Vice President Kamala Harris holds calls with foreign leaders without Biden, proving that she will play an important part in the White House.
According to a White House readout, Harris hosts called with foreign leaders without Biden last Monday. Harris took a call with French President EmmanuelKamala Harris Holds Calls With Foreign Leaders Without Biden Macron, where she expressed her commitment to strengthening bilateral ties.
— sexton_je (@sexton_je) February 17, 2021
The statement read, “Vice President Harris and President Macron agreed on the need for close bilateral and multilateral cooperation to address COVID-19, climate change, and support democracy at home and around the world.” In addition to this, the White House also stated the two political leaders “also discussed numerous regional challenges, including those in the Middle East and Africa, and the need to confront them together.”
Although Biden knows many of the world leaders during his tenure as the Vice President in the Obama administration, he has not dealt extensively with the French President who was elected in 2017.
As noted by the Council on Foreign Relations, the vice president’s role in foreign policy has grown since the mid-20th century. For instance, Dick Cheney is recognized for shaping George W. Bush’s foreign policy priorities. Biden, on the other hand, managed relations with several key countries during the Obama administration.
VP Kamala Harris is hosting calls with foreign leaders on Biden’s behalf
Many have expressed concerns about Biden's physical strength and mental acuityhttps://t.co/ugfKg8nCYH
— Tarentaal (@TARENTAAL12) February 17, 2021
However, the movements of Harris created repeated concerns about Biden’s ability to carry out his role during his four years in office, considering that he is the oldest president ever elected at the age of 78.
Last year, Defense Secretary Robert Gates raised the question of whether older people, such as Biden, still have the mental acuity or energy necessary for a President.
GOP House Representative Greg Murphy, who is a medical doctor and urologist, repeatedly made statements that Biden has dementia.
Murphy said, “Part of my job is to look, listen and make assessments.” He added, “He [Biden] does have signs of dementia.”
The doctor and House Representative also added that Biden is not “physically up or mentally up for the job,” citing Biden’s speech patterns. “I don’t think one has to be a rocket scientist to see it,” Murphy said.
Fact check: NC's Greg Murphy on Joe Biden and dementia …https://t.co/sYLazx2V2l
About 5% to 8% people over 65 have some form of dementia, according to UNC. Murphy questioned why Biden would not take a dementia test. Trump has bragged about taking and passing a cognitive test
— Royce Stevens (@rfoxfire) September 19, 2020
Meanwhile, Biden faced a backlash for not reaching out to the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu.
During a press briefing last Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki reassured the press that a call would take place “soon,” despite admitting that she could not pinpoint an exact date yet.
The White House press secretary also added that Netanyahu would be the first leader in the region to receive Biden’s call and reaffirmed that Israel is an “important ally” to the U.S.
Last week, Israel’s former ambassador to the United Nations, Danny Danon, tweeted a list of 10 countries that he said had gotten a call from Biden. “Might it now be time to call the leader of #Israel, the closest ally of the #US?” Danon posted. Psaki at the time promised the president’s silence was “not an intentional diss.”
“Israel is, of course, an ally,” Psaki says. “Israel is a country where we have an important strategic security relationship, and our team is fully engaged.”
So far, Biden has already made a series of phone calls to American allies worldwide, including leaders in Canada, Mexico, Britain, France, Japan, Germany, and South Korea. He also talked to some of America’s foes as Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russia’s Vladimir Putin.