Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden will restart efforts to campaign in person in the coming days, answering calls from allies who say that his lead on Trump has narrowed.
The Washington Post reports that the former Vice President will conduct in-person campaign events amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, particularly to tackle concerns about a need to recapture Minnesota voters and to quell fears that rapper Kanye West, who qualified for the state’s ballot and has petitioned to appear on ballots in a number of battleground states may try to siphon votes with help from GOP strategists. Per the Post, Biden recently mentioned Minnesota among three other states— Arizona, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin as states due for in-person visits soon.
Republicans have for months teased Biden for not “coming out of the basement,” as Trump put it at a New Hampshire rally on Friday — criticizing the former Vice President’s vigilance about preventing the spread of coronavirus at large gatherings.
We’re going to do it in a way that is totally consistent with being responsible,” Biden told supporters at a virtual fundraiser Thursday — pointing a finger at Trump who he has often criticized for making public appearances to largely maskless crowds of spectators.
Aides told the Post that the Biden campaign is considering a range of event types that honor state rules around group assembly amid the pandemic. One option is “drive-in” rallies modeled after the one Biden and Harris held in Delaware after Biden’s acceptance speech at the virtual Democratic National Convention.
“We’re going to try to find ways to give him venues to connect with people to hear what’s going on in their lives,” Biden deputy campaign manager and communications director, Kate Bedingfield said. She added: “As we are doing this traveling to battleground states, you’re going to hear him talking a lot about his plans to bring manufacturing and supply chains back to America,” in addition to provisions for affordable child care.
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