The Hill's Campaign Report: Trump faces pushback after suggesting election could be delayed

The Hill's Campaign Report: Trump faces pushback after suggesting election could be delayed
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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 TrumpNew Bob Woodward book will include details of 25 personal letters between Trump and Kim Jong Un On The Money: Pelosi, Mnuchin talk but make no progress on ending stalemate | Trump grabs 'third rail' of politics with payroll tax pause | Trump uses racist tropes to pitch fair housing repeal to 'suburban housewife' Biden commemorates anniversary of Charlottesville 'Unite the Right' rally: 'We are in a battle for the soul of our nation' MORE sparked pushback in Washington on Thursday after suggesting the 2020 elections could be delayed as he continues to undermine confidence in mail-in voting.

Trump, who is trailing presumptive Democratic nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenRon Johnson signals some GOP senators concerned about his Obama-era probes On The Money: Pelosi, Mnuchin talk but make no progress on ending stalemate | Trump grabs 'third rail' of politics with payroll tax pause | Trump uses racist tropes to pitch fair housing repeal to 'suburban housewife' Biden commemorates anniversary of Charlottesville 'Unite the Right' rally: 'We are in a battle for the soul of our nation' MORE in the polls, said over Twitter that mail-in voting would lead the 2020 election to be “the most inaccurate and fraudulent” in history. He asked if the election should be delayed “until people can properly, securely and safely vote.”

The Trump campaign had previously described Biden’s speculation about Trump wanting to delay the election as “incoherent, conspiracy theory ramblings of a lost candidate who is out of touch with reality.”

Democrats are outraged and top Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOn The Money: Pelosi, Mnuchin talk but make no progress on ending stalemate | Trump grabs 'third rail' of politics with payroll tax pause | Trump uses racist tropes to pitch fair housing repeal to 'suburban housewife' Pelosi, Mnuchin talk but make no progress on ending stalemate Democrats say White House isn't budging in coronavirus relief stalemate MORE (R-Ky.), quickly dismissed the idea.

The president has no authority to delay the election. Federal law requires the election be held on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November every four years. It would take an act of Congress to change that.

The president was rebuffed by his closest allies, including House GOP leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyWin by QAnon believer creates new headaches for House GOP GOP leaders go into attack mode against Harris Republicans introduce bill to defend universities conducting coronavirus research against hackers MORE (R-Calif.) and Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamRon Johnson signals some GOP senators concerned about his Obama-era probes Democrats ramp up warnings on Russian election meddling Hillicon Valley: Facebook removed over 22 million posts for hate speech in second quarter | Republicans introduce bill to defend universities against hackers targeting COVID-19 research | Facebook's Sandberg backs Harris as VP pick MORE (R-S.C.).

Rep. Rodney DavisRodney Lee DavisWatchdog calls for probe into Gohmert 'disregarding public health guidance' on COVID-19 Massie plans to donate plasma after testing positive for COVID-19 antibodies The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the Air Line Pilots Association - Key 48 hours loom as negotiators push for relief deal MORE (Ill.), the top Republican on the House committee that has jurisdiction over elections, said the November elections “should not be changed.”

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The president’s claims about mail-in voting also drew a brushback.

Many states have expanded access to mail-in balloting to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. The states have taken additional verification measures to ensure the integrity of their elections.

There is no evidence of widespread fraud in mail voting, although some states have been overwhelmed by the flood of ballots and the crush of administrative work, which has led to some counting delays.

The latest Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll survey finds that 70 percent of voters support a mail-in option, including 88 percent of Democrats, 71 percent of independents and 50 percent of Republicans.

Seventy-five percent of voters said they’re at least a little bit concerned about catching the coronavirus if vote-by-mail is not an option.

– Jonathan Easley

READ MORE:

Trump raises idea of delaying election, by Brett Samuels.

Republicans dismiss Trump proposal to delay elections, by Alexander Bolton.

FEC commissioner says Trump does not have the power to delay the elections, by Justin Wise.

 

FROM THE TRAIL:

Former President Obama on Thursday called the Senate filibuster rule a "Jim Crow relic" and said it should be ended to pass legislation that would restore a key provision of the Voting Rights Act. Obama made the remarks while delivering a eulogy for civil rights icon Rep. John LewisJohn LewisMore than 50 Confederate monuments have been removed since Floyd's death: report Trump rips Bill Maher as 'exhausted, gaunt and weak' Trump's personality is as much a problem as his performance MORE (D-Ga.), who died earlier this month at the age of 80. The John R. Lewis Voting Rights Act would make it harder for states to enact racially suspect voting restrictions. The Hill's John Kruzel reports.

A Trump campaign bus carrying Vice President Pence was involved in a minor accident Thursday in Pennsylvania. The accident, which a Trump campaign official described as a “minor fender bender,” happened on a sharp curve along a narrow stretch of road in Allegheny County. The Hill’s Brett Samuels reports.

Meanwhile, in Ohio, the Biden campaign released its first television ads of the cycle in the Buckeye State. While recently considered an uncompetitive state by Democrats since Trump’s victory in 2016, new polls show a tight race forming in Ohio. The Hill’s Tal Axelrod reports.

The New York Times on Thursday reported that former President Obama told donors ahead of the 2020 election that his top concerns include voter suppression and President Trump potentially casting doubt on the election’s legitimacy. The Hill’s Zack Budryk reports.

News of the Trump campaign’s decision to scale back its spending on television advertising in Michigan is indicative of the changes in the 2020 landscape. The Hill’s Niall Stanage reports.

Biden is casting himself as being firm on China as U.S.-Chinese relations decline, and as Trump paints Biden as weak, emphasizing his administration’s confrontational approach to relations with Beijing. The Hill’s Morgan Chalfant, Jonathan Easley, and Laura Kelly report.

POLLS:

MASON-DIXON- FLORIDA PRESIDENTIAL 

Biden: 50%

Trump: 46%

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FRANKLIN AND MARSHALL COLLEGE- PENNSYLVANIA PRESIDENTIAL 

Biden: 50%

Trump: 41%

 

PERSPECTIVES:

A.B. Stoddard: With VP pick, will Biden push or pause his party?

Franklin Foer: The tech giants are dangerous and Congress knows it.

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David Harsanyi: Biden was once a champion for life. Now he’s NARAL’s man.

Ian Milhiser: No, Trump cannot delay the election.

 

MARK YOUR CALENDARS:

Aug. 4:

Arizona primaries

Kansas primaries

Michigan primaries

Missouri primaries

Washington primaries

 

Aug. 6

Tennessee primaries

 

Aug. 8

Hawaii 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