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Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

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Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

The Biden campaign plans to hammer President Trump this week with targeted attacks in battleground states where COVID-19 infection rates are rising — including Florida and North Carolina.

The big picture: A campaign official said the attacks, delivered in press calls and high-level surrogate virtual events, will focus on his reopening of the economy.

In a statement to Axios, Deputy Campaign Manager Kate Bedingfield previewed the Biden campaign's message for this week:

  • "Donald Trump profoundly failed our nation by refusing to act on countless warnings from his own experts and from Joe Biden as the coronavirus outbreak spread around the world."
  • "Trump's lack of a coherent response to the worst public health crisis in generations has cost almost 115,000 Americans their lives, triggered historic job losses, and thrown our nation into chaos..."
  • "[I]nstead of finally doing his job and helping the country safely reopen, the virus is resurgent in nearly 20 states and the president is AWOL without a plan while still not rushing to give states the testing, contact tracing, and other resources they need to get this under control and repair the terrible damage his incompetence has wrought on our economy."

Trump campaign's response: "Biden has been lobbing ineffective partisan bombs from his basement, trying to undermine confidence in the federal response, and has sought relevance where there is none," said the Trump campaign's communications director Tim Murtaugh.

  • "Voters know that President Trump built the American economy to unprecedented heights before it was artificially interrupted, and he will do it again."
  • "As the record 2.5 million jobs created in May prove, the Great American Comeback is already underway. Joe Biden is actively rooting against a recovery, knowing that good news for Americans is bad for him..."
  • "On all economic issues, President Trump wins hands-down, and voters know it."

Go deeper

Mike Allen, author of AM
Sep 22, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Bill Stepien: Trump travel, grassroots campaigning worth $48 million a week

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

A stark difference between the Trump and Biden campaigns is Trump-Pence's aggressive continuation of traditional door-knocking amid the pandemic, while Joe Biden emphasizes virtual techniques. And President Trump travels more.

The state of play: Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien is now quantifying the difference, arguing in a new memo that candidate travel and the campaign's ground game give the president an advantage at a time when the airwaves are saturated.

Sep 20, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trump campaign goes all in on Pennsylvania

Trump poster in Scranton, Pennsylvania. Photo: Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images

The president's campaign is placing more importance on Pennsylvania amid growing concern that his chances of clinching Wisconsin are slipping, Trump campaign sources tell Axios.

Driving the news: Pennsylvania, which has 20 electoral votes, twice Wisconsin's number, actually has been trending higher in recent public and internal polling, a welcome development for the campaign.

Inside Biden's Supreme Court strategy

Joe Biden enters the hall at the National Constitution Center. Photo: Roberto Schmidt/AFP via Getty Images

Joe Biden’s closing argument will shift to a dominant emphasis on health care, turning the looming Supreme Court fight into a referendum on coverage and pre-existing conditions, officials tell Axios.

Why it matters: Biden aides believed they were winning when the race was about the coronavirus pandemic. Now they plan to use the Supreme Court opening as a raucous new field for a health care fight, returning to a theme that gave Democrats big midterm wins in 2018.