Making someone as extreme as Kamala Harris a president-in-waiting is a bone-chilling prospect. No conservative or moderate should support it.
NRPLUS MEMBER ARTICLE I part company with some of my colleagues in that I don’t find Kamala Harris personally irritating. She’s attractive, youthful (she looks 15 years younger than her actual age, which is 55), and presentable. Her voice is neither a hectoring Midwestern drone (like Hillary Clinton’s) nor does it have the prissy professorial condescension of Elizabeth Warren’s. Her voice is fine, albeit a bit nasal.
It’s Harris’s policies that repel me. While I tend to view “Flight 93” thinking as hyperbolic, she does present a major threat to the constitutional order, to the economy, and to established norms. Moreover, she stands an excellent chance of succeeding Biden to the presidency should their ticket be elected in November. Kamala Harris poses a far greater danger to the Republic than Hillary Clinton. Anyone who calls himself a conservative should recognize this.
Harris’s platform is so far to the left of the mainstream that she makes Mrs. Clinton, a hero to the Left for several decades, look moderate. Clinton, for instance, said that illegal immigrants should be allowed to purchase health insurance on the Obamacare exchanges but without subsidies, which is Joe Biden’s position (according to his platform, though Biden himself often seems confused about this when publicly discussing the issue). Kamala Harris backs a single-payer federal health-care plan and did not equivocate when asked whether illegal immigrants would be covered: “Let me just be very clear about this. I am opposed to any policy that would deny in our country any human being from access to public safety, public education or public health, period.” This would mark an end to the distinction between people who are here legally and illegally and would signal to the world’s poor that it’s time to make their break for the United States. Harris also compared Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers to the Ku Klux Klan and said we should decriminalize unauthorized border crossings. (“I would not make it a crime punishable by jail. It should be a civil enforcement issue but not a criminal enforcement issue.”)
So: a parking ticket for coming in illegally? How is that to be seen as anything other than an engraved invitation to would-be migrants? In a Senate hearing, Harris suggested ICE should be more of a welcome wagon than an enforcement agency: “Are you aware,” she said to Ronald Vitiello, acting director of ICE, “that there is a perception that ICE is administering its power in a way that is causing fear and intimidation, particularly among immigrants? And specifically among immigrants coming from Mexico and Central America?” Neither the culture nor the federal fisc is prepared for the massive disruption likely to be unleashed if an American president so encourages illegal migration. Way back in 1994, when the Democratic Party was still concerned with what the center of the country thought and felt, Mrs. Clinton said in a House hearing that her Hillarycare plan would not be available to illegal entrants: “We do not want to do anything to encourage more illegal immigration into this country,” she said, adding that “we know now that too many people come in for medical care, as it is.”
Kamala Harris laughed uproariously at Joe Biden’s suggestion that a president is constrained by the Constitution from ruling by executive fiat. This clip ought to nauseate any constitutionalist: Even Hillary Clinton would not have gone so far as to treat the Constitution as a joke. Harris, moreover, has the most extreme position on abortion imaginable. And when an undercover journalist, David Daleiden, made the abortion lobby look bad by accurately exposing the inner doings of Planned Parenthood executives, she brought the full force of the state down on his head, raiding his home and launching a vendetta that would result in nine felony charges against him. Former Obama speechwriter and leftist pundit Jon Favreau calls it “hilarious” that anyone thinks Harris is a moderate because “she has one of the most liberal records in the U.S. Senate.”
And as a senator, she fully backed the Green New Deal, which is so important to her that she would destroy the filibuster tradition to enact it. This is a breathtakingly extreme piece of legislation that aims to rewire the U.S. economy along social-justice lines. Harris would end fracking and quickly zero out carbon-based fuels, leading to catastrophic energy-price hikes and dizzying costs. One aspect of the proposal, to convert the 83 percent of the U.S. energy supply that is carbon-based to renewables, would cost $2.9 trillion all by itself — nearly a full year’s federal tax revenue. The cost of the whole package is estimated at anywhere from $18 trillion to $93 trillion — enormous sums that would require comparably enormous tax hikes. That a President Harris would ram this disastrous bill through with only 50 Senate votes (plus, presumably, a tie-breaking vote from her own vice president) is more alarming than anything Hillary Clinton ever proposed.
The Democrats’ guiding strategic precept is: Never let a crisis go to waste. In their minds, the personality and behavior of Donald Trump constitute a crisis, and they may find broad agreement on that point from the electorate. But Biden’s selection of Harris indicates that the party is prepared to overstep any mandate it receives yet again, as it did in 2009–2010, the period of unasked-for Democratic hyperactivity that led to the election of a Republican to replace Ted Kennedy in the Senate and the famous “shellacking” in the midterms. Making someone as extreme as Kamala Harris a president-in-waiting is a bone-chilling prospect. No conservative or moderate should fail to recognize the danger.