New reports from Politico suggest Vice President Kamala Harris’ office is not a healthy environment.
Interviews with over 20 current and former vice presidential aides, officials and associates described it as a “blame culture” and being “treated like sh*t.” The report suggests issues are stemming from top officials like the experienced Democratic strategist, Tina Flournoy, Harris’ chief of staff.
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Politico writes, “Aides and allies said Flournoy, in an apparent effort to protect Harris, has instead created an insular environment where ideas are ignored or met with harsh dismissals and decisions are dragged out. Often, they said, she refuses to take responsibility for delicate issues and blames staffers for the negative results that ensue.”
However, some individuals working for Harris defended her and top officials like Flourney. “Look, [Tina Flourney’s] strong, she’s intelligent, she’s driven, and she expects strong, intelligent, driven people around her,” said Daughtry. “But some people may find strong, driven, smart people intimidating, but I think that’s more projection than reality because that’s just not Tina’s intent or style.”
Excerpts of interviews suggested the VP herself was to blame. “‘People are thrown under the bus from the very top, there are short fuses and it’s an abusive environment,’ said another person with direct knowledge of how Harris’ office is run. ‘It’s not a healthy environment and people often feel mistreated. It’s not a place where people feel supported but a place where people feel treated like s—.’”
The Vice President’s recent visit to the El Paso border was allegedly scheduled last minute and left her employees “blindsided.” Those in charge of organizing travel and publicly announcing the visit were “scrambling.” Struggles within the Harris operations are not unique to her role as VP. One former Harris Senate aide described working for her as “managed chaos,” noting, “The boss’ expectations won’t always be predictable.” A friend of Harris said, “When people feed her anxieties, all of that goes away … exacerbating the bad tendencies.”