Biden to resume campaign travel after Labor Day

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Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said Thursday he will resume campaign travel after Labor Day next month, making stops in some of the most competitive states in the country.

Biden, who has taken his campaign almost entirely online amid the coronavirus pandemic, said at a fundraiser that he plans on going to Arizona, Minnesota, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, all swing states this November. The former vice president maintained his events will be conducted in line with local health guidance regarding the pandemic.

“Here’s the deal. We plan on, without jeopardizing or violating state rules about how many people can in fact assemble,” he said, according to a pool report of his remarks. “So what we’re working on is how I get out. I’m going to be traveling throughout the country where I can do it consistent with the state rules about how many people can be assembled.”

Biden, known for his retail politicking skills, has done nearly all of his events from his home state of Delaware in the past few months, leading to some handwringing from Democrats that he’s not making enough stops in key states.

He’s so far made exceptions to his no-travel rule only to fly to Texas to visit with the family of George Floyd, a Black man who was killed by the police in Minneapolis in May, and to give a speech on race in Philadelphia.

The former vice president said that he will meet people in communities and local businesses and not hold “irresponsible rallies.”

“I’m a tactile politician. I really miss being able to, you know, grab hands, shake hands, you can’t do that now. But I can in fact appear beyond virtually, in person, in many of these places,” he told donors.

Renewed travel could help blunt a consistent line of attack from President Trump’s reelection campaign, which has seized on the fact that Biden has remained in Delaware to hit him over staying in “his basement.”

The Trump campaign has put up billboards around Wisconsin, the state that officially hosted the largely digital Democratic National Convention, asking “Where’s Joe?” and deploying Vice President Pence to the state hoping to narrow Biden’s lead there.

Donors have said that remaining in Delaware is not sustainable in the final sprint to Election Day, noting that Biden has much to gain from making stops in crucial states.

“He can and he should” hit the trail, Democratic strategist Christy Setzer told The Hill. “Not just to meet actual voters and hear their concerns face to face, but to generate local media attention.”

Tags 2020 2020 campaign 2020 election Arizona Coronavirus Delaware Donald Trump Joe Biden Minnesota Pennsylvania Wisconsin

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