Vice President Kamala Harris has acknowledged the possibility of assuming presidential duties, referencing ongoing concerns about President Joe Biden’s age and frailty as he approaches his 81st birthday in November.
In her remarks to the Associated Press in Jakarta, India, Harris expressed her readiness to step into the role of president should circumstances require it.
This statement serves as a reminder that an important part of the Vice President’s obligations is the understanding that they may need to take over at any point. The current state of the presidency thus remains uncertain.
“Joe Biden is going to be fine, so that is not going to come to fruition,” Harris insisted. “But let us also understand that every vice president — every vice president — understands that when they take the oath they must be very clear about the responsibility they may have to take over the job of being president.” She added, “I’m no different.”
Since President Biden was inaugurated in January 2021, his age and health have been topics of intense debate. At 78 years old, he is the oldest person ever to assume the U.S. presidency, raising important questions about the capacity of older individuals to fulfill its demands.
Meanwhile, Vice President Harris has made it clear that she is prepared to step in should the need arise, potentially changing the dynamics of this administration and having lasting effects on American politics and policy-making.
Since he was sworn into office, President Biden has experienced multiple falls, most notably while boarding Air Force One.
Widely documented and shared on media platforms, the incident showed him tripping three times while ascending the stairs.
This has caused concern among many about his age and physical fitness for office. In response to these occurrences, it has been observed that he now uses the shorter built-in stairs leading to the belly of the plane for greater stability.
Aside from this incident, Biden is also reported to have nearly fallen while climbing steps during a visit to Poland and stumbled on a sandbag at a Colorado graduation ceremony.
Despite these events, senior White House officials have assured citizens that he is in good health. Nevertheless, people continue to debate whether or not such incidents should be cause for alarm.