President Donald Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden zeroed in on the critical battleground of Pennsylvania on Monday night, demonstrating different approaches to rallying voters just days before polls close in the presidential election.
Trump drew thousands of largely mask-less supporters as he began a final-week charge through nearly a dozen states. Biden, meanwhile, taking a more cautious approach in effort to show that he’s taking the pandemic seriously, greeted a few dozen supporters outside a Chester, Pennsylvania, campaign field office.
Trump insisted that Biden didn’t do large campaign events, ‘because nobody shows up.”
“And we had two events, Sleepy Joe is down there and they said, you got to get out of this basement. So, he travelled from Delaware to a little tiny corner of Pennsylvania, like right next to Delaware,” Trump said.
“And he made his speech and he said that he doesn’t do these kind of rallies because of COVID, you know. No he doesn’t do them because nobody shows up. That’s why, nobody shows up. COVID, COVID, COVID. That’s all they talk about, the fake news. COVID, COVID, COVID. That’s all they talk about, what progress we’ve made on it, too,” the president added.
Meanwhile, as coronavirus deaths continue to rise in the US and cases are climbing in practically every state, Biden slammed Trump for his handling of the pandemic, calling him the “worst possible person” to lead the nation through the crisis.
The former vice president urged Trump “to have just a little bit of shame because people are dying.”
“The bottom line is Donald Trump is the worst possible president, the worst possible person to try to lead us through this pandemic,” Biden said.
“I don’t think he just, he either doesn’t have any idea what to do or he just doesn’t care. He suggested the doctors were inflating the numbers, catch this, because doctors get more money. What the hell’s the matter with this man? A thousand doctors and nurses have given their lives trying to save lives.”
For each candidate, the differing campaign approaches carry risks.
For Trump, the full-speed-ahead strategy could spread the virus in places that are already setting new records. And if Biden comes up short in the election, his lower-key travel schedule will come under scrutiny as a missed opportunity.
With more than a third of the expected ballots in the election already cast, it could become increasingly challenging for Trump and Biden to reshape the race.
Biden is leading Trump in most national polls and has an advantage, though narrower, in many key battlegrounds.
The Democrat will add Florida, Republican stronghold Georgia, Iowa and Wisconsin to his travel itinerary for the final campaign sprint before Election Day.
President Trump is set to visit Arizona Wednesday, with a flurry of stops across the state as the election heads into the final stretch.