With the Republican National Convention behind him, President Trump is heading to New Hampshire on Friday for a rally, while Joe Biden’s running mate, Sen. Kamala D. Harris, plans to virtually address the “Get Your Knee Off Our Necks” march in Washington, which is drawing attention to police brutality.
With less than 10 weeks until Election Day, both tickets are now turning their attention to mobilizing voters in a campaign framed by the pandemic, racial unrest and the economy.
In his acceptance speech Thursday night, Trump delivered a scathing and wholesale attack on Biden and fiercely defended his stewardship of a nation buffeted by historic crises, appealing to voters for a second term in an election he said would either preserve or destroy the “American way of life.”
Harris said Friday that “nobody’s going to be punished” if she and Biden implement a national mask mandate to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus, something Biden has promised as part of his plan to respond to the ongoing pandemic.
In an interview that aired on NBC’s “Today” show on Friday morning, Harris chuckled at Craig Melvin’s question about how a Biden-Harris administration might enforce such a mandate, calling it instead “a standard.” Trump and GOP allies have attacked such mandates as violations of personal liberties.
“Come on. Nobody likes to wear a mask. This is a universal feeling, right?” Harris said. “That’s not the point — hey, let’s enjoy wearing masks. No. The point is, this is what we, as responsible people who love our neighbor, we have to just do that right now.”
Melvin also asked Harris how she and Biden can promise less chaos during their administration than the country has endured under a Trump administration, a staple of their pitch to voters since combining on the ticket.
“There’s an old saying, ‘the fish rots from the head.’ Part of leadership is to set a tone for the country,” Harris said. “We have on the one hand Donald Trump who has been spending full time sowing hate and division in our country. On the other hand, you have Joe Biden, who has been all about saying we need to unify as a country, respect the dignity of our fellow human being in this election. There are two clear choices — there are two. And which choice is reflective of who we aspire to be as a country?”
Trump shows up for his children when they go to Disney World, gives hope to addicts and once called a colleague after a major surgery. He welcomes immigrants through naturalization ceremonies and uses his pardon power for people like suffragists and a reformed bank robber.
He heads a Republican Party with prominent support from African American leaders, even a veteran of the 1960s civil rights movement, a party that celebrates the removal of the Confederate flag — “a divisive symbol,” one speaker said. Grievance is, Vice President Pence said Wednesday night, less important to Trump than gratitude.
This was the script that Trump’s advisers wrote and delivered with remarkable repetition over more than 10 hours of broadcast time at the Republican National Convention this week — a naked appeal to college-educated, minority and independent voters who have been alienated from the president after three years of pugilism, name calling and norm breaking from the Oval Office.
With the Republican National Convention behind him, Trump plans to head to New Hampshire on Friday night for a campaign rally in the Manchester area.
In July, his campaign abruptly postponed a rally scheduled in Portsmouth, N.H., pointing to concerns about Tropical Storm Fay, which was making its way up the East Coast but was not forecast to directly impact the event site.
At the time, Trump had come under criticism for holding a rally in Tulsa the month before, with critics arguing that the event could have helped spread the novel coronavirus in the state.
Masks will be distributed at Friday’s event, according to local reports.
In 2016, Democrat Hillary Clinton carried New Hampshire over Trump by less than 3,000 votes. The Granite State has four votes in the electoral college.
Harris plans to virtually address a march in Washington on Friday, seeking to draw attention to the issue of police brutality against Black Americans.
She is scheduled to appear at the event, titled “Commitment March: Get Your Knee Off Our Necks,” that was planned earlier this summer in the aftermath of George Floyd’s death in the custody of Minneapolis police. The event has taken on additional urgency following the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wis.
Organized by the Rev. Al Sharpton, the event is expected to draw thousands to Washington and coincides with the 57th anniversary of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” address. Speeches will be delivered from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.
A professor at the University of Pennsylvania has renewed a request to investigate how Trump was admitted to the school in 1966, citing what he called “new evidence” on secretly recorded tapes in which Trump’s sister says a friend took his entrance exam.
The professor, Eric W. Orts, is one of six faculty members who asked Penn’s provost earlier this summer to launch an investigation into how Trump transferred into the school. He noted that the president’s niece, Mary Trump, wrote in her book published in July that the president paid someone to take his SATs.
The provost, Wendell E. Pritchett, replied to Orts on July 20 that “we certainly share your concerns about these allegations and the integrity of our admissions process. However, as you suggest in your message, we have determined that this situation occurred too far in the past to make a useful or probative factual inquiry possible. If new evidence surfaces to substantiate the claim in the future, we will continue to be open to investigating it.”
With just under 10 weeks until Election Day, the campaign for president turns from a pair of scripted conventions to the trench warfare of mobilizing voters and to the unpredictability of September and October, with the campaign playing out against a backdrop unlike anything seen in modern times.
In a month, the first of three presidential debates will be held, scheduled for Sept. 29 in Cleveland. Some strategists see that evening as a pivotal and potentially decisive confrontation, particularly if Trump has a bad night and Biden looks strong. Still, the 2016 campaign moved late and, ultimately, decisively in Trump’s direction. Democrats worry about a repeat of that playbook and warn now against complacency.
By the time of the first debate, early voting will have begun in a few states, and the pace will accelerate in October. Controversy over voting by mail is yet another backdrop of the argument between Trump, who claims without evidence that mail ballots are vulnerable to fraud, and Biden, who has charged that Republicans are trying to frustrate voters and suppress Democratic turnout.
Hundreds of protesters chanted, marched and played music near the White House on Thursday as Trump spoke on the final night of the Republican National Convention — a loud and often raucous rejoinder to a leader they say has divided the country and supported racist policies and practices.
The protest continued long after the speech ended and later turned physical at times. A group of demonstrators shouted at supporters of the president as they left the White House, including Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who had to be escorted to a nearby hotel by police. Officers sprayed a chemical irritant at the protesters.
Paul was confronted at the corner of 14th and F streets NW, with protesters shouting, “Say her name — Breonna Taylor!” and “You are a degenerate!” At one point, Paul almost fell as a police officer collided into him after a protester appeared to collide with the officer. Police whisked Paul into the hotel, and the group of protesters who had been following him dispersed.
Trump celebrated his renomination Thursday with a crowded party at the White House that offered a jarring contrast with a nation that is still widely shut down over fears of the coronavirus pandemic and its spread that remains uncontrolled.
More than 1,500 supporters poured onto the South Lawn for his formal acceptance speech to cap the Republican National Convention, and most were not wearing masks, even though they were seated closely together in white folding chairs.
The overwhelming majority of guests were not administered rapid coronavirus tests, Trump campaign and convention officials said, despite their relative proximity to the president and other White House officials. A White House official said it was logistically unfeasible to test such a large number of people.
Trump ended the Republican National Convention with a tidal wave of tall tales, false claims and revisionist history.
Here are 23 claims by the president that caught our attention, along with seven claims by speakers earlier in the evening.
As is our practice, we do not award Pinocchios for a roundup of claims made in convention events.
The Republican National convention wrapped after four nights, with President Trump defending his record and delivering a wholesale attack on Democratic nominee Joe Biden. Here are takeaways from the third night.
More Americans can vote by mail in November than before the pandemic; find out which states have changed rules. Barring a landslide, we may not have a result in the presidential election on Nov. 3. See what elections are coming up and which have moved.
Trump and Biden are scheduled to debate three times this fall; here’s what to know about the 2020 presidential debates.
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