Here’s a nightmare scenario for those hoping for a return to competent White House leadership, and it involves Vice President Kamala Harris.
President Joe Biden will reach the halfway mark of his first term on Jan. 20 and for all intents and purposes has become a lame duck already, thanks to his advanced age, which he is certainly showing, and the Republicans taking over the House of Representatives.
Who really believes Biden is fit to serve a second term? And with House Republicans gearing up to investigate potential Biden family corruption based on Hunter Biden’s infamous “laptop from hell,” the question is if he will even be able to finish his first term.
That’s to say nothing of the special counsel appointed Thursday to look into Biden’s mishandling of classified documents from his time as vice president.
If Biden were forced to leave office due to impeachment, ill health or lack of mental fitness, Harris would become president.
Mike Davis, president of the Article III Project and a former Senate Judiciary Committee staffer, pointed out Wednesday that if Biden were to leave office after Jan. 20, the day he was sworn in two years ago, Harris would complete the remainder of his term and be eligible to run for two more terms after that.
“Per the 22nd Amendment, if President Biden leaves office after January 20, 2023, a President Harris could still run for two 4-year terms (10 years total),” Davis tweeted.
“If Biden left office before then, Harris could only run for one 4-year term (6 years total),” he added.
Per the 22nd Amendment, if President Biden leaves office after January 20, 2023, a President Harris could still run for two 4-year terms (10 years total).
If Biden left office before then, Harris could only run for one 4-year term (6 years total).https://t.co/P6SaYiaozK
— 🇺🇸 Mike Davis 🇺🇸 (@mrddmia) January 11, 2023
The 22nd Amendment, ratified in 1951, was passed in the aftermath of President Franklin Roosevelt’s presidency. The former New York governor was elected to four terms as president starting in 1932. He died in office in 1945.
The amendment placed a two-term limit on the presidency and stipulated that serving more than two years of someone else’s term counts as a full term. However, serving less than two years does not bar that person from running for president twice more.
For example, when John F. Kennedy was assassinated in the third year of his presidency in 1963, Vice President Lyndon Johnson stepped in and finished the last year-plus of that term and successfully ran for election himself the following year.
He was eligible to run again in 1968, but he had become very unpopular by that point due to the Vietnam War and did not seek a second full term.
By contrast, when President Richard Nixon resigned in August 1974 over a year after being re-elected in 1972, Vice President Gerald Ford became president and served the last two-plus years of Nixon’s term.
Ford ran for election and narrowly lost to Democrat Jimmy Carter in 1976, but had he won, he would not have been eligible to run again in 1980 because he had already served over two years of Nixon’s term.
The chances of Biden leaving or being forced from office before Jan. 20 seem pretty remote, so conceivably Harris could become president sometime this year and then be eligible to run for two more terms.
A Harvard-Harris poll conducted last month shows her as the Democratic frontrunner for 2024 by a good margin if Biden is not in the mix.
However, the survey shows her losing to potential Republican nominee Donald Trump by 6 percentage points. She would also lose to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis by 5 points.
Of course, as we all know, especially after the last midterm election, polls are not ballots, nor the Electoral College tally, so we’ll see.
But it is possible, if Biden leaves office after Jan. 20, that the country could be led by Kamala Harris for the next 10 years.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.