As the House’s attempts to elect the next Speaker have dominated the news this week, Vice President Kamala Harris was busy preparing to conduct the Tuesday swearing-in ceremony in the Senate. The Constitution also designates the vice president to act as the president of the Senate. Harris exercised her authority to order every senator and guest to provide negative COVID-19 tests to enjoy the privilege of posing for a photo-op with her.
Harris’s office sent out a notice to senators in advance of Tuesday’s ceremony advising them: “Anyone over two years of age who will interact with the vice president must receive a negative test 24 hours prior to interaction. This policy applies regardless of vaccination status.”
Kamala Harris is demanding a negative COVID test if newly-elected senators want a photo taken with her during swearing-in ceremony on January 3 –
Who would want a picture with her? 🤣🤣😂https://t.co/HDjWtCKd1S
— Forever Trumper (@FanaTeresafana) January 3, 2023
It was unclear why Harris was mandating COVID-19 testing as the fears over the pandemic have largely waned over the last year. She hosted a packed Christmas party at her official vice presidential residence last month at which the celebrities and politicians in attendance appeared to have little concern about “social distancing.”
Harris may not be able to afford to be too picky about admittance to her staged photo opportunities. She is so unpopular even among her conference that the Democratic National Committee cut the price for a staged photo with her by two-thirds.
Harris’s current job approval rating among American adults sits at a meager 38%.
Tuesday’s up-close-and-personal photos of senators and guests with Harris were taken after she conducted the swearing-in on the Senate floor.
That’s some crew there. https://t.co/Hbd0vtoH5Z
— Lenny Dykstra (@LennyDykstra) January 4, 2023
When each new Congressional session begins every two years, the Senate has an official swearing-in ceremony for all senators jointly in the main chamber of the upper house. Afterward, there is a separate reenactment in which senators can take photos with the vice president. In addition, senators often invite family members and close friends to participate in the personal ceremony and pose for pictures.
One aide told reporters that some senators are “so upset they might not participate in the photo ceremony.” The source added: “Senators’ children and grandchildren should not be subjected to this insanity so Kamala can pretend to care about fighting coronavirus.”