The White House on Tuesday elaborated on the use of the term “Biden-Harris administration” as a way to emphasize the importance of the vice president’s role.
When asked by a reporter about whether there are deeper reasons behind the “rebranding” of the term—from the “Biden administration” to the “Biden-Harris administration” on the White House website, press secretary Jen Psaki asked back, “Is it a rebranding?”
The reporter responded, “When you look on the website, it’s, you know, not—it’s ‘Biden-Harris,’ and that’s not been necessarily the norm in the past. Is there any message being sent by that? Or what’s meant to be—what can be extrapolated from it?”
“I would take from it that Vice President Harris is an important partner,” Psaki responded. “She’s the first in the room and the last in the room on most occasions, if she’s in town and not traveling around the country. It’s a reflection of the important role that she will play moving forward.”
The “Administration” tab on the White House’s website leads to a page headlined “The Biden-Harris Administration.”
“Thousands of people work in the West Wing, the East Wing, the Cabinet, and the Executive Office of the President. Learn more about the people who carry out the priorities of the Biden-Harris Administration,” the description reads. The page features images of President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, as well as First Lady Jill Biden and second gentleman Doug Emhoff.
Likewise, the “Priorities” tab on the White House’s website leads to a page headlined “The Biden-Harris Administration Immediate Priorities.” Meanwhile, the White House’s Twitter page reads, “Welcome to the Biden-Harris White House!”
The move by the current administration is a break from its recent predecessors, because neither of the past two administrations had used headlines that featured the vice president’s name.
The White House under the Trump administration had a headline on its website that read “The Administration” with accompanying photos of then-President Donald Trump, Melania Trump, then-Vice President Mike Pence, and second lady Karen Pence.
The Obama administration’s White House website similarly only had a headline that read “The Administration.” However, it did feature a similar description to that of the current White House website: “Thousands of people work in the West Wing, the East Wing, the Cabinet, and the Executive Office of the President. Learn more about the people who carry out the priorities of the Obama-Biden Administration.”
“Now when President Harris and I took a virtual tour of a vaccination center in Arizona, not long ago, one of the nurses on that tour injecting people, giving vaccinations, said that each shot was like administering a dose of hope. A dose of hope. That’s how she phrased it,” Biden said on March 18 at the White House.
Biden also previously referred to Harris as the “president-elect” in December 2020.
Referring to vaccine shots for the CCP virus, Biden said on Dec. 29, 2020, “I took it to instill public confidence in the vaccine. President-elect Harris took hers today for the same reason.”
Biden announced last week that he had selected Harris to lead efforts in talks with Mexico and the Northern Triangle nations of Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador, which needs help in “stemming the migration” to the southern border, Biden said. He added that Harris is the “most qualified person to do it.”
He also said, “she’s leading the effort because I think the best thing to do is to put someone who, when he or she speaks, they don’t have to wonder about is that where the President is. When she speaks, she speaks for me. Doesn’t have to check with me. She knows what she’s doing, and I hope we can move this along.”
Psaki clarified on Monday that Harris will look at what the “root causes” of illegal immigration and “not the border,” noting that there was “some confusion” over the matter.
Harris recently spoke to Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei over matters to address the “root causes” of illegal immigration to the United States. She has, since taking office as vice president, made some solo calls to a number of world leaders, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, and French President Emmanuel Macron, suggesting that she may continue engage in foreign policy in the future.