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This is the DNC’s Battleground Brief -- a weekly wrap-up of Trump’s broken promises and everything you need to know across the path to 270. 


NEVER FORGET. Yesterday, Americans of every background and ideology joined together to reflect on the profound loss inflicted on our country 19 years ago. As the DNC Veterans and Military Families Council wrote, “September 11th is a somber day when we all can wrap our arms around each other in support and love. It is a day when true heroes are memorialized: from first responders, to airline passengers, to the military, to so many more.”



“SACRIFICE” — NEW AD CALLS OUT TRUMP’S DISRESPECT FOR THE MILITARY. This week, the DNC War Room released a new 60-second television ad calling out Donald Trump’s long history of disparaging America’s service members. The ad is airing in key media markets with large veteran and military communities in Arizona, Florida, Maine, North Carolina, and Virginia. See how it’s playing in the battlegrounds:


In Arizona:

Arizona Republic: Democrats seize on Trump's attacks on Sen. John McCain in a play for battleground Arizona. “Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and national Democrats are aiming to use President Donald Trump’s continuing attacks on the late Sen. John McCain against Trump in Arizona, the 2020 battleground state McCain represented on Capitol Hill for more than three decades … ‘Trump attacked John McCain, tortured for years, as a loser who was not a war hero,’ the ad says. The one-minute ad is airing on cable TV in the Phoenix media market as part of a six-figure buy. The ad will be targeted to military families and veterans.”

In Florida:

Bay News 9: DNC Begins Airing Ad in Tampa Bay Area Market Attacking President Trump For Alleged Comments About Military. “The Democratic National Committee ‘War Room’ is releasing a new television ad today in the Tampa Bay area television market that blasts President Trump for what the DNC says is a ‘long record of disparaging comments about America’s service members.’”


In North Carolina:

Fayetteville Observer: “Nationally, Democrats clearly think the alleged Trump comments give them an opportunity. The Democratic National Committee has invested in a 60-second ad, ‘Sacrifice,’ that plays off Trump’s comments about the military and began airing Wednesday in the Fayetteville and Raleigh-Durham markets.”

In Virginia:

Blue Virginia: New DNC Ad Hits Trump Over His Disparaging Comments About Veterans’ Sacrifice. “The DNC War Room is releasing a new television ad today, ‘Sacrifice,’ that blasts Trump for his long record of disparaging comments about America’s service members. The 60-second spot will air on cable in the Roanoke-Lynchburg media market as part of a six-figure buy. Virginia has one of the highest concentrations of veterans in the United States.”


WORKING FAMILIES DESERVE BETTER. This week, Democrats across the battlegrounds continued calling out Trump’s cratering economy and failed record for working families. See for yourself:

  • (AZ) Arizona Democrats: “Following Labor Day, the Arizona Democratic Party hosted a press call with Arizona labor leaders and small business owners to highlight how Trump’s failed leadership has hurt workers and working families across Arizona. During the call, Arizona AFL-CIO Executive Director Fred Yamashita, State Senator Lupe Contreras (Senate District 19), and Tucson small business owner José A. Jiménez called out the devastating consequences of Trump’s failed leadership for Arizona workers, working families, and unions.”


  • (CO) Colorado Newsline: Renewed federal aid urged by Colorado Democrats, labor groups. “Joined by Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez, Colorado Democrats and union leaders on Wednesday warned of an urgent need for more federal relief as workers and local governments across the state continue to suffer economic hardship caused by the coronavirus pandemic. ‘Local governments and state governments desperately need the help, and the suffering is going to continue until they get it,’ Perez told reporters on a Sept. 9 press call.” 


  • (NV) Las Vegas Sun: Culinary Union to Trump: We will protect our families. “[U]nder President Donald Trump, working people have been overlooked and undervalued. Now, the economic fallout from Trump’s botched pandemic response has spiraled out of control. As the coronavirus spreads across our state, working people are bearing the brunt of both a public health disaster and an economic meltdown.” 


  • (NH) Nashua Telegraph: Failure to contain pandemic continues to wreak havoc for tourism workers. “The Trump administration could have taken decisive action to scale up widespread and continuous testing to help us contain the spread of COVID-19. Instead he downplayed the risks, even as he knew the consequences could be disastrous. Now, six months on, the pandemic is far from contained and the economic recovery has been mixed at best and catastrophic at worst. Tourism has declined precipitously — it’s hard to blame people for not wanting to plan family travel when a deadly airborne disease is raging — and that means that working people in the industry have been hung out to dry.”


  • Asian Journal: AAPI working families deserve better than Trump’s dangerous rhetoric, failing economy. “This week, as we came together to mark Labor Day, the consequences of Donald Trump’s failed presidency are still being felt in AAPI working families across the country. Trump’s disastrous coronavirus response has inflamed existing racial inequalities and economic disparities in AAPI communities. Thanks to Trump, AAPIs are being disproportionately impacted by a historic recession — and scapegoated for a pandemic that his own administration has utterly failed to contain.” 


“IT’S UNDENIABLE, AND IT’S INEXCUSABLE”: This week, we learned that Donald Trump admitted to purposefully downplaying the severity of COVID-19 to the American public. Across the country, Democrats are continuing to highlight the devastating consequences of that betrayal.

  • ABC News: Democrats rope in college students to hammer Trump on coronavirus response. “Democrats have found a new strategy to target holes in the Trump administration’s approach to coronavirus: give college students the mic. ‘I want to go to a game again; I want to be able to hang out with my friends again. And I want to attend classes and go to the library like normal again. But none of that can happen until we elect Biden and Harris this November,’ college student Cecelia McDermott said during a press conference held virtually by the Wisconsin Democratic Party on Friday morning.’”


  • (MI) Michigan Daily: Michigan, Ohio Democrats put rivalry aside to blame Trump for a fall without football. “At the press conference Friday, Dingell described her love for Michigan football and her disappointment in the canceled season. ‘There’s nothing better on a Saturday than a Big Ten football game,’ Dingell said. ‘Quite frankly, I like football more than I like politics and suddenly we don’t have a season this fall ... the way that COVID has been handled from the very beginning is determining what’s happening in this country.’”


  • (AZ) Arizona Republic: Woman who lost father to COVID-19 says Trump should resign after downplaying virus. “Kristin Urquiza — the former Maryvale resident who drew national attention for a searing obituary of her father that slammed politicians' handling of the COVID-19 pandemic — called for President Donald Trump to resign Wednesday after reports he'd purposely downplayed the severity of the novel coronavirus … ‘The president is on record lying,’ Urquiza, whose father died of COVID-19 in June, told The Arizona Republic. ‘It’s undeniable, and it’s inexcusable.’”


  • (NH) New Hampshire Union Leader: Denny Ruprecht: A year of college unlike any other. “While some readers of this piece may know me as a state representative, others know that I’m also still a college student … As college years ramp up around the globe, students in countries with comprehensive national strategies to contain coronavirus are in a much safer position to go back to school. The United States is different, however. This was a global crisis, but the severity of that crisis stands out in America. Why? Because we have a President of the United States in Donald Trump who was completely incapable of handling this crisis.”


HOLDING THEM ACCOUNTABLE. Wherever Trump, Pence, and their cronies go, Democrats are calling out their broken promises. Check it out:

In Florida:

Palm Beach Post: PBC Dems ahead of Jupiter visit: Trump's environmental record is a mess. “President Donald Trump is no friend of the environment, Florida Democrats said Tuesday as the president headed to Jupiter … ‘To come here in Palm Beach County and to claim a record of environmental advocacy and championing environmental issues is not only disingenuous,’ [state Sen. Bobby] Powell said. ‘It's disrespectful and it’s downright preposterous. We don't have time for another four years.’”


  • Florida Politics: Florida Democrats accuse Donald Trump of empty promises on environment ahead of Jupiter visit. “Several Florida Democrats are hammering Donald Trump‘s environmental record as the President heads to Florida’s southeast coast Tuesday … Jupiter Vice Mayor Ilan Kaufer used his remarks to advocate for Trump’s presidential opponent, former Vice President Joe Biden, arguing Biden would be better on the environment. ‘Vice President Biden understands the urgency of addressing these climate change impacts and sea level rise and understands the impact that it’s having on our economy and the well-being of our communities,’ Kaufer said.”


In Michigan:


NBC25: Whitmer says Trump is a “threat” ahead of Mich. visit, Democrats & Republicans respond. “Today, during Governor Whitmer's press conference, she said the greatest threat to America's people is the current President … During a separate press conference today where Democrats met to discuss the President's upcoming visit, Flint congressman Dan Kildee called Trump a ‘performer’ and said Trump ‘failed’ the American people with how he handled the pandemic.”


  • WNEM: Democrats respond to Trump's visit saying it's a health concern during COVID-19. “‘He’s willing to let people get COVID-19 if it somehow advances his political goals,’ said Congressman Dan Kildee. Kildee doesn’t think President Donald Trump should be holding large in-person rallies like the one scheduled at MBS airport on Sept. 10. He says Trump’s actions are too dangerous in a COVID-19 world. ‘The fact that you have to have people out there at MBS, and from what I’ve heard, many of them, maybe most of them, not wearing any masks is an indication of that same fact.’”


  • ABC 12: Michigan Democrats concerned about COVID-19 spreading at Trump Rally. “‘He knew that coronavirus was deadly. He knew that it spread quickly. He understood the risks, and by his own admission, he tried to minimize those risks. That caused many Americans to die that didn’t have to, so his visit comes at a very important time where the President has some explaining to do,’ Congressman Dan Kildee said during a phone interview with ABC12.”


In Minnesota:


Associated Press: Trump, Biden surrogates bring campaign messages to Minnesota. “‘We have the coronavirus pandemic, we have the economic collapse and we have a civil rights pandemic and what they all have in common is Donald Trump adding gasoline to the fire, inciting fear, sowing chaos, pitting Americans against each other,’ said Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez.”


  • CBS 3 Duluth: Group gathers in opposition to Trump Jr.’s Duluth visit. “Minnesota's DFL party held a virtual meeting Wednesday, criticizing the Trump administration. State Representative Liz Olson said Trump Jr.’s visit was an effort to distract from real issues. ‘I hope it's a waste of their time to come here and spread their divisive narrative amongst a group of people that really aren't buying it,’ Olson said. ‘It's an attempt to divide us.’”


  • KIMT: Minnesota DFL Party Responds To Donald Trump Jr.’s Visit To Duluth. “Minnesota DFL Party Chairman Ken Martin calls Trump Jr.’s visit a distraction from his father’s failed response to the pandemic. ‘It doesn't matter how many times Trump, Pence, or their family members come to Minnesota,’ Martin said, ‘it will not change the fact that Donald Trump has failed Minnesotans plain and simple.’”


In Nebraska: 


Omaha World-Herald: “The Democratic National Committee, in a statement, attacked Lara Trump’s visit as a ‘transparent attempt to distract from the reality of Trump’s toxic record in Nebraska.’ Nebraska Democratic Party Chairwoman Jane Kleeb echoed that, saying the president failed to respond appropriately to the coronavirus, leaving a wounded economy.”


In Nevada:


Associated Press: “State Democratic Party spokeswoman Madison Mundy said Trump and his allies are trying to turn a public health crisis into a partisan issue. ‘If Trump had offered leadership and a clear national strategy to contain COVID-19 months ago, instead of intentionally downplaying the virus, these emergency directives would not be necessary and thousands of Americans would still be alive,’ Mundy said in a statement Thursday.” 


  • Las Vegas Review-Journal: “‘The fact that Donald Trump was even considering holding these unsafe events in the midst of a global pandemic is just the latest example of his poor judgment and complete disregard for Nevadans’ public health and safety,’ said Madison Mundy, spokeswoman for the Nevada State Democratic Party. ‘The state is currently reeling from a pandemic exacerbated by Trump’s disastrous coronavirus response. Limitations on in-person gatherings in Nevada were established to fill the void in leadership created by Trump. Thanks to emergency directives implemented by state leadership, great progress has been made in controlling deadly outbreaks. Trump is only the victim of his own incompetence.’”


  • KLAS: “‘Once again, Trump and his allies are making Nevada the target of their lies and deceit, turning a public health crisis into a partisan issue. While Trump, his campaign and the Nevada GOP seek a scapegoat, the truth is, they only have Trump to blame.’” 


In North Carolina:


Winston-Salem Journal: N.C. Dems critical of Trump's leadership on pandemic. “A trio of current and former North Carolina Democratic women leaders criticized President Donald Trump ahead of his stump speech in Winston-Salem, saying the president offered little leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic and hasn't done enough to help working families amid the recession and racial unrest. Former Gov. Bev Perdue was joined by N.C. Rep. Evelyn Terry, Forsyth, and Kathy Manning, the Democratic candidate for the revamped 6th Congressional District”


  • Newsweek: “The state chapter of the Democratic Party criticized the in-person event, stating it would pose health concerns due to the coronavirus pandemic. ‘Just as he spreads misinformation about phony coronavirus treatments and ignores our public health experts, holding a full-blown, in-person rally is a dangerous dereliction of Donald Trump’s responsibility to protect public health,’ Austin Cook, communications director of the North Carolina Democratic Party, said in a statement.”


In Ohio:


Columbus Dispatch: “Before Donald Trump Jr.‘s appearance in Lima, Ohio Democrats continued to highlight what they say are the president’s broken promises to Ohio, including the shuttering of General Motors’ Lordstown assembly plant, an economic engine for the Youngstown area. ‘Donald Trump promised to bring jobs back to Ohio, then he promised that COVID-19 was ‘totally under control,’’ Ohio Democratic Party Chairman David Pepper said in a prepared statement. ‘Instead, as a result of his incompetence and chaotic failure of leadership, Trump has broken both promises and left working Ohioans to pick up the pieces.’”


In Pennsylvania:


Beaver County Times: Trump failed Beaver County workers, families. “Communities like Beaver County trusted [Trump] to keep his promises, bring jobs back to our region, and get our economy booming again. But here we are four years later and the truth is, we are worse off than before. And today, Mike Pence is coming to town to try and tell Beaver County workers that he and Trump are on our side. Nothing could be farther from the truth.”


  • Beaver County Times: Local Democrats blast Trump ahead of Pence visit. “Beaver County Democrats lambasted President Donald Trump’s ‘job-killing’ policies and COVID-19 response ahead of Vice President Mike Pence’s latest visit to western Pennsylvania. Terri Mitko, Beaver County Democratic Party chairwoman, and Bob Williams, a Brighton Township resident and steelworker challenging state Rep. Josh Kail, joined Senate Democratic Leader Jay Costa of Allegheny County on a Wednesday call to address state unemployment numbers and manufacturing decline during the Trump presidency.”


  • KDKA: Pennsylvania Democrats Question Trump-Pence ‘Love Affair’ With Beaver Co. “Mitko says Beaver County Democrats won’t be fooled again and even some Republicans are switching to Joe Biden. ‘People who are fed up with what’s going on in the Republican Party, particularly with the politics there, with the state of the economy in Beaver County and with the shenanigans that are going on in the White House,’ Mitko said.”


  • WTAE: PA Democrats and Steelworkers Union president say Trump has failed to deliver on promises. “As Vice President Mike Pence headlined a ‘Workers for Trump’ event in Beaver County, Pennsylvania Democratic leaders charged President Donald Trump has failed to deliver on his promises here ... ‘He (Trump) had promised he was going to bring back steel mills and we would be stronger than ever, and that just has dropped,’ said Bob Williams, a steelworker who is running as a Democrat for a seat in the Pennsylvania State House.”


In Virginia:


Prince William Times: We deserve a president who keeps his promises to veterans. “Now Trump is running for president again, making the same claims that no one’s done more for our troops than him. And when Vice President Mike Pence visits VMI this week, he’ll probably say the same. But behind those boasts are missing checks and broken promises to our nation’s veterans and military families. In fact, he regards those who’ve given their lives for our country as ‘suckers’ and ‘losers.’”

  • WSLS: Virginia Democrats criticize Vice President's VMI visit. “The vice president’s trip to VMI drew criticism from some leading Democrats in Virginia. Several of them, including VMI graduate and delegate Jennifer Carroll Foy, voiced their concerns about Pence’s visit. They believe his stop in Lexington is a hollow salute to the military that distracts from his administration’s issues … ‘Vice President Mike Pence is using Virginia Military Institute as a backdrop to try to repair Trump’s reputation and the damage that he’s done from his most recent attacks on our men and women in uniform.’”


In Wisconsin:


News 8000: WI union leaders say Trump administration has betrayed working Wisconsinites. “They say the President has betrayed working Wisconsinites and that promises have not been kept. AFSCME Council 32 representative Valerie Landowski said the administration’s response to COVID-19 has failed Wisconsin. ‘It’s wreaked havoc on Wisconsin families. We aren’t getting the PPE we need in our facilities. We’ve seen thousands of layoffs and furloughed employees. This has created an economic downturn that will destroy the economy of Wisconsin and nationally for years to come,’ Landowski said.”


KEEPING OUR FOOT ON THE GAS: While Republicans hypocritically scramble to recover from Trump’s attacks on vote-by-mail, Democrats are continuing to expand our advantage across the battlegrounds.

Politico: Democrats build big edge in early voting. “Democrats are amassing an enormous lead in early voting, alarming Republicans who worry they’ll need to orchestrate a huge Election Day turnout during a deadly coronavirus outbreak to answer the surge.”

  • “The Democratic dominance spreads across an array of battleground states, according to absentee ballot request data compiled by state election authorities and analyzed by Democratic and Republican data experts. In North Carolina and Pennsylvania, Democrats have a roughly three-to-one advantage over Republicans in absentee ballot requests. In Florida — a must-win for President Donald Trump — the Democratic lead stands at more than 700,000 ballot requests, while the party also leads in New Hampshire, Ohio and Iowa.”


  • “Even more concerning for Republicans, Democrats who didn't vote in 2016 are requesting 2020 ballots at higher rates than their GOP counterparts. The most striking example is Pennsylvania, where nearly 175,000 Democrats who sat out the last race have requested ballots, more than double the number of Republicans, according to an analysis of voter rolls by the Democratic firm TargetSmart.”


Florida Politics: Florida Democrats grow mail ballot enrollment edge to more than 700,000. “More than 700,000 more Democrats in Florida requested absentee ballots than Republicans ahead of the presidential election. The Florida Democratic Party announced Friday that over 2.22 million Democrats registered to vote by mail. That expands an enrollment advantage to 717,000 over Republicans. ‘Our volunteers, partner organizations and the coordinated campaign team have worked tirelessly to educate Democrats about vote-by-mail, and with 43 days until the vote-by-mail enrollment deadline we are excited to see this margin continue to grow,’ said Terrie Rizzo, Florida Democratic Party chair.”

ON THE GROUND: 52 DAYS OUT, TRUMP CONTINUES REPELLING KEY VOTERS. From farms to the suburbs, Trump continues to drive away the voters he needs to reach 270. Check out the battleground trends playing out in the final weeks before Election Day: 

Politico: Harvest of shame: Farmworkers face coronavirus disaster. “Six months into the pandemic, according to a POLITICO analysis, these workers appear to be victims of the worst of the Covid-19 crisis. For several weeks, many of the places that grow the nation’s fruits and vegetables have seen disproportionately high rates of coronavirus cases — a national trend that, as harvest season advances in many states, threatens already vulnerable farmworkers, their communities and the places they work.”

  • Valdosta Daily Times: Survey: 82% of farmers suffered financial loss due to COVID-19. “Georgia farmers have suffered substantial financial losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic … A new impact study released this month by the University of Georgia Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development shows that 82% of farmers have seen revenue loss — those predicting an annual loss on average expected to be short nearly $50,000.”


Arizona Republic: ‘It's not what Christ taught’: How voters of faith are viewing Trump and Biden in Arizona. “[Former] state Sen. Bob Worsley, a Republican, is working alongside other members of the LDS church to help elect Biden. He wrote a letter condemning Trump, signed onto by 200 members of his church, writing Trump was the ‘antithesis’ of the church’s teachings. ‘Anger and fear is divisive, it doesn’t drive us together, it drives us apart,’ he said. ‘And it’s not what Christ taught when he was here. We’re to love our neighbor, love our neighbors, love our enemies, not be angry.’”

Philly Inquirer: The Philly suburbs aren’t the only suburbs where Democrats are on the rise in Pennsylvania. “Suburban voters are getting a lot of attention in 2020. Democrats are hoping big turnout for Joe Biden in the suburbs, where Donald Trump’s presidency has soured even Republicans on their party, could overcome the president’s growing advantage in rural areas and small towns. Trump is hoping to revive his dwindling suburban support with a law-and-order message. In Pennsylvania, the Philadelphia suburbs have become an epicenter of the Democratic Party. But the suburbs of central Pennsylvania are also seeing smaller gains, which could have an important impact in November and signal where Democrats can expand their party in the years to come.”

YOUR WEEKEND READING. Donald Trump’s attacks on U.S. service members are continuing to reverberate across the country. See how veterans and military families are responding:



Make sure to follow the DNC’s War Room (@DNCWarRoom) to get real-time updates on Trump’s abuses of power and broken promises.

-The DNC Comms Team

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