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Kamala Harris Stands in for Biden Again, Takes Another Solo Call with World Leader

Takes one-on-one phone call with Norway's Prime Minister Erna Solberg

 on 10th March 2021 @ 7.00pm
kamala harris has stepped in for joe biden again to speak with a foreign leader © press
Kamala Harris has stepped in for Joe Biden again to speak with a foreign leader

Kamala Harris has stood in for Joe Biden to speak with a foreign leader yet again, according to reports.

On Tuesday, Harris spoke with Norway's Prime Minister Erna Solberg, independent of Joe Biden.

During her solo call with PM Solberg, Harris "affirmed her commitment to deepening the strong alliance between Norway and the United States," according to a readout of the call. 

"The Vice President thanked the Prime Minister for Norway’s close security partnership with the United States and generous contributions to development and health security efforts around the world," readout adds.

This is far from the first time the VP has stepped in to take calls with world leaders "on behalf" of Biden, however.

Harris previously took calls alone with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and French President Emanuel Macron, as well as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, shortly after Biden put in a call to France and Canada's leaders himself.

president trump personally welcomed norway s prime minister erna solberg during her official visit in january 2018 © press
President Trump personally welcomed Norway's Prime Minister Erna Solberg during her official visit in January 2018

Less than two months into the new administration, Harris’s frequent solo calls with world leaders signal that she’ll engage deeply even in foreign policy, though her experience has been almost entirely in the domestic realm, according to Fox News.

Leaders around the world could view the vice president as Biden’s heir-apparent and be eager to build a relationship.

"She will be seen by everyone as a potential president in waiting," one European ambassador told Politico in February. 

"Much more than in previous presidencies."

She also participated in the first bilateral meeting of the new administration, between the U.S. and Canada, an opportunity not afforded to Biden during his time in Harris' job. 

Under President Trump, Vice President Mike Pence occasionally spoke with foreign leaders directly by phone, but the president preferred to call them himself.

During his final year in office, Pence took no calls with foreign leaders, but in 2019 he spoke with Trudeau, along with the presidents of Ukraine and Colombia.

In 2018, he spoke with Iraq’s prime minister and the president of Colombia for the first time, and in 2017 he spoke with the presidents of Argentina and Australia.

harris  will be seen by everyone as a potential president in waiting   one european ambassador warned © press
Harris 'will be seen by everyone as a potential president in waiting,' one European ambassador warned

But during the Obama administration, Biden served as the president’s frequent ambassador abroad, drawing on his decades of experience as a member and later chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

He traveled to over 50 countries throughout the Obama administration. 

Before him, Dick Cheney is credited for shaping President George W. Bush’s foreign policy priorities. 

On Friday, Biden is to meet virtually with members of "the Quad," leaders from Australia, Japan, and India.

It will be his first multilateral conversation since being sworn into office. 

Biden last month spoke with Netanyahu, after delays in calling the Israeli leader raised questions. 

The Democrat has made a flurry of phone calls to American friends around the world, including leaders in Canada, Britain, France, Japan, Mexico, Germany, South Korea, and even some foes: He spoke with Chinese Communist Party leader Xi Jinping and Russia’s Vladimir Putin.

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