Joe Biden, believing President Trump is suddenly vulnerable with military voters, goes up today with an ad called "Knock On The Door," featuring retired Air force Brigadier General John Douglass, a former casualty notification officer.
- Douglass — who grew up in Florida, and now splits time between Virginia and Florida — used to deliver the dreaded "knock on the door" to military families, letting them know their loved one had made the ultimate sacrifice.
- Douglass, referring to accusations — which Trump disputes — in a widely covered article by The Atlantic, says in the ad: "These military families suffer, and those spouses are not suckers. And those children are not losers."
What I'm hearing: The Biden campaign argues that reports of Trump privately disparaging service members have broken through with everyday people who don't follow, or don't care about, other Trump scandals.
- A poll of registered voters in military households by Politico/Morning Consult found an astonishing 73% had heard the reports.
The ad will air on TV and digital platforms in Arizona, Florida, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and Wisconsin — targeting media markets and areas with a high number of military households and veterans.
- Biden ads remain active in a total of 10 states — the ones above plus Michigan, Nevada, Ohio, Nebraska, and Minnesota.
The other side: Trump has denied the accusations by The Atlantic, as have many current and former aides. A key figure in the article — retired Marine general John Kelly, a former Trump chief of staff — hasn't spoken publicly about it.
- Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh told me: "Servicemen and women know that President Trump restored the military to its rightful strength and fixed the scandalous problems at VA hospitals."