The Hill's Campaign Report: Trump campaign resets amid rough patch

The Hill's Campaign Report: Trump campaign resets amid rough patch
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Welcome to The Hill’s Campaign Report, your daily rundown on all the latest news in the 2020 presidential, Senate and House races. Did someone forward this to you? Click here to subscribe.

We’re Julia Manchester, Max Greenwood and Jonathan Easley. Here’s what we’re watching today on the campaign trail.

LEADING THE DAY: 

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President TrumpDonald John TrumpTeachers union launches 0K ad buy calling for education funding in relief bill FDA head pledges 'we will not cut corners' on coronavirus vaccine Let our values drive COVID-19 liability protection MORE’s reelection campaign has hit a rough patch.

Trump announced late Wednesday that he had demoted campaign manager Brad ParscaleBradley (Brad) James ParscaleMORE.

Bill Stepien, who served as the White House political director during Trump’s first two years in office, will act as campaign manager.

Parscale will stay on to lead the campaign’s digital operations, a role he held in the 2016 campaign. Parscale had never before run a campaign.

That news was followed by the Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDanielRonna Romney McDanielTrump outraises Biden in July, surpasses billion for the cycle Texas governor skipping Republican convention RNC chairwoman: Quarantines in Democratic-led states made GOP Florida convention impossible MORE announcing the party would scale back the Republican National Convention in August.

Coronavirus cases are on the rise in Florida, and Trump is expected to deliver a speech accepting his party's nomination for reelection from Jacksonville on Aug. 27.

McDaniel blamed the pandemic for the changes.

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Among the changes the party will make:

  • Attendance to the convention will be limited to regular delegates for the first three days, amounting to a crowd of about 2,500 people.
  • When Trump formally accepts the GOP nomination on the event's final day, delegates will be allowed to bring one guest and alternate delegates will also be allowed to attend. That crowd would be capped at about 6,000 or 7,000 people.
  • The convention celebration will be a mix of “indoor and outdoor venues” at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena, TIAA Bank Field, Daily’s Place Amphitheater, 121 Financial Ballpark and several others. There is programming scheduled for every night in Jacksonville between Aug. 24 and Aug. 27.
  • The RNC will “implement a variety of health protocols in order to ensure a safe event,” which includes on-site temperature checks of attendees, personal protective equipment, “aggressive” sanitizing protocols and COVID-19 testing.

“I want to make clear that we still intend to host a fantastic convention celebration in Jacksonville. We can gather and put on a top-notch event that celebrates the incredible accomplishments of President Trump’s administration and his re-nomination for a second term — while also doing so in a safe and responsible manner.” - McDaniel

Those developments follow a raft of terrible polling for Trump that shows him trailing badly nationally and in key battleground states.

The Trump campaign is eager for the summer to end and for the conventions to take place, believing the race will tighten once Biden is forced into the spotlight and the contest becomes more one-on-one. – Jonathan Easley

READ MORE: 

Trump shakes up campaign leadership, demotes Parscale, by Brett Samuels.

Trump’s new campaign manager brings ties to GOP establishment, by Reid Wilson.

Republicans scale back convention in Jacksonville due to coronavirus concerns, by Justine Coleman and Jonathan Easley.

 

FROM THE TRAIL:

The progressive group NextGen America is spending $2 million on four digital ads in support of Biden. The ads launched on Thursday and will run through August. The Hill’s Rebecca Klar reports.

 

FROM CONGRESS AND THE STATES: 

The LGBTQ Victory Fund’s Out for America 2020 digital report found a 21 percent increase in openly LGBTQ elected officials over the past year. The findings, which were part of the group's Out for America 2020 digital report, showed the number of bisexual elected officials increased by 53 percent, while the number of queer-identified individuals elected to office rose by 71 percent. Additionally, representation for trans women grew increased by 40 percent. Julia Manchester reports.

Planned Parenthood rolled out an ad campaign, backed by a six-figure ad buy, against incumbent GOP Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsState aid emerges as major hurdle to reviving COVID-19 talks Senators ask for removal of tariffs on EU food, wine, spirits: report Coronavirus deal key to Republicans protecting Senate majority MORE. The campaign hits Collins over her 2018 vote to confirm Supreme Court Justice Brett KavanaughBrett Michael KavanaughMcConnell has 17-point lead over Democratic challenger McGrath: poll Davis: My recommendation for vice president on Biden ticket Kavanaugh urged Supreme Court to avoid decisions on Trump finances, abortion: report MORE. The Hill’s Tal Axelrod reports

 

MONEY WATCH:

Democrats running in some of the most competitive Senate races in the country trounced Republican incumbents in fundraising in the second quarter of 2020. Second-quarter campaign finance reports filed with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) showed Democrats outraising Republicans in all but two of the 15 most competitive Senate races. Together, Democrats pulled in a combined $102 million in the three-month period spanning April 1 through June 30, while Republicans raked in about $70 million.

The biggest second-quarter haul came from former Marine combat pilot Amy McGrath, who’s challenging Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTeachers union launches 0K ad buy calling for education funding in relief bill No signs of breakthrough for stalemated coronavirus talks State aid emerges as major hurdle to reviving COVID-19 talks MORE (R) in Kentucky. McGrath raised $17.4 million between April 1 and June 30, while McConnell pulled in about $12.2 million. Overall, challengers outraised GOP incumbents in 11 of 12 states that Democrats are hoping to seriously contest this year in their bid for a Senate Majority. The Hill’s Max Greenwood has more.

 

POLL WATCH:

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OH PREDICTIVE INSIGHTS – ARIZONA PRESIDENTIAL

Biden: 49%

Trump: 44%

 

MARK YOUR CALENDARS:

Aug. 4:

Arizona primaries

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Kansas primaries

Michigan primaries

Missouri primaries

Washington primaries

 

Aug. 11:

Connecticut primaries

Minnesota primaries

Vermont primaries

Wisconsin primaries

Georgia primary runoffs

 

Aug. 18:

Alaska primaries

Florida primaries

Wyoming primaries

 

Aug. 17-20:

Democratic National Convention

 

Aug. 24-27:

Republican National Convention

 

Sept. 1:

Massachusetts primaries

 

Sept. 8:

New Hampshire primaries

Rhode Island primaries

 

Sept. 15:

Delaware primaries

 

Sept. 29:

First presidential debate

 

Oct. 7:

Vice presidential debate

 

Oct. 15:

Second presidential debate

 

Oct. 22:

Third presidential debate