The Kamala Harris Staff Departure Controversy Is Worse Than We Originally Thought

For Kamala Harris, 2021 started off as a great year: She made history when she was sworn in as the nation's first female, first Black, and first Asian vice president of the United States. However, it seems like things have gone on a downhill slope since then, as she's been marred with controversies and negative headlines ever since. 

Harris has been criticized for not doing enough about the border crisis, as detailed by CNN, and can't seem to shake off the devastatingly low approval ratings from the public, according to a poll conducted in part by USA Today. When NBC's Lester Holt asked the vice president if she had plans to visit the border, she apparently stumbled when she said, "At some point. We are going to the border. We've been to the border. This whole things about the border, we've been to the border." Harris has also been forced to defend herself after some reports suggested there was friction between her and President Joe Biden behind the scenes. 

To make matters even worse, there's speculation that something has been going on behind closed doors at Harris' office that has prompted a mass exodus of her staff — particularly with the recent departure of her senior advisor, Symone Sanders.

Kamala Harris seems to have a hard time retaining her staff

As more of Kamala Harris' staffers leave their positions — including top advisor Symone Sanders and former communications chief Ashley Etienne, who was the first person to call it quits — rumors about what is going on behind the scenes aren't helping.

Back in July, the Daily Mail reported that the vice president held a special party for her staff at the Naval Observatory after claims were made that they were given abysmal treatment. A month prior to that, one source close to the situation suggested that working in Harris' office was "not a healthy environment," according to Politico. An insider put it this way, "People are thrown under the bus from the very top" and " ... often feel mistreated." The Washington Post spoke to a staff member who had since left; this person claimed employees had to endure "soul-destroying criticism" from Harris.

But others countered these claims, and Symone Sanders told the Washington Post that her own decision to leave had nothing to do with any drama or negative feelings; instead, she needed a breather from such a pressure-filled job during the pandemic.

Still, another anonymous source claimed to the Post that one of the problems staffers had with Harris is her alleged behavior towards her employees if she seems "unprepared" in public. The insider claims that though the vice president allegedly chooses not to look at "briefing materials" the staff gives her, she reprimands them if the consequences are that she doesn't seem informed while speaking at press events.