Kamala Harris staff exodus continues with departure of deputy chief of staff

The continued wave of departures from Vice President Kamala Harris’ office continues apace this month with the official departure of deputy chief of staff Michael Fuchs, who in April announced his plans to join a number of other high-profile staffers who have made haste toward the exits, as the New York Post reported.

At the time he declared his intentions, Fuchs had not indicated what the next stop on his career path might be, but he did pledge to stay on until the beginning of this month in order to ensure a “smooth transition” within the office.

Fuchs said in an internal email upon informing his colleagues of his decision, “it’s been the honor of a lifetime to serve in this administration, working for the Vice President and President on behalf of the American people.”

Jamal Simmons, Harris’ communications director remarked at the time, “The Vice President is grateful for Michael’s tireless work, leadership, and the many miles he traveled domestically and internationally as we lifted up families and strengthened relationships with allies abroad. Our entire team will miss Michael as he begins this next chapter.

As the Post noted separately, Fuchs’ farewell marked the 12th time a significant staffer in Harris’ office has made a dash for the door since last summer, in a troubling trend that has had many questioning the vice president’s leadership style and overall competence.

Back in February, it was announced that Harris’ chief speechwriter, Kate Childs Graham would be leaving her post within a matter of weeks, a move that came on the heels of similar decisions on the part of communications director Ashley Etienne and senior vice presidential adviser and chief spokesperson Symone Sanders, both of whom declared their exit plans in late 2021.

In April, as The Hill reported, Harris’ chief of staff, Tina Flournoy, revealed that she, too, would be taking her leave of the administration, in what was the highest-ranking staff departure to hit the vice president’s office to date.

“Tina has been a valued advisor and confidant to me and tremendous leader for the office,” Harris said at the time of the announcement, adding, “[f]rom day 1, she led our team during a historic first year as we made progress rebuilding our economy here at home and our alliances around the world. Tina is the consummate public servant and I will continue to rely on her advice, counsel and friendship.”

Though Harris has tried to downplay persistent rumors of discord among her staff, insiders told the Washington Post last year that her office is one in which “you have to put up with a constant amount of soul-destroying criticism.” That harsh reality combined with the vice president’s growing tally of missteps and outright humiliations here and abroad makes it understandable why so many or her staff appear so eager to distances themselves from what many view as a rapidly sinking ship.