47 days until the November 3 General Election and what do we know?

By Dave Andrusko

“The new national telephone and online survey finds the president with a 47% to 46% lead over Biden among Likely U.S. Voters. The race has narrowed over the past two weeks. Biden had a two-point lead last week, but that survey also marked the first time Trump had edged above 45% over the past two-and-a-half months. The new survey finds Trump with 80% support among Republicans and a nine-point lead among voters not affiliated with either major party. Rasmussen Reports

“As President Trump’s campaign barrels ahead with crowded rallies and in-person door-knocking, some Democratic officials in battleground states are warning that Joe Biden may not be doing enough to excite voters. …With some polls tightening since the beginning of the summer, they are warning him that virtual events may not be enough to excite voters, and urging him to intensify in-person outreach.

“The concern among these Democrats is whether, in closely fought states that may be won on the margins, the Biden campaign is engaging every possible voter with an affirmative case for his candidacy, when the other side simply has more traditional tactics they are willing to use…

“Compounding the challenge is an on-the-ground operation that was weak during the primary season and was slow to scale up in the general election. Strapped for cash after the primaries and uncertain about how to campaign amid a national lockdown, the Biden team initially refrained from greatly expanding its staff. It entered the summer without state directors in critical battlegrounds like Michigan, Florida and Pennsylvania, and efforts to establish local operations stretched deep into the summer.”  Sydney Ember, Katie Glueck, and Thomas Kaplan

*“I hope Vice President Biden will agree with me that the American people deserve this information before the election, not after. I call on Vice President Biden to release the list of names from which he would nominate to the Supreme Court, no later than September 30th.” — Sen. Charles Grassley, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee

*“The Complicated Importance Of Abortion To Trump Voters”—headline to story published by National Public Radio. Hint: it’s “complicated” because the author doesn’t understand single-issue voters.

And

* “On Election Day [2016] , that Blue Wall collapsed like a bad soufflé. Trump won virtually every state along it — flipping Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, and Wisconsin, and taking the electoral votes that put him in the White House. Four years later, Democrats, buoyed by electoral successes in the 2018 midterms, are talking about their wall again. But the bricks look as loosely cemented today as they were in 2016.” — Trump Again Will Outperform the Polls in Pennsylvania

 A few follow up thoughts…

Just because President Trump is ahead in the national polls, according to Rasmussen Reports, does not change what we’ve talked about repeatedly: the election will be decided by the competitive states (the “battleground states”). But this is a very good signal that the tide is changing–and not just in a handful of states.

*Speaking of panic, nary a day goes by that some reporter doesn’t complain [fear?]that Biden is sleepwalking through the election. They ignore that Biden is barely campaigning personally. There’s a reason for Biden’s “restraint,” as the New York Times amusingly put it, that everyone knows. Just as everyone knows there is a reason Biden will only take questions from pre-selected reporters.

No, Biden’s M.I.A. campaigning is not what they are most worried about. Rather it is the almost complete absence of a field operation—boots on the ground. Catch this from the New York Times:

“It feels like asymmetric warfare,” said Matt Munsey, the Democratic chair in Northampton County in eastern Pennsylvania, one of the counties Mr. Trump narrowly flipped in 2016, referring to Mr. Biden’s approach versus Mr. Trump’s.

*So why hasn’t Joe Biden copied what President Trump did with gusto? Announce a pool of candidates from which he would choose nominees to fill future Supreme Court vacancies. To ask the question is to answer it. They would be so far outside the judicial mainstream that Biden’s pretense of “moderation” would vanish like mist on a summer’s morning day. Biden must practice “restraint” on this, lest (like referring to the Harris-Biden ticket) he let the cat out of the bag.

*When NPR’s Danielle Kurtzeben writes about  “The Complicated Importance Of Abortion To Trump Voters,” what is she talking about? Here are her two opening sentences:

If President Trump wins Wisconsin again, he’ll have Republican stalwarts like Mary Ludwig to thank.

“I always vote Republican because I’m so against abortion”

The point she makes here and then tries to walk back is that single-issue voters will stick with President Trump even if they have qualms on other grounds. But that’s nothing new for pro-lifers. That’s been the case since 1980!

Just as single issue pro-lifers will disagree amongst themselves over a panoply of other issues but come together in voting for candidates who are against abortion, so, too, can pro-lifers disagreed with Presidents Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, and Donald Trump over a wide expanse of issues but cast their vote for them because they defend the defenseless.

Finally…

* Writing at Real Clear Politics, Charlie Gerow offers a very astute analysis of why President Trump “always outperforms the polls.” It’s not just the “silent Trump voter,” although that’s part of it. Nor is it the Trump campaign’s elaborate social media outreach, which is the classic [and massive] “under the radar” effort.

It’s his incredible “on the ground” grassroots game where they are reaching millions of American on a one-on-one personal basis. Retail politics “sells” at the local level. By taking a page out of what President Obama’s campaigns did so effectively, the Trump is demonstrating that this can be done at a national level, particularly in key battleground states.

See you tomorrow.

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