Now, with only four days to go until the election, they’ll shift their focus to the Midwest as they criss-cross paths in the industrial states that helped put Trump in the Oval Office four years ago.
They’ll both spend a few hours in Minnesota – Trump in Rochester and Biden in St. Paul – along with stops in Wisconsin – the president in Green Bay and his Democratic rival in Milwaukee.
President Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden will go head-to-head in Minnesota and Wisconsin on Friday after holding dueling rallies in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday
Trump became the first Republican presidential candidate in more than 20 years to win Wisconsin when he carried it in 2016 – a shocking victory that left Democrats stunned. The state was part of a ‘blue wall’ of industrial Midwest states for Democrats. But Trump also flipped two other ‘blue wall’ states: Pennsylvania and Michigan.
All three states he’s fighting to keep again.
The two men are campaigning in Wisconsin as coronavirus cases hit new levels. Wisconsin is third in the nation in per capita COVID cases. It logged single-day records this week for both new COVID cases and deaths.
Complicating the contest in Wisconsin could be the Monday’s decision from the Supreme Court, which effectively barred the counting of mail-in ballots received after Election Day even if post marked by November 3.
It raises the question of how many late-arriving votes will be disqualified.
Joe Biden told reporters he wasn’t concerned about losing Minnesota, making his remarks at an airport in Delaware before leaving on a three-state campaign swing
President Trump took to Twitter to complain about Minnesota officials capping his Friday event at 250 people due to coronavirus restrictions
Meanwhile, the two contenders will also be in Minnesota – a state a Republican presidential candidate hasn’t carried in over 20 years. Richard Nixon was the last to do so in 1972.
But Trump lost the state by less than two points in 2016 and, by campaigning there, he’s forcing Biden to spend time in the state.
Biden said he wasn’t concerned about losing the state.
‘No I’m not concerned,’ he told reporters in Delaware as he prepared to depart on Friday’s three-state campaign swing. ‘We’re gonna be in Iowa, we’re gonna be in Wisconsin, so I thought I’d stop in Minnesota. I don’t take anything for granted. we’re gonna work for every single vote up til the last minute.’
The Trump campaign was forced to reconfigure their campaign plans for Friday’s event when Minnesota officials capped attendance at 250 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
They are now calling it a ‘MAGA Peaceful Protest’ – Trump has complained that protests are allowed in cities while officials try to limit his rally attendance due to the virus. He has joked he will call his rallies ‘peaceful protests’ so they can have larger numbers.
Trump’s event was originally planned at Rochester International Airport but it was then moved to McNeilus Steel, a private company in nearby Dodge Center, in order to accommodate a larger crowd.
The company was predicting 25,000 people would attend.
However, Democratic Gov. Tim Walz has limited gatherings to 250 people. State Attorney General Keith Ellison had asked the campaign for a COVID-readiness plan and said he did not receive a response.
Late Thursday night the event was shifted back to the airport and the Trump campaign said only the first 250 people would be let inside.
‘Without question, Minnesota Democrats had hoped that the President would simply cancel the event, but he will not allow partisan politicians to deprive people of their First Amendment rights to gather peacefully to hear directly from the President of the United States,’ the Trump campaign said in a statement.
First lady Melania Trump made a rare campaign appearance with President Trump in Tampa, Florida, on Thursday
The entire Democratic ticket – Joe and Jill Biden along with Kamala Harris and Doug Emhoff – will barnstorm Pennsylvania on Monday
The Trump campaign is also fighting hard for Pennsylvania: Melania Trump was there Tuesday and Ivanka Trump was there on Wednesday
President Trump weighed in during a 2 am tweet storm, complaining that ‘We were planning for as many as 25,000 people in Minnesota. Now the Governor, at the last moment, will only allow the first 250 people to attend.’
Biden’s event in the state – a drive in rally similar to his other stops – will follow COVID restrictions.
The Democratic nominee held a drive-in rally in Tampa on Thursday – that got cut short when a rain storm swept in and drenched the candidate – after Trump held an outdoor rally in the city a few hours earlier.
First lady Melania Trump joined the president in his appeal to Florida voters, at a packed rally with few masks and little social distancing. It was so hot fire trucks sprayed water on the crowd and several people fainted.
Meanwhile, the Biden campaign revealed its plans to wrap up the campaign – the entire ticket will spend Monday barnstorming the must-win state of Pennsylvania.
Joe Biden, Jill Biden, Kamala Harris, and Doug Emhoff will ‘barnstorm Pennsylvania and fan out across all four corners of the state,’ the campaign said in a statement.
Biden will also campaign in Philadelphia on Sunday.
Both sides are campaigning hard to win Pennsylvania’s 20 electoral votes. Trump wants to repeat his 2016 win and Biden wants to win the state he was born in.
Trump will hold three rallies in Pennsylvania on Saturday – in Bucks County, Reading, and Butler. He’s expected to make another stop in the state before Election Day. And he held three rallies in the state on Monday.
The president, in 2016, became the first Republican in more than 20 years to win Pennsylvania although his margin of victory was one point.
Biden leads by four points in the RealClearPolitics average of polls in the state.
The Trump campaign is also using an all-hands on deck approach for Pennsylvania.
First lady Melania Trump made a rare campaign appearance there on Tuesday. And first daughter Ivanka Trump was there on Wednesday.
Additionally on Friday, President Trump will campaign in Michigan while Biden makes a stop in Iowa.