Trump's 'law and order' messaging isn't sticking with voters as new polls show they trust Biden more on public safety
Summary List Placement
Former Vice President Joe Biden's visit on Thursday afternoon to Kenosha was a markedly different scene from President Donald Trump's trip to the Wisconsin city two days earlier. While visiting the city, Biden spoke on the phone with Jacob Blake, a Black man who was shot seven times in the back by a police officer last month, triggering protests in Kenosha and across the country. The former vice president also met with Blake's family members and discussed systemic racism with community leaders. "We've reached an inflection point in American history," the Democratic presidential candidate said on Thursday. "I honest to God believe we have an enormous opportunity now that the screen, the curtain has been pulled back on just what's going on in the country, to do a lot of really positive things." Trump, on the other hand, did not speak to Blake nor meet his family, claiming they wanted to involve lawyers, which he found inappropriate. The president instead talked to law enforcement officials and business owners, surveyed the damage done during protests, and hammered the state's Democratic leaders, who had asked him to not show up. During his visit, Trump continued to cast himself as the patron of "law and order," repeating the messaging around which he's built his 2020 reelection effort. Last week's Republican National Convention largely focused on similar themes. "The most dangerous aspect of the Biden platform is the attack on public safety," Trump said during convention. "No one will be safe in Biden's America." Yet, several new polls released this week suggest the president's hardline strategy hasn't been swaying voters. Instead, 47 percent of registered voters said they trust Biden to handle public safety, opposed to 39 percent who have more faith in Trump, according to a Morning Consult survey. Similarly, 42 percent of likely voters said they would feel more safe with Biden as president, versus 35 percent who said the same for Trump, a Quinnipiac University poll showed. And a CNN poll also indicated that 51 percent of voters believe Biden would keep them safe from harm, compared with 45 percent who said Trump will. Nationally, Biden has maintained a lead in the polls, signaling that Trump's focus on pinning Biden as weak on crime and public safety has not gained much traction yet among voters. Biden is 10 points ahead in a Quinnipiac poll, 8 points ahead in polls from CNN and Grinnell College, and 7 points ahead in polls from Reuters and USA Today/Suffolk University. A Fox News poll also showed Biden with an advantage in three key states that Trump narrowly won in 2016: Arizona, North Carolina and Wisconsin. In Wisconsin, voters preferred Biden by five-percentage points over Trump to lead on issues such as policing and criminal justice. Calls for the presidential candidates to address civil unrest don't appear to be waning, however. Democratic advisers and strategists for the Biden campaign have reportedly warned that Trump's rhetoric may pose a risk and undermine Biden's electability in Midwestern states. Biden condemned violence during anti-racism protests triggered by the George Floyd killing earlier this summer and has since taken a tougher position, calling for the arrests of those engaged in looting and destroying property. He also recently unveiled his first nationwide television commercial addressing the issue. "Rioting is not protesting. Looting is not protesting," he says in the commercial, according to The New York Times. "And those who do it should be prosecuted." Still, the coronavirus pandemic appears to remain the most important issue for Americans. Just an estimated 8 percent of adults pointed to crime as a top priority for the country, whereas an overwhelming majority, 78 percent, said they remain "very" or "somewhat" concerned about COVID-19, according to a Reuters poll.
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Summary List Placement President Donald Trump entered the 2020 election with high hopes of maintaining his...Summary List Placement President Donald Trump entered the 2020 election with high hopes of maintaining his numbers in the Midwest and flipping several blue states to the Republican column. But a recently released set of polling conducted by the New York Times and Siena College from Sept. 8-11 among likely voters showed continued strength for Joe Biden. The former vice president leads the incumbent president in Wisconsin, a state critical to Trump's re-election hopes, along with Minnesota, Nevada, and New Hampshire, states where Trump wants to make inroads, especially with suburban voters. In Wisconsin, Biden leads Trump 48%-43%, with a sample size of 760 respondents. Wisconsin, which had consistently voted for Democratic presidential nominees from 1988 to 2012, went for Trump by a slim 0.77% margin in 2016. Trump has made the civil unrest in Kenosha following the police shooting of Jacob Blake a focal point of his law-and-order messaging, but he's lagged in the polls in the state for months. The most recent Real Clear Politics polling average for Wisconsin from Aug. 21 through Sept. 10 shows Biden ahead 49.6%-43.3%. In Nevada, Biden is ahead of Trump 46%-42%, with a sample size of 462 respondents. Nevada, a state that has swung dramatically towards the Democrats in recent years, boasts a sizeable percentage of white voters without college degrees, a demographic that plays to Trump's strength. But Nevada is now a majority-minority state, with a long tradition of organized labor, which bodes well for Biden's chances. While Biden has been ahead in the limited amount of polling coming from Nevada, the Trump campaign will continue to compete hard there. Minnesota, a state which has gone Democratic on the presidential level since 1976, has the largest lead for Biden (50%-41%, with 814 poll respondents) out of the four states polled. Trump has sought to capitalize on the unrest in the state following the murder of George Floyd, but he is still behind. Hillary Clinton, however, only won Minnesota by 1.5% in 2016 and the Trump campaign insists that the state is winnable this year, especially with the continued drift of the state's rural voters away from the Democratic party. In New Hampshire, which was one of the closest states in 2016, Biden is ahead 45%-42%, with 445 polling respondents. Biden is in a strong position as a challenger to the incumbent president, but polling from the four states revealed some numbers that both campaigns will be parsing over going forward. "In the four swing states polled, Mr. Biden's advantage comes from a combination of strong support from women, people of color and whites with college degrees, though he is also performing better among male voters and less-educated white voters than Mrs. Clinton did four years ago," The Times reported. The Times/Siena polling showed Biden ahead of Trump 60%-28% in urban areas and 50%-39% in suburban areas, while Trump leads 50%-40% in rural areas. Notably, the polling across the four states also showed Biden winning the overall white vote 47%-44%, with a sample size of 2,004 respondents. Democrats have struggled to win or break even with white voters in national elections since the late 1960s, so this would be notable development for the Biden campaign.Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: What it takes to become a backup dancer for Beyoncé
Rep. Val Demings says President Trump was 'walking around with a gasoline can' while 'America was on fire' during civil unrest
Summary List PlacementDemocratic Rep. Val Demings of Florida slammed President Donald Trump for his response to...Summary List PlacementDemocratic Rep. Val Demings of Florida slammed President Donald Trump for his response to widespread, ongoing racial-justice demonstrations on Sunday, arguing that he has fueled tensions rather than trying to bring the country together. "While America was going through civil unrest in all 50 states, quite frankly, America was on fire, we had a president — a commander-in-chief — who was walking around with a gasoline can," Demings said during a Sunday interview on ABC's This Week. “While America was going through civil unrest in all 50 states, quite frankly, America was on fire, we had a president — a commander-in-chief — who was walking around with a gasoline can,” Rep. Val Demings tells @MarthaRaddatz about Pres. Trump’s rhetoric. https://t.co/LUK4OPSI7P pic.twitter.com/ocRFj2PX8w — ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) September 6, 2020 Demings' scathing comments were in response to a question about how Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden have responded to the mostly peaceful protests. Host Martha Raddatz cited a new ABC-Ipsos poll, which concluded that 55% of Americans believe that Trump's rhetoric surrounding the protests has made things worse, while 49% said that Biden hasn't had an effect one way or the other. "President Donald John Trump is the commander-in-chief, and so the buck stops with him," Demings said, adding that Trump was "not trying to sow peace and calm, but actually throwing fire onto an already volatile situation." Demings' comments came after violence at racial-justice protests has escalated in recent weeks. Police have accused 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse of shooting three and killing two people during protests in Kenosha, Wisconsin on August 25. On August 30, a man was shot dead in Portland as Black Lives Matter protesters clashed with pro-Trump ralliers. Many have accused Trump of playing a part in the violence by emboldening his supporters to physically attack protesters. Shortly after George Floyd's death in Minneapolis police custody on May 25 sparked massive protests across the country, Trump tweeted "when the looting starts, the shooting starts," which he later denied was a call to violence. Trump was also widely criticized for inviting Mark and Patricia McCloskey, who pointed guns at protestors during demonstrations in St. Louis, to speak at the Republican National Convention late last month. The convention saw Trump and his allies tout a "law and order" message, and even use stock video and pictures of protests to warn attendees about presidential hopeful "Biden's America." "What we're currently seeing in our country is not sustainable," Demings continued. "And it's really time to start moving from what we're seeing in the streets, I believe, to roundtable discussions ... to start putting into place plans of action that can get us back on track."SEE ALSO: Trump hired Obama lookalike he 'ritualistically belittled' and fired in video stunt, says Michael Cohen in new book Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Why American sunscreens may not be protecting you as much as European sunscreens
Joe Biden visited the restive Wisconsin town on Thursday, two days after President Trump did, as...Joe Biden visited the restive Wisconsin town on Thursday, two days after President Trump did, as their competing messages — racial justice versus 'law and order' — roil the presidential campaign.