Sep 6, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Biden aiming ads at military families

Joe Biden giving a speech in Delaware. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Joe Biden's campaign is seizing on new accusations about President Trump insulting veterans, investing heavily in ads to sway voters around military bases in five swing states.

Driving the news: "Protect Our Troops," an ad that debuted earlier this year highlighting Biden's family connections to the U.S. military and plans to support troops, will relaunch this week as part of a $47 million ad buy across TV, digital and radio.

  • Voters living near bases like Fort McCoy in Wisconsin or Fort Bragg in North Carolina will see the ad on Facebook and Instagram.
  • The campaign is targeting households in a 50-mile radius of military bases in those two swing states, as well as Arizona, Pennsylvania and Florida.

Why it matters: The ad follows an explosive report in The Atlantic that cites multiple unnamed sources and alleges Trump privately referred to American soldiers who've died in war as "suckers" and "losers." Trump and several current and former aides on the record have denied the report, while some news outlets report confirming portions of it.

  • Biden blasted Trump's alleged comments as "disgusting" and "deplorable" in a Friday speech from Delaware and urged the president to apologize.

The big picture: Trump's support with active-duty troops appeared to be sliding before the report, per a Military Times poll of over 1,000 service members from late July and early August.

  • The report has drawn comparisons in terms of the potential for damage to the "Access Hollywood" tape that emerged in 2016 in which Trump bragged about grabbing women by their genitals.
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