Vice President Kamala Harris’s communications director announced her resignation this week amidst reports of plummeting approval ratings and growing tensions between Harris and the rest of the Biden administration.
Ashley Etienne turned in her resignation and will leave Harris’s office next month, according to Fox News.
“Ashley is a valued member of the Vice President’s team, who has worked tirelessly to advance the goals of this administration,” a White House official said in a statement. “She is leaving the office in December to pursue other opportunities.”
Etienne was a longtime top adviser to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., serving as Pelosi’s communications director twice.
Harris’s office has been in turmoil in recent weeks as her approval ratings hit record low numbers. CNN reported last week that Harris’s team believes the Biden administration is intentionally leaving Harris out to dry, and that she isn’t being put in a position to succeed.
Harris’s camp is worried, for example, that the White House will choose Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg over her when it comes time to choose a 2024 nominee.
“It’s hard to miss the specific energy that the White House brings to defend a white man, knowing that Kamala Harris has spent almost a year taking a lot of the hits that the West Wing didn’t want to take themselves,” a former Harris aide said.
However, when asked this week whether she feels “misused or underused” by the Biden administration, Harris laughed in response.
“No, I don’t,” she said.
The White House has also denied that Harris is at odds with the administration, claiming she is a “valued” part of the team.
Recent polls show Harris’s approval ratings have dropped to 28%, which is even worse than Biden’s. The poll shows that 51% disapprove of the job she’s doing. The other 21% are undecided.