chain disruptions are high priorities for both nations.

“We are very excited about this next stage of the relationship and partnership between the United States and Mexico,” said Harris, who visited Mexico City in June for talks with López Obrador. “Mexico is our closest neighbor … and a strategic partner and one of our most important economic relationships. Mexico’s economic stability is in the interest of the United States.”

Now comes the meeting, and somehow no Harris. The one name that appears to have been added since the original announcement of all those heavy White House cabinet hitters is that of Attorney General Merrick Garland, which is interesting, given that Biden is so pleased with him for doing his bidding. The other two bigs, Mayorkas and Blinken, are also favorites of Biden, given their Susan Rice-like capacity to lie and state with a straight face that black is white.

But Harris is nowhere to be found in that meeting that she gushed all about to the AP in that September report. She's out visiting daycare centers in New Jersey, a first lady's job, seemingly filling in for the actual first lady, who's been seen behind the chief executive's desk.

Two, the meeting agenda most certainly does address what Harris called the "root causes" of illegal immigration. According to the Associated Press's Oct. 7 report:

López Obrador said Thursday his government would continue to press the United States to increase investment in poor countries during the meetings.

Mexico's president is scheduled to meet Friday with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and Attorney General Merrick Garland.

For months, López Obrador has used every opportunity to press the U.S. to address the root causes of migration, especially from Central America. It is a priority shared by the Biden administration with Vice President Kamala Harris in charge of exploring what the U.S. could do.

“The immigration phenomenon, the immigration problem has to be addressed by creating opportunities for work, well-being in the places where the migrants originate so that before they leave those towns and abandon their families, risking it all, they have the option to work and be happy where they were born, where their people are, where their cultures are,” López Obrador said. “That is our focus.”

Wasn't "root causes" what was in Kamala Harris's wheel-well? Her staff issued a cursory report in late July on the matter, supposedly after a ton of research, which included failed meetings with Mexico's and Guatemala's leaders, and a cursory visit to the El Paso border with Mexico, where the migrant crisis is relatively insignificant.

She's not going to be in Mexico City to discuss root causes among the heavyweights at a time when it matters.

 Worse still, she actually presented work on supposedly drawing in foreign investment to Central America through her own "Call to Action" initiative with a private group partnership with apparently two employees based on LinkedIn profiles called Partnership for Central America. At the time that was announced, it appeared (to me at least) to be a Potemkin maneuver, given the paucity of job-creating investments on offer and the tiny number of corporations (just 12) willing to step onboard.

As late as Sept. 5 or 6, they were crowing about this work:

WASHINGTON, Sept. 5, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Vice President Kamala Harris spoke to Ajay Banga, Executive Chairman of Mastercard and Board Member of the Partnership for Central America (PCA) and Jonathan Fantini Porter, PCA's Executive Director, about their work in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras and applauded their efforts to increase private sector investment and improve livelihoods in the region in partnership with the Department of State, USAID, and other agencies. The Vice President shared her vision for the Root Causes Strategy and the Call to Action she announced in May, updates from her trip to Guatemala and Mexico in June, and discussed ways to continue working together. In addition, they also discussed her trip to Singapore and Vietnam.

As of today, the website shows ... no apparent actual work. No extra corporations have signed on in all these months despite their call for them to join, and nothing on the website has been updated since late July. What happened to that? Was it all just for show?

Now the Big Boys of the Biden administration are taking the investment issue into their own hands, and neither Kamala nor her stagnant investment group of still-12 corporations seems to be needed.

To be sure, Moran's theory that it's Kamala who's shirking her duty is a possibility, too. He lays out a very trenchant reason here:

But clearly, Harris has her own agenda and it doesn’t include taking the responsibility for the political tar baby at the border. As Biden’s position as president erodes and the murmurs of a health issue grow, Harris wants to be ready to answer the call no matter when it comes.

But on the other hand, Harris is known to have annoyed the president of Mexico on her phone calls and in-person meetings -- to the point of which he apparently released 16,000 Haitian migrants to the Texas border to teach the Biden administration a lesson. CIS National Security Fellow Todd Bensman broke that story, and I commented about that as AMLO's revenge for something, here. Could Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez-Obrador have done the disinviting of Harris, given how she annoyed him earlier, not wanting a flyweight pol unwilling to do her homework to waste his precious time? That also seems possible.

Her bad relations with Jill Biden are yet another possibility for the reason as to why she's out.

Whatever the case, Kamala seems to be kicked to the curb. Some border czar she is, not allowed into the big boy room where there's no giggling or Instagramming allowed. When the big talks come, and the policy decisions are made, she's (unlike what Joe Biden says) not even allowed in that room.

Image: Gage Skidmore, via Flickr // CC BY-SA 2.0

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