The Campaign Report – Biden leads in OH, WI, MI

A new University of Akron poll in Ohio finds Joe Biden leading Donald Trump in the presidential race, 46% to 42%.

A new Global Strategy Group (D) poll in Wisconsin finds Biden leading Trump, 51% to 42%.

A new Public Policy Polling poll in Michigan shows Biden leading Trump, 49% to 43%. The poll also finds Democratic Senator Gary Peters leading Republican challenger John James, 47% to 39%.

Domenico Montanaro: “It’s hard to believe that the hole President Trump dug for himself could get deeper, but it has.”

“A record and widening majority of Americans disapprove of the job he’s doing when it comes to handling the coronavirus pandemic; he gets poor scores on race relations; he’s seen a suburban erosion despite efforts to win over suburban voters with fear; and all that has led to a worsened outlook for Trump against Democrat Joe Biden in the presidential election.”

“As a result, in the past month and a half, the latest NPR analysis of the Electoral College has several states shifting in Biden’s favor, and he now has a 297-170 advantage over Trump with exactly three months to go until Election Day.”

New York Magazine: “Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren didn’t know each other extremely well until March… So when Warren and Biden spoke on the phone shortly before she dropped out of the presidential race early this year, there was every reason to believe it was a pro forma one-off — even after he embraced her bankruptcy policy in March, a move then widely seen as a gambit to win her endorsement and the support of Bernie Sanders voters.”

“But as winter became spring and the primary wound down, Biden started considering the general election against Donald Trump. And the calls — iPhone to iPhone, sometimes without aides on the line — kept coming.”

“Joe Biden has extended his vice-presidential search by as much as two weeks, intensifying the jockeying and lobbying between allies of the women who hope to join his White House. Even some longtime Biden allies worry the process has become ‘messier than it should be,’ pitting women, especially Black women, against one another,” the Washington Post reports.

“The dynamic threatens to undermine Biden’s effort to use the vice-presidential search to spotlight some of the party’s brightest female stars during the highly public vetting process. And it’s already providing President Trump’s campaign an opening to dig up dirt and launch attacks on potential rivals.”

“The increasing nastiness is fueled by a sense, even among Biden’s closest advisers, that Biden is entering the final phase of the search without a clear favorite. Rather than a traditional ‘shortlist’ of three candidates, people close to the process expect him to interview five or six finalists for the position.”

Sources close to the selection process tell NBC News that Joe Biden “planned this weekend to drill down on vetting materials with the goal of narrowing the list down to a ‘three or four’ candidates. But several factors stand in the way of a public announcement, which aides say is unlikely to come this week.”

“One key element, a person involved in the process said, was polling data the campaign was waiting on on each of the potential candidates. Even as the campaign looks to avoid a choice that could prove to be a political liability, the most important ingredient to Biden is having personal chemistry with the choice. Biden then hopes to meet with each finalist — in person if possible, but at least virtually — by midweek.”

“The competition to be named Joe Biden’s running mate has entered the final stretch with huge unknowns about how it will unfold — among even some of the candidates themselves,” Politico reports.

“At least some of the contenders were in the dark on Sunday about their upcoming interviews with Biden: They were told to be prepared for in-person sit-downs while at the same time cautioned that could change due to health and logistical concerns surrounding Covid-19.”

“For weeks, aides of contenders going through the vetting process said they had little visibility into the campaign’s thinking. They’ve scoured news reports for tidbits on the finalists and any window into where they are in the horse race.”

CBS News: “On Monday the Biden campaign announced a slate of staff hires aimed at flipping the historically conservative Lone Star State, last won by a Democratic presidential candidate in 1976 by Jimmy Carter.”

National Journal notes Texas is also “ground zero” for House Democrats looking to flip more seats.

Politico: “While there are still 92 days until Election Day, the president has as little as half as much time to begin closing the gap with Joe Biden.”

“Trump’s window is smaller — and his margin for error tighter — because of an expected surge in mail voting due to the coronavirus and because the electorate this year appears more hardened than in 2016, with fewer undecided voters to peel off in the closing days of the contest.”

“Voters will begin receiving ballots in key swing states as early as next month.”

Harry Enten: “We’re under 100 days til election day (and way less than that til some people start voting via mail/absentee), and the election isn’t close to being the top story right now. That’s not something a lot of us are used to.”

President Trump charged that Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak (D) and Democratic lawmakers are “using COVID to steal the state” election, a day after the Senate passed a bill to hold a mostly mail-in election and allow ballot “harvesting” during an emergency, the Las Vegas Review Journalreports.

Trump called the action “an illegal late night coup” which “made it impossible for Republicans to win the state.”

Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien told Fox News that he wants “more debates” between the president and Joe Biden – and he wants them to begin sooner rather than later.

Said Stepien: “We want more debates. We want debates starting sooner. First debate is scheduled for Sept. 29, by that time 16 states already will have voted, by Sept. 29. That’s a concern to me. I want to see President Trump on the debate stage against Joe Biden.”

President Trump’s campaign is getting back up on the airwaves after hitting pause on their TV ad spending last week for a campaign strategy review, NBC News reports.

On Monday, the campaign announced it is launching two new ads in North Carolina, Georgia, Florida and Arizona — states which begin early voting in October.

“Kanye West is pushing ahead with his presidential campaign and is now trying to get on the ballot in Wisconsin, a pivotal swing state which was decided by less than 23,000 votes in 2016,” according to New York magazine.

“President Trump’s unfounded attacks on mail balloting are discouraging his own supporters from embracing the practice, according to polls and Republican leaders across the country, prompting growing alarm that one of the central strategies of his campaign is threatening GOP prospects in November,” the Washington Post reports.

CNN: Video resurfaces of Trump struggling to vote in person in 2004 as he ramps up attacks on mail-in voting.

Ben Smith: “I spoke last week to executives, TV hosts and election analysts across leading American newsrooms, and I was struck by the blithe confidence among some top managers and hosts, who generally said they’ve handled complicated elections before and can do so again. And I was alarmed by the near panic among some of the people paying the closest attention — the analysts and producers trying, and often failing, to get answers from state election officials about how and when they will count the ballots and report results.”

Said analyst Random Finnigan: “The nerds are freaking out. I don’t think it’s penetrated enough in the average viewer’s mind that there’s not going to be an election night. The usual razzmatazz of a panel sitting around discussing election results — that’s dead.”

Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

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