The Trump campaign is doubling down on its message of "law and order" with a dark ad released Wednesday telling Americans they "won't be safe" if presumptive Democratic nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenDearborn office of Rep. Debbie Dingell vandalized Pfizer to apply for COVID-19 booster approval for 16- and 17-year-olds: report Coronavirus variant raises fresh concerns for economy MORE is elected president.
"The radical left wing mob’s agenda? Take over our cities. Defund the police. Pressure more towns to follow. And Joe Biden stands with them," a narrator says over ominous music and video of recent protests and a building in flames that were all shot in the last several weeks.
The ad goes on to accuse the former vice president of supporting “letting criminals back on the street” and warns of “violent crime exploding, innocent children fatally shot.”
“You won’t be safe in Joe Biden’s America,” the ad concludes.
The 30-second clip is further indication that the Trump campaign views the president’s law-and-order mantra and vocal support for law enforcement as a political winner, particularly among the suburban voters who will play an outsized role in deciding the presidential election.
“Joe Biden is too weak to stand up the extremists in his party and is aiding and abetting their radical undermining of law and order in cities across American,” said Tim Murtaugh, the Trump campaign’s communications director.
“Who will answer the phone when you call 9-1-1?” he asked.
The ad is part of the Trump campaign’s existing multi-million dollar ad buy and will air nationally and in key swing states.
“We are spending all over the country. Joe Biden would like us to make the same mistake Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonCountering the ongoing Republican delusion Republicans seem set to win the midterms — unless they defeat themselves Poll: Democracy is under attack, and more violence may be the future MORE made in 2016 and take certain states for granted. We won’t. And the President has raised considerable resources — enough to take the fight to Joe Biden in states he should be able to count on, but can’t,” a senior campaign official said when asked precisely exactly how much money went behind the ad.
The public has been gripped in a national conversation on systemic racism and police brutality since George Floyd’s killing in police custody in Minneapolis in May, with some activists calling for cities to defund the police. While some demonstrators have called for completely scrapping law enforcement, more have suggested diverting some resources away from police and reinvesting them in social services.
Biden has refused to back calls to defund the police but has voiced support for further justice system reforms and expressed sympathy with activists protesting racial inequality.
“The vast majority of police are decent, honorable people, but there are bad apples, man. And we have to change the way we teach the police,” Biden said at a recent fundraiser. “We have to make sure that we deal with an entire new set of standards at the federal level like Barack [Obama] and I were doing before we left office. There’s so much we can do, the country is ready for it. We don’t have to defund the police departments, we have to make sure they meet minimum basic standards of decency.”
A similar Trump campaign ad that aired earlier this month received four Pinocchios from The Washington Post’s fact-checker.