VP Harris Hosts Female Senators for Dinner as Border, Biden Agenda Remain Tense Vice President Kamala Harris attends the announcement for the disbursement of nearly $1.25 billion for Community Development Financial Institutions in the South Court Auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, next to the White House, in Washington, D.C. on June 15, 2021. (MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)
By Solange Reyner | Wednesday, 16 June 2021 01:50 PM
Vice President Kamala Harris hosted a private dinner party at the Naval Observatory for 20 female senators Tuesday, a gathering that took place as negotiations on voting and infrastructure legislation remain tense between Republicans and Democrats.
But policy wasn’t on the menu.
Tennessee Republican Sen. Marsha Blackburn told Fox News that Harris was a gracious host, and that the dinner was a "lovely event," but said there "wasn't a policy discussion at all."
"But if she had brought up policies, I would've loved to have said, 'Madame Vice President, you need to get to the border. You need to talk to the Border Patrol,'" Blackburn said Tuesday night in an interview with Fox News' Sean Hannity.
All 24 women in the Senate were invited, though three didn’t attend: Republicans Cindy Hyde-Smith of Mississippi and Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming, and Democrat Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona.
Democrat Debbie Stabenow of Michigan shared photos of the event on Twitter, including one of Harris giving a toast to the group and of the vice president’s cheese puffs she made from scratch.
Republican Sen. Deb Fischer of Nebraska shared a photo of the menu: roasted mahi-mahi as the entrée and strawberry rhubarb croustades and vanilla ice cream for dessert.
Harris continues to get heat on the border crisis, with some pundits calling her trip to Guatemala and Mexico last week a disaster.
"After her horrific interview performances this week – coupled by her overall poor performance in addressing the border crisis – a President Harris is looking like it will never happen; that’s if she's judged by her handling of the biggest task assigned to her thus far as vice president," wrote Joe Concha in an opinion piece earlier this week.
The Biden agenda appears to be stalled – his infrastructure plan does not have the support of most Republicans and Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., remains opposed to the voting rights legislation Harris is championing. He is also against ending the Senate filibuster.