In the old days of the USSR, Kremlinologists used to figure out who was in and who was out in the power struggles at the top by looking at the reviewing stand for the May Day military parades. Proximity to the leader was the criterion. With today’s Democrats, an equally shadowy gaggle of power-hungry operatives controlled by hidden hands, we must rely on signals coming from a few semi-official media organs, but preeminently the New York Times.

That’s why a major article in the big circulation Sunday edition of the Times on Kamala Harris is so interesting.

After an introduction with some sympathy for the vice president, feigning balance, came this slap in the face from “dozens” of anonymous party sources “including some who helped put her on the party’s 2020 ticket”:

 But the painful reality for Ms. Harris is that in private conversations over the last few months, dozens of Democrats in the White House, on Capitol Hill and around the nation — including some who helped put her on the party’s 2020 ticket — said she had not risen to the challenge of proving herself as a future leader of the party, much less the country. Even some Democrats whom her own advisers referred reporters to for supportive quotes confided privately that they had lost hope in her.

It gets worse.

Through much of the fall, a quiet panic set in among key Democrats about what would happen if President Biden opted not to run for a second term. Most Democrats interviewed, who insisted on anonymity to avoid alienating the White House, said flatly that they did not think Ms. Harris could win the presidency in 2024. Some said the party’s biggest challenge would be finding a way to sideline her without inflaming key Democratic constituencies that would take offense.

There you have it. Power is the animating force of the Democrat party. Nothing else comes close to mattering as much, but that distant second place consideration is the identity-based constituencies: Blacks, women, sexual minorities, and Hispanics in particularly.

The action plan is clear: get Kamala off the ticket if Biden runs for re-eleciton, as appears increasingly probable.

Now with Mr. Biden appearing all but certain to run again, the concern over Ms. Harris has shifted to whether she will be a political liability for the ticket. Given that Mr. Biden at 80 is already the oldest president in American history, Republicans would most likely make Ms. Harris, who is 58, a prime attack line, arguing that a vote for Mr. Biden may in fact be a vote to put her in the Oval Office.

This article will help build a consensus among influential Democrats, the type that select or become delegates to nominating conventions, that Kamala must go. Some sort of face-saving position will be found for her, to be sure, up to and [God-forbid] including a nomination to a seat on the Supreme Court should one become vacant.


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