May 17, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Democrats test Trump's swing-state vulnerability on small-business pain

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

For months, Democrats have been attacking President Trump over his national coronavirus response — but a new digital campaign is about to test how much more potent the argument becomes when it's targeted to individual states and communities.

Details: The $1.5 million buy from Pacronym, a super PAC with ties to President Obama's former campaign manager and strategist David Plouffe, is running on digital platforms in five battleground states — Arizona, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

  • The ads include combinations of videos, graphics and news clips tailored to each state, focusing on how local economies have suffered from the virus response.
  • They'll run on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Roku TV, Pandora, CBSi and McClatchy over the next two weeks.
  • The group plans to measure the ads' effectiveness on its Barometer platform.

What they're saying: Shannon Kowalczyk, Pacronym's chief marketing officer, tells Axios in an email that the campaign will amplify "so many stories from around the country of small businesses who are struggling to get relief as large corporations and chains receive bailouts from the Trump administration" and "how that has impacted our local economies."

Go deeper

Biden formally secures Democratic presidential nomination

Joe Biden speaks at Delaware State University's student cente on June 5. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden became the formal Democratic presidential nominee on Friday evening, per AP.

The big picture: Biden has been the presumptive frontrunner to take on President Trump since Sen. Bernie Sanders suspended his campaign in early April.

Updated 10 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 6,724.516 — Total deaths: 394,018 — Total recoveries — 2,996,832Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 1,894,753 — Total deaths: 109,042 — Total recoveries: 491,706 — Total tested: 19,231,444Map.
  3. Public health: WHCA president says White House violated social-distancing guidelines to make reporters "a prop" — Jailing practices contribute to spread.
  4. Sports: How coronavirus could reshuffle the sports calendar.
  5. Jobs: Better-than-expected jobs report boosts stock market.
  6. Media: The Athletic lays off 8% of staff, implements company-wide pay cut.

Scoop: German foreign minister to travel to Israel with warning on annexation

Heiko Maas. Photo: Michael Kappeler/picture alliance via Getty Images

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas is expected to travel to Israel next week to warn that there will be consequences if Israeli leaders move forward with plans to annex parts of the West Bank, Israeli officials and European diplomats tell me.

Why it matters: Israeli and European officials agree that if Israel goes ahead with unilateral annexation, the EU will respond with sanctions.